E-Newsletter: December 15, 2014

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 A Baby’s First Breath

And all heaven watches as God so loved the world that he sent his precious, only Son to give new life to earth.
Tiny fingers grasped the straw. Little baby hands shot up in praise! A cry broke the still night air as the Savior shed His first tears this side of Heaven.
The Stars danced, The Angels praised, When God came to live among us.
With a heartfelt prayer that every blessing of this Advent and Christmas season may touch your spirit, deepen your faith, and light your world with Christmas joy.

Yours in Christ,
The Office of Advocacy and Justice


Helpers’ Mass and Rosary Procession, January 3, 2015
The next Helpers’ Mass and Rosary procession will be held at Annunciation Catholic Church (1020 Montgomery Road, Altamonte Springs, FL) Saturday, January 3rd , beginning with Mass at 8 AM. Following Mass we will drive to St Mary Magdalen Catholic Church, park and then process to the All Women's Center facility on Maitland Avenue and pray the rosary. Please join us in praying for the protection of human life. For more information, contact the Office of Advocacy and Justice; 407-658-1818 x2086 or at    Complete schedule here!

After the rosary, all participants are invited to join us for lunch compliments of:
                                     Life Choices Women's Center
                                     600 E. Altamonte Drive, Suite 1200
                                     Altamonte Springs, FL 32701




March for Life St. Augustine! Register Now to Stand up for Life in Florida!

Every year since 2007 thousands of pro-lifers from all over Florida have met in our nation’s oldest city, St. Augustine, to defend the dignity of human life. Please join our group this coming January 17th in standing up for the unborn. The Office of Advocacy and Justice will have  buses from our diocese going up to St. Augustine on January 17th for the march.

For more information and a copy of our flyer and registration form,
click here!

Florida's Abortions Report 2006-2013 English and Spanish.

Central Florida Celebration of Life is a FREE EVENT 
January 24, 2015
Holy Family Catholic Church

Visit the website for descriptions of all 10 Workshops plus the High School Youth Program (FEARLESS), a schedule for the day and bios of all 13 presenters including:
Greg Robeson, Chief Campaign Speaker for ThriVe St Louis
Jannique Stewart,
Founder of Love Protects and Featured Speaker for Scott Klusendorf’s Life Training Institute


Catholic Days at the Capitol, March 3-5, 2015,
Register Today!

Catholics from around the state gather in Tallahassee to participate in Catholic Days at the Capitol. Participants attend a legislative briefing on human life and dignity issues prior to meetings with elected officials. Included in the activities is a luncheon for participants, the bishops of Florida and state legislators.

View  video highlights from last year's trip

Register NOW! Please see our flyer and registration form here.


Rooms  Are Limited

Special Elections to Be Held for Vacant Seats

Pursuant to the Florida Constitution, the Florida Legislature convenes 14 days following the general election for the purpose of organization, election of officers and adoption of rules. On November 18, Florida state senators and representatives gathered in Tallahassee for this Organization Session, during which new and re-elected lawmakers took their oaths of office and leaders were elected.

Sen. Andy Gardiner (R-Orlando) was elected as the President of the Florida Senate and Rep. Steve Crisafulli (R-Merritt Island) was elected as House Speaker. Sen. Arthenia Joyner (D-Tampa) and Rep. Mark Pafford (D-West Palm Beach) were selected as minority leaders in their respective chambers.


More information on additional leadership positions and committee chair assignments can be found on the Florida Senate and House websites.
Special elections are scheduled for several vacant House seats and one Senate seat:
Senate District 6, House Districts 17 & 24 - primary Jan 27, 2015/general April 7, 2015
House District 13 - primary Dec 16, 2014/general Feb 17, 2015
House District 64 - primary Feb 10, 2015/general Apr 21, 2015

The regular legislative session is scheduled to begin March 3, 2015 and conclude May 1, 2015.



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Vatican & USCCB

Disabilities & Health Issues


 Ebola Outbreak: CRS  Scales Up Response

Catholic Church Crucial to Fighting AIDS


This Advent, help bring about peace in the Holy Land by:
  1. Praying for Peace each day of Advent
  2. Contacting your Senators and Representative now
  3. Supporting artisans living in the Holy Land by purchasing items from this special, Fair Trade collection
  4. Donate to help CRS’ work in the region

Environmental Issues




Confronting Poverty & Hunger

More Conferences/Educational Opportunities
Catholic Social Ministry Gathering
February 7-10, 2015

2015 Young Leaders Initiative Registration




Upcoming  Events

1st             WORLD DAY OF PEACE

3rd             Helpers Mass and Rosary Procession at  Annunciation Catholic Church - 8AM

13th       Luncheon for Life - Free Pro-Life Networking Event

17th       March for Life, St Augustine

24th          Central Florida Celebration of Life - Holy Family Catholic Church 1PM-4PM
              Youth Event - Fearless! Taking Charge in A Culture of Exploitation 2PM-4PM

st           Polk County Sanctity of Life Celebration Event  -  Faith Baptist Church, Winter Haven, FL 2PM
              Understanding Poverty Workshop, Sacred Heart, New Smyrna - 9AM-12PM

