Browsing News Entries

Browsing News Entries

USCCB President and Migration Chair Urge Against Further Reduction in Refugee Resettlement as Contrary to American Values

WASHINGTON, D.C. —Administration officials will reportedly recommend to President Trump that the number of refugee admissions for the coming year will be fewer than 30,000 refugees, already an historic low. Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, Archbishop of Galveston-Houston and President of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), and Bishop Joe S. Vásquez, Chair of USCCB Committee on Migration, issued the following statement:

“Further reductions in the number of refugees allowed to seek freedom in the United States would be wholly counter to our values as a nation of immigrants. America welcomes refugees; that is who we are, that is what we do. Such reductions would undermine America’s leadership role as a global champion and protector of religious freedom and human rights. Beginning with European refugees in the aftermath of World War I, the Catholic Church in the United States has more than a century of experience resettling vulnerable populations to a safer life and one in which they have contributed to the greatness of America. The 3.4 million refugees that America has welcomed since 1975 have paid billions of dollars in taxes, founded companies, earned citizenship, and bought homes at notably high rates.

As the Catholic Church prepares to celebrate the World Day of Migrants and Refugees on September 29th, we are reminded of Pope Francis urging us all to work for a ‘globalization of solidarity’ with refugees, not a globalization of ‘indifference’. In light of refugees’ extraordinary contributions to our country, and of the world’s struggle with the greatest forced displacement crisis on record and historic highs in religious persecution, we categorically oppose any further reductions in the refugee resettlement program.”

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Keywords: USCCB, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Cardinal DiNardo, Bishop Joe S. Vásquez

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Media Contact:
Chieko Noguchi
(202) 541-3200

Mark Priceman
(202) 541-3064

 

U.S. Bishops’ Vice-President Leads Delegation to the Holy See to Present V Encuentro Proceedings and Conclusions to Pope Francis

WASHINGTON— Archbishop José H. Gomez, of Los Angeles, and Vice-President of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB); Bishop Nelson J. Pérez, of Cleveland, chairman of the Committee on Cultural Diversity in the Church, and Bishop Arturo Cepeda, of Detroit, chairman of the Subcommittee on Hispanic Affairs will lead a delegation that will visit the Holy See, September 13-18, to present to Pope Francis the Proceedings and Conclusions of the Fifth National Encuentro of Hispanic/Latino Ministry.

Delegates accompanying the Bishops include USCCB staff, members of the National V Encuentro Team and a cross-section of V Encuentro delegates representing a diversity of ages, geographical areas, ministries and states in life. The delegation is scheduled to meet with the leadership and staff of various Vatican offices, including the Pontifical Council for Culture, the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life; the Pontifical Council for Promoting the New Evangelization, and the Pontifical Commission for Latin America. The visit will conclude with an audience and encounter with the Holy Father.

“This visit to the Holy See provides an important opportunity to follow up with Vatican offices on what we have seen and heard, what we learned so far, and the next steps in the V Encuentro process. We bring with us the voices and wisdom of thousands of Hispanic Catholics and other leaders who have accompanied us in this process,” said Bishop Pérez. “Meeting with the Holy Father and handing over a copy of the Proceedings and Conclusions will be a very special moment. Pope Francis and Vatican officials have been very supportive of the V Encuentro process and have followed its developments closely. They have accompanied us with their presence, messages and prayers. We are extremely grateful and pleased to have this opportunity to offer them a report on the V Encuentro.”

The USCCB’s Administrative Committee authorized the publication of the Proceedings and Conclusions of the V National Encuentro of Hispanic Latino Ministry during its September meeting. The resource will be available for sale at the USCCB store in October; other related tools and resources will be posted soon thereafter on the V Encuentro website.

The document is expected to facilitate collaboration and coordination on Hispanic Ministry initiatives between the Bishops’ Conference and dioceses across the country. Numerous initiatives are emerging at the local, regional, and national level as a direct result of the V Encuentro.

For the last two and a half years, the Catholic Church in the United States has taken Pope Francis’ call to embrace an experience what it means to evangelize, reaching out in a special way to those in the peripheries (Evangelii Gaudium, 20-24), specifically through the V National Encuentro. The Proceeding and Conclusions, meant to be a practical resource for utilization by dioceses, captures the five steps of the V Encuentro process.

