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Pope Francis Names Archbishop Wilton Gregory of Atlanta as New Archbishop of Washington

WASHINGTON—Pope Francis has named the Most Reverend Wilton D. Gregory as the new Archbishop of Washington. The appointment was publicized in Washington, DC, on April 4, 2019 by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States.

Archbishop Wilton Gregory, 71, was born on December 7, 1947 in Chicago, Illinois. He attended the University of Saint Mary at Mundelein Seminary, and completed his doctorate in sacred liturgy in 1980 at the Pontifical Liturgical Institute (Sant’ Anselmo) in Rome.

He was ordained as a priest for the Archdiocese of Chicago on May 9, 1973. On December 13, 1983, he was ordained an auxiliary bishop of Chicago. He was then installed as bishop of the Diocese of Belleville, IL on February 10, 1994. Pope John Paull II appointed him as the sixth archbishop of the Archdiocese of Atlanta. He was installed on January 17, 2005.

Archbishop Gregory served as president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops from Nov. 2001 to 2004, following three years as USCCB vice president. Under his leadership, the USCCB implemented the “Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People.” He also previously served on other committees including the Committee on Doctrine, Liturgy, Administrative, and International Policy and also as Chairman of the Bishops’ Committees on Personnel and the Third Millennium/Jubilee Year 2000.

On October 12, 2018, Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Cardinal Donald Wuerl, 78, from the pastoral governance of the Archdiocese of Washington.

Cardinal Wuerl had presented his resignation almost three years ago, when he reached the retirement age for bishops of 75. Upon acceptance of his resignation, Pope Francis named Cardinal Wuerl as apostolic administrator to oversee the archdiocese until a successor was named. Cardinal Wuerl served as archbishop of Washington from 2006 to 2018.

The Archdiocese of Washington is comprised of 2,104 square miles and has a total population of 2,994,625 of which 658,818 or 22 percent, are Catholic.  

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Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Pope Francis, Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio, Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory , Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl, Archdiocese of Washington, Archdiocese of Atlanta

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Media Contact:
Judy Keane
202-541-3200

El Presidente del Comité de Actividades Provida de USCCB emite una declaración sobre la Ley de Protección a Sobrevivientes del Aborto Nacidos Vivos

WASHINGTON— Hoy, el congresista Steve Scalise está presentando una petición en la Cámara de Representantes para forzar una votación sobre el proyecto de ley de la Representante Ann Wagner, la Ley de Protección de Sobrevivientes del Aborto Nacidos Vivos. Si la petición recibe 218 firmas, los miembros de la Cámara votarán sobre la legislación para garantizar que cualquier niño nacido vivo después de un intento de aborto reciba el mismo grado de atención que se le daría a otro niño nacido en la misma edad gestacional.

El Arzobispo Joseph F. Naumann, Presidente del Comité de Actividades Pro-Vida de la Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de los Estados Unidos (USCCB), emitió la siguiente declaración en respuesta:
 
“Nuestra nación es mejor que el infanticidio. Los bebés nacidos vivos durante el proceso de aborto merecen la misma atención y asistencia médica que cualquier otro recién nacido. No brindar atención es una forma letal de discriminación contra las circunstancias del nacimiento del niño. Insto encarecidamente a todos los representantes a firmar esta petición, y luego a votar por la Ley de Protección de Sobrevivientes del Aborto Nacidos Vivos. Este proyecto de ley agregaría requisitos específicos para ayudar a garantizar que los bebés nacidos vivos después de un intento de aborto puedan tener una oportunidad justa en la vida".

La carta del Arzobispo Naumann a la Cámara de Representantes y otros recursos pueden encontrarse en: http://www.usccb.org/about/pro-life-activities/born-alive-bill.cfm

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Palabras clave: Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de Estados Unidos, Comité de Actividades Provida, USCCB, Arzobispo Joseph Naumann, Cámara de Representantes, Steve Scalise, Ley de Protección de Sobrevivientes del Aborto Nacidos Vivos.

