Loretto: Committed to Ensuring the Common Good for All
The Fourth of July, our nation’s Independence Day, has been a federal holiday since 1941, but the custom of celebrating it goes all the way back to the American Revolution. On July 2, 1776, the Continental Congress voted in favor of declaring independence from England. Delegates from the 13 American colonies adopted Thomas Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence two days later, setting the stage for that July 4th and all to follow as the birthday of American independence.
A treasured item from that time when our nation was born is the Liberty Bell. The historic bell first rang out in the tower of the Pennsylvania State House, now known as Independence Hall. The bell is recognized as an extraordinary symbol of freedom for all, with its famous inscription from Leviticus 25:10: “Proclaim Liberty Throughout All the Land Unto All the Inhabitants Thereof.” What some may not know is abolitionists gave the bell its name; its inscription became their rallying cry as they sought to end slavery in America. That inscription continues to inspire many today as we as a country struggle to address righting the terrible wrongs wrought from our country’s sin of slavery.
While many Americans enjoy the freedoms guaranteed by the Bill of Rights and the U.S. Constitution, there are still many who don’t, particularly people of color. As a nation, we remain a work in progress. The Loretto Community does, too. Like our nation, we have made our share of mistakes. We remain, however, committed to ensuring the common good and the rights of individuals and groups. Loretto holds these values to be self-evident: “Grounded in our roots, enlightened by the Gospel and the (Second Vatican) Council, relying on Divine Providence, we are free to work for a future in which the poor and suffering, the hungry in body and spirit, will know God’s saving love in them.” (“I Am the Way,” Loretto Constitutions, #9) Look to Loretto’s Facebook page this week as we explore these Loretto values.