The Proceedings and Conclusions provide a summary of challenges and opportunities, hopes and dreams, gifts and talents, insights, recommendations, strategies, and successful practices for the pastoral care and accompaniment of the Hispanic/Latinos in the United States. Dioceses around the country have already begun a process of incorporating V Encuentro findings to their existing pastoral plans or are in the process of developing new ones.

More information about the V Encuentro can be found at: https://vencuentro.org/

The following is a complete list of V Encuentro Delegates that will travel to the Holy See:

Bishops:

• Most Rev. José H. Gomez, Archbishop of Los Angeles, USCCB Vice-President

• Most Rev. Nelson J. Pérez, Bishop of Cleveland, Chairman, Committee on Cultural Diversity in the Church

• Most Rev. Arturo Cepeda, Auxiliary Bishop of Detroit, Chairman, Subcommittee on Hispanic Affairs

USCCB Staff:
• María del Mar Muñoz-Visoso, Executive Director, Secretariat of Cultural Diversity in the Church

• Alejandro Aguilera-Titus, Assistant Director of Hispanic Affairs, National Coordinator of the V Encuentro, Secretariat of Cultural Diversity in the Church

Delegates and National V Encuentro Team:
• Junuee Castro, Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries, Diocese of Salt Lake City

• Dr. Patricia Jiménez, V Encuentro Communications Coordinator

• Ken Johnson-Mondragón V Encuentro Research Coordinator

• Mario and Paola Martínez, Co-Directors, Office of Marriage and Family Life Ministry, Diocese of San Bernardino

• Roberto Navarro, Senior Director of U.S. Church Engagement, Catholic Relief Services

• Luis Peña, Hispanic Ministry Inter-Parish Coordinator, Archdiocese of New York

• Wanda Vásquez Director of Hispanic Ministry, Archdiocese of New York, and Board Member of the National Catholic Association of Diocesan Directors of Hispanic Ministry (NCADDHM), Episcopal Region II Representative

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Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Fifth National Encuentro of Hispanic/Latino Ministry, Archbishop José Gomez, Bishop Nelson Pérez, Bishop Arturo Cepeda, missionary discipleship, Church in the United States, Holy Father, Hispanic/Latino minister, Catholic Leaders, evangelization, USCCB Committee on Cultural Diversity in the Church.

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Media Contacts:
Chieko Noguchi
202-541-3200

Mar Muñoz-Visoso
301-646-8616

 

President of U.S. Bishops Conference Calls for Prayers After Deadly Hurricane Hits the Bahamas and Moves Closer to the Southeastern Coast

WASHINGTON—Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, Archbishop of Galveston-Houston and President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, has issued the following statement regarding Hurricane Dorian that left seven people dead in the Bahamas and is moving closer to the southeastern United States.

Cardinal DiNardo’s full statement follows:

“As we continue to be vigilant for the effects of Hurricane Dorian as it approaches the U.S. coast, we are extremely mindful of the dire need faced by the community in the Bahamas so devastated by this catastrophic storm. We pray for all affected and invite Catholics and all people of goodwill to donate to Catholic Relief Services and Catholic Charities USA.”

The donations to CRS can be made at https://support.crs.org/donate/hurricane-dorian and to Catholic Charities USA at https://app.mobilecause.com/form/RTKRvQ?vid=1snqm

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Keywords: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, Bahamas, Hurricane Dorian, Florida, Georgia, Catholic Relief Services, Catholic Charities USA donations
 
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Media Contact:
Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3202

 

Pope Francis Appoints Bishop Paul Etienne as Archbishop of Seattle; Accepts Resignation of Most. Rev J. Peter Sartain from the Pastoral Governance of the Same See

WASHINGTON— Pope Francis has appointed Coadjutor Archbishop Paul Etienne as Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Seattle and accepted the resignation of the Most Reverend J. Peter Sartain from the pastoral governance of the same see.

The appointment and resignation were publicized in Washington, DC, on September 3, 2019 by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States.
Archbishop Etienne graduated from University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota obtaining a bachelor's degree in Business Administration in 1986. He served with the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) as Assistant Coordinator for Papal Visits for Pope John Paul II to the United States. He later pursued his ecclesiastical studies at Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, where he obtained a bachelor’s in Sacred Theology in 1995.  

Archbishop Etienne was ordained priest for the Archdiocese of Indianapolis on June 27, 1992. On October 19, 2009, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI appointed him Bishop of Cheyenne. On April 29, 2019, Pope Francis appointed him Coadjutor Archbishop of Seattle.

