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Senate vote allows states to redirect funds away from abortion clinics

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WASHINGTON — The Senate voted late March 30 to override a rule change made by in the last days of the Obama administration that prevented states from redirecting Title X family planning funding away from clinics that performed abortions and to community clinics that provide comprehensive health care.

People pass a Planned Parenthood clinic March 17 in New York City. The U.S. Senate voted March 30 to let states cut off funds for Planned Parenthood. (CNS photo/Justin Lane, EPA)

People pass a Planned Parenthood clinic March 17 in New York City. The U.S. Senate voted March 30 to let states cut off funds for Planned Parenthood. (CNS photo/Justin Lane, EPA)

“The clear purpose of this Title X rule change was to benefit abortion providers like Planned Parenthood,” said Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York, who is chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities.

“Congress has done well to reverse this very bad public policy, and to restore the ability of states to stop one stream of our tax dollars going to Planned Parenthood and redirect it to community health centers that provide comprehensive primary and preventive health care,” he said in a March 31 statement.

Midday March 30, Vice President Mike Pence, as president of the Senate, cast a tiebreaking vote that allowed Senate action to proceed on a joint resolution to block the Obama-era regulation that went into Jan. 18, two days before President Barack Obama left office.

Pence also had to cast a second tiebreaking vote so the Senate could pass the measure.

The joint resolution, H.J. Res. 43, was introduced in the House by Rep. Diane Black, R-Tennessee. It passed 230 to 188 on Feb. 16, a vote that was largely along party lines.

In the Senate, the measure was introduced by Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa. Her fellow Republican Sens. Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska voted against allowing the legislation to move forward and then against the bill itself.

Republicans control the Senate by only a 52-48 margin, so Pence was called on twice to break a 50-50 tie. Now the measure goes to President Donald Trump, who is expected to sign it into law.

Title X of the Public Health Services Act was passed by Congress in 1970 to control population growth by distributing contraceptives to low-income families. Planned Parenthood is the largest recipient of Title X funding. Planned Parenthood also is the nation’s largest abortion network — performing over a third of all abortions in the U.S. It receives more than half a billion dollars in federal funding each year.

Under the Hyde Amendment, federal funding for abortion already is prohibited, but federal family planning funds were allowed to go to clinics and facilities for other health services.

States have been acting on their own to prohibit Title X funding to agencies performing abortions.

The joint resolution is one of a series of bills Congress has passed under the Congressional Review Act, which allows federal regulations put in place during the final days of the previous administration to be rescinded by simple majority passage.

In a letter to House members urging them to vote for H.J. Res. 43, National Right to Life wrote: “Long-standing objections to the massive governmental funding of PPFA (Planned Parenthood Federation of America) have been reinforced by widely publicized undercover videos, which illuminate the callous brutality that occurs daily in these abortion mills.”

After the House vote, Ernst said in a statement she was “committed to restoring our states’ ability to make their own decisions about the best eligible Title X providers for folks.”

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Paralyzed NYPD officer who spoke of forgiveness dies at 59

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NEW YORK — Detective Steven McDonald, the New York City police officer who was paralyzed after being shot in the line of duty 30 years ago and famously forgave his teenage assailant and went on to became a prophetic voice for forgiveness and reconciliation, died Jan. 10. He was 59.

A New York police spokesman confirmed that McDonald, who was Catholic, had died at a Long Island hospital four days after suffering a heart attack.

Detective Steven McDonald of the New York Police Department, who was shot and paralyzed in the line of duty in 1986, smiles as he is greeted by then Cardinal Edward M. Egan of New York in front of St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York City during the St. Patrick's Day Parade in 2013. McDonald died Jan. 10 at a Long Island hospital at age 59. (CNS/Gregory A. Shemitz)

Detective Steven McDonald of the New York Police Department, who was shot and paralyzed in the line of duty in 1986, smiles as he is greeted by then Cardinal Edward M. Egan of New York in front of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City during the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in 2013. McDonald died Jan. 10 at a Long Island hospital at age 59. (CNS/Gregory A. Shemitz)

Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York called McDonald “a prophet, without speaking, of the pro-life cause.”

“He showed us,” the cardinal said, “that the value of life doesn’t depend on physical ability, but on one’s heart and soul, both of which he had in abundance.”

The cardinal told Catholic New York, newspaper of the New York archdiocese, that he had visited McDonald in the hospita’s intensive care unit and said that the many rosaries and religious statues there represented outward signs of a Catholic faith the detective dearly practiced.

“You could see that he was such a fervent Catholic,” Cardinal Dolan said.

McDonald often discussed his Catholic faith and the reason he forgave the teenage shooter, explaining that he believed what happened to him was God’s will and that he was meant to become a messenger for God’s message of peace, forgiveness and reconciliation in the world.

