By California Catholic Conference

SACRAMENTO – Bishops from throughout the state of California released a video today reenacting the Stations of the Cross to draw attention to the sin of racism and ask God’s help in eliminating it.

It is also intended to commemorate the fifth anniversary of the tragic killings at Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC, and the Juneteenth holiday this Friday, celebrating the end of slavery in the United States.

“People today suffer unjustly simply because of the color of their skin or their national origin,” says Bishop Robert McElroy, leader of the Diocese of San Diego and president of the California Catholic Conference. “Let us acknowledge the sin of racism and work to combat it in our social structures, our institutions and our hearts.”

The “Stations of the Cross” is both a reenactment and a reminder of the struggle and humiliation that our Lord Jesus Christ went through on his way to crucifixion and his ultimate resurrection. There are 14 “stations,” each depicting incidents that took place as Jesus carried his own cross to Mount Calvary, the site of his execution.

The video released today is led by Archbishop José Gomez of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and includes the leaders of all 12 California (arch)dioceses and the two Catholic eparchies.

The liturgy was developed by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and each station in the video was taped at a location with rich significance.