December 1, World AIDS Day, Christians around the world will unite in prayer. This year, Catholics throughout the United States will also be asked to join in on the occasion, which happens to lie on the first Sunday of Advent.
The Bishops Committee for Hispanic Affairs and for African American Catholics, along with the Episcopal Moderator for the National Catholic AIDS Network came together in a letter calling upon Catholics to "Live and Let Live," the theme for this year's observance. Homilies, prayers and activities for the day that will address the issues of stigma and discrimination against those living with AIDs.
"Stigma and discrimination are daily facts of life, and are obstacles to addressing the real issues of the disease," says Ronaldo Cruz, Director and Secretariat for Hispanic Affairs.
"Both the USCCB (U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops) Committees on Hispanic Affairs and Committee for African American Catholics have made serious efforts to develop theologically and culturally appropriate resources that show compassion to people living with HIV/AIDS," says Beverly Carroll, Director and USCCB Secretariat for African American Catholics.
By Pauline J.