Wednesday February 20, 2019
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February 15, 2019  
  Improving care for those suffering from mental illness is a major focus of state lawmakers.  WSCC supports efforts to improve availability of community-based mental health programs and is closely monitoring the following bills:
Children's Mental Health - HB 1876 / SB 5903 requires Educational Service Districts to coordinate behavioral health efforts for school districts, including training and the provision of the State Superintendent's mental health literacy and healthy relationship curriculum. This is scheduled for a committee vote on the morning of Friday the 15th.
Increasing Peer Services - SB 5055 directs the Health Care Authority to continue developing a peer support program for individuals with substance use disorder. There is limited access to vital peer services, especially in rural areas, and SB 5055 would help create more access. The bill is in the Senate Rules Committee.
Comprehensive Behavioral Health - Proposed by the Governor, HB 1393 / SB 5432 restructures the provision of key behavioral health programs in the state. The bill establishes managed care organizations and behavioral health organizations to manage the community behavioral health system. The legislation is progressing through the assigned policy committee in each chamber.

Expanding Mental Health Care for Teens - HB 1874 / SB 5904 authorizes mental health professionals to provide certain treatment information to a parent or guardian when they determine this would not be detrimental to the adolescent. This bill is also scheduled for a committee vote on February 15th.

The Washington State Senate passed a resolution (SR 8613), introduced by Sen. Phil Fortunato (R - Auburn), honoring the more than 17,000 members of the Knights of Columbus in our state. The Knights were commended for their contributions "to a strong civil society [and] for their work serving the poor and vulnerable in our state and around the world..."
  The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has a newly proposed regulation requiring health plans that cover abortion to also offer identical plans without abortion coverage. The USCCB submitted written comments not only applauding this proposal, but also urging stronger language to ensure greater availability of such plans and alerting consumers if a particular plan covers abortion.  The WSCC encourages you to submit your own comment before the 2:00 pm on February 19, 2019.  
  SB 5826 implements the federal Family First Prevention Services Act that Congress passed last year. The bill enables our state to receive additional federal funding for foster care services, increase placements in family settings (as appropriate), and encourage family reunification. This bill was passed unanimously out of the committee of origin and is scheduled for public hearing in Senate Ways & Means on February 18 at 3:30 pm.  

Before the establishment of the USCCB, and in the aftermath of the first World War, the U.S. Bishops published a landmark statement on national social policy.  The Bishops called for government to enact both a minimum wage as well as insurance programs that protect citizens "against illness, invalidity, unemployment, and old age".  The Bishops concluded their statement by encouraging a "human and Christian, in contrast to the purely commercial and pagan, ethics of industry." Read the whole statement.  
  The WSCC has heard from many Catholic school leaders expressing concern and sharing personal stories when they were not notified by first responders of emergency situations, despite notifications made to other schools in their neighborhoods. SB 5514 would require first responders to notify all known schools - public or private - in a given vicinity of an emergency in process that would require a lockdown or evacuation.  Further, HB 1216/SB 5317 seeks to create a statewide network of support to increase school safety and student well-being.  WSCC is pleased to announce that each of these bills has been passed out of committee and are now being considered by the fiscal committee in each chamber.  
  Conference on Pornography, Gonzaga University - February 23

Walking + Witnessing for Migrant Families - April 29 to May 11

Cornerstone Catholic Conference - October 18-19, 2019


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Let us pray for a generous welcome of the victims of human trafficking, of enforced prostitution, and of violence.

Pope Francis – February 2019

Although we try to ignore it, slavery is not something from other times.
Faced with this tragic reality, no one can wash their hands of it without being, in some way, an accomplice to this crime against humanity.
We cannot ignore the fact that there is as much slavery in the world today as there was before, or perhaps more.
Let us pray for a generous welcome of the victims of human trafficking, of enforced prostitution, and of violence.




Recemos por la acogida generosa de las víctimas de la trata de personas y de la prostitución forzada y de la violencia.

