Catholic Church must renew its appeal, Archbishop Dolan tells conference
By Michelle Bauman
Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan speaks at the fall General Assembly on Nov. 14, 2011
Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan speaks at the fall General Assembly on Nov. 14, 2011

.- The U.S. bishops must work to “renew the appeal of the Church,” which has wounds, like Christ did, said Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan in his first presidential address to the bishops' conference.

“Christ and his Church are one,” said Archbishop Dolan.

“Perhaps, brethren, our most pressing pastoral challenge today is to reclaim that truth.”

Archbishop Dolan gave his first presidential address to the United States bishops at their three-day fall General Assembly in Baltimore on Nov. 14.

In the address, he emphasized the “sacred duty” of the bishops to shepherd the Church and encouraged them to lead their flocks to embrace “Jesus in and through His Church.”

Archbishop Dolan pointed to “chilling statistics” that show fewer and fewer Catholics believe that Jesus and the Church are one.

He said he is concerned at the growing number of people drifting away from the Church and  warned that the problem must be taken seriously. 

The U.S. bishops must “reclaim the role of fishermen” as they carry out the work of the New Evangelization, inviting the world to see Christ and his Church as one, he said.

The archbishop explained that the mission of the New Evangelization requires an authentic turn to the Lord.

“Jesus prefers prophets, not programs; saints, not solutions,” he said.

He recalled the exhortation of Pope John Paul II, “Love for Jesus and His Church must be the passion of our lives.”

Archbishop Dolan also spoke of the sins of Church members.

“Since we are a spiritual family, we should hardly be surprised that the Church has troubles,” he said.

He acknowledged that in a world fixated on the sinfulness of Church members, temptations might come to run and hide from sin. But the bishops must fight this temptation and instead lead the faithful in acknowledging their sinfulness and recognizing their great need for the Church, he said.

The archbishop explained that the Church has wounds, just as Christ did, and must show them as Christ did on the first Easter night.

Despite the threats to the Church, Archbishop Dolan also noted that glimmers of hope can be seen in young people, new converts and Catholic immigrants. 

He encouraged the U.S. bishops to reach out to these and all people, strengthening “the Catholic conviction that Christ and His Church are one.”

To do this, he explained, they must lead people into an encounter with the person of Jesus.

Archbishop Dolan noted that the world sees the Church as an outdated organization, but the bishops must work to show the truth that “the Church invites the world to a fresh, original place.”

The Church must not be viewed as a mere “system of organizational energy and support,” he said.

“The Church is Jesus – teaching, healing, saving, serving, inviting.”

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages


Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic

Liturgical Calendar

April 18, 2014

Friday of the Passion of the Lord (Good Friday)

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Jn 18:1 - 19:42


Daily Readings

First Reading:: Is 52:13-53:12
Second Reading:: Heb 4:14-16; 5:7-9
Gospel:: Jn 18:1-19:42

Homily of the Day

Jn 18:1 - 19:42


Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
Text only

Follow us: