Understanding the larger historic and socioeconomic context one steps into when engaging in service greatly helps in framing for the individual the value of the impact they will make. The following Pastoral Letters and articles help shed light on the reality of life in West Virginia and how the Church calls us to respond.
Setting Children Free: Loosening the Bonds of Poverty in West Virginia (2012)
"In the fourth pastoral letter of his episcopacy, Most Rev. Michael J. Bransfield, bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston, calls attention to poverty in West Virginia and its devastating effects on the state’s children." Read more...
This Land Is Home to Me (1975) & At Home in the Web of Life (1995)
A Pastoral Letter on Powerlessness in Appalachia by the
Catholic Bishops of the Region
A Pastoral Message on Sustainable Communities in Appalachia
Celebrating the 20th Anniversary of This Land Is Home to Me
from the Catholic Bishops of Appalachia
National Catholic Reporter articles on West Virginian economic and environmental concerns:
Mountaintop removal mining poses economic dilemma for West Virginians (10/27/14)
West Virginia's resources have long been eyed for development (10/28/14)
Despite long mining history, poverty straps many in West Virginia (11/4/14)