Statement by the Catholic Bishops of Montana on the Syrian Refugee Crisis

We, the Roman Catholic Bishops of Montana, write to express our solidarity with all victims of persecution and violence across the globe. Recent terrorist attacks serve as a reminder that terrorism is a grave threat and that all people of good will must stand together against such deplorable acts. The humanitarian crisis gripping Syria calls us to reflect on the fact that we are part of a global family and are obligated to help our innocent brothers and sisters as they desperately flee the brutality and oppression that threatens their very lives.

At this crucial moment, it is essential that we heed the call of Pope Francis to guard against a culture of indifference that dehumanizes those on the margins of society and regards them as problems or inconveniences. We must not surrender to a spirit of hopelessness that would tempt us to see a problem too great and without a remedy.

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and state Catholic Conferences across the country have called for our nation to welcome those fleeing persecution in other countries, including refugees seeking asylum from Syria. We join our voices with theirs and strongly support these efforts believing that with proper screening of our refugee applicants and the infusion of state and federal dollars required to provide the necessary infrastructure to support refugee resettlement, we can provide for this most vulnerable population while continuing to ensure our own security. 

Consistent with our history and mission, the Catholic Church in Montana will seek ways to assist incoming refugees and those who are in desperate need of assistance. As a nation, we must also recommit ourselves to do what we can to build peace in Syria so that those who flee today will tomorrow find a safe and secure home to which they can return.

We urge all Montanans to consider the plight of these refugees with an open heart, and learn more about the rigorous screening process potential refugees must undergo in order to resettle in our country. We also implore all persons of faith to pray that our lawmakers be filled with wisdom and prudence as they deliberate and seek a course that upholds the dignity of every human person and advances the common good.


Most Rev. George Leo Thomas                   Most Rev. Michael W. Warfel            

Bishop of Helena                                             Bishop of Great Falls-Billings

Bishops' Statement Regarding Planned Parenthood

In his recent Encyclical letter, Laudato Si’, Pope Francis asserted that because “…everything is interrelated, concern for the protection of nature is also incompatible with the justification of abortion. How can we genuinely teach the importance of concern for other vulnerable beings, however troublesome or inconvenient they may be,” wrote the Pope, “if we fail to protect a human embryo, even when its presence is uncomfortable and creates difficulties?” (#120)
Pope Francis has called abortion the product of a “widespread mentality of profit, the throwaway culture, which has today enslaved the hearts and minds of so many.” The recent news stories concerning Planned Parenthood direct our attention to two larger issues involving many institutions in our society. The first is abortion itself: a direct attack on human life in its most vulnerable condition. The second is the now standard practice of obtaining fetal organs and tissues through abortion. Both actions fail to respect the humanity and dignity of human
As Catholic Bishops of Montana, we urge all people to respect the value and dignity of all human life, even at its earliest phase of life. We urge all people to work together to protect those unable to speak for themselves, born or soon to be born.

Most Rev. George Leo Thomas
Bishop of Helena

Most Rev. Michael W. Warfel
Bishop of Great Falls-Billings


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AlertNetwork Newsletter

Each Friday during the legislative sesssion, the Catholic Conference sends out an electronic newsletter to all those who have joined the Alert Network. To receive a hard copy of the newsletter, simply call the Conference at 442-5761 to submit your name and mailing address.

The newsletter summarizes the weeks' events, highlights the bills the Conference is actively working on or is following, lists the hearings of interest scheduled for the upcoming week and provides contact information for the legislators.  If there is an issue the Conference needs assistance with, a Call to Action Alert is sent out.  The Alert will identify the bill, the committee members and include contact information.

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