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LA archbishop at Mass before Dodgers game: ‘When God is insulted, it diminishes all of us’

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Los Angeles Archbishop Jose Gomez celebrated a special Mass on Friday ahead of an act of “blasphemy” scheduled to take place at Dodgers Stadium this evening.

The Mass, celebrated on the solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, marked the beginning of a day of prayer in reparation for the Los Angeles Dodgers’ decision to honor a group that calls itself the “Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence” with a “Community Hero Award.”

Many are calling the organization an “anti-Catholic hate group” for its lewd performances that profane holy symbols and its perverse parody of the Catholic Mass.

“My brothers and sisters in Christ, we gather together on this solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus to celebrate the beauty of God’s love and pray that our hearts might be conformed to his, which burns with love for all people,” Gomez said in his homily at the 12:10 p.m. Mass, celebrated in the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in Los Angeles.

“The Catholic religion is a religion of love. We believe that God is love, that he has opened his heart to reveal himself to us in Jesus Christ,” he said.

Gomez said that Catholics share God’s love not only in word and worship but also through acts of charity.

“We prove our love by working for peace and justice for every person. This is why so many of us are offended by the decision to honor a group that insults Jesus and mocks Catholic believers,” Gomez remarked.

“Religious freedom and the respect for the beliefs of others are hallmarks of our nation. When God is insulted, when the beliefs of any of our neighbors are ridiculed, it diminishes all of us,” he said.

Gomez said that religious sisters, priests, deacons, lay Catholics, and consecrated people serve where there is suffering and a need for help.

“We are teachers and healers. We are advocates for those our society neglects: the poor, the homeless, the prisoner, the unborn, the immigrant,” he said.

“We do this because we are Catholics and we are called to love with the heart of Jesus,” he said.

“At every turn in his earthly life, Jesus rejected the temptation to violence. When one of his disciples raised his sword to fight for him, Jesus said, ‘No more of this,’” he said.

Gomez said that Jesus is “meek and humble of heart” and “gave his Church permission to proclaim the good news of his love for every human heart to the ends of the earth, until the day he returns.”

He also said that Jesus “commands us to forgive those who trespass against us and to pray for those who persecute us.”

Jesus taught us to oppose what is wrong and support what is true and beautiful, he said.

“So today we ask him to give us the strength to do that,” he said.

At the end of the Mass, Gomez prayed the Litany of the Sacred Heart of Jesus with the attendees, a prayer that he, together with the U.S. bishops, asked all Catholics to pray in reparation for the act of “blasphemy” scheduled to take place at Dodger Stadium.

An act of reparation is offered to the Lord to repair the spiritual damage inflicted by sin.

At the conclusion of the Mass, Gomez noted the heavy presence of religious sisters and publicly thanked them for their vocation and ministry, which was followed by applause.

On Friday, in the parking lot outside of Dodger Stadium, two Catholic advocacy organizations, Catholics for Catholics and CatholicVote, along with Virgin Most Powerful Radio organized a prayer rally in reparation for offenses committed against Jesus Christ.

Bishop Joseph Strickland of Tyler, Texas, was scheduled to lead a eucharistic procession at 3 p.m. local time.

The Dodgers sparked protests from Catholics across the nation after it was announced that the team would honor the Los Angeles chapter of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence in June.

The Dodgers initially reversed course and disinvited the group after Catholic leaders complained.

But after LGBT activists and local political leaders criticized the team for disinviting the group, the Dodgers re-invited them on May 22 to be an honoree at the team’s June 16 LGBTQ+ Pride Night game against the San Francisco Giants at 10:10 p.m. EDT.

Several U.S. bishops issued statements denouncing the Dodgers’ re-invitation of the group.

U.S. bishops and Catholic organizations were not the only ones to denounce the Dodgers’ move. In a statement, Washington Nationals pitcher Trevor Williams said he believes it is “essential” for the Dodgers to reconsider its decision.

Watch Williams in this exclusive interview with EWTN:

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LA archbishop at Mass before Dodgers game: ‘When God is insulted, it diminishes all of us’