Rooted in Faith

Browsing News Entries

Browsing News Entries

Pope Francis Names Msgr. Alejandro Aclan as Auxiliary Bishop of Los Angeles; Accepts Resignation of Bishop Armando Ochoa from the Diocese of Fresno; Appoints Most Reverend Joseph Brennan as Bishop of

WASHINGTON— Pope Francis has appointed the Reverend Monsignor Alejandro
D. Aclan as Auxiliary Bishop of Los Angeles. The Pope has also accepted the resignation of Bishop Armando Xavier Ochoa from the pastoral governance of the Diocese of Fresno and appointed as Bishop of that same See the Most Reverend Joseph V. Brennan, up until now Auxiliary Bishop of Los Angeles. Bishop Ochoa has reached the retirement age for bishops of 75. The Pope has also named Bishop David Talley as Bishop of the Diocese of Memphis.

The appointments and resignation were publicized in Washington on March 5, 2019, by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio to the United States.

Rev. Msgr. Alejandro Aclan is currently serving as priest of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and most recently served as Vicar for Clergy. He was born February 9, 1951 in Pasay City, Philippines. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology (1971) from University of Santo Tomas in Manila. He also holds a Master of Divinity (1993) from St. John’s Seminary, in Camarillo. Father Aclan was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles in 1993.

Assignments after ordination include: Associate Pastor/St.Finbar, Burbank; St. John of God, Norwalk, 1993-2001; Director of Vocations in Progress (1996-1999). Rev. Msgr. Aclan served as a Pastor/St. Madeleine, Pomona (2001-2012); Member/Regional Pastoral Council, San Gabriel Valley Pastoral Region (2003-2008); Treasurer/Council of Priest (2006-2010); Regional Vocations Director, San Gabriel Valley Pastoral Region (2010-2012); Associate Vicar for Clergy (2015-2018). In July 2018 Monsignor Aclan began a sabbatical year.  

Bishop Joseph V. Brennan was born on March 20, 1954 in Van Nuys, California. He holds a B.A. in Philosophy from St. John’s Seminary College (1976) and a Masters in Divinity from St. John’s Seminary Theologate (1980). He was ordained a priest in June 21, 1980.

He was installed as Auxiliary Bishop of Los Angeles and Titular Bishop of Trofimiana, September 8, 2015. Bishop Brennan is the Episcopal Vicar of the San Fernando Pastoral Region, one of the five Pastoral Regions in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Bishop Brennan has also served as Moderator of the Curia for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

Bishop Armando Ochoa was born in Oxnard, California, in 1943. In 1962 he entered St. John’s Seminary College and having graduated, continued his studies at St. John’s Seminary School of Theology. He was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles on May 23, 1970. He served as Associate Pastor at St. Alphonsus Church in East Los Angeles; St. John the Baptist Church in Baldwin Park; and St. Teresa of Avila Church, Los Angeles. Bishop Ochoa was appointed Pastor of Sacred Heart Church in Los Angeles, in December 1984. While an Associate Pastor at St. Teresa of Avila, he was named a Monsignor, Chaplain to His Holiness, in 1982. Bishop Ochoa was installed as the fifth Bishop of the Diocese of Fresno on February 1, 2012 and served on several U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) committees.

Pope Francis has also appointed Bishop David P. Talley as Bishop of the Diocese of Memphis. Bishop Talley has served up until now as Bishop of Alexandria in Louisiana.

Bishop Talley studied for the priesthood at St. Meinrad School of Theology. He earned his doctorate in canon law from the Pontificia University Gregorian in Rome. He also holds a bachelor’s degree from Auburn University and a graduate degree from the University of Georgia. He was ordained on June 3, 1989.

He was appointed as auxiliary bishop of Atlanta by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI on January 3, 2013 and was consecrated a bishop on April 2, 2013. Pope Francis appointed him Coadjutor Bishop of Alexandria on September 21, 2016 and was installed a bishop of the diocese on February 2, 2017 following the resignation of Bishop Ronald Paul Herzog.  

His assignments include: parochial vicar at St. Jude the Apostle church, officer of the Archdiocese of Atlanta tribunal, director of vocations for the Archdiocese of Atlanta, chancellor of the Archdiocese of Atlanta.

The Archdiocese of Los Angeles is comprised of 8,636 square miles in the state of California and has a total population of 11,541,404 of which 4,039,491 or 35 percent are Catholic.  

The Diocese of Fresno is comprised of 36,072 square miles in the state of California and has a total population of 2,906,023 of which 1,200,000 or 41.29 percent are Catholic.

