Catholic leaders vote against Pope's agenda, Bishop now heads Pro-Life Committee

Catholic leaders vote against Pope's agenda, Bishop now heads Pro-Life Committee

Catholic leaders vote against Pope's agenda, Bishop now heads Pro-Life Committee

Bishops voted 96-88 to elect Archbishop Vigneron during their fall general assembly.

The committee has been led by a cardinal since the mid-1980s, and the rejection of Cardinal Cupich will be seen as marking the bishops' emphasis on abortion over other political issues, as well a degree of scepticism about Pope Francis's approach.

Breaking a long-standing tradition, USA bishops have chosen Archbishop Joseph Naumann of Kansas City over Cardinal Blase Cupich to serve as chairman of the Pro-Life Activities Committee.

The chairman-elect of the communications committee is Bishop Michael Burbidge of Arlington, who garnered 116 votes to Bishop John Barres of Rockville Centre's 70 votes.

In other votes Nov. 14, Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron of Detroit will be the next secretary of the USCCB, taking office next November. Bishop Nelson J. Pérez, of the Diocese of Cleveland will lead the cultural diversity committee, and Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend will head the doctrine committee. He defeated Archbishop Jerome Listecki of Milwaukee by a vote of 113 to 86.

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At their spring meeting in June, the bishops voted to make what was an ad hoc religious liberty body a permanent standing committee. Baltimore Archbishop William E. Lori served as chairman of the committee since its creation in 2011. The National Collections Committee contest was won by Bishop Joseph Cistone of Saginaw over Archbishop Michael Jackels of Dubuque. All of these elected will serve as chair-elect for one year and take over the chairmanship next year. Kurtz will assume leadership of the committee immediately.

The cardinal has been twice promoted by Pope Francis: to Archbishop of Chicago, and then to the College of Cardinals.

The plenary on Monday and Tuesday marked the centenary of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Following an afternoon of vigorous discussion on how best to respond to President Donald Trump's policies on immigration Cardinal DiNardo indicated that it could take several days for a statement to be drafted, and that he would like to work on it with Archbishop José Gomez of Los Angeles, head of the special working group on immigration, and Bishop Joe Vasqeuz of Austin, Texas, head of the Committee on Migration.

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