While on patrol July 12, 1986, McDonald came upon three teenagers in Central Park and stopped to frisk them because he thought one of them had a weapon in his sock. One of the youths, then-15-year-old Shavod Jones, pulled out a weapon of his own and shot McDonald, leaving him for dead as the trio fled.

Three bullets struck McDonald, including one that pierced his spinal cord, leaving him paralyzed.

Doctors initially told McDonald’s wife, Patti, who was three months pregnant with the couple’s son, that the officer would not survive. However, McDonald pulled through. At the baptism of the son, Conor, March 1, 1987, McDonald asked his wife to read a statement about his feeling toward the shooter, saying “I forgive him and hope he can find a purpose in his life.”

McDonald remained on the police department payroll after being shot and later was named a detective.

McDonald long hoped that he and Jones could team up to speak about reconciliation. They corresponded while Jones served a 10-year sentence for attempted murder, but the correspondence ended when McDonald declined a request from Jones’ family for help in seeking parole, saying he was not knowledgeable enough or capable to intervene. Jones died in a 1995 motorcycle accident shortly after being released from prison on parole.

For years after the shooting, McDonald drew widespread attention and media coverage. He met with St. John Paul II in 1995 and with South African anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela. Although he was able to breathe only with the help of a respirator, McDonald crossed the country speaking at schools and other venues about the importance of forgiveness and peace. He also became an advocate for peace in troubled lands, visiting Northern Ireland, Israel and Bosnia to take his message to communities in conflict.

Conor McDonald eventually joined the NYPD and became a sergeant in 2016. He is the fourth generation of the family to serve in the department.

McDonald was born March 1, 1957, in Queens Village, New York, and grew up in Rockville Centre on Long Island. He was one of eight children of David and Anita McDonald.

      A funeral Mass was scheduled for Jan. 13 at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City with Cardinal Dolan presiding.

      – – –

      Contributing to this report was Catholic New York, newspaper of the Archdiocese of New York.

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Newborn left in a New York City manger a sign of a culture of life, says cardinal

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Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON — A baby in a manger is proof enough for Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York that Americans can express a culture of life.

And it wasn’t the Christ child. Instead, it was a newborn infant left by his mother in the crib of a manger scene at a parish in the New York City borough of Queens.

People pray prior to the opening Mass of the National Prayer Vigil for Life at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington Jan. 21. The all-night vigil is held before the annual March for Life, which this year marked the 43rd anniversary of the Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion across the nation. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)

People pray prior to the opening Mass of the National Prayer Vigil for Life at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington Jan. 21. The all-night vigil is held before the annual March for Life, which this year marked the 43rd anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion across the nation. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)

Calling it “a sad but gripping tale” in his homily during the opening Mass Jan. 21 of the National Prayer Vigil for Life at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, Cardinal Dolan, said, “No one knew where the baby had come from, or who left him there … until, a week later, the sobbing mother, a young Mexican woman, remaining anonymous, told her story to a journalist.”

Cardinal Dolan, who is chairman of the U.S. bishops’ pro-life committee, recounted the mother’s words, noting the irony that the woman had left her baby at Holy Child Jesus Church:

“I was so afraid, and, all alone in the house, suddenly went into labor. I must have been in excruciating pain for at least two hours. I started pushing because, each time I did, the pain would let up. I pushed for 15 minutes and finally the baby, a boy, finally came out. He didn’t cry at first, so I was afraid he was not all right. I didn’t know what to do, so I left the umbilical cord on. I wrapped him in a clean towel and started to look for some place safe and warm.

“I’m very religious,” the woman had continued, “so right away I thought of my church, Holy Child Jesus (in the Brooklyn diocese). I go there a lot, and the priests and people are so good. I just knew if I left him in God’s hands, my baby would be OK. So, I ran into my church and put him in the empty crib. Then he started crying. I just hoped he was warm enough. I hid in the back of church, knowing Father would find my baby and the people would care for him. They did.”

“True story,” Cardinal Dolan said, “and I submit it to you, the jury, this evening, as Exhibit A in our case for promoting the culture of life.”

He added, “It’s not far-fetched to imagine another scenario, what might have happened: that mother’s legitimate and understandable apprehension and isolation could have led her to Planned Parenthood.

“She could have been going to a parish which she found cold, unwelcoming and, impersonal, where she did not feel safe, and where she would not have been inclined to turn in her crisis,” Cardinal Dolan said. “Or, in those fretful minutes after her baby’s birth, she might have run to a church only to find it bolted-up, with a sign on the outside telling her, probably in English, to come back during office hours. Thank God that scenario remains only a ‘might-have-been.’”

