- CARDINAL RIGALI PROTESTS MOVE TO FUND ABORTION IN DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA
June 30, 2009
WASHINGTON—Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia, chair of the Committee on Pro-Life Activities for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, wrote to members of the House Appropriations Committee today urging them not to fund abortions in the District of Columbia. Last week the House subcommittee considering the Financial Services appropriations bill for 2010 voted to permit direct public funding of abortion in the nation’s capital.
- Orthodox-Catholic Consultation Studies Nature of Communion, Authority
June 26, 2009
WASHINGTON—The seventy-sixth meeting of the North American Orthodox-Catholic Theological Consultation took place at St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary in Crestwood, New York, June 1 to 3. The session, hosted by the Standing Conference of the Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas (SCOBA), was co-chaired by Metropolitan Maximos of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Pittsburgh and Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati.
- U.S. BISHOPS, CATHOLIC RELIEF SERVICES CALL FOR GREATER COMMITMENT TO HELP POOR AROUND THE WORLD IN CLIMATE CHANGE LEGISLATION
June 25, 2009
WASHINGTON—Leaders of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and Catholic Relief Services (CRS) said they were encouraged by provisions aimed at protecting the poor and vulnerable at home and abroad in the latest climate change legislation, but added that they were "very concerned about the inadequate funding for assisting the poorest people and countries on earth" to help them adapt to the impact of climate change.
- Methodist-Catholic Dialogue Explores Eucharist, Environment
June 24, 2009
WASHINGTON—Care for one’s bodily health is linked to care for the body of the Church and for material creation, Methodist Bishop Timothy Whitaker said in a sermon during the second meeting of Round 7 of the Methodist-Catholic Dialogue at St. Paul’s College in Washington, June 15-17.
- San Juan Archbishop's Workshop on 'Continental Mission' Part of US Bishops' Spring Meeting
June 24, 2009
SAN ANTONIO—Archbishop Roberto González Nieves of San Juan, Puerto Rico, addressed the U.S. bishops on the implications of a "Continental Mission" to reignite Catholic identity and missionary zeal throughout the American continent, as urged by the Latin American bishops.
- BISHOPS OF G8 COUNTRIES URGE THEIR LEADERS TO PROTECT THE POOR AND ASSIST DEVELOPING COUNTRIES AT JULY G8 SUMMIT
June 24, 2009
WASHINGTON—In a letter to leaders participating in the G8 Summit in Italy, July 8-10, the presidents of the Catholic bishops' conferences of the G8 nations urged Summit leaders to "take concerted actions to protect poor persons and assist developing countries."
- CATHOLIC BISHOPS, CATHOLICS HEALTH CARE, UNIONS FIND COMMON GROUND ON RESPECTING RIGHTS OF HEALTH CARE WORKERS
June 23, 2009
WASHINGTON—The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), along with leaders from Catholic health care and the labor movement, released "guidance and options" for creating a fair process for health care workers to decide whether or not to form a union. Outlined in a new document entitled Respecting the Just Rights of Workers: Guidance and Options for Catholic Health Care and Unions, the principles reflect a unique and ground-breaking consensus between Catholic health care employers and unions and are the result of a dialogue that began more than a decade ago. The document can be found on the USCCB Web site at: www.usccb.org/sdwp/national/respecting_the_just_rights_of_workers.pdf
- 2009 CATECHETICAL SUNDAY MATERIALS BEING OFFERED ENTIRELY ONLINE
June 22, 2009
WASHINGTON—The Committee on Evangelization and Catechesis of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) announced that, for the first time, the major Catechetical Sunday materials will be offered entirely online. The theme for Catechetical Sunday 2009 is "Catechesis and the Proclamation of the Word."
- U.S. Bishops Express Support for Bishop D'arcy and His Pastoral Concern for the University of Notre Dame
June 22, 2009
SAN ANTONIO—During their spring General Assembly, June 17-19, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops expressed their solidarity for Bishop John M. D'Arcy of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, Ind., in particular for his care and concern for the University of Notre Dame, which resides in his diocese.
- Bishops Approve Text, Inclusion Of Mass In Thanksgiving For The Gift Of Human Life, Spanish Lectionary; Other Liturgy Votes Inconclusive
June 18, 2009
SAN ANTONIO—The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), meeting in their spring general assembly, approved the text of the Mass in Thanksgiving for the Gift of Human Life and its U.S. adaptation to the Roman Missal. It was approved with 183 Latin rite bishops voting yes, 3 voting no and 3 abstaining. Its adaptation was approved with 179 bishops voting yes, 1 voting no and 1 abstaining.