Papa Francisco – Febrero 2019

Aunque tratemos de ignorarlo, la esclavitud no es algo de otros tiempos.
Ante esta trágica realidad, no podemos lavarnos las manos si no queremos ser, de alguna manera, cómplices de estos crímenes contra la humanidad.
No podemos ignorar que hoy hay esclavitud en el mundo, tanto o más quizás que antes.
Recemos por la acogida generosa de las víctimas de la trata de personas y de la prostitución forzada y de la violencia.


February 8, 2019  

Hundreds of Catholic Advocates braved cold weather and icy roads to attend Catholic Advocacy Day on February 7th.  The day began at St. Michael's Parish where attendees received a legislative briefing, talking points on bills of interest and schedules to meet with their lawmakers. Before they were shuttled to the state Capitol, attendees enjoyed Mass celebrated by Archbishop Sartain, Bishop Elizondo and a number of priests who made the journey from across the state. 
Thank you to all the participants who demonstrated faithful and civil advocacy.  Also special thanks to the many organizers and sponsors of the event, including Intercommunity Peace & Justice Center, Catholic Community Services, Catholic Housing Services, St. Vincent de Paul and St. Michael's Parish in Olympia.  
  During the 2019 legislative session, four bills have been introduced that seek to place new restrictions on abortion. One regarding parental notification(SB 5185) was described in the January 18 Advocacy Bulletin.
Given the current makeup of the Legislature, it is unlikely that the following bills will receive hearings in their respective committees. Nonetheless, theWSCC will continue to monitor all proposed legislation that seek to honor and protect the dignity of all human life, while encouraging the conversion of the hearts and minds of our elected representatives.
The Pro-life bills include:
HB 1526, also known as the Washington Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, bans abortions of unborn children old enough to experience pain. The bill states that "there is substantial medical evidence that an unborn child is capable of experiencing pain by twenty weeks after fertilization." The bill has been assigned to the House Health Care & Wellness Committee.
HB 1560 prohibits certain types of abortions, specifically dilation and extraction abortions after the 10th week of pregnancy. The bill has been assigned to the House Health Care & Wellness Committee.
SB 5721 establishes regulation of abortion facilities and a licensing process for such facilities to meet. It also authorizes the state Department of Health to conduct surveys of abortion facilities. The bill imposes certain requirements on physicians who perform abortions.  The bill is before theSenate Health & Long Term Care Committee.
  On February 7, the Senate Law and Justice Committee passed SB 5339 by a 4 to 2 margin. The bill now moves onto consideration by the Rules Committee.   

Today is also the feast day of St. Josephine Bakhita, who was kidnapped as a child and sold into slavery in Sudan and Italy. She learned from the Canossian Sisters that she was created in the image of God and possessed human dignity. Once declared free, Josephine became a Canossian Sister and dedicated her life to sharing her testament of deliverance from slavery and comforting the poor and suffering. Read More.
  Last Tuesday, the Senate failed to adopt by unanimous consent the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act-legislation that would ensure that a child born alive following an abortion would receive the same degree of care to preserve her life and health as would be given to any other child born alive at the same gestational age. The next day, Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, chair of the USCCB Committee on Pro-Life Activities, sent a letter to the U.S. Senate urging it to bring the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act to a floor vote and support the common-sense legislation that would protect infants who survived abortion attempts.  
  Earlier this week, Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, chairman of the USCCB Committee for Religious Liberty, sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee asking senators not to impose a religious test for public office. The letter reads in part: "In recent months, multiple nominees to the federal judiciary have been interrogated about their membership in the Knights of Columbus, with the implication that participation in the largest Catholic fraternal organization in the country ... could be disqualifying. Not only are religious tests unconstitutional and unjust, they are an attack on all people of faith and those with no faith at all." Read More.  
  Ten years ago, less than 3% of the homeless population was over 60. In a one-night count at Nativity House Shelter in Tacoma in October 2018, more than 25% of shelter guests were over sixty. In King County, 36% of homeless are over the age of fifty. If you go to a homeless shelter today, it more resembles a nursing home than what one thinks of as a shelter. SB 5839attempts to address this by bringing Medicaid personal care to frail seniors and people with disabilities through a modest pilot project. The Senate Human Services, Reentry & Rehabilitation Committee will hold a hearing on the bill, Wednesday, February 13, at 8:00 am. Read More.  
  In order to improve safety at all schools (public and private) the WSCCsupports two bills that were approved in committee on Wednesday afternoon. SB 5514 requires that, in the event of an emergency which would require a lockdown or evacuation of a public school, that first responders notify all schools - public or private - of the same emergency. Currently the law does not require equitable emergency notification to both public and private schools. HB 1216/SB 5317 seeks to create a formalized network of regional and statewide "safety centers" that will work to implement best practices in emergency planning and response across the state.   
  Conference on Pornography, Gonzaga University - February 23

