Browsing News Entries

Amended Release: At Annual Fall Assembly in Baltimore, U.S. Bishops Approve Action Items on Their Agenda

The following press release has been amended to include the correct names of the CRS Board. The error in the initial release was an oversight of the public affairs team.

BALTIMORE— The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) meeting this week for their Fall General Assembly in Baltimore have voted on nine action items.

The bishops voted to approve the 6th edition of the Program of Priestly Formation for use in the dioceses of the United States with 226 votes in favor, 4 against, and 3 abstentions. The vote required affirmation by two-thirds of the Conference membership and is subject to recognitio by the Vatican Congregation for Clergy.

The Latin Church members of the USCCB voted to approve two translations by the International Commission on English in the Liturgy (ICEL). The first vote on a translation of the Order of Christian Initiation of Adults as the base text for a future edition of this rite in the dioceses of the United States was approved with 217 votes in favor, 3 against, and 3 abstentions. The vote required affirmation by two-thirds of the Latin Church members and is subject to confirmatio and recognitio by the Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. The second vote on a translation of the Hymns of the Liturgy of the Hours for use in the dioceses of the United States was approved with 205 votes in favor, 5 against, and 2 abstentions. The vote required affirmation by two-thirds of the Latin Church members and is subject to confirmatio by the Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments.

In other items the bishops approved:

• A short letter and five short video scripts to supplement Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship, the bishops’ teaching document for the faithful on the political responsibility of Catholics. The short letter was approved 207-24 with 5 abstentions; the vote on the video scripts was 227-5 in favor with 4 abstentions.
• In a vote of 220 to 7 with 2 abstentions, the body of bishops voted to approve the Conference’s Subcommittee on Hispanic Affairs to lead the process of developing a new comprehensive vision for Hispanic/Latino ministry in response to the V Encuentro process.
• The bishops voted with 211 in favor, 11 against and 1 abstention of approval of the 2020 proposed budget, presented by the Committee on Budget and Finance.
• The results of the vote by diocesan and eparchial bishops for a three percent increase in the diocesan assessment for 2021, was 111 to 55, which fell short of the necessary majority. Ballots will be mailed to bishops not present in order to have a conclusive vote.
• The full body of bishops also approved the Revised Strategic Priorities for the 2021-24 USCCB Strategic Plan by a vote of 214 to 4 with 2 abstentions.
• By a voice vote of the majority of members present and voting, the bishops also approved to support the request of Cardinal Philippe Barbarin of Lyon asking the Holy Father to name Saint Irenaeus a Doctor of the Church.
• The bishops also elected the following members to the Catholic Relief Services (CRS) Board of Directors: Bishop Frank J. Caggiano of Bridgeport, Bishop Mark J. Seitz of El Paso, and Bishop Anthony B. Taylor of Little Rock.

---
Keywords: USCCB, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Fall General Assembly, November meeting, Baltimore, Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations, CCLV, Program of Priestly Formation, Divine Workshop, ICEL Gray Book, #USCCB19, Catholic Relief Services, Strategic Plan, Cardinal Philippe Barbarin, Saint Irenaeus.

###
Media Contact:
Chieko Noguchi or Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3200

 

U.S. Bishops Vote for Conference Secretary, Chairman and Chairmen-elect of Six Committees at Fall General Assembly in Baltimore

BALTIMORE—The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) have elected a new secretary for the Conference, as well as a chairman of the Committee for Religious Liberty, and chairman-elect of five additional standing committees at their Fall General Assembly in Baltimore.

During their morning session, the bishops elected Archbishop José H. Gomez of Los Angeles as president of the conference and Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron of Detroit as vice president. Both the new president and vice president begin their terms at the conclusion of this year’s General Assembly. Archbishop Vigneron has served as the Conference secretary since 2018 and will vacate that office upon assuming the vice presidency. In order to accommodate this leadership change, the bishops voted for a new Conference secretary in the afternoon session. Archbishop Timothy P. Broglio of the Military Services, USA was elected secretary of Conference in a 112-87 vote over Bishop Daniel E. Thomas of Toledo.

Bishop George V. Murry, SJ of Youngstown was elected as chairman of the Committee for Religious Liberty in a 121-121 vote over Archbishop Thomas G. Wenski of Miami and fills the vacancy created earlier this year after the committee chairman stepped down due to health reasons. The tie vote resulted in deference to Bishop Murray by nature of age seniority; he assumes his post at the end of this year’s Fall General Assembly and will serve through November 2021 at which time he will be eligible for re-election.

The remaining five will serve for one year as chairmen-elect before beginning a three-year term at the conclusion of the bishops’ 2020 Fall General Assembly. The bishops elected as chairmen-elect are:

Archbishop Jerome E. Listecki of Milwaukee, as chairman-elect of the Committee on Canonical Affairs and Church Governance in a 144 to 97 vote over Bishop Mark L. Bartchak of Altoona-Johnstown.

Bishop David P. Talley of Memphis, as chairman-elect of the Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs in a 123 to 114 vote over Bishop Steven J. Lopes of The Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter.

Bishop Andrew H. Cozzens, auxiliary bishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis, as chairman-elect of the Committee on Evangelization and Catechesis in a 151 to 88 vote over Bishop Thomas A. Daly of Spokane.

Bishop David J. Malloy of Rockford, as chairman-elect of the Committee on International Justice and Peace in a 140 to 101 vote over Bishop Jaime Soto of Sacramento.

Bishop James V. Johnston, Jr. of Kansas City-St. Joseph, as chairman-elect of the Committee on Protection of Children and Young People in a 167-77 vote over Bishop W. Shawn McKnight of Jefferson City.

---

Keywords: USCCB, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Fall General Assembly, November meeting, Baltimore, elections, president, vice president, ballot, vote, majority vote, committee, CRS, Catholic Relief Services, #USCCB19.

