For the past 128 years, the Catholic Church in the United States has fostered evangelization among African and Native American peoples through the annual Black and Indian Mission Collection. With the help of our generous donors. this collection has established and then supported schools; funded religious education programs; and sponsored seminarians throughout the entire country. We, in the Brooklyn Diocese, have directly benefited from this special collection. This year, 30 parishes. schools and apostolates in Brooklyn and Queens have received funding for activities such as an innovative program of the Haitian Apostolate to provide a CD of finely crafted homilies in Haitian Creole for those who would be unable to hear the Word in their native tongue; and high school retreats; and door-to-door evangelization. These grants aredistributed in our Diocese by a committee of Priests and Deacons who know the local situation and can direct the funds where they are most needed. As a Diocese with many new immigrants from Africa and the Caribbean, we are particularly aware of the challenges facing individual immigrants and the parishes which serve them. There are many other groups that seek to evangelize our new neighbors; your generosity will allow us to compete and fulfill our Church mission.
The Church in Brooklyn and Queens has always responded to the needs of the faithful with holiness and creativity. Monsignor Bernard Quinn, founding Pastor of S1. Peter Claver Church, worked so effectively in the African American Community within our Diocese. Through the Grace of God, we have recently begun the process for hi s Cause for Canonization. Let us each seek to follow in his footsteps.
Throughout our Country, the Black and Indian Mission Collection will be taken up on February 16 and 17, the first weekend of Lent. I ask everyone to be as charitable as your means will allow.
Thanking you in advance for your generous donation, and with an assurance of my continued remembrance of you in prayer and in the celebration of the Eucharist, I am Sincerely in Christ,
Most Reverend Nicholas DiMarzio Ph.D., D.D.
Bishop of Brooklyn