- Cardinal George, Bishops Ask President Obama, Congress To Enact Comprehensive Immigration Reform Before End Of 2009
June 18, 2009
SAN ANTONIO—Cardinal Francis George of Chicago called on President Barack Obama and Congress to enact comprehensive immigration reform before the end of 2009.
USCCB Clarifies Key Points From Reflections On Covenant And Mission Statement (2002)
June 18, 2009
- Liturgical Items Will Dominate Spring Bishops' Meeting Agenda In San Antonio
June 16, 2009
- Cardinal George Congratulates Archbishop -Elect Di Noia, Former Head Of USCCB Doctrine Office
June 16, 2009
- USCCB's Refugee Children's Program Wins Award For Advancement Of Child Maltreatment Prevention And Intervention
June 15, 2009
- Pope Names Bishop Gregory Aymond as Archbishop of New Orleans
June 12, 2009
- CARDINAL GEORGE CALLS VIOLENCE AT HOLOCAUST MUSEUM APPALLING;
CITES NEED FOR EDUCATION AGAINST RACIAL, RELIGIOUS PREJUDICE
June 11, 2009
- Advisory: The annual Spring General Meeting of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) will be June 17 through 19
June 12, 2009
- Bhutanese Couple Resettled by U.S. Bishops' Program to Speak at United Nations' World Refugee Day Event
June 10, 2009
- Catholics, Anglicans Meet on Debt Relief, Contraception
June 9, 2009
- 'Callings' Documentary Featuring Baseball Player, Dancer, Social Worker Available for Airing on NBC
June 8, 2009
- Sikh-Catholic Retreat Scans Common Theology, Youth Outreach
June 8, 2009
- WEST COAST MUSLIM-CATHOLIC DIALOGUE EXPLORES MIGRATION IN LIVES OF JESUS, MUHAMMAD
June 8, 2009
- Pope Names Philadelphia Vicar for Priests Auxiliary Bishop
June 8, 2009
- YEAR FOR PRIESTS WEBSITE HIGHLIGHTS INTERNATIONAL CELEBRATION
June 5, 2009
- CATHOLIC BISHOPS, OTHER CHRISTIAN LEADERS APPLAUD OBAMA SPEECH, RESPOND TO HIS CALL TO WORK FOR HOLY LAND PEACE
June 5, 2009
WASHINGTON—A broad and diverse group of national U.S. Christian leaders, including Bishop Howard J. Hubbard of Albany, New York, Chairman of the U.S. bishops' Committee on International Justice and Peace, applauded president Barack Obama in a June 4 letter to the President on the heels of his historic speech in Cairo, June 4.
- OFFICIAL CATHOLIC DIRECTORY STATISTICS SHOW CATHOLICS STILL 22 PERCENT OF U.S. POPULATION
June 3, 2009
- Pope Accepts Resignation of Omaha Archbishop, Appoints Bishop Lucas of Springfield, Illinois, as Successor
June 3, 2009
- Bishops Support Family Reunification Senate Bill, Not Able to Support Similar House Legislation
June 2, 2009
- U.S. Bishops Express 'Profound Regret' about Shooting Death of Abortion Doctor
June 1, 2009
- Pennsylvania News Anchor, Educator, Lawman Named to Bishops Child, Youth Protection National Review Board
June 1, 2009
Cardinal Rigali said that the subcommittee’s action “effectively nullifies the Dornan amendment,” which for a total of 18 years has prevented public funding of elective abortions in the District. He said this move, “presumably the first step in a broader effort to restore such funding throughout the federal government,” is misguided for three reasons.
In a June 22 letter to the U.S. House of Representatives, Albany Bishop Howard J. Hubbard, chairman of the USCCB Committee on International Justice and Peace, and Ken Hackett, president of CRS, called the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 (H.R. 2454) "groundbreaking legislation" that "begins a serious and overdue effort to face up to moral and environmental challenges and represents an important beginning."
Bishop Whitaker, who co-chairs the dialogue with Bishop William Skylstad of Spokane, Washington, drew on the body image from the New Testament to show that Christ’s redemption embraces all of creation and implies respect for the natural environments in which parishes and church agencies are located.
He addressed the full body of bishops June 17, at the General Assembly of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) in San Antonio. The day before, he led a workshop on the same topic accompanied by U.S. bishops who participated in the Fifth General Conference of Bishops of Latin America in Aparecida, Brazil, May 13-31, 2007.
The bishops observed that poor persons and nations have contributed the least to creating the economic crisis and to the human cause of global climate change, but in both cases are likely to suffer tragic consequences.
