WASHINGTON (June 16, 1998) -- U.S. Bishops meeting later this week in Pittsburgh will discuss ways to build relationships between the Church in the United States and in Latin America, just as a tool they have used to raise awareness of the topic has been honored by Catholic journalists.
Sharing Faith Across the Hemisphere, commissioned by the Bishops' Committee on the Church in Latin America last year, was awarded first place in the category of Catholic History/Biography Books earlier this month by the Catholic Press Association.
The CPA cited the book as a "stellar contribution to the study of Catholic missionary efforts."
Each delegate to last year's Synod of Bishops for America -- encompassing Bishops from North, South, and Central America -- received a copy of the book to assist in his preparations for the month-long meetings in Rome. As follow-up to the Synod, U.S. Bishops will discuss ways to heighten awareness among U.S. Catholics of the problems and prospects facing the Church in Latin America. Among the ideas to be considered is the appointment of a person in each diocese who would work directly with Bishops' Latin America Secretariat in Washington.
Bishop Roberto González of Corpus Christi, Chairman of the Committee for the Church in Latin America, welcomed the CPA's recognition of the book.
"The first place honor will draw attention to the book which in turn will draw attention to the need for stronger bonds of solidarity among Catholics throughout the Western Hemisphere," Bishop González said. "There is much to draw us closer, and we must work to foster those relationships."
Written by St. Joseph Sister Mary M. McGlone, Sharing Faith Across the Hemisphere has received strong reviews.
St. Anthony Messenger said the book is a "solid and informative overview of inter-American Church relations of recent decades. .... Written in readable, engaging style, the book is very beneficial for educators and parish leaders, as well as for anyone interested in Church history."
"It should be a useful resource for parish programs and classes on church and mission," said Book Review, and Sisters Today said, "This book is an excellent teaching tool and includes statistical results of mission work. Each chapter concludes with questions for reflection."
The book, which is available in both English and Spanish editions, also has a 30-minute video companion. All can be purchased from the U.S. Catholic Conference's Office of Publishing and Promotion Services (1-800-235-8722).