January 2017

USCCB chairman calls on Congress and Senate to preserve gains in health care coverage while also emphasizing the need to protect human life, conscience rights and the poor

Bulletin Extras, January 2017
Washington, D.C. - As Congress discusses a repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act, the Chair of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice, is urging members of the House and Senate to provide a replacement plan concurrently so that millions of Americans will continue to have access to vital health care. In a letter sent to members of the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate on January 18, 2017, Bishop Dewane wrote that repealing the ACA should not be undertaken without simultaneous passage of a replacement plan that will continue healthcare access for those who rely on it for their well-being. At the same time, the letter also underscores the importance of creating a replacement…
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Rev. Alfred Baca named new executive director of U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs department

Bulletin Extras, January 2017
Washington, D.C. - Rev. Alfred Baca from the Diocese of Orange in California, has been appointed as Executive Director of the Secretariat on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, based in Washington D.C. "Father Baca brings to the Conference a wealth of knowledge and experience in the realm of ecumenical and interreligious dialogue, both at the institutional and at personal levels," said USCCB General Secretary, Rev. Msgr. Brian Bransfield, who made the appointment. "I am very grateful to Fr. Baca for accepting this vital position in service to the bishops and to the Conference. I am equally grateful to Bishop Kevin Vann of Orange, California, for his tremendous support of the Conference and generosity in releasing Fr. Baca for this important service." Father Baca earned…
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Subcommittee on aid to the Church in Central and Eastern Europe awards over $2 million in grants

Bulletin Extras, January 2017
Washington, D.C. - The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Subcommittee on Aid to the Church in Central and Eastern Europe approved over $2.3 million in funding for 75 projects in 23 countries throughout Central and Eastern Europe.  “A new generation of Catholics in Central and Eastern Europe needs our support as they continue to face the ongoing consequences of decades of communist rule,” said Cardinal Blase J. Cupich of the Archdiocese of Chicago, chairman of the USCCB Subcommittee on Aid to the Church in Central and Eastern Europe, “These grants give the people living there, especially the younger generation, a place to encounter Christ and the courage and strength to re-build their church communities.” Grants approved include: Support to Caritas Georgia for a rehabilitation center for youth in Kutaisi…
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Celebrating National Migration Week – A message from the president and vice president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

Bulletin Extras, January 2017
Washington, D.C. - The following is a joint statement from Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, President of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and Archbishop José H. Gomez of Los Angeles, Vice President of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops on National Migration Week, taking place January 8-14, 2017. Full messages as follows: Beginning Sunday, the Catholic Church in the United States marks National Migration Week.  The observance began more than 25 years ago as a way to reflect upon the many ways immigrants and refugees have contributed to our Church and our nation. This year, we are invited to create a culture of encounter where citizens old and new, alongside immigrants recent and longstanding, can share with one another their hopes for a better life. Jesus, Mary and Joseph…
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USCCB migration chairman expresses disappointment over abrupt end of “Wet Foot / Dry Foot” policy, which has long benefitted Cuban migrants and refugees

Bulletin Extras, January 2017
Washington, D.C. - On January 12, 2017, the Obama Administration announced the end of the Wet Foot/Dry Foot policy towards Cuban arrivals, which allows Cubans who arrive onto American soil to stay in the U.S. and apply to become legal residents while returning those Cubans intercepted at sea back to Cuba. Bishop Joe Vasquez of Austin, Texas, chairman of the Committee on Migration at the U. S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, stated in response to the announcement, “I am disappointed over the Administration’s sudden policy change to end the ‘Wet Foot/ Dry Foot’ policy for Cuban arrivals.” Bishop Vasquez noted in regards to the Administration’s actions, “While we have welcomed normalizing relations with Cuba, the violation of basic human rights remains a reality for some Cubans and the Wet Foot/Dry…
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USCCB president urges encounters of the heart in message for Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Bulletin Extras, January 2017
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="923"] World Telegram & Sun photo by Dick DeMarsico, Wikimedia Commons[/caption] Washington, D.C. - The president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, issued the following statement in relation to the observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Full statement follows: A Statement from Cardinal Daniel DiNardo President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Since the time of the founding fathers, our country has been blessed with citizens who have had the courage to rise above the challenges of their day and call their fellow citizens forward in the unending task of building an ever more just nation. Today, we celebrate such a citizen, Martin Luther King, Jr. His inspiration guides us as we seek to build peace in our…
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USCCB chairmen welcome preparatory document for next synod focusing on young people, faith, and vocational discernment

Bulletin Extras, January 2017
Washington, D.C. - The chairmen of two U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) committees issued a joint statement welcoming the Vatican’s release of the preparatory document for the upcoming Synod of bishops on “Young People, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment.” The Synod takes place in October 2018. The full statement from Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R, of Newark, chairman of the USCCB 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, follows: A Joint Statement from Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R, and Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., in Response to the Synod Questionnaire The Church of the United States is filled with great anticipation as we welcome the preparatory document…
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Pope Names Auxiliary Bishop Oscar Solis as Bishop of Salt Lake City

Bulletin Extras, January 2017
Washington, D.C. - Pope Francis has named Auxiliary Bishop, Oscar A. Solis of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles as bishop of Salt Lake City, Utah. The appointment was publicized in Washington, January 10, by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio to the United States. Bishop Oscar Solis was born on October 13, 1953 in San Jose, Nueva Ecija, Philippines. He attended Divine Word Seminary in Tagaytay City, in the Philippines and Theology University of Santo Tomas in Manila.  He was ordained a priest on April 28, 1979. After ordination, he served the archdiocese of Manila and Cabanatuan. He also served as associate pastor at St. Rocco’s Church, Union City, New Jersey (1984-1988) and St. Joseph Co-Cathedral, Thibodaux, Louisiana (1988-1992).  He also served as pastor of Our Lady of Prompt Succor Church (1993-1999)…
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February men’s silent retreat set for Broom Tree Retreat and Conference Center

Bulletin Extras, January 2017
February Men's Silent Retreat February 23-26, 2017  Directed by Father Joe Vogel Based on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius, this retreat will offer you time for private prayer, conferences intended to provide instruction in the spiritual life and daily opportunities for Mass, the Sacrament of Reconciliation and Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament all in the silent and sacred environment of Broom Tree Retreat Center. Your day will begin with Morning Prayer from the Liturgy of the Hours and throughout the day you will follow a schedule that will assist you in hearing the voice of God in the silence. There is also individual time for Spiritual Direction. No TV’s, no phones, no computers…just you and God and the natural beauty of the best retreat center this area has to…
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Permanent diaconate candidates instituted as lectors

Permanent diaconate candidates instituted as lectors

Headlines, January 2017
Bishop Paul J. Swain (center, on the left) during the celebration of Mass and institution of the diocesan candidates for the permanent diaconate as lectors at the Cathedral of Saint Joseph. Dr. Glenn Ridder, kneels before the bishop during the liturgy. Other candidates in the current class are Thane Barnier, Maurice Barrett, Todd Cloos and Timothy Dickes. (Photo courtesy, Deacon Roger Heidt, Diocese of Sioux Falls)
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