###
Media Contacts:
Chieko Noguchi or Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3200

 

U.S. Bishops Vote for USCCB President and Vice President at Annual General Assembly in Baltimore

BALTIMORE—Archbishop José H. Gomez of Los Angeles was elected president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) during the Fall General Assembly in Baltimore. Archbishop Gomez has served as vice president of the Conference since 2016. Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron of Detroit was elected as USCCB vice president. Both the new president and vice president terms begin at the conclusion of this year’s General Assembly.

Archbishop Gomez was elected president on the first ballot with 176 votes. Archbishop Vigneron was elected vice president on the third ballot by 151 to 90 in a runoff vote against Archbishop Timothy P. Broglio of the Military Services, USA. The president and vice president are elected by a simple majority from a slate of 10 nominees. If no president or vice president is chosen after the second round of voting, a third ballot is a run-off between the two bishops who received the most votes on the second ballot. Archbishop Vigneron has served as the Conference secretary since 2018, a position that he will vacate upon assuming the vice presidency. Therefore, the bishops will vote in their afternoon session for a Conference secretary to fill the vacancy left as Archbishop Vigneron assumes the vice presidency.

Read President-elect Archbishop Gomez’s biography.
Read Vice President-elect Archbishop Vigneron’s biography.

---

Keywords: USCCB, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Fall General Assembly, November meeting, Baltimore, elections, president, vice president, ballot, vote, majority vote, committee, Archbishop Gomez, Archdiocese of Los Angeles, Archbishop Vignernon, Archdiocese of Detroit, #USCCB19.

###

Media Contacts:
Chieko Noguchi or Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3200

 

USCCB Chairmen Issue Statement on Supreme Court Cases Upholding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program

WASHINGTON— Bishop Joe S. Vásquez, of Austin and Chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) Committee on Migration, commented on three cases argued before the Supreme Court today – Department of Homeland Security v. Regents of University of California; McAleenan, Secretary of Homeland Security v. Vidal; Trump, President of U.S. v. NAACP. These cases challenge whether decisions in the lower court to repeal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) were lawful.

On October 4, the USCCB, with other Catholic and evangelical partners, filed an amicus curiae brief in the cases. The brief argues that rescinding DACA without considering crucial facts underlying the program irreparably harms hundreds of thousands of families by placing them at imminent risk of separation, which violates the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), and is thus unlawful.

Bishop Joe S. Vásquez offered the following statement on the hearing:

“DACA youth are leaders in our parishes and significant contributors to our economy and communities. They are hard-working young people who know the United States as their only home. We continue to urge Congress and the President to work together to find a permanent legislative solution to the plight of all DREAMers, including DACA beneficiaries. In the meantime, ending DACA would disrupt DACA recipients’ continued contributions and integration to our country and could needlessly separate them from their families. Not allowing these young people to continue to utilize DACA to reach their God-given potential is against the common good and our nation’s history of welcoming the immigrant.”

USCCB’s amicus curiae brief in these consolidated cases is available at: http://www.usccb.org/about/general-counsel/amicus-briefs/upload/2019-10-04-FINAL-DACA-brief.pdf.

---
Keywords: USCCB, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, DACA, Dreamers, President Trump, Department of Homeland Security.

###
Media Contact:
Chieko Noguchi and Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3200

 

Pro Life Committee Chairman Invites Bishops to Join Initiative Serving Pregnant and Parenting Mothers in Need

BALTIMORE - Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, of Kansas City in Kansas, and Chairman of the Committee on Pro-Life Activities for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, addressed the body of bishops at the annual November plenary meeting of bishops about the need for improved pastoral responses to women facing unexpected or challenging pregnancies.  

“The challenges can be immense for women in difficult or unplanned pregnancies. 75% of women who choose abortion are low income,” said Archbishop Naumann. “Pregnant and parenting moms in need are in our parishes and our neighborhoods. Women facing challenging pregnancies should see the Church as a place where they can find help, especially with its myriad of social services and organizations dedicated to meeting the needs of people in crisis,” he continued.

In his invitation to the bishops, Archbishop Naumann shared that well over 150,000 low-income mothers deliver their babies at Catholic hospitals each year, and many tens of thousands of pregnant and parenting moms are helped each year through Catholic Charities programs and other help agencies. In addition, thousands of pregnancy care centers staffed by many Catholic volunteers.
Nevertheless, the archbishop noted that there are “gaps,” and “while many pregnancy help resources are appropriately coordinated at the diocesan or regional level, moms in need are best reached at the local level.”

“We have well over 17,000 parishes in the United States. Each parish is best able to identify the local pregnancy help resources that are currently available and to identify potential gaps that need to be addressed. The parish community is uniquely positioned to encourage a collaboration of resources at the local level and to increase awareness of help available to mothers and families in need,” Archbishop Naumann explained.

To this end, Archbishop Naumann asked the bishops present to invite their parishes to join a nationwide effort from March 25, 2020 to March 25, 2021 entitled: “Walking with Moms in Need: A Year of Service.”

This Year of Service will coincide with the 25th anniversary of Evangelium Vitae (The Gospel of Life), a landmark encyclical by Pope John Paul II. The Pro-Life Committee is developing educational, pastoral, and action-oriented resources for parish use, including reflections on the teachings of Evangelium Vitae, Evangelii Gaudium, and Laudato Si; prayers for building a culture of life; tools for documenting an inventory of local resources for pregnant mothers in need; and ideas and support for improving parish responses.

More information about the initiative can be found at www.usccb.org/moms-in-need

---
Keywords: Pro-Life, Secretariat of Pro-Life, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Archbishop Joseph Naumann, Walking with Moms in Need

###

Media Contact:
Chieko Noguchi or Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3200