California’s bishops issued a statement of appreciation on Oct. 29 for the work and ministry of women religious in the nation’s most populous state. The statement acknowledged “with profound gratitude the contributions of these women of the Gospel who have lived and served in the Catholic dioceses and archdioceses of California.” The statement was accompanied by a letter from Cardinal Roger M. Mahony of Los Angeles and was sent to communities of women religious across the state. “We are all aware of the special anxieties which surround our women religious these days, and I am writing to offer you my prayers of gratitude and my support for all of your members,” the cardinal wrote. Cardinal Mahony cited the two centuries of ministry the sisters have offered to the people of California. He credited the sisters for establishing schools, hospitals and other facilities.