Pray for California!
San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone held three Eucharistic processions on Sun., Sept. 20, in response to the city’s discriminatory Mass restrictions.
The processions began at St. Anthony, St. Patrick, and Star of the Sea Catholic Churches. Each proceeded to the United Nations Plaza and concluded at the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption.
Archbishop Cordileone, along with several additional priests, celebrated multiple outdoor Masses simultaneously in front of the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption.
A diocesan spokesperson said approximately 1500 people attended.
The City of San Francisco announced that houses of worship may host 50 people outdoors, but only one person may pray inside a church at a time. The Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption holds up to 2500 people.
However, retail shops, gyms, and other businesses have reopened at a much greater capacity than houses of worship.
“One person at a time in this great Cathedral to pray? What an insult. This is a mockery. They are mocking you, and even worse, they are mocking God,” Abp. Cordileone said in his homily during Sunday’s “Free the Mass” protest.
“Faith is still alive and well, but people are hurting,” he added in a video compiled excerpts from the protest.
“I want the people to know that our people are hurting because they cannot come to church, they cannot receive the sacraments, they cannot exercise their natural right protected by the First Amendment: to worship without suffering punishment from our city.”
Here’s the “Free the Mass” video and procession below:
Here’s more of what Archbishop Cordileone said:
“Now in San Francisco, all of us here are being put at the end of the line.
“No matter how rich or poor, no matter whether newly arrived or from families that have been here for many generations, it is our Catholic faith that unites us, and it is because of our Catholic faith that we are being put at the end of the line.”
“Months ago, we submitted a safety plan to the city, including masks and social distancing. Just like indoor retail stores did. The city said yes to indoor retail, but we Catholics are still waiting to hear back.
“The city continues to place unrealistic and suffocating restrictions on our natural and constitutional right to worship.”
“We go to the end of the line in the sense of humbly serving others, but that doesn’t mean we accept injustice.”
“So we fight for justice, but we don’t fight like the world fights where they’re beating each other up to get their own way and have dominion over others.
“We’re fighting, as I said, for the glory of God.
“God has to be respected in society. If there is no proper ordering with respecting God, which means the practice of religion has to be a part of the public life, and we can do that with respect for all people’s religious beliefs, then we can put our society back together.
“But as long as we keep rejecting God, we’re going to keep suffering all of the problems and torments that we’ve been going through.”
“Why can we shop at Nordstrom at 25 percent capacity, but only one of you is allowed to pray at a time in this great cathedral, which is your cathedral? Is this equality?
“No, there is no reason for this new rule, except the desire to put Catholics–to put you–at the back of the line.
“For months, I have pleaded with the city on your behalf advocating for your need of the consolation of the Mass, and the consolation you derive from the practice of your faith in connection with your faith community.
“City Hall ignored us. City Hall ignored you. They didn’t deny it, but they simply ignored you. It has become clear to me that they just don’t care about you.
“To them you are nothing. To them, you don’t matter.”
“To me, you do matter. To me, you matter very much. Please don’t misunderstand me. I don’t mean that we should accept injustice. We have been patiently putting up with unjust treatment long enough, and now it is time to come together to witness to our faith and to the primacy of God and to tell City Hall ‘No more!'”
Here’s the full Mass homily below:
Pray for an end to religious discrimination in our country!