From the Bishop


Bishop Francis X. DiLorenzo Statement Regarding Catholics in Public Office

The Catholic Church makes its position very clear as it pertains to the protection of human life, social justice initiatives, and the importance of family life. From the very beginning, Catholic teaching informs us that every human life is sacred from conception until natural death. The right to life is a fundamental, human right for the unborn and any law denying the unborn the right to life is unequivocally unjust.

Legislative issues pertaining to these matters are advocated on behalf of myself and Bishop Loverde, of the Diocese of Arlington, before the Virginia General Assembly, U.S. Congress, and with state and federal agencies and administrations through the Virginia Catholic Conference, a public policy advocacy organization. Through this organization, elected officials in Virginia are aware of the Church’s positions on such important issues.

We continue to maintain an open communication with public officials who make on-going decisions impacting critical, moral and social issues. This is a responsibility I take seriously, along with my brother bishops, to reach out to public leaders to explain Catholic principles and encourage them to protect human life and dignity in all decisions they make.

We always pray for our Catholic leaders that they make the right choice, act in the best judgment and in good conscience, knowing the values and teachings of the Catholic Church.

It is the duty of all Catholics, no matter their profession, to decide through an upright and informed conscience as to their worthiness to receive the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist.

Guidelines for Political Activity in Diocesan Parishes and Entities

Our state and nation are in the midst of election season that will yet again determine the direction the United States takes in the future. In this summer of political conventions, Bishop DiLorenzo once again encourages Catholics to learn the issues being debated, to consider them using the light and wisdom of Church teaching, and to take an active role in the political process.

While our Church teaches that “responsible citizenship is a virtue and participation in political life is a moral obligation…”
(Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship, USCCB), our Catholic parishes do not enter the political fray as partisans. We consider issues in light of Catholic principles, but we do not endorse candidates or show favoritism to either political party.
Several years ago, the Virginia Catholic Conference, the public policy representative of the Virginia Bishops, issued political guidelines for our parishes and other diocesan entities. Please follow these guidelines during this political season and beyond. You can find the guidelines attached to this memo or by visiting the Virginia Catholic Conference at

Bishop Francis X. DiLorenzo Statement on The Catholic Church’s Teaching Regarding Marriage

More than a year after the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on marriage, and despite recent statements from the campaign trail, the Catholic Church’s 2000-year-old teaching to the truth about what constitutes marriage remains unchanged and resolute.
As Catholics, we believe, all humans warrant dignity and deserve love and respect, and unjust discrimination is always wrong. Our understanding of marriage, however, is a matter of justice and fidelity to our Creator’s original design. Marriage is the only institution uniting one man and one woman with each other and with any child who comes from their union. Redefining marriage furthers no one’s rights, least of all those of children, who should not purposely be deprived of the right to be nurtured and loved by a mother and a father.
We call on Catholics and all those concerned for preserving this sacred union to unite in prayer, to live and speak out with compassion and charity about the true nature of marriage – the heart of family life.

Declaración del Obispo Francis X. DiLorenzo sobre la enseñanza de matrimonio de la Iglesia Católica

Habiendo pasado más de un año después de la decisión del Tribunal Supremo de EE.UU. sobre el matrimonio, y pese a las recientes declaraciones de la campaña electoral, la enseñanza de la Iglesia Católica de los pasados 2000 años enseña la verdad sobre lo que constituye el matrimonio y se mantiene resuelta y sin cambios.

Como católicos, creemos, que todos los seres humanos merecen dignidad, amor y respeto, y lainjusta discriminación es siempre mala. Sin embargo, nuestro entendimiento del matrimonio, es una cuestión de justicia y fidelidad al diseño original de nuestro Creador. El matrimonio es la única institución que une a un hombre y a una mujer entre sí y con cualquier niño que proviene de su unión. Redefinir el matrimonio no promueve los derechos de nadie, y menos el de los niños, que no deben ser deliberadamente privados del derecho a ser formados y ser queridos por una madre y un padre.

Recurimos a los católicos y a todos los interesados para preservar esta unión sagrada a unirse en oración, a vivir y hablar con compasión y caridad sobre la verdadera naturaleza del matrimonio – el corazón de la vida familiar.