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Contactos de prensa:
Judy Keane
202-541-3200

Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3202

 

Christus Vivit, Pope Francis’s Apostolic Exhortation on Young People, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment, Welcomed by U.S. Bishops’ President and Committee Chairmen

WASHINGTON-The release of Pope Francis's apostolic exhortation today is “a wonderful summons to the Church to more vigorously invest in youth and young adults, especially those on the peripheries and those disconnected from the Church,” said the President and committee chairmen of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB). 

Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston and President of the USCCB, Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R, of Newark, chairman of the Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations, and Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., of Philadelphia, chairman of the USCCB Committee on Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth, have issued the following joint statement on the release of Christus Vivit. 

Full statement follows: 

“The Church of the United States welcomes this teaching from Pope Francis as the fruit of the synodal journey in which we walked with and listened to young people. This exhortation is a wonderful summons to the whole Church to more vigorously invest in youth and young adults, especially those on the peripheries and those who are disconnected from the Church.

We encourage all Catholic leaders to read and study this exhortation and the pertinent documents of the Synod. They provide for us a framework from which we can build upon in our dioceses, parishes, and communities. 

Now more than ever, we must turn our attention to our young people and engage them as ‘protagonists’ of the Church’s mission. Their insights can help us grow as a Church and guide us as we all learn to become better missionary disciples in an intercultural and intergenerational context. We look forward to what comes next, in collaboration with Catholic ministry leaders already working alongside young people. We look forward to the journey ahead, and pray with St. John Paul II, a patron of young people whose passing we remember today, for the Church’s ongoing mission to all generations. 

The post-synodal apostolic exhortation, Christus Vivit, is a significant milestone of the synodal process begun by Pope Francis in 2016. After two years of consultation by episcopal conferences, movements, and Catholic organizations, along with a worldwide online survey and a Pre-Synod Meeting with young adults in March 2018, the General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops met in October 2018 on the theme ‘Young People, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment.’ Bishops, clergy, religious, and lay people, including a number of young people, together with Pope Francis, addressed the challenges facing younger generations today and ways in which the Church can best respond. Now the work of the Holy Spirit, manifest in the sessions of the Synod, will bear fruit in the dioceses of the United States.”

Pope Francis’s Christus Vivit may be ordered online at http://store.usccb.org/christ-is-alive-p/7-628.htm

Please also click on the following link for a cover image of the text http://www.usccb.org/about/marketing/products/images/p-francis-exhortation-christ-lives-7-628-Cover-1000.jpg

Additional books and resources pertaining to youth and young adult ministries, marriage and family life, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the Vatican, ministry and more can be found by visiting the USCCB’s online bookstore at https://store.usccb.org

For more information on the 2018 Synod on Young People, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment, please visit www.usccb.org/christlives

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Keywords: Pope Francis, Apostolic Exhortation, Christus Vivit, Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations, Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., Committee on Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth, Synod, intercultural, intergenerational context, youth ministry, young adult ministry, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops  


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Media Contact:

Judy Keane

202-541-3200

 

Catholic Bishops’ Pro-Life Chairman Praises Trump Administration for Expanded Mexico City Policy

WASHINGTON– Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, chair of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Pro-Life Activities, thanked the Trump Administration following its announcement of the expansion of the Mexico City Policy and its enforcement of the Siljander Amendment.

“As Chairman of the United States Bishops’ Pro-Life Committee, I applaud this Administration for working hard to ensure that U.S. taxpayer dollars are not used to perform or promote abortion internationally. Taxpayer dollars should never fund abortion—and especially not in developing countries where many women need genuine, life-sustaining support for themselves and for their children. International organizations should be providing real assistance, real healthcare, and real opportunities for women, instead of offering to end the lives of their unborn children.”

The Mexico City Policy, now called Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance, requires foreign non-governmental organizations receiving U.S. aid to certify that they will not perform or actively promote abortion as a method of family planning in developing nations. The expansion ensures that taxpayer dollars aren’t going to organizations that perform or promote abortions themselves or that fund other organizations that perform or promote abortions. The Siljander Amendment prohibits federal dollars from funding groups that lobby for or against abortion.