The Diocese of Memphis comprises 10,682 square miles. It has a total population of 1,553,899 people of which 60,320 or 4% percent, are Catholic.

---

Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Pope Francis, Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio, Reverend Monsignor Alejandro Aclan, Bishop Joseph Brennan, Bishop Armando Ochoa, Archdiocese of Los Angeles, Diocese of Fresno, Bishop David Talley, Diocese of Alexandria in Louisiana

###

Media Contact:

Judy Keane

202-541-3200

 

Diverse Faith Leaders and Religious Nonprofits Renew Call to Repeal the “Parking Lot Tax”

WASHINGTON–Ecumenical and interfaith leaders renewed their call to urge Congress to repeal a change to the Internal Revenue Code that will imminently tax nonprofit organizations—including houses of worship—for the cost of parking and transit benefits they provide to their employees. Section 512(a)(7) has been commonly referred to as the “parking lot tax”.

Leadership from a variety of nonprofits, religious and educational institutions, and houses of worship sent a letter to the House Ways and Means Committee Chairman and Ranking Member asking for Congressional action to address this concern.

The letter states, in part: “This provision effectively creates an income tax on churches for the first time in U.S. history,” and it expresses concern “about the troubling precedent this sets by entangling the IRS with houses of worship.” The letter “urge[s] Congress to swiftly pass a bipartisan, full repeal of Section 512(a)(7) before taxes are due this year.”

Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, Chairman of the USCCB Committee for Religious Liberty, and Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice, Chairman of the USCCB Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, joined signatories from the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, The Jewish Federations of North America, Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, The Episcopal Church, National Association of Evangelicals, Seventh-day Adventist Church North American Division, and other nonprofit organizations concerned about this new tax in signing the letter.

A link to the letter can be found here: http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/religious-liberty/upload/Coalition-Letter-Nonprofit-parking-lot-tax-3-1-19.pdf
---
Keywords: Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, Bishop Frank Dewane, USCCB, Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, parking lot tax, Section 512(a)(7), religious freedom, religious liberty

Media Contact:
Judy Keane
202-541-3200

 

Chair of Pro-Life Committee Commends Rule Separating Abortion from Title X Family Planning

WASHINGTON--Last Friday, the Department of Health and Human Services announced that it finalized “The Protect Life Rule,” regulations for the federal Title X family planning program. The Rule requires clear financial and physical separation between Title X funded projects and programs or facilities where abortion is a method of family planning. Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, Chairman of the U.S. Bishops Committee on Pro-Life Activities, issued the following statement commending HHS:

“I applaud the Trump Administration for reaffirming that abortion is not family planning. Abortion ends the lives of families’ most vulnerable members, as well as damaging the spiritual, mental and physical health of mothers. Although the USCCB continues to have strong objections to government promotion and funding of contraceptives, we have long supported enforcement of the abortion funding restrictions in Title X, and we are pleased to see that the Administration has taken seriously its obligation to enforce those restrictions. We are also grateful that this rule eliminates the requirement that doctors in Title X clinics refer and counsel for abortion, which previously ensured that all Title X clinics and staff had a close connection with abortion.”

---
Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Archbishop Joseph Naumann, Committee on Pro-Life Activities, President Trump, pro-life, federal funding, abortion, Title X, pregnancy, family planning, women's health, comprehensive care

###
Media Contact:
Judy Keane
202-541-3200

 

Catholic Bishops’ Pro-Life Chairman Says Senate Rejection of Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act should horrify and anger the American people

WASHINGTON–Monday night, the Senate failed to advance the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act—legislation that prohibits infanticide by ensuring that a child born alive following an abortion would receive the same degree of care to preserve her life and health as would be given to any other child born alive at the same gestational age. The Senate rejected a motion to advance the bill on a vote of 53 to 44 with 3 not voting. In the Senate, 60 votes are needed to overcome a filibuster and pass a bill.

Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, chair of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Pro-Life Activities, issued the following statement in response:

“There should be no bill easier for the Senate to pass than one that makes clear that killing newborn babies is wrong and should not be tolerated. That even one senator, let alone 44 senators voted against the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, is an injustice that should horrify and anger the American people and commit us to decisive political action. A vote against this bill is a vote to extend Roe v. Wade’s license for killing unborn children to killing newborn babies. The American people, the vast majority of whom support this bill, must demand justice for innocent children.”
---
Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Archbishop Joseph Naumann, Committee on Pro-Life Activities, pro-life, abortion
###
Media Contact:
Judy Keane
202-541-3200

 

President of U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Issues Statement at Close of Meeting on the Protection of Minors in the Church

ROME—Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, Archbishop of Galveston-Houston and President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), has issued the following statement on the final day of a four day meeting attended by Presidents of Bishops’ Conferences from across the globe.  

