The Vatican recently called for a broad-based world-wide parish-level input in preparation for the bishops meeting next year on pastoral challenges to the family.
Tuesday marks the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address. President Abraham Lincoln delivered the two-minute speech as part of a military cemetery dedication in the south-central Pennsylvania town that nearly five months earlier had served as the site of one of the Civil War's bloodiest battles.
To commemorate the 1863 address, filmmaker Ken Burns recruited a wide cross section of Americans -- from presidents to preteens -- to recite the famous words, part of a national campaign for all to study and recite the speech.
Archbishop Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa, Ontario, recalled once having a parish that needed a new furnace and was considering hiring a youth pastor. The parishioners raised $90,000 in three weeks for the furnace, but failed to find funds for the youth pastor, figuring there were few young people to serve.
Has anything changed with the U.S. Catholic bishops? It is far too early to tell, but there were a few interesting things that occurred last week in Baltimore. First of all, the bishops returned to their normal process for selecting their president by elevating the current vice president to the presidency.
All Things Catholic: Now out of leadership, Dolan used his final address as USCCB president to emphasize "the most urgent Christian story of our time," Allen writes.
Several reports of the choice of a new bishops' president noted gingerly that this election had returned to the traditional process of naming successors. That is, the outgoing vice president would be given the top job and the bishops would elect a vice president who became next in line.
"Any other nominees? I didn't think so."
The U.S. bishops meeting in fall assembly this morning elected chairmen to various committees, including their Committee on the Protection of Children and Young People.
To fill open chairmen slots, the bishops' committee on priorities and plans presents a slate of two candidates. Other candidates can be nominated from the floor of the assembly, so conference president New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan asked before each vote, "Are there any other nominees?"