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Insights: State of the State; Coronavirus Concerns

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February 21, 2020

Governor Focuses on Homelessness in State of the State


Breaking tradition, Governor Gavin Newsom spent almost his entire State of the State address this week focusing on the homeless epidemic in California and urging the Legislature to find a solution.

In his speech, the Governor called the current environment a ‘disgrace’ and asked the Legislature to pass laws that would roll back regulations that stall progress on new housing for the homeless and give authorities more leeway in insisting on treatment for the mentally ill.

“The state of California can no longer treat homelessness and housing insecurity as someone else’s problem, buried below other priorities that are much easier to win or better-suited for soundbites,” said Governor Newsom.

The Governor’s proposed budget allocates $750 million in spending to assist in the homeless situation, though the proposal is being widely criticized for not laying out specifics for that spending.

Read the Governor’s State of the State speech here. For an annotated version by the nonpartisan news source CalMatters, click here.


Join Us at the LA Religious Education Congress this Weekend

Every year, around 40,000 Catholics gather in southern California for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles’ Religious Education Congress.  Workshops and worships services featuring prominent Catholic leaders and writers create a collective atmosphere of prayer, learning and discernment.

Staff from the California Catholic Conference (CCC) attend to promote membership in the Catholic Legislative Network (Booth #149) and our prison chaplain activities (Booth #249).

We are introducing a new format this year.  Stop by to find out how much you know about Catholic social teaching with our new electronic quiz.  See if you make the leader board for the weekend.

We’re also going to be celebrating the fifth anniversary of Laudato Si with a special gift for new members to the Catholic Legislative Network.  If you know someone who is not a member of the Network yet, advise them to stop by Booth #149 for a special gift when they sign up.

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USCCB Encourages Collaboration Against Coronavirus

The USCCB is applauding the Holy See and U.S. government for their contributions against the coronavirus and is encouraging widespread collaboration against the virus in a statement released this week:

“As communities and public health officials respond to the outbreak of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in China and closely monitor its presence and progression in other parts of the world, we join in solidarity and prayer for those impacted or working to treat those infected by the disease. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Catholic Relief Services, and the Catholic Health Association of the United States hope that governments will work together in partnership to improve all nations’ capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to this virus.

“The Catholic Church in the United States stands in solidarity with those affected by the coronavirus and their families, health workers who are valiantly trying to diagnose and treat patients, and those under quarantine awaiting results of their screening for the virus. We offer our prayers for healing and support those organizations, both domestic and international, working to provide medical supplies and assistance to address this serious risk to public health.



Celebrate Lent with Fasting and Giving

Lent is a favourable season for opening the doors to all those in need and recognizing in them the face of Christ."  -- Pope Francis

The Lenten season begins on Ash Wednesday, February 26 this year and runs until the Triduum begins on Holy Thursday. During Lent, we are asked to devote ourselves to seeking the Lord in prayer and reading Scripture, to service by giving alms, and to practice self-control through fasting.

CRS Rice Bowl is one way Catholics can enhance their Lenten fasting practice by giving up meals and donating the cost of those meals to Catholic Relief Services to help those who do not have enough to eat.

Each year, Lenten alms donated through CRS Rice Bowl support the work of CRS in roughly 45 different countries 25 percent of all donations to CRS Rice Bowl stay in the local diocese, supporting hunger and poverty alleviation efforts. Since its inception in 1975, CRS Rice Bowl has raised nearly $300 million.

Click here to order materials for CRS Rice Bowl in both English and Spanish.


February 21, 2020

Vol. 13, No. 6

En Español