He said later, “We are summoned to be such agents of conversion.” The way to do that, Cardinal Dolan said, was “by imitating those priests and people of Holy Child Jesus Parish in New York City, by acknowledging that Jose, that abandoned newborn baby (named for St. Joseph, Jesus’ foster father), Jose was nowhere more at home than in the empty manger of their parish nativity scene, because he, too, is a child of God.”

Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl of Washington, in introductory remarks, welcomed “the many, many, many young people” at the Mass, as they serve as “a reminder for every generation” that all are “called to show respect for the gospel of life.”

The prospect of a major storm carrying heavy snow and high winds made the national shrine slightly less impossibly crowded. Compared to the 11,000 who were packed in for the opening mass of the National Prayer Vigil for Life last year, 9,000 were on hand Jan. 21, according to Jacquelyn Hayes, a shrine spokeswoman.

Clergy turnout was similarly smaller for the Mass. Unlike the entrance processions in recent years, which lasted a half-hour, the Jan. 21 procession took 20 minutes.

 

 

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In Ireland, U.S. cardinals praise role of immigrants

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Catholic News Service

KNOCK, Ireland — Two American cardinals of Irish descent praised the role of immigrants, especially Irish, in building the United States.

Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York stands with Franciscan University of Steubenville students who came to see the cardinal open the novena in Knock, Ireland, Aug. 14. (CNS photo/Sarah Mac Donald)

Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York stands with Franciscan University of Steubenville students who came to see the cardinal open the novena in Knock, Ireland, Aug. 14. (CNS photo/Sarah Mac Donald)

The United States is “a nation of immigrants and we are proud of that,” New York Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan told Catholic News Service at the Marian shrine of Knock, where he delivered a keynote opening a novena.

He said that while everybody was talking about the so-called immigrant problem, “We in United States would say the immigrants are not a problem, the immigrants are a gift.

“If there is one thing we have done well, it is to welcome the immigrant. Every person in the United States, unless you are Native American, is a descendant of an immigrant,” he told CNS.

Recalling that his own great-great-grandfather came to America from Ireland, he commented, “We didn’t have this intense anti-immigrant sentiment back then; America was known as a land of welcome, and there weren’t these restrictions.”

Rebuffing this anti-immigrant mentality he said: “There is an unfortunate inaccurate uncharitable stereotype of the immigrant. Some of the most patriotic and loyal Americans are immigrants because they love their adopted country. They are more patriotic and loyal than we are.”

Discussing Pope Francis’ September visit to the United States, he said the pope was particularly concerned about the treatment of immigrants and had suggested that America “might be a light to the rest of the world, showing it how to welcome and embrace and assimilate the immigrant.”

Cardinal Dolan said Pope Francis expressed a desire to see the work of American Catholic charities helping immigrants because New York is synonymous with the Statue of Liberty. He also wanted to see an inner city Catholic school, so he is scheduled to visit Our Lady Queen of Angels in Harlem, and there he will also meet about 150 immigrants and some of the charities working with them. He is also scheduled to meet with immigrants in Philadelphia.

Cardinal Dolan said that during his week in Ireland, more than 160 Americans had visited ancient places of pilgrimage, and many of the people they met expressed gratitude to the U.S. bishops and Catholic leaders for their “call for sound and fair immigration reform” in the United States.

Separately, Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley of Boston led 1,500 people commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Cathedral of Our Lady Assumed Into Heaven and St. Nicholas in Galway Aug. 14. Boston Cardinal Richard Cushing represented Blessed Paul VI at the dedication of the cathedral in 1965.

In his homily, Cardinal O’Malley spoke of the deep historic links between the United States and Ireland and particularly between his city of Boston and Galway.

He noted that Massachusetts was a Puritan colony that was historically hostile to Catholicism, where Catholics were forbidden residence, priests imprisoned, and an effigy of the pope was burned every November on Boston Common.

But all of this changed following the 19th-century famine in Ireland that sent millions of Irish across the sea to start a new life and to send help back to those who stayed behind.

“As a young seminarian, I was here in Ireland when John F. Kennedy, the first Irish Catholic president of the United States, came to visit the land of his ancestors. He received the cead mile failte, the 100,000 welcomes of the Irish people,” he recalled.

“In Boston, we are very proud of our Irish heritage,” he said.

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Pope will have ‘profound impact’ on New Yorkers, says cardinal

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NEW YORK — The 30 hours or so Pope Francis will spend in New York in September will be relatively brief, but “his presence here among us will have a profound and lasting impact on all New Yorkers,” said Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan. Read more »

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Fatal shooting of New York police officers called ‘brutal, irrational’

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New York Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan joined in mourning what he called the “brutal and irrational execution of two young, promising and devoted police officers” fatally shot Dec. 20 as they sat in their New York Police Department cruiser on a Brooklyn street.

