As the summer sun shines upon us, we find ourselves celebrating a beloved American holiday – Independence Day. This is a time when we come together to celebrate the freedom and opportunities our nation provides. It’s a day of barbecues, fireworks, and cherished moments with family and friends. But as we revel in the United States’ independence, let us not forget our brothers and sisters around the world who are dependent on us, both in prayer and in material support.

In the Communion of Saints, we are bound together as one family, connected through the love of Christ. This connection transcends borders and reaches to the farthest corners of the earth. While we celebrate our own freedom, we must remember that millions across the globe are still yearning for liberation from poverty, oppression, and persecution. Furthermore, there are millions who are waiting for the freedom that comes from realizing that they are children of a loving God who has a plan for them because they have yet to be introduced to the joy of the Gospel.

This Independence Day, and throughout these summer months, when we often have more time to spend with our loved ones and to reflect on the graces God has bestowed upon us, let us make a conscious effort to extend our hearts and prayers beyond our own little corners. As we look back and ahead, let us remember those who suffer and continue to face unimaginable challenges. And let us also remember those who accompany them on a daily basis. The missionary women and men, the priests and religious, and the thousands living a life dedicated to faith and service, despite the challenges of uprooting their already bustling lives.

Prayer is a powerful tool that unites us with our brothers and sisters in need. In our moments of gratitude for our own blessings, let us offer prayers for those who are still caught in the grip of poverty and injustice. Through our prayers and in offering up our more challenging realities, we become a beacon of hope.

Together, we can create a network of faith, love and support that transcends distance and brings comfort to the afflicted.

Furthermore, let us remember the material support we can provide. The Pontifical Mission Societies have been working tirelessly to alleviate suffering and bring the light of Christ to those in need. Our generosity can make a tangible impact on the lives of our brothers and sisters, providing them with the resources they desperately need to build a brighter future.

So, as we celebrate the red, white, and blue, let us also embrace the call to solidarity. Let us make this Independence Day a reminder of our responsibility to those who are dependent on us. May we be driven not only by our love for our nation but also by our love for all our brothers and sisters in Christ.