U. S. Bishops to Vote for Conference Secretary, Chairman and Chairmen-Elect of Five Committees at Fall General Assembly in Baltimore, Nov. 13-14

WASHINGTON—The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) will be voting for the conference secretary, chairman of the Committee for Religious Liberty and chairmen-elect of five additional standing committees at the upcoming annual 2016 General Assembly taking place November 13-14 in Baltimore, Maryland. The five committee chairmen will serve for one year as chairmen-elect before beginning a three-year term at the conclusion of the bishops’ 2018 Fall General Assembly. Nominees for the Conference Secretary, Chairman of the Committee for Religious Liberty and Chairman-elect of each committee are as follows: Conference Secretary: Archbishop Paul S. Coakley, Archdiocese of Oklahoma CityArchbishop Allen...

Pope Names Auxiliary Bishop Joseph Siegel as New Bishop of Evansville

WASHINGTON—Pope Francis has named Bishop Joseph M. Siegel, up until now Auxiliary Bishop of Joliet, as the new bishop of Evansville, Indiana. The announcement was publicized in Washington on October 18 by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio to the United States. Bishop Siegel was named Auxiliary Bishop of Joliet, Illinois, by Pope Benedict XVI on October 28, 2009 and was ordained a bishop on January 19, 2010 by Bishop Peter Sartain. He was born in Lockport Township on July 18, 1963 and is the youngest of nine children. He attended St. Meinrad Seminary, Indiana, where he completed his college...

USCCB Migration and Refugee Services Release Report Recommending Extension of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for El Salvador and Honduras

WASHINGTON—The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Office of Migration and Refugee Services (USCCB/MRS), released its report today, entitled Temporary Protected Status: A Vital Piece of the Central American Protection and Prosperity Puzzle recommending the U.S. government extend Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for El Salvador and Honduras. Bishop Joe S. Vásquez of Austin, Texas, Chairman of the USCCB Committee on Migration, in a letter of introduction of the report states: “As this report indicates, there is ample evidence to suggest that current TPS recipients from Honduras and El Salvador cannot return safely to their home country at this time.” A...

Pope Accepts Resignation of Auxiliary Bishop of Newark

WASHINGTON—Pope Francis has accepted the retirement of Bishop John W. Flesey from the office of auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese of Newark. The announcement was publicized in Washington on October 16 by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio to the United States. Bishop Flesey has served in the Archdiocese since 1969. As required by Canon Law, Bishop Flesey submitted to Pope Francis his letter offering his retirement having reached 75 years of age. The Most Reverend John Walter Flesey, STD was born in Jersey City, NJ in 1942. He attended Immaculate Conception Seminary until 1969, when he was ordained. Bishop...

U.S. Bishops Chairman Expresses Concern, Calls for Careful Implementation of Health Care Executive Order

WASHINGTON—On October 13, President Trump signed an Executive Order on health care, and news about the Administration ending subsidies to insurers to help lower-income individuals was confirmed by Administration officials around the same time. In light of these developments, Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice, Florida, Chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, called for the Administration and Congress to protect low income people, as well as enact comprehensive reform for the sake of the most vulnerable. Bishop Dewane’s full statement follows: “President Trump signed an executive order yesterday intended...

Attorney General’s Religious Liberty Guidance Protects Freedom of Faith-Based Organizations

WASHINGTON–On Friday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a memorandum for all executive departments and agencies on the subject of “Federal Law Protections for Religious Liberty”. Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore, Chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), has offered the following statement in response: “The Attorney General’s guidance helpfully reaffirms that the law protects the freedom of faith-based organizations to conduct their operations in accordance with their religious mission. The guidance also reaffirms that the federal government should never exclude religious organizations from competing on an equal...