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Keywords: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, Committee on Pro-Life Activities, Trump Administration, Mexico city Policy, enforcement, Siliander Amendment, U.S. taxpayer dollars, abortion, International organizations, Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance, non-governmental organizations, NGO’s, developing nations

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Media Advisory
Judy Keane
202-541-3200

 

Book Review: The Anti-Mary Exposed

By Andrea Picciotti-Bayer

Why are so many women so angry today?
 
Don’t get me wrong, confronting abuse, harassment, and unfair treatment demands a certain toughness and righteous anger. But more than the injustices of the day seem to be making women really angry. Dr. Carrie Gress’ thought-provoking new book, The Anti-Mary Exposed: Rescuing the Culture from Toxic Femininity, offers a convincing explanation: We live in an age of the Anti-Mary.
 
It is well-accepted, at least in Catholic circles, that Mary brought a unique spirit into the world as the Mother of God. She is the anti-Eve, the New Eve. Gress builds upon this understanding and argues that “[i]f Christ is the New Adam and Mary the New Eve, it makes sense to consider that an antichrist could have a female complement.” This complement is an anti-Marian spirit that “animates an entire movement and the individuals engaged in it.” That movement is what passes for feminism today.
 
What does this “anti-Marian spirit” look like?
[A] woman in its grip would not value children. She would be bawdy, vulgar, and angry. She would rage against the idea of anything resembling humble obedience or self-sacrifice for others. She would be petulant, shallow, catty and over sensuous. She would also be self-absorbed, manipulative, gossipy, anxious, and self-servingly ambitious. In short, she would be everything that Mary is not. She would bristle especially at the idea of being a virgin or a mother.     
 
The description is bracing and familiar. I know this spirit. At my best, I struggle against it. At my worst, I am overtaken by aspects of it. We probably all are, women and men, as individuals. Gress, however, is arguing that this unattractive “anti-Marian spirit” has become something of a spirit of the age for far too many women today. The result is a prevailing anger. And a prevailing discontent.  
 
Gress finds the roots of the anti-Marian spirit in the early feminist movement of the 1960s. She recounts the movement's founding and the dramatic influence it has had on how women think about themselves today. Her history lesson is not glamorous.  It is not chic. It is downright ugly and reveals how "feminism" from its infancy indulged in the vice of envy.
 
Today, proponents of unfettered abortion have taken up the baton once carried by early radical feminists. They peddle the idea that a woman's developing child is a threat to her advancement, success, and happiness. Adherents of a toxic feminism do not “embrace the goodness that men have to offer society but view it as an evil that must be eliminated.” This anti-Marian spirit has rebranded and exalted as role models the “woman of folly,” Jezebel, and Lilith – characters referred to in cautionary tales found in Scripture and literature. Women under the spirit’s grip embrace the Marxist idea that divorces motherhood from the reality of being a woman. While rejecting the general idea of “goodness,” slaves of the anti-Marian spirit are encouraged to "find the goddess within."   
 
Fortunately, Gress’ The Anti-Mary Exposed is not mere commentary on our ailing culture. Rather, it is a self-help book for rescuing womanhood. So, what can modern woman do? How can we pull ourselves away from the “anti-Marian spirit” before being completely consumed?  
 
The antidote Dr. Gress prescribes is Mary -- our perfect model of Christian femininity. In Mary, we find a woman, not a goddess. She is sinless and perfect. She is not enslaved by vice. Her power is in her complete surrender to God. Mary’s meekness does not make her a doormat. As Saint Pope John Paul II observed, Mary “participated maternally in the tough fight against the powers of darkness that unfold during the whole of human history.”  
 
In short, she fights like a mom.  
 
The desires of women's hearts, Gress observes, "are to be beautiful, to be fruitful, to have their dignity respected, and most essentially, to be known and loved." Imitating Mary -- the perfect model of one who is "loved by God and who has an authentic relationship with Him" -- will satisfy these desires.  
 
