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Dwell In My Love
A Pastoral Letter on Racism
by Francis Cardinal George, O.M.I.

"We are called not only to a radical conversion of heart but a transformation of socially sinful structures as well."

April 4, 2001
33rd Anniversary of the Death of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.


I am grateful to those who helped to research and write this Pastoral Letter in its various stages: Bishop Joseph N. Perry, Sister Jamie Phelps, O.P., Ph.D., John T. McGreevy, Ph.D., and William Purcell.

I am grateful to others who read the draft and provided helpful comments and criticism: Bishop Raymond Goedert, Bishop John Gorman, Bishop Thad Jakubowski, Bishop Edwin Conway, Bishop Gerald Kicanas, Bishop John Manz and Bishop Jerome Listecki; Father Lawrence Dowling, Father Leonard Dubi, Father Thomas Swade, Father Derek Simons, S.V.D., Deacon Ralph Shaw, Sister Anita Baird, D.H.M., Sheila Adams, Sheila Bourelly, Joan Neal, John Lukehart, Aurie Pennick, Terri Johnson and Clarence Wood.

I am especially grateful to the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, United States Province; the Chicago Province of the Society of Jesus; the Society of the Daughters of the Heart of Mary; the Franciscan Sisters of Chicago; the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas Regional Community of Chicago; the Sisters of St. Joseph of La Grange, the Order of Preachers Dominican Central Province; the Claretians and the Society of the Divine Word for their generous financial support on behalf of this project.

I am grateful always for the prayers and support of the priests, deacons, religious women and men, and the lay faithful of the Archdiocese of Chicago.

Finally, as a bishop of the Catholic Church, I hope to include and respect many different experiences in a letter such as this but most of all, I intend to present the teachings of the Church in our present context. The teaching on the sin of racism is integral to our faith and cannot be ignored. I hope Catholics will be helped to put this teaching into practice in this local Church I serve as pastor.


1. Introduction: Dwelling Together
God, the Creator
Jesus, the Lord
The Holy Spirit
2. Examining Our Present Situation:
How Do We Dwell Together?

Four Types of Racism:
Spatial, Institutional, Internalized and Individual
3. Envisioning Our Future:
How Might We Dwell Together?

A. Dwelling with God in Ordinary Life
Inclusive Communities: Living with Our Neighbor
Economic Justice: Working with Our Neighbor
Supporting Culturally Diverse Social Institutions
B. Dwelling with God in His Church
The Eucharist as the Sacrament and Means of Communion
The Empowering Gifts of the Spirit
4. Conclusion: An Agenda for Addressing
Racial and Systemic Injustice

Catholic Elementary Schools,
High Schools, Colleges and Universities
Community Action

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