“ARISE” is the theme of this year’s Annual Catholic Appeal.
My dear friends, in this past year often our hearts were troubled, our families threatened, and our neighbors and friends have suffered at the hands of this invisible menace in our midst. Yet we have come together in hope and encouragement for one another and for our sisters and brothers in need, and we have made the Lord’s presence real to them and to one another. And for that, my friends, I am deeply grateful.
But now we’ve come to a moment when we can dare to hope that we begin to see the first lights of a new dawn. And so, as I’ve prayed and continue to pray for you and for your loved ones and for the mission of our Church, there is a single word that the Lord has put on my heart, and that word is, “Arise.”
“Arise,” you and I, with a renewed sense of encouragement and hope that God’s love is always present to us, even in the darkest hours. Arise in solidarity as sisters and brothers to support one another, to allow each other to move forward, to face whatever challenges we face– personal, familial, or communal; and “Arise” to not leave anyone behind, most especially those who are suffering, have lost homes, have lost jobs, and even have lost hope.
I come to you, my friends, this day to ask that you rise with the Lord and with me to the challenge before us by continuing your generous support for the programs and ministries that address the needs of our neighbors and friends, and those in our midst whom this pandemic has ravaged so deeply. We arise by standing together in prayerful hope to strengthen the mission of the Church which we form, a people of the light in darkness, a people of hope despite challenge.
I thank you for all that you have done this past year, and I come again humbly and yet boldly to ask for your generous support to this year’s Arise, Annual Catholic Appeal so that we can welcome the light of this dawn that will grow in our midst, risen with the Lord to meet the challenge before us.
Most Reverend Frank J. Caggiano
Bishop of Bridgeport
Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. – James 1:17