Catholic Voices heeds Pope's call for public witness in US

Catholic Voices heeds Pope's call for public witness in US

.- The recently-formed Catholic Voices USA organization is seeking volunteers to defend Church teachings, in response to Pope Benedict XVI's recent call for an effective witness in public life.

At a January 2012 meeting with U.S. bishops in Rome, the Pope said that “articulate and well-formed Catholic laity” were needed to “counter a reductive secularism which would delegitimize the Church's participation in public debate about the issues which are determining the future of American society.”

In order to fulfill this call, Catholic Voices USA is seeking members of the Church in the New York and Washington, D.C. areas, who are less than 45 years old and can commit to a schedule of training sessions as well as public appearances.

Applications for its upcoming training session, which will take place May 19-21, are being accepted until April 20.

Volunteers will take part in what Pope Benedict called “a primary task” of the U.S. Church, as they learn to offer “a convincing articulation of the Christian vision of man and society” in different public forums.

Catholic Voices USA is based on a U.K. program that began in the run-up to Pope Benedict's 2010 visit to England and Scotland.

That initiative's first goal was to ensure that the Church and its beliefs were presented accurately in the British media. But organizers say it has since grown into “a school of a new Christian humanism” and “the laboratory of a new kind of apologetics.”

Founders of the U.K. Catholic Voices initiative are working in collaboration with organizers of the new U.S. program. In Mexico, two Spanish-speaking coordinators of the British program recently trained 20 speakers who made a total of 54 media appearances to discuss the Pope's March 2012 visit.

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