Walking + Witnessing for Migrant Families - April 29 to May 11

Cornerstone Catholic Conference - October 18-19, 2019


Washington’s Catholic Bishops Support Bill to Repeal Death Penalty

OLYMPIA – The Catholic Bishops of Washington State submitted testimony Tuesday, February 5 in support of Senate Bill 5339, which seeks to repeal the death penalty and require that life imprisonment without the possibility of parole become the sentence for aggravated first degree murder convictions.

“Our country’s legal system is far from perfect when it comes to imposing the death penalty,” said Archbishop J. Peter Sartain of Seattle. “This past fall, our state’s Supreme Court ruled that the death penalty was unconstitutional as it had been implemented in an arbitrary and racially-biased manner. Senate Bill 5339 removes the unconstitutional language and moves Washington state towards greater justice and respect for life at all stages.”

The Bishops have long been on record as opposing capital punishment, while stating their deep concern for families and loved ones of victims of violent crimes. “All citizens have the right to be protected from those who commit the crime of murder,” said Archbishop Sartain. “The act of murder cries out for an appropriate punishment, but the death penalty merely adds violence to violence, perpetuating an illusion that taking one human life for another can somehow balance the scales of justice.”

The Catholic Church’s consistent belief is that every human life is sacred from conception until natural death – this principle has energized the Bishops’ efforts for decades to abolish the death penalty.

The Catholic Bishops of Washington State are Archbishop J. Peter Sartain and Auxiliary Bishops Eusebio Elizondo and Daniel Mueggenborg of Seattle, Bishop Thomas Daly of Spokane, and Bishop Joseph Tyson of Yakima.

The Washington State Catholic Conference (WSCC) is the public policy voice of the Catholic Bishops of Washington.

Share the Journey

Dear Friends,

We have good news to share.

As a community of faith, Share the Journey and thousands of people across the nation lifted their voices in support of bills to protect trafficking victims and help refugee girls. 

It made a huge difference!

Refugee Education Bill Update

Our collective actions—a year of sending emails and making phone calls – helped The Protecting Girls' Access to Education in Vulnerable Settings Act pass in Congress before 2018 ended. It just became law a few weeks ago and will work to ensure refugee girls around the world have access to education—helping them heal from trauma and build hope for their future.

Together, we also secured the reauthorization of the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act, solidifying a national commitment to assist victims in rebuilding their lives and to stop the scourge of human trafficking.

Advocacy works, and it matters.

As the first month of the new Congress ends, please take two minutes to send a message to your members of Congress, encouraging them to support migrants and refugees around the world in 2019.

Thank you for raising your voice and sharing the journey!


© 2019 Catholic Relief Services
228 W. Lexington St. Baltimore MD 21201-3443

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Magnificat is a program of faith formation for all the people who want to learn more about their Catholic Faith. Through classes of theology taught by teachers specialized in different topics we are looking to enhance the spiritual growth of each student as well as in the in-depth study of the pastorals and theological aspects of our faith in order to awaken in each on the desire of server to the Lord bybeing Missionary Disciples: Witnesses of God’s Love in the distinct ministries that we serve in, and continue to learn how to teach our catechetical programs with children.