Cardinal DiNardo’s full statement follows:

"The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth." Psalm 145:18

"These have been challenging, fruitful days. The witness of survivors revealed for us, again, the deep wound in the Body of Christ. Listening to their testimonies transforms your heart. I saw that in the faces of my brother bishops. We owe survivors an unyielding vigilance that we may never fail them again.

How then to bind the wounds? Intensify the Dallas Charter. Pope Francis, whom I want to thank for this assembly, called us to ‘concrete and effective measures.’ A range of presenters from cardinals to other bishops to religious sisters to lay women spoke about a code of conduct for bishops, the need to establish specific protocols for handling accusations against bishops, user-friendly reporting mechanisms, and the essential role transparency must play in the healing process.  

Achieving these goals will require the active involvement and collaboration of the laity. The Church needs their prayers, expertise, and ideas. As we have learned from diocesan review boards, a comprehensive range of skills is required to assess allegations and to ensure that local policies and procedures are regularly reviewed so that our healing response continues to be effective. All of the models discussed this week rely upon the good help of God’s people.

I and the bishops of the United States felt affirmed in the work that is underway. Enhanced by what I experienced here, we will prepare to advance proposals, in communion with the Holy See, in each of these areas so that my brother bishops can consider them at our June General Assembly. There is an urgency in the voice of the survivors to which we must always respond. I am also aware that our next steps can be a solid foundation from which to serve also seminarians, religious women, and all those who might live under the threat of sexual abuse or the abuse of power.

In our faith, we experience the agony of Good Friday. It can cause a sense of isolation and abandonment, but the Resurrection is God’s healing promise. In binding the wounds now before us, we will encounter the Risen Lord. In Him alone is all hope and healing.

May I also add a sincere word of thanks to the many who prayed for me and for all that this meeting be a success."
---
Keywords: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Pope Francis, Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, Meeting on the Protection of Minors in the Church, Vatican, Holy See, survivors, Dallas Charter, laity,
bishop conduct, June General Assembly, sex abuse, abuse of power, Good Friday, Resurrection, Risen Lord, prayer, wounds, healing

###
Media Contact:

Judy Keane
202-541-3200

 

Ash Wednesday Collection to Support the Catholic Church in Central and Eastern Europe

WASHINGTON— The annual special Collection for the Church in Central and Eastern Europe will be taken up in most dioceses on Ash Wednesday, March 6, 2019. The funds collected are used to support seminaries, youth ministry, social service programs, pastoral centers, church construction and renovation, and Catholic communications projects in 28 counties in Central and Eastern Europe.

“As we embark on our Lenten journey it is a fitting time to remember our sisters and brothers in Central and Eastern Europe, who are working to restore the Church and build the future after decades of oppression,” said Bishop Jeffrey Monforton, Bishop of Steubenville and Chairman of the Subcommittee on Aid to the Church in Central and Eastern Europe. “I thank the American faithful for their support. As a Paschal people, we help bring God’s consolation and the hope of rebirth when we extend our generosity to those in need.”

In 2017, the Subcommittee on Aid to the Church in Central and Eastern Europe awarded over $9 million through more than 300 grants. Among projects recently supported is the construction of a Catholic youth center in a remote part of Georgia, helping to form a new generation of disciples.

The Subcommittee on Aid to the Church in Central and Eastern Europe (CCEE) oversees the collection and an annual grant program as part of the USCCB Committee on National Collections. More information about the collection, including detailed information about who it supports and how the funds are distributed, can be found at www.usccb.org/ccee. People who live in dioceses that do not participate in the collection or who wish to give directly can learn how to give here.

Tetiana Stawnychy, Director of the Collection for the Church in Central and Eastern Europe, is available for media interviews.

---
Keywords: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Bishop Jeffrey Monforton, Subcommittee on Aid to the Church in Central and Eastern Europe, seminaries, youth ministry, social service programs, pastoral centers, church construction, renovation, Catholic communications projects

###
Media Contact:
Judy Keane
202-541-3200

 

Pope Francis Names Bishop Boris Gudziak as Archbishop of the Ukrainian Archeparchy of Philadelphia

WASHINGTON—Pope Francis has named Bishop Boris Gudziak as archbishop of the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy of Philadelphia. Bishop Gudziak, 58, currently serves as bishop of the Ukrainian Eparchy of Saint Vladimir-le Grand de Paris in France.