The Catechetical Sunday materials, entitled "Celebrating the Catechetical Year 2009-2010 With Resources for Catechetical Sunday 2009," are available in English and Spanish and will assist parishes in celebrating Catechetical Sunday. They offer a variety of items for use throughout the 2009-2010 year. They can serve as resources for parish catechetical leaders, catechists, Catholic school teachers and parishioners. These resources can be used in catechist or teacher in-services, parish adult faith formation, family enrichment, personal prayer and retreats.
The bishops made this show of support during executive session, but released the following statement:
He called for this action June 18, at the Spring meeting of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops in San Antonio, Texas. The statement follows.
WASHINGTON—A statement clarifying two points of Catholic teaching relative to the Jewish community was released June 18, at the spring meeting of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). A Note on Ambiguities Contained in Covenant and Mission was jointly issued by the Committee on Doctrine and Pastoral Practice and the Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs.
SAN ANTONIO—The Spring General Meeting of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) starts June 17 in San Antonio, Texas.
Sessions open to media are Wednesday, June 17, 1:30-5 p.m., and Thursday, 9 a.m.-12: 15 p.m.
SAN ANTONIO—Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), congratulated Archbishop-elect J. Augustine Di Noia on his appointment as secretary at the Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments.
WASHINGTON—The American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC) has announced that it has chosen BRYCS (Bridging Refugee Youth and Children's Services), an initiative of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' Migration and Refugee Services (USCCB/MRS), as the recipient of this year's Award for Advancement of Cultural Competency in Child Maltreatment Prevention and Intervention.
This award recognizes an individual, organization or agency that has made outstanding contributions in this regard mainly through education. Viola Vaughan-Eden, awards chair and APSAC vice president, summarized the reasons BRYCS was selected for the award.
WASHINGTON—Pope Benedict XVI has named Bishop Gregory Aymond of Austin, Texas, 59, as Archbishop of New Orleans. He succeeds Archbishop Alfred Hughes, who turned 75 in 2007. According to Canon Law, bishops submit their resignation to the pope when they turn 75.
The appointment was announced in Washington, June 12, by Msgr. Alexander Cifuentes Castaño, chargé d'affaires at the Vatican Nunciature.
Gregory Michael Aymond was born November 12, 1949, in New Orleans. He attended elementary and secondary schools in his home city and entered St. Joseph Minor Seminary in 1971. He earned a Master of Divinity degree at New Orleans' Notre Dame Major Seminary in 1975, and was ordained a priest for the archdiocese on May 10, 1975.
WASHINGTON—Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, said the violence of the June 10 shooting at the Holocaust Museum was "appalling." He added that "This tragic incident only serves to reinforce the need for continued education throughout society against bias of every kind, but most especially racial and religious prejudice."
His entire statement, issued Jun 11, follows.
WASHINGTON—Khagendra and Ganga Baral, Bhutanese refugees resettled in the United States in 2008 through the U.S. Catholic Bishops' refugee resettlement program, will speak at this year's World Refuge Day event on June 18, hosted by the UN Commissioner for Refugees and the National Geographic Museum.
The theme of this year's celebration, "Real People, Real Needs," highlights the human story of refugees and their needs. The Barals' story embodies the tragedy of "statelessness" that hundreds of thousands of Bhutanese, mostly ethnic Nepalis, face after being forced to leave their own country.
WASHINGTON—The second meeting of the new round of the Anglican-Roman Catholic Dialogue in the United States (ARC-USA) took place in Cincinnati, May 25-26. It was hosted by the Episcopal Diocese of Southern Ohio and co-chaired by Episcopal Bishop Thomas Breidenthal of Southern, Ohio, and Catholic Bishop Ronald P. Herzog of Alexandria, Louisiana. Following the theme of this round of dialogue, "Ecclesiology and Moral Discernment: Common Ground and Divergences," members examined two moral theology issues: debt relief and contraception.
Debt relief was addressed on the Catholic side by M. Therese Lysaught, Ph.D., of Marquette University in a paper entitled, "Reconciling All Things: An Analysis of the Roman Catholic Position on International Debt." The question was analyzed from an Anglican perspective by Timothy F. Sedgwick, Ph.D., of the Virginia Theological Seminary in his paper, "A Case Study on Poverty: On Moral Teaching in the Episcopal and Anglican Church." Members noted that even though they differ on sources and methodologies, the two churches have reached nearly identical conclusions on this question.
WASHINGTON—"Callings," an hour-long documentary on work as a vocation, will be released by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) to NBC-TV stations and affiliates on Sunday, June 14. (Check local listings. Local broadcast is at the discretion of the station.)