His assignments included: Vocation Director at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish in New Albany, Spiritual Director at St. Meinrad School of Theology, Vice-Rector of the Bishop Simon Bruté College Seminary, member of the Archdiocesan Review Board, pastor at St. Simon and several other parishes.

Archbishop J. Peter Sartain was ordained a priest in 1978 in Memphis, Tennessee. He served as Bishop of the Diocese of Little Rock from 2000 to 2006 and then served as Bishop of Joliet from 2006 to 2010.

Archbishop Sartain serves on a number of Catholic boards and has served as Secretary of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. He is the author of several books, including Of You My Heart Has Spoken (Arkansas Catholic, 2005); Strengthen Your Brothers: An Archbishop’s Letters of Encouragement to His Priests (Liturgical Press, 2012), and The Journey to the Heart of Jesus (Our Sunday Visitor, 2014).

The Archdiocese of Seattle is compromised of 24,814 square miles in the state of Washington and has a total population of 5,501,540 of which 863,000 or 15.7 percent are Catholic.

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Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Pope Francis, Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio, Most. Rev J. Peter Sartain, Most. Rev Paul Etienne, Archdiocese of Seattle

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Media Contact:
Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3200

 

USCCB President Issues Statement Following Shootings in Midland and Odessa

WASHINGTON— Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, Archbishop of Galveston-Houston, and President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), issued the following statement in response to the tragic shootings in Midland and Odessa, Texas.

The full statement follows:

“As we travel to Sunday Mass, we do so with heavy hearts. Just a few short hours ago, less than a month after the horrific instances of gun violence in California, Texas and Ohio, yet further terrible shootings took place, this time involving random targeting of victims on roads and highways. There are reports of at least 5 fatalities, and numerous critical injuries. Once again, these horrific onslaughts demonstrate unequivocally the undeniable existence of evil in our society. I am deeply saddened to witness yet again scenes of violence and contempt for human life being repeated in our Nation’s streets. With renewed resolve, I call on all people of good will, starting with our Catholic leaders and faithful, to work tirelessly to root out the causes of such crimes. As people of faith, we must continue to pray for all the victims, and for healing in all these shattered communities that now extend across the length and breadth of our land.”

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Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, Galveston-Houston, shootings, Midland, Odessa, Texas, gun violence

 

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Media Contact:

Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3200

 

USCCB Chairman issues Labor Day statement during the centenary year of the United States Bishops’ Program of Social Reconstruction

WASHINGTON- Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice in Florida, Chairman of the Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, issues a statement on the one-hundred-year-old United States Bishops’ Program of Social Reconstruction.

The United States Bishops’ Program of Social Reconstruction was published in 1919 after the end of World War I as a guide for the economic changes during that time period. In his statement, Bishop Dewane highlights key themes from Catholic social teaching presented in the Bishops’ Program. Subsidiarity, Monopoly Power and Wage Suppression, the Universal Destination of Goods and Employee Ownership, and Solidarity and Unions are pertinent to the present economic difficulties working people face in the United States.

“In the Gospel for this Labor Day, Jesus proclaims in the synagogue the words of Isaiah: that he, like the prophet, has been “anointed” “to bring glad tidings to the poor” (Lk. 4:18). How do we bring glad tidings to the poor today? As Pope Francis said earlier this year, ‘today’s tendency is toward slowing down the pace of reducing extreme poverty and increasing the concentration of wealth in the hands of a few. . .. Many do not have food to eat and live adrift while a few drown in excess. This perverse current of inequity is disastrous for humanity’s future.’”

Bishop Frank J. Dewane’s entire statement can be found in English and Spanish.
 
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Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Bishop Frank J. Dewane, Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, Bishops’ Program for Social Reconstruction, Labor Day

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Media Contact:
Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3200

 

USCCB Committee Chairmen Commend Administration for Actions Enforcing Conscience Law on Abortion

WASHINGTON-The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights announced yesterday that it is taking corrective action against the University of Vermont Medical Center for forcing a nurse to participate in an elective abortion against the nurse’s beliefs, in violation of the federal Church amendment. The Church amendment, enacted in 1973, prohibits recipients of various federal health program funding from forcing health care personnel to perform or participate in abortions against their religious beliefs or moral convictions. Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City, Kansas, Chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Pro-Life Activities, and Bishop Robert J. McManus of Worcester, Chairman of the Committee for Religious Liberty, issued the following statement in response to this enforcement action:

“It is a grotesque violation of civil rights, and of federal law, to force someone to perform or participate in an abortion against their beliefs. The action by the University of Vermont Medical Center (UVMMC), forcing a nurse to participate in the killing of a defenseless unborn child under threat of job loss, and other coercive pressure, is abhorrent. We commend and thank the Administration for taking corrective action to enforce the law. Sadly, such violations of federal conscience laws are not infrequent. We hope that today’s action, and future actions by this Administration, will help ensure that no one is forced to participate in an abortion against their beliefs.”