The Anti-Mary Exposed: Rescuing the Culture from Toxic Femininity is a powerful read. Gress cogently explores how radical feminism has unleashed a malicious "anti-Marian spirit," but leaves women and our culture a way out. Our embrace and imitation of Mary can rescue our culture, our womanhood. As Gress makes clear in this gem of a book, "[Mary] offers us the key to unlock the confusion about what it means to be women and what we need to do to find the true happiness that our souls crave." 

U.S. Bishops’ Chairmen Offer Prayers and Solidarity for Recovery After Deadly Cyclone Hits Mozambique, Malawi, and Zimbabwe

WASHINGTON—After historic devastation and loss of life brought on by Cyclone Idai to Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe, Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin C.Ss.R., Archbishop of Newark and Chairman of the U.S. Bishops’ Subcommittee on the Church in Africa, and Archbishop Timothy P. Broglio, Archbishop for the Military Services and Chairman of the U.S. Bishops’ Committee on International Justice and Peace, wrote to the Catholic Bishops’ Conferences of Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe to express sorrow and solidarity over the lives lost by the cyclone and offered prayers for recovery.

The full statement follows:

“It is with profound shock, horror, and sadness that we learn about the devastation and massive loss of life that has occurred in your country due to Cyclone Idai. The magnitude of the cyclone and the scope of its damages are almost beyond belief.

We pray for the hundreds of people who lost their lives in the storm. May they rest in peace and bask in the eternal embrace of our heavenly Father. We also pray for the family members who survived the devastation and now mourn the loss of their loved ones, and struggle to rebuild their homes and livelihoods. They face a long road to recovery. We join them in their mourning. May they find comfort and solace. We offer them our prayers and support.

As a concrete manifestation of that support, we are pleased to inform you that Catholic Relief Services (CRS), the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops overseas relief and development agency, immediately set up an emergency relief initiative to collect resources to provide humanitarian aid and begin the longer-term recovery efforts in Mozambique/Malawi/Zimbabwe. We have full confidence that you will soon see the results of these efforts.

CRS and the USCCB remain committed to stand with the Church and the people of Mozambique/Malawi/Zimbabwe in your long road to recovery and increased prosperity.”

Donations can be made to Catholic Relief Services.

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Keywords: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, Archbishop Timothy Broglio, Catholic Relief Services, Mozambique, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Cyclone Idai

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Media Contact:
Judy Keane
202-541-3200

 

Concern Over New Mercury Rule Expressed by Chairmen of U.S. Bishops’ Domestic Justice and Pro-Life Activities Committees; Bishops Call it “Troubling”

WASHINGTON—The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed a new rule that deems it no longer “appropriate and necessary” to regulate mercury and other hazardous air pollutants emitted by power plants. Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice, Florida, Chairman of the USCCB Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development and Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, Chairman of the U.S. Bishops Committee on Pro-Life Activities, expressed concern about the potential risks to human life and environmental health.  

 “The proposed change to the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) rule is troubling since it is well-documented that pregnant mothers and their unborn children are the most sensitive to mercury pollution and its adverse health effects,” said Archbishop Nauman. “The MATS rule reflects a proper respect for life of the human person and of God’s creation – a great example of the integral ecology called for in Laudato Si’,” said Bishop Dewane.  

Comments in opposition to the regulations can be found at: https://t.co/1SniZN2BXq?amp=1
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Keywords: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Bishop Frank J. Dewane, Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, Committee on Pro-Life Activities, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) mercury, hazardous air pollutants, power plant emissions, environmental health. Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) Laudato Si  
 
Media Contact:
Judy Keane
202-541-3200

 

Update on Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo’s Recovery from a Mild Stroke

WASHINGTON—The Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston has issued the following update on the recovery of Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, Archbishop of Galveston-Houston and Presidentof the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). Cardinal DiNardo suffered a mild stroke last Friday, March 15. We join with the archdiocese in continued prayers for the Cardinal’s full recovery.

