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Celebrating a bishop-elect in San Francisco

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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.

Ads counter anti-Muslim bigotry

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From Religion News Service:

Muslim group releases ads to counter wave of bigotry

By Adelle M. Banks

WASHINGTON -- A Muslim advocacy organization has released public service announcements -- including one featuring a Muslim firefighter who responded on 9/11 -- as part of a campaign to fight recent anti-Muslim bigotry.

“Muslim Americans were among the victims and also Muslim Americans were among the first responders,” said Nihad Awad, national executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations at a Wednesday (Sept. 1) news conference at the National Press Club.

“We also should acknowledge that 9/11 hit us all hard and we should not allow those who seek political and religious division in the United States to win,” Awad said.

One of the public service announcements features Hisham Tawfiq of the New York Fire Department, tearfully recalling how he learned his firefighting colleague was missing after the attacks on the Twin Towers.

“I'm a New York City firefighter and I responded to 9/11 and I am a Muslim,” he said in the ad.

Gulf Coast Watchdog

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ProPublica, the independent, non-profit cooperative that produces investigative journalism in the public interest, is keeping a close watch on the Gulf Coast oil disaster. As other news outlets, seeemingly wrap up their coverage of the disaster, ProPublica keeps churning out reports.

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