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Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Bishop Robert J. McManus, Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, University of Vermont Medical Center, Committee on Pro-Life Activities, Committee for Religious Liberty, Church Amendment, pro life, abortion
 
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Media Contact:
Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3200

 

President of the USCCB and Committee Chairmen of International Justice and Peace and Domestic Justice and Human Development issue a statement of concern regarding the fires in the Amazon

WASHINGTON- The President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, Bishop Frank J. Dewane, Chairman of the Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, and Archbishop Timothy P. Broglio, Chairman of the Committee on International Justice and Peace issue the following statement regarding the fires in the Amazon:

“Last Sunday, after his Angelus prayer, Pope Francis expressed concern for the fires that have developed in the Amazon, stating, ‘Let us pray that, with everyone’s commitment, they may be tamed as soon as possible.’ As bishops of the United States, we join in these heartfelt prayers and urge the faithful of our nation to support, through their petitions and concern, these efforts. As our Church begins a “Season of Creation,” culminating on October 4th, the Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi, let us all consider spiritual and corporal acts of mercy towards our common home and all those living in it. We express solidarity with our brother bishops in Latin America who, through the Consejo Episcopal Latinoamericano (CELAM), have expressed their desire for a prompt extinguishment of these fires, and welcome the decision by the Group of Seven (G7) to extend financial support for these efforts.”  

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Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, Bishop Frank J. Dewane, Archbishop Timothy P. Broglio, Committee on International Justice and Peace, Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, Amazon fire
 
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Media Contact:
Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3200

 

Chair of USCCB’s Committee on Migration Denounces New Rule Undermining Existing Protections for Immigrant Children

WASHINGTON— Today, Bishop Joe S. Vásquez of Austin, Chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Migration, condemned the final rule published by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) relating to the care and custody of immigrant children under the Flores Settlement Agreement. The agreement sets forth foundational principles and critical protections regarding the care, custody, and release of immigrant children who are in federal custody, including the general requirements that they be housed in the least restrictive setting and in licensed facilities for childcare.

The rule will drastically undermine existing Flores protections for immigrant children in federal custody.

“This rule will have heartbreaking consequences for immigrant children – those whom Pope Francis has deemed ‘the most vulnerable group’ among migrants,” said Vásquez. “It is an attempt by the Administration to circumvent existing obligations and undermine critical protections for these children. This rule will jeopardize the well-being and humane treatment of immigrant children in federal custody and will result in children suffering long-lasting consequences of being held for prolonged periods in family detention. We oppose this rule that we believe is unlawful and inhumane. Countless children will be harmed by this new rule and this is simply not acceptable.”  

USCCB also opposed this rule when it was initially proposed by DHS and HHS by submitting comments detailing concerns with the rule and urging it be rescinded.

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Keywords: USCCB, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Pope Francis, Bishop Joe S. Vásquez, Committee on Migration, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Health and Human Services, Immigration, Flores

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Media Contact:
Mark Priceman
202-541-3064

 

USCCB Appoints Chieko Noguchi as Director of Public Affairs

WASHINGTON—The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has appointed Chieko Noguchi as Director of the Office of Public Affairs. She begins work on September 9.  

Ms. Noguchi spent the last ten years with the Archdiocese of Washington, serving as director of media and public relations since 2011. In 2016, she received the Benemerenti Medal from Pope Francis in recognition of her dedication to the Church. Prior to joining the Archdiocese, Ms. Noguchi worked for global public relations agencies Porter Novelli and Ketchum. She began her career on Capitol Hill, working for then Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich in both his congressional and political offices. Ms. Noguchi is a graduate of American University in Washington and is raising her family in Virginia.  

Upon making the appointment, Monsignor J. Brian Bransfield, General Secretary of the USCCB, said, “Chieko brings an extensive blend of Church and private sector experience to the Conference’s communications mission. We look forward to working with her to carry the bishops’ Gospel witness into the public square.”
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Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Chieko Noguchi, Director of Public Affairs, Archdiocese of Washington, Monsignor J. Brian Bransfield, General Secretary
 
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Media Contact:
Miguel Guilarte
202-541-3200