I spent some time in San Francisco earlier this summer and wherever Catholics were gathered, the buzz was about bishop-elect Msgr. Robert W. McElroy, who will be ordained to the episcopacy Sept. 7. As auxiliary bishop in San Francisco, he is expected to be named Vicar for Pastoral Life.
It would be a fitting job, if everything that’s being said about him is true. In this age when a certain amount of healthy Catholic skepticism is often the norm, people on all parts of the ecclesiological/political spectrum just gushed about McElroy’s intellectual and pastoral genius.
“He’s always the brightest bulb in the room,” said one Jesuit, and we know members of the order don’t loosely confer intellectual superiority to someone outside “the Society.” And I heard that phrase more than once.