Magnificat is the single largest initiative that brings together Spanish and English leadership here in the Diocese of Yakima on a monthly basis. We are the only diocese in the region to have such a large, consistent and robust gathering of catechetical leaders. You are key in building up Magnificat and in helping its future leadership in building a more unified instruction and a more unified witness that brings together the large Hispanic Catholic Community with our more historical and very vibrant English-speaking community!


“Credo ut intelligam, intelligo ut credam”

“I Believe to understand, understand to believe”

Saint Augustine of Hippo 



Encuentro started in 1972 as an initiative of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops as a tool to reach out to the growing and emerging Hispanic presence in the United States. The first three "Encuentro" processes in 1972, 1979 and 1984 engaged Hispanic communities in the United States in how we, as a Church, could better evangelize, welcome and receive the gifts of immigrant communities migrating north from Mexico as well as Central and South America. The fourth Encuentro in 2000 was a celebration of the many diverse communities from around the world: Africa, Asia and the Pacific Islands as well as Mexico and Latin America. Its focus moved from evangelization to celebration and appreciation.  This fifth "Encuentro" process is almost the reverse of the first three "Encuentro" processes of the 1970s and 1980s.  Rather than asking about outreach to the Hispanic community, this fifth "Encuentro" is about the formation of the Hispanic community as missionaries who can evangelize North America with the singular love that comes from our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. This fifth "Encuentro" is meant to emphasize how the Hispanic community is not an "object" of the Church's missionary impulse but is now the spark and initiator calling everyone – including the North American anglophone community – to deeper discipleship. 

So why are we doing this in the Diocese of Yakima? First and foremost we are doing this with all of our Magnificat leaders in both English and Spanish because for the Spanish-speaking side of the Church to know how to reach the entire Church – especially the English-speaking side – it's important that we do the process together and have the conversation across the traditional language and cultural divides. The Diocese of Yakima is now nearly 75 percent Hispanic with the majority of our worshippers going to Mass in Spanish – not English. 

Goals of V Encuentro:

  • For the Hispanic community and the English speakers to come in unity and into discipleship with Jesus Christ
  • Extend the invitation to English speakers to initiate a program or a service for V Encuentro
  • Make the commitment to work together to build up the Church in this new moment here in Central Washington








Magnificat es un programa de formación en la fe para todas las personas que desean aprender más sobre su fe católica. A través de las clases de teología impartidas por maestros especializados en diferentes temas, buscamos mejorar el crecimiento espiritual de cada estudiante, así como en el estudio a fondo de los aspectos pastorales y teológicos de nuestra fe para despertar en cada uno el deseo de Servir al Señor por ser discípulos misioneros: Testigos del amor de Dios en los distintos ministerios en los que servimos, y continuar aprendiendo cómo enseñar nuestros programas catequéticos a los niños.


“Credo ut intelligam, intelligo ut credam"

“Creo para entender, entiendo para creer”

San Agustín de Hippo



Encuentro comenzó en 1972 como una iniciativa de la Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de los Estados Unidos como una herramienta para llegar a la presencia hispana creciente y emergente en los Estados Unidos. Los primeros tres procesos "Encuentro" en 1972, 1979 y 1984 involucraron a las comunidades hispanas en los Estados Unidos cómo nosotros, como Iglesia, podríamos evangelizar, recibir y recibir mejor los dones de las comunidades de inmigrantes que migran hacia el norte desde México y Centro y Sur America. El cuarto Encuentro fue en el 2000 fue una celebración de las diversas comunidades de todo el mundo: África, Asia y las Islas del Pacífico, así como México y América Latina. Su enfoque pasó de la evangelización a la celebración y el aprecio. Este quinto proceso de "Encuentro" es casi el reverso de los primeros tres procesos de "Encuentro" de los años setenta y ochenta. En lugar de preguntar acerca de llegar a la comunidad hispana, este quinto "Encuentro" trata de la formación de la comunidad hispana como misioneros que pueden evangelizar a América del Norte con el amor singular que proviene de nuestro Señor y Salvador Jesucristo. Este quinto "Encuentro" pretende enfatizar cómo la comunidad hispana no es un "objeto" del impulso misionero de la Iglesia, pero ahora es la chispa y el iniciador que llama a todos, incluida la comunidad anglófona de América del Norte, a un discipulado más profundo.