Archdiocesan Statement re: Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo:

Following a mild stroke experienced last Friday evening while leading a Lenten observance of the Stations of the Cross, we are pleased to report that Cardinal DiNardo’s condition has improved to the point that he was discharged from St. Joseph’s Hospital today — and has entered a standard rehabilitation program which usually lasts in the neighborhood of two weeks. Based on recent trends, doctors expect the Cardinal to make a full recovery. “I could not be more grateful to the truly wonderful doctors and nurses at St. Joseph’s for their expert care and compassion, which has helped hasten my way down the road to a full recovery,” said Cardinal DiNardo. “I am also doubly thankful for the many kindwishes and especially the prayers that have been directed towards my healing, which I can assure you are making a true difference. I look forward to getting back to work soon and continuing the important work we have before us.”  

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Keywords: Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston

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Media Contact:

Judy Keane

202-541-3200

 

U.S. Bishops’ Chairmen Reaffirm Authentic Human Dignity and Rights in Letter to Congress Opposing Equality Act

WASHINGTON—Three chairmen of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) have written in public opposition to the Equality Act (H.R. 5 / S. 788), which was introduced in Congress on March 13, 2019. The Act would add the new terms “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” to the definition of “sex” in federal civil rights laws, which has wide-reaching impacts on health care, women and girls’ legal protections, charitable services to needful populations, schools, personal privacy, athletics, free speech, religious liberties, and potentially parental rights.
 
With respect to those who identify as “LGBT,” “each and every person should be treated with dignity and respect. Part of that dignity, as Pope Benedict stated, is every person’s right to gainful and decent employment free of unjust discrimination. Also included is each person’s right to services that address their needs for health and safety,” affirmed Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice, chairman of the Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development; Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, chairman of the Committee for Religious Liberty; and Bishop James D. Conley of Lincoln, chairman of the Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage; in their letter to members of Congress.
 
“Rather than offering meaningful protections for individuals, however, the Equality Act would impose sweeping regulations to the detriment of society as a whole,” they explained. The chairmen proceeded to elaborate on some of their several concerns with the Act’s consequences. In state and local jurisdictions with similar laws, many of these have already been coming to fruition – with students, charities, and businesses owners facing privacy violations, penalties, or litigation.

Stressing their desire to work toward social inclusion without divisiveness or harm to the common good, the bishops emphasized to members of Congress that “we readily stand with you, and are willing to assist you, in developing compassionate and just means to eradicate unjust discrimination and harassment from our country.”
 
The letter to the House and Senate is available online at www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/marriage-and-family/marriage/promotion-and-defense-of-marriage/upload/Equality-Act-Letter-to-Congress-House-1.pdf, and www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/marriage-and-family/marriage/promotion-and-defense-of-marriage/upload/Equality-Act-Letter-to-Congress-Senate-1.pdf.
 
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Keywords: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Bishop Frank J. Dewane, Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz, Committee for Religious Liberty, Bishop James D. Conley, Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage; U.S. Congress, Equality Act (H.R. 5 / S. 788), LGBT, civil rights laws
 
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MEDIA CONTACT:
Judy Keane
202-541-3200

 

U.S. Bishops’ Chairman Offers Prayers for Recovery, After Flooding in the Midwest

WASHINGTON—After historic flooding brought devastation to parts of the Midwest, Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice, Florida and Chairman of the U.S. Bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, expressed grief over the lives lost and threatened by the floods and offered prayers for recovery.

The full statement follows:

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of life and the damage caused by the flooding throughout the Midwest these past few days. As of this writing, at least nine million people in fourteen states have been affected by rising water levels along rivers and creeks in the central United States. Four people have been killed by swift currents and rising floodwaters. Heavy rainfall and melting snow from this winter’s powerful storms continue to threaten the lives and livelihoods of many as the floodwaters are not expected to recede until later this week.

It is our prayer that those affected by the floods will find the strength to rebuild. We trust that the Lord will console them in their suffering. Let us answer the Lord’s call to love one another and generously support our neighbors in this time of need.”
Donations can be made to Catholic Charities USA at https://catholiccharitiesusa.org.

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Keywords: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Bishop Frank Dewane, Nebraska, Iowa, Wisconsin, Missouri, Kansas, Midwest, Missouri River

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Media Contact:
Judy Keane
202-541-3200