Autry Hallett places a turkey in the bag of a food pantry visitor on Monday behind the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Hartford.
I want to make this last recording about the papal visit. Having arrived home this morning, I am at work. We just finished a priests’ council meeting...
All the local TV outlets showed up at St Thomas Seminary on Sept. 25 to chronicle the start of the Archdiocese of Hartford's pilgrimage to the papal v...
I am just sitting on our Amtrak Acela train, I and about 80 other bishops. We are on our way now to Philadelphia. This morning at the hotel, after I c...
This afternoon, on a very beautiful fall afternoon and evening, we celebrated Mass with Pope Francis on the grounds of the National Shrine of the Imma...
Statement from Archbishop Leonard P. Blair (November 20, 2015)
The new film “Spotlight” recounts a deeply painful and pivotal chapter in the history of the Catholic Church in the United States, when in 2002 the Boston Globe investigated and reported on sexual abuse by clergy and the failures of Bishops in the face of such reprehensible acts.
We recognize the important role of the journalists who brought this issue to light. It prompted a call-to-action, leading to major Church reforms and meaningful change. We also acknowledge the scores of people at the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and others who worked diligently with the Bishops to create the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, published in June 2002.
Since the inception of the Charter 14 years ago, the Archdiocese of Hartford has remained true to its principles. The Archdiocese has developed and upheld a culture of “zero tolerance” of sexual abuse, with clearly defined legal and pastoral consequences for offenders should abuse of any form take place.
Our overriding goal is to create a safe, protective environment for children, young people and others who might be vulnerable. This goal is supported by mandatory background checks for all personnel who come in contact with a minor or vulnerable adult. To ensure that the Charter and its conduct codes are followed, we willingly comply with an annual audit overseen by an independent, unbiased entity. Additionally, we require sexual abuse awareness training for all Archdiocesan employees, as well as those who teach Catholic school or a parish religious formation program. We thank the many clergy, lay faithful, religious and professionals involved in developing and implementing training. The Archdiocese of Hartford welcomes Pope Francis’ Papal Commission, which the Holy Father created in 2014 to advise him on additional reform measures.
The Catholic Church has asked, and continues to ask, for forgiveness from those whose sacred trust was violated through the crime of sexual abuse of minors, and who have endured emotional and physical pain because adequate safeguards were not in place or not enforced. The Church is profoundly sorry for the damage that was wrought on young people and their families.
More information about the protocols and programs run by the Archdiocese of Hartford to protect the faithful and promote healing and reconciliation may be found through the Office of Safe Environment.
From the Most Reverend Leonard P. Blair, (November 18, 2015)
Archbishop of Hartford
I write this reflection as Paris’ death toll nears 130 people – mostly young concert-goers, soccer fans and Parisians who thought they were going to enjoy Friday night out. Instead, they died as innocent victims at the hands of militant extremists, and France experienced the deadliest violence to strike the country since World War II, or what some journalists have called France’s version of 9/11.
How does the world make sense of the atrocities when the ‘City of Light’ faces such darkness? Moreover, how do we as Christians respond to the murderous hate and hideous carnage of terrorism?
First, let us pray for our brothers and sisters who died senselessly and tragically, and for their families now grieving and grappling with emotions ranging from sorrow to anger to fear. Let us send our loving light to those who have been physically injured and acknowledge the medical professionals who helped in their rescue and care. Let’s include in our intercessions prayers for all those around the world who are the victims of terrorism, violence and religious persecution.
As Catholics we firmly believe that acts of terrorism and violence never serve to praise God.
We honor our heavenly Father and each other whenever we choose to remain faithful, loving agents of peace. Even as we do what is necessary to defend ourselves and others, we have to remember Our Lord’s words: “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven.” And we certainly cannot judge all refugees from Syria, who are themselves the victims of terror, on the basis of some individual acts.
As an Archdiocesan family of faith, may we call upon the bond of humanity and help raise Paris up to the Light of God’s unconditional love and mercy. To the people of France, please know that we mourn with you and hold dear the lives lost from many countries, including our own.