Entonces, ¿por qué estamos haciendo esto en la Diócesis de Yakima? En primer lugar, estamos haciendo esto con todos nuestros líderes de Magnificat tanto en inglés como en español, porque para que el lado hispanohablante de la Iglesia sepa cómo llegar a toda la Iglesia, especialmente al lado de habla inglés, es importante que hagamos el proceso juntos y mantengan la conversación a través del lenguaje tradicional y las divisiones culturales. La Diócesis de Yakima es ahora casi un 75 por ciento hispana, y la mayoría de nuestros fieles van a Misa en español, no en inglés.

Nuestras metas con el programa de V Encuentro:

  • Para que la comunidad hispana y los hablantes de inglés vengan a la unidad y al discipulado con Jesucristo
  • Se hace una invitación a personas de habla inglesa para iniciar un programa o servicio de V Encuentro
  • Hacer el compromiso de trabajar juntos para desarrollar la Iglesia aquí en el centro de Washington.





As noted in a recent message from Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, the sexual abuse scandal in the Church has been and continues to be a “moral catastrophe.” It summarizes the pain and scandal caused by those clergy and laity ministering in the church who sexually abuse minors and vulnerable adults. Even more the “moral catastrophe” stems from the failure of us as a body of bishops to have better accountability for our oversight of our flock and of each other. I am so very, very sorry. 

I want to uplift Pope Francis’ message for all of us to consider as we work together to create better structures of accountability, especially in the case of bishops who abused minors or failed to act in the face of abuse in their own dioceses. These are moral failures and criminal acts that need careful attention.  Please find attached to this message the following:

Pope Francis Letter to the People of God  ENGLISH | SPANISH

Cardinal DiNardo Message to the U.S. Church  ENGLISH | SPANISH

Be assured of my prayers for all of you. Kindly place in prayer all victims of sexual abuse too. They and the healing of their pain need to remain our key focus. 

+Bishop Joseph Tyson
Diocese of Yakima 

Upcoming Events



February 23, 2019
Pedagogy Day
– Grandview, WA (English/Espanol)
March 2, 2019
Magnificat – Holy Spirit Parish Kennewick, WA (English/Espanol)
March 4 – 12, 2019
Novena of Grace @ St. Joseph Parish, Yakima WA
March 6, 2019
Ash Wednesday
March 9, 2019
Magnificat – St. Joseph Parish Wenatchee, WA (English/Espanol)
March 12, 2019
Mass for Medical Professionals (White Mass) @ St. Paul's Cathedral, Yakima WA
March 16, 2019
Magnificat – St. Paul's Cathedral, Yakima WA (English/Espanol)
March 19, 2019
Mass for Law Enforcement (Blue Mass) @ St. Paul's Cathedral, Yakima WA
March 23, 2019
Magnificat – Holy Spirit Parish Kennewick, WA (English/Espanol)
March 26, 2019
Mass for Lawyer (Red Mass) @ St. Paul's Cathedral, Yakima WA
March 30, 2019
Magnificat – St. Joseph Parish Wenatchee, WA (English/Espanol)
April 6, 2019
Magnificat – St. Paul's Cathedral, Yakima WA (English/Espanol)
April 6, 2019
FOCCUS Faciliator Training

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Most Rev. Joseph J. Tyson
Bishop of Yakima

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