"The generosity and willingness of Catholics to sacrifice is witnessed in the charitable works during times of national disasters or through Catholic Relief Services," he said, adding that signs of hope are present in the Church "even as many of us worry about the lasting impact of the sexual abuse crisis."
The archbishop acknowledged that the Church in the U.S. faces "many challenges," highlighting the demographic changes and the need to engage better with young people.
Pierre also highlighted a series of priorities and concerns about the welfare of the priesthood, acknowledging a shortage of clergy had led to strained circumstances in many dioceses. He urged to make "communion with the presbyterate" a key priority.
"Establishing communion within the presbyterate is becoming increasingly challenging, and not just because of differences in age, theology, or liturgical practices." He noted the increasing numbers of priests from other countries serving in American dioceses.
"Although we are grateful for the sacramental and pastoral care provided by these priests, we must investigate how this has affected or is affecting the presbyterate within our respective dioceses."
In answer to the shortage of clergy, Pierre said that there is "an urgent need the bishops to foster a "culture of vocation."
"Building a culture of vocations also means providing adequate support for and accompaniment of families, where vocations are born and nurtured even at a young age."
Pierre concluded by saying he hoped that the American bishops would find his "reflections" useful for the coming year.
"Knowing the richness of your spiritual and cultural heritage, as well as the depth of your faith and devotion and that of your people, I am confident that the Church in the United States will discover the right path for its spiritual renewal."