The program features major league first baseman Mike Sweeney, now of the Seattle Mariners, dancer Francie Huber, Catholic Charities social worker Rita Flynn, and seven others who point out that their work is more a calling than a job. A clip from the documentary can be found at http://www.usccb.org/video/
WASHINGTON—Representatives of the World Sikh Council-America Region (WSC-AR) and staff of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) met in Columbus, Ohio, May 29-31, for a three-day Catholic-Sikh retreat on the theme "The Nature of God: Convergence, Divergence, and Our Spiritual Paths."
The two faith communities have been meeting since 2006, when the Holy See's Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue encouraged greater contact between the two communities in the United States. Sikhs, among the fastest growing Asian religious communities in the United States, now numbering 150,000.
WASHINGTON—Understanding the experience of "Migration in the Lives of Jesus and Muhammad" and applying it to the contemporary challenges faced by Muslims and Catholics was the topic of the West Coast Dialogue of Catholics and Muslims, May 20-21, in Rancho Palos Verdes, California. Presenters were Imam S. Mostafa Qazwini and Msgr. Dennis Mikulanis of the Diocese of San Diego.
Understanding the experience of "Migration in the Lives of Jesus and Muhammad" and applying it to the contemporary challenges faced by Muslims and Catholics was the topic of the West Coast Dialogue of Catholics and Muslims, May 20-21, in Rancho Palos Verdes, California. Presenters were Imam S. Mostafa Qazwini and Msgr. Dennis Mikulanis of the Diocese of San Diego.
WASHINGTON—Pope Benedict XVI has named Msgr. Timothy C. Senior, 49, as an auxiliary bishop of Philadelphia.
The appointment was announced in Washington, June 8, by Msgr. Alexander Cifuentes Castaño, Chargé d'Affaires of the Apostolic Nunciature in the United States.
WASHINGTON—The U.S. Bishops' Secretariat for Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations has set up a Web site to mark the Year for Priests, to be celebrated June 19, 2009-June 19, 2010, throughout the world.
Pope Benedict XVI has designated the year-long celebration to begin on the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, a day of prayer for the sanctification of all priests. The pope also has designated St. John Vianney as the Universal Patron of All Priests on the occasion of the 150th Anniversary of the saint's death. The saint, who also is known as the Cure of Ars, is the patron of parish priests.
The Year for priests Website can be found at http://www.usccb.org/yearforpriests/index.shtml.
The message expressed gratitude for President Obama's efforts at reaching out to the Muslim world and for making Israeli-Palestinian peace a top priority of his Administration. It also expressed grave concern over the "deteriorating situation in the Holy Land" and urged the Obama Administration to make real and concrete progress in achieving a just peace between Israel and the Palestinians.
WASHINGTON—Data in the 2009 Official Catholic Directory, also known as the Kenedy Directory, show there are 68,115,001 Catholics in the United States, making up 22 percent of the U.S. population. The total number of Catholics is an increase of about one million from the previous year.
The directory is based on information collected from dioceses and is released each spring.
WASHINGTON—Pope Benedict XVI has accepted the resignation of Archbishop Elden F. Curtiss, 76, from the pastoral governance of the Archdiocese of Omaha, Nebraska, and has named as his successor Bishop George J. Lucas, 59, up until now Bishop of Springfield in Illinois.
The announcement was made June 3 in Washington by the apostolic nuncio to the United States, Archbishop Pietro Sambi.
WASHINGTON—Bishop John C. Wester of Salt Lake City, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' (USCCB) Committee on Migration, expressed the Committee's support for the Reuniting American Families Act (S. 1085) introduced May 20. He did so in a June 2 letter to Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ).
The Act proposes reforms to the family-based immigration system that would allow immigrant families to more quickly reunite in the United States.
WASHINGTON—Speaking on behalf of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia, chairman of the bishops' Committee on Pro-Life Activities, expressed profound regret upon learning of the shooting death of abortion doctor George Tiller.
"Our bishops' conference and all its members have repeatedly and publicly denounced all forms of violence in our society, including abortion as well as the misguided resort to violence by anyone opposed to abortion," Cardinal Rigali said. "Such killing is the opposite of everything we stand for, and everything we want our culture to stand for: respect for the life of each and every human being from its beginning to its natural end. We pray for Dr. Tiller and his family."
WASHINGTON—Mike Clark, a Pittsburgh TV news anchor, and Antoine M. Garibaldi, Ph.D., president of Gannon University in Erie, Pennsylvania, have been named to the National Review Board for three-year terms beginning June 1.
In addition, Stephen A. Zappala Jr., Pennsylvania's Alleghany County District Attorney, has been tapped for a three-year term beginning June 1, 2010.
Others to begin their terms in June are Charles Handel, Ed.D and Anna Moran, J.D., whose appointments were announced last year.