USCCB Responds to CCHD Grant Criticisms
  1. As the official national anti-poverty program of the bishops in the United States, CCHD is governed and overseen by the bishops, accountable to the bishops, and operates at the highest levels of fidelity to Church teaching, integrity and transparency.
  2. CCHD is pro-life, pro-family, and pro-community and will never do anything to undermine that commitment.
  3. CCHD monitors every award recipient through an exacting reporting process and works jointly with individual dioceses to ensure each group’s harmony with authentically Catholic sensibilities. Every year, each group’s grant receives the formal written endorsement of the local bishop.
  4. Justice requires that CCHD investigate with due diligence any claim that a funded group may be engaged in activities contrary to Catholic teaching. However, prudence recommends that current claims originating from the same sources as in years past be considered with reasonable skepticism based on their consistent track record of misreporting.
  5. Any credible allegation is thoroughly investigated by CCHD in partnership with the local diocese. In the case of any group that engages in activities contrary to Catholic teaching, the situation will be rectified quickly, responsibly and charitably in deference to the local Ordinary.


Johnny Shane Kormondy
Thursday, January 15, 2015


On Thursday, January 15, 2015, Johnny Shane Kormondy, is scheduled to be executed at Florida State Prison, in Starke, Florida.

Your parish is encouraged to continue to pray for Mr. Kormondy, his victims, his family, the victims’ family; for all the public officials involved in this scheduled execution; for Governor Scott, that he will discern God’s will and apply the teachings of our Catholic faith on the death penalty.

contact Governor Scott to voice your concern. Parishes are encouraged to participate in prayer services at the parish or to attend a prayer service at the execution site in Starke.

A bus will be leaving from the parking lot of Our Lady of Lourdes 201 University Blvd, Daytona Beach, 32118, at 2:30pm on January 15, 2015.

A prayer service will be held at St. Patrick’s Church in Mt. Dora at 11 AM on Wednesday, January 14, 2015.

St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church, 526 North Park Avenue, Winter Park, Florida 32789 will host a prayer service for Mr. Kormondy on Tuesday, January 13, 2015 at 5:00 PM in the chapel followed by the daily Mass at 5:30 PM. 

For more information on the prayer service, contact the Office of Advocacy and Justice, or 407-658-1818 x 2086 . 

Tuesday, January 13, 2015 from 11:30 AM to 1:30 PM (EST) 

Sweetwater Golf & Country Club
2700 Sweetwater Country Club Dr
Apopka, FL 32712

Join us for a complimentary lunch
and networking opportunity.


RSVP to LaVon LeGrand at or 407-406-4169

by January 6, 2015 or Register HERE

Luncheons for Life, a program of Angels Among Us in Florida 5277 N. Tamiami Trail  Sarasota, Florida 34234941-421-9859


Celebrate a Fair Trade Christmas



By Stephanie Bosse, CRS Fair Trade Ambassador

I love fair trade because it affords us opportunities ...of KNOWING.  Before I was acquainted with the movement, I truly never thought about where my coffee or cocoa came from.  But fair trade opened my eyes and prompted me to ask questions like who am I buying gifts for?  Who am I buying gifts from?  Who made the gift?  Our fair trade campaign this fall comes from this very idea that knowing is love, solidarity, and justice.  Read More...

Win Fair Trade Products in our Advent Contest (Nov. 30-Dec. 28)


Tidbits for Teachers, Youth Ministers, Catechists, & Homeschoolers

2015 CCHD Media Arts Contest - PRIZE MONEY  AVAILABLE


Engage youth (grades 7-12) in learning about the causes of poverty and our Catholic response through the 2015 Multimedia Youth Contest. This year's theme is, "Do Justice, Love Goodness, Walk Humbly with God" (Micah 6:8).    Visit the contest materials, or call the Office of Advocacy and Justice for details and ways teachers can meet their class objectives through the implementation of the art project.   All artwork and media entries must be submitted to Deborah Shearer at the Office of Advocacy and Justice, 1819 N. Semoran Boulevard, Orlando FL  32807 by March 1, 2015.
Watch the recent interview with the 2014’s National CCHD contest winners, from St. Mary Magdalen Catholic School,  for ideas on how to get started on your art project submission,
here!  Or go to the Catholic Campaign for Human Develpoment tab on our website.  


2015 Atlantic Institute Art & Essay Contest - GREAT PRIZES

An art and essay contest for middle and high school students.  This year's theme is:  Kindness Without Borders: Open Eyes Open Hearts in our Global Village   Check out the contest rules and parameters here!

FREE High School Youth Program
Register Now!


JANUARY 24, 2015


Holy Family Catholic Church

Join Vincentians and others in your parish community as we open our eyes and hearts to a better understanding of the poverty that surrounds us.  Saint Vincent de Paul works continually to alleviate the day-to-day challenges of poverty.  The National Society is working in conjunction with the Bridges Out of Poverty organization to provide training on a local level, to train you to understand poverty and to assist individuals who want and need a helping hand .

            January 31, 2015  9am-12pm (doors open at 8:30am)
            Sacred Heart, New Smyrna            RSVP -





The Pope’s Prayer Intentions for December
The Pope's general prayer intention for December is:
"That the birth of the Redeemer may bring peace and hope to all people of good will."
His mission intention is:
“That parents may be true evangelizers, passing on to their children the precious gift of faith."

Copyright © 2014 Office of Advocacy and Justice at the Diocese of Orlando*, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
Office of Advocacy and Justice
Diocese of Orlando
1819 North Semoran Boulevard
Orlando, FL  32807
or 407.658.1818 x 2086
407.282.2891 (Fax)

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