Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput reacted to the Pope’s address to the U.S. bishops by agreeing with the Pontiff’s emphases on the need for Catholics to be present in the public square and to buttress family life.
“The part I found of personal interest was his ideas on being in the public square: the priority of Catholics being clear and united in their voice, in their presence, being leaven in society; about family issues, life issues, marriage issues…it was a wonderfully comprehensive presentation,” Chaput said.
The archbishop also recalled the theological and scriptural appropriateness of the U.S. bishops meeting with the Pope, the successor of St. Peter.
“The Church has this tradition of the bishops counseling with Peter to make sure that our preaching and teaching is faithful to the apostolic tradition and that happened today. We went to him to take his view of our ministry and then he confirmed us in our faith, which is a wonderful gift,” the archbishop explained.
When asked if there was anything that surprised him in the Pope’s address the archbishop said that no section surprised him, but that he was surprised at how comprehensive the talk was.
“He spent a lot of time talking about the family, which is the first priority of the Bishops’ conference, but I was surprised how focused he was on that.” Chaput also added that he was, “especially happy about the amount of time he spent on that issue.”
Asked if there was a section that the Catholics in Denver should focus on, Archbishop Chaput said “well it wasn’t a long talk, so I think they should read it all.” “None of it was terribly esoteric or beyond the reach of people.”