Fortnight for Freedom
Fortnight for Freedom
Fortnight for Freedom
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has called for a “Fortnight for Freedom,” a 14-day period of prayer, education, and action in support of religious freedom, from June 21 to July 4. The event begins with the vigil of the Feasts of St. John Fisher and St. Thomas More and ends with Independence Day. This special period of prayer, study, catechesis, and public action is intended to emphasize both our Christian and American heritage of liberty.
To open the Fortnight for Freedom, a Mass will be held on June 21 at 7:00 p.m. in Baltimore, Maryland at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, celebrated by Archbishop William E. Lori of the Archdiocese of Baltimore. On July 4 at 12:10 p.m. at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, Cardinal Donald Wuerl of the Archdiocese Washington will celebrate Mass, and the homilist will be Archbishop Charles Chaput, OFM Cap of Philadelphia. The Mass on July 4 will be televised nationwide on the EWTN cable network.
Events in New Hampshire
- Rosary for Religious Freedom
Saint Joseph Parish, Epping
June 21 - July 4, 2012
- Fortnight for Freedom Kick-Off
Our Lady of the Holy Rosary Church, St. Ann Hall, Rochester
June 22, 2012
- Fortnight for Freedom Prayer Service
Saint Joseph Church, Laconia
June 25, 2012
- Theology on Tap
Murphy’s on the Green, Hanover
June 26, 2012
- "Our First, Most Cherished Liberty" Reflection
Sponsored by the Faithful Citizenship Committee
St. Thomas Aquinas Parish, Derry
June 30, 2012
- Fortnight for Freedom Mass at the Cathedral with Bishop Libasci
St. Joseph Cathedral, Manchester
July 1, 2012
CLICK HERE to listen to Bishop Libasci's Fortnight for Freedom Homily
In addition to following the local and national Fortnight for Freedom events, here are ideas for recognizing this special period of prayer and education in your own parish:
- Visit www.fortnight4freedom.org. The USCCB will be updating this site with prayer resources, including a prayer for each day of the Fortnight. This website also includes ideas from other dioceses and will be updated to provide educational resources.
- Incorporate a prayer for religious liberty. All parishes are encouraged to incorporate a prayer for religious liberty during liturgically appropriate times on the weekends of June 23-24 and June 30-July 1. There are a number of prayers posted on the www.fortnight4freedom.org website. The following prayer was included in the statement Our First, Our Most Cherished Liberty released by the USCCB:
Almighty God, Father of all nations, for freedom you have set us free in Christ Jesus (Gal 5:1).
We praise and bless you for the gift of religious liberty, the foundation of human rights, justice, and the common good.
Grant to our leaders the wisdom to protect and promote our liberties; by your grace may we have the courage to defend them, for ourselves and for all those who live in this blessed land.
We ask this through the intercession of Mary Immaculate, our patroness, and in the name of your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, with whom you live and reign, one God, forever and ever. Amen.
Parishes also may wish to incorporate this prayer for religious liberty into meetings, Eucharistic adorations, and other parish activities.
Parishes also may wish to include general intercessions such as:
For the success of the Church’s efforts to defend religious freedom in this country and abroad, we pray to the Lord.
That religious freedom, our nation’s first and most cherished liberty, will be defended strongly by our political leaders and all citizens, we pray to the Lord.
- Text "FREEDOM" to 377377. Encourage parishioners to join the national campaign for religious freedom by texting “FREEDOM” (or “LIBERTAD” for Spanish response) to 377377. Texters will regularly receive information on how to help to protect religious freedom worldwide. CLICK HERE for a bulletin insert about the campaign in English and Spanish.
- Hold a prayer service during the Fortnight for Freedom. Visit the USCCB's website for Prayer Resources, including prayer cards and prayers of the faithful as well as prayers for our nation and leaders. Prayer resources are available in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese.
- Educate others about religious liberty issues by distributing the USCCB’s educational bulletin inserts on religious freedom (CLICK HERE for the current bulletin for June and additional bulletin inserts will be updated on this webpage).
- Inform parishioners through bulletin announcements, for example:
Catholic “Fortnight for Freedom” – The U.S. Bishops announced a two-week period of prayer, study, catechesis, and public action to emphasize both our Christian and American heritage of religious liberty. It is called “Fortnight for Freedom” and runs from June 21 to July 4. For more information, visit catholicnh.org/freedom.
Live “Town Hall Meeting” with Cardinal Seán on Religious Liberty (June 25 at 8pm on CatholicTV) – Cardinal Seán O’Malley will be hosting a live “town hall meeting” on Monday, June 25 at 8pm on CatholicTV. The Cardinal and other panelists will receive and respond to questions from the viewing audience. This broadcast is part of the “Fortnight for Freedom” initiative of the U.S. Bishops which runs from June 21 to July 4. Please see catholicnh.org/freedom for more information about Fortnight for Freedom.
- Ring church bells. All parishes are encouraged to ring their church bells at noon on July 4 in recognition of religious freedom.
- Encourage those in your parish to fast or make an appropriate act of reparation during this period, such as meatless Fridays or a fast day on Wednesdays.
- Promote a parish Novena for religious freedom during the Fortnight.
- Learn more. Use this time to learn how you can make a difference in religious liberty efforts. Visit the new Religious Liberty page on the Diocese of Manchester website for links to education and prayer resources. Subscribe to Catholic Citizenship News, the e-mail newsletter of the Diocese of Manchester on Public Issues, to stay informed about issues in New Hampshire. Visit the Conscience Protection page of the USCCB’s website for information and action alerts, including information to help you write to your federal legislators.
- Visit USCCB for graphics and downloads. CLICK HERE for graphics and downloads available from the USCCB to help you with Fortnight for Freedom activities, especially developing materials and creating print and web advertising.
- Promote your events. If you host an event in your parish, please consider posting it on the calendar on the Diocese of Manchester website so we can share the information with others who may be interested in attending. CLICK HERE to post your event.
For more information, please contact:
Meredith P. Cook, Esq.
Director of the Office of Public Policy