Chapel of Our Lady of the Snows, Belgrano II Base, Antarctica
Did you know that even Antarctica has a bishop? That’s because every place on earth is part of a diocese. Antarctica is officially part of the diocese of Punta Arena, at the southern tip of Chile. And its southernmost church is a permanent chapel carved out of the ice. That’s because there are things we can do as church so much more effectively when we do them together. Like serve the community of researchers in one of the most remote places on the planet.
This is that time of the year that we commit ourselves to the work that we do together as the Archdiocese of Louisville. And like Punta Arena and Antarctica we serve populations within our community that couldn’t exist on their own. For 20 years I served the Campus Ministry at the University of Louisville, which is essentially a parish for the students. (In fact the number of Catholics that live on campus is larger than many of our parishes.) That ministry is funded by the archdiocese. Which means by you! Recently I’ve been involved in discussions working to establish a regular ministry for our fairly large Catholic community from Central Africa, who are French speakers. In the process I learned that there are currently 52 different languages spoken by Catholics in Louisville. Our Office of Multicultural Ministries is truly ministering to many cultures! And all of our various forms of outreach are in addition to the regular support for the work of our parishes.
So when the Catholic Services Appeal brochure arrives in your mail soon, take it to heart. Let us all think and pray about our commitment to a church that is much larger than our own parish, and that does so much more than we could do alone.