The appointment was publicized in Washington on February 18, by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States.

Bishop Gudziakwas born November 24, 1960 in Syracuse, New York. He was ordained on November 26, 1998 by Bishop Sofron Mudry O.S.B.M.He was ordained a bishop in Franceon August 26, 2012.

Bishop Gudziak holds a duel bachelor’s degree in philosophy and biology (1980) from Syracuse University, a degree in theology (1983) from the Pontifical Urban Universityin Rome, and a Ph.D., in Slavic and Byzantine Cultural History (1992) from Harvard University.

Post-ordination assignments include: vice rector of the Lviv Theological Academy, rector of the Lviv Theological Academy, and rector and president of the Ukrainian Catholic University.

The Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy of Philadelphia includes the District of Columbia, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey and parts of eastern Pennsylvania. It has a total Catholic population of 67,250. The Archeparchy has been sede vacante since April 2018.

---

Keywords: bishop appointment, Pope Francis, Archbishop Christophe Pierre, Apostolic Nuncio, Bishop Boris Gudziak, Catholic Archeparchy of Philadelphia, Ukrainian Eparchy of Saint Vladimir-le Grand de Paris

###
Media Contact:
Judy Keane
202-541-3200

 

President of U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Issues Statement on Theodore McCarrick in Response to Judgement by the Holy See

WASHINGTON— Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, Archbishop of Galveston-Houston and President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, has issued the following statement upon the decision of the Holy See announced today regarding Theodore McCarrick.

Cardinal DiNardo’s Full Statement Follows:

“The Holy See’s announcement regarding Theodore McCarrick is a clear signal that abuse will not be tolerated. No bishop, no matter how influential, is above the law of the Church. For all those McCarrick abused, I pray this judgement will be one small step, among many, toward healing. For us bishops, it strengthens our resolve to hold ourselves accountable to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I am grateful to Pope Francis for the determined way he has led the Church’s response.

If you have suffered sexual abuse at the hands of someone within the Catholic Church, I urge you to contact local law enforcement and your local diocese or eparchy. Victims Assistance Coordinators are available to help. We are committed to healing and reconciliation.”

--

Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, Pope Francis, Holy See, Theodore McCarrick, sexual abuse, local law enforcement, Victim Assistance Coordinators, Church response

###

Media Contact:

Judy Keane

202-541-3200

President of U.S. Bishops’ and Chairman of Bishop’s Committee on Migration Respond to President’s Order to Fund Construction of Border Wall

WASHINGTON—Today President Trump announced that he will issue an order stating his intention to make use of funds previously appropriated for other purposes to fund the construction of a border wall at the U.S./Mexico border that Congress has refused to fund. Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston and President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), and Bishop Joe S. Vásquez of Austin, Chairman of the USCCB Committee on Migration, issued the following joint statement:

“We are deeply concerned about the President’s action to fund the construction of a wall along the U.S./Mexico border, which circumvents the clear intent of Congress to limit funding of a wall. We oppose the use of these funds to further the construction of the wall. The wall first and foremost is a symbol of division and animosity between two friendly countries. We remain steadfast and resolute in the vision articulated by Pope Francis that at this time we need to be building bridges and not walls.”

Media Contact:
Judy Keane
202-541-3200

 

U.S. Bishops’ Chairmen Condemn Decision Preventing Muslim Man from Receiving Appropriate Spiritual Care at Execution

WASHINGTON–On February 7, 2019, the State of Alabama executed Domineque Ray, a Muslim man whose request to have an imam present at his execution was denied by the U.S. Supreme Court by a vote of 5-4. Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, Chairman of the USCCB Committee for Religious Liberty, and Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice, Chairman of the Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, have issued a statement, which reads:

“The execution of Domineque Ray deeply troubles us. The death penalty itself is an affront to human dignity, and the Church has long called for its abolition in the United States and around the world. Mr. Ray bore the further indignity of being refused spiritual care in his last moments of life, in violation of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and Alabama law. This unjust treatment is disturbing to people of all faiths, whether Muslim, Christian, Jewish, or otherwise. People deserve to be accompanied in death by someone who shares their faith. It is especially important that we respect this right for religious minorities. As Pope Francis said during his recent trip to the United Arab Emirates, ‘What we are called to do as believers is to commit ourselves to the equal dignity of all.’ Let us make this commitment today.”

---

Keywords: Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, Bishop Frank Dewane, USCCB, Domineque Ray, Supreme Court, death penalty, religious liberty, religious freedom, First Amendment, U.S. Constitution

Media Contact:

Judy Keane

202-541-3200