“God’s holy word, which we just heard, and the sermon that follows, are supposed to be good news. Some days that’s tough to give, this good news, and this is one of them,” the cardinal said in his homily during Mass Dec. 21 at St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

A man places flowers at a makeshift memorial Dec. 22 near the site where two New York Police Department officers were assassinated in their patrol car Dec. 20 in the Brooklyn borough of New York. Police said Ismaaiyl Brinsley allegedly ambushed officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu, fatally shooting them before killing himself inside a subway station. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)

A man places flowers at a makeshift memorial Dec. 22 near the site where two New York Police Department officers were assassinated in their patrol car Dec. 20 in the Brooklyn borough of New York. Police said Ismaaiyl Brinsley allegedly ambushed officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu, fatally shooting them before killing himself inside a subway station. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)

According to police, officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu were ambushed as they sat in their marked police car in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn.

“We tear up thinking about their heartbroken families; as we are in solidarity with our police officers who experience a ‘death in the family’; as we worry about a city tempted to tension and division,” the cardinal said. “Good news might seem distant, difficult, even indiscrete, as we anticipate the joy of Christmas four days away, and feel more like we’re near Good Friday.”

A gunman opened fire on Ramos and Liu, shooting both fatally in the head. The suspected shooter, identified as Ismaaiyl Brinsley, then fled to the subway where, police say, he committed suicide. An AP story said Ramos and Liu were part of a special detail assigned to help reduce crime in that part of Brooklyn.

Ramos, who recently turned 40, was married and the father of two sons, a 13-year-old and a college student. He joined the New York Police Department in 2012, after working for several years as a school resource officer. Liu, 32, had been on the New York police force for seven years and had gotten married just two months before being killed.

“Never is the hope of the good news of God’s promise and fulfillment erased for a believer, and the more it is tested the stronger it gets,” Cardinal Dolan said.

He called it providential that Dec. 21, the fourth Sunday of Advent, was “the darkest day of the year, the day of least light as the sun is at its lowest point.”

“Anthropologists tell us that our ancestors millennia ago were gripped with fear and anxiety on this day, wondering if the sun, the light, would reverse its descent and start back up into the sky, if the days would gradually get longer and the light more obvious,” Cardinal Dolan said.

“Year after year, they would hold their breath with fear, only to discover that, yes, tomorrow, the sun would be reborn, and start upward,” he said.

It is “no surprise that the church would place the birth of the Son … right at the rebirth of the sun … and we have Christmas,” he continued.

“At the darkest time of the night, near the darkest day of the year, Jesus the light of the world, was born in Bethlehem,” Cardinal Dolan said. “He will teach us gently and manifest radiantly in his own birth, life, death and resurrection that light trumps darkness, hope beats despair, grace wins over sin, love defeats hate, life conquers death.

“When we’re tempted to question that as stupid and silly, he whispers, ‘Be not afraid: Fear is useless. What is needed is trust.’”

 

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Cardinal Dolan wants ‘nothing further to do’ with Priests for Life

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NEW YORK — New York Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan said he wants “nothing further to do” with Priests for Life, which has its headquarters on Staten Island, which is in the New York archdiocese.

Cardinal Dolan said he had been asked by the Vatican Congregation for the Clergy to assist its national director, Father Frank A. Pavone, with “several necessary reforms,” but he said the priest has not cooperated.

The changes have mostly to do with an audit and the need to establish an independent board “to provide oversight and accountability,” according to Religion News Service and Catholic World News.

Cardinal Dolan made the comments in a letter to his fellow U.S. bishops dated Nov. 20. The letter was not made public. But Catholic World News obtained a copy and reported on it in a story posted on CatholicCulture.org.

“Although Father Pavone initially assured me of his support, he did not cooperate,” Cardinal Dolan wrote.

In a statement sent to Catholic News Service Dec. 16, Priests for Life said it is “working with the Vatican to fully implement all the church’s expectations. The Vatican has been consistently supportive and favorable toward Priests for Life, which is an international private association of the faithful.” It also said the issue was “about control,” not financial accountability.

Priests for Life was founded in California in 1991 “to train, motivate and encourage priests to effectively advance the Gospel of life.”

In 1993, New York Cardinal John J. O’Connor appointed Father Pavone, then a priest of the New York archdiocese, to the full-time post as national director. Ordained in 1988, he had been a parish priest for five years.

As head of the organization he gained prominence through his work with the group, traveling to all 50 states and personally working with Blessed Teresa of Kolkata and Mother Angelica, the founder of the Eternal Word Television Network.

In 2005, Father Pavone was incardinated in the Diocese of Amarillo, Texas, headed by Bishop Patrick J. Zurek.

In September 2011, Bishop Zurek suspended the priest from ministry outside the diocese, saying he was needed for work in Texas. Father Pavone appealed to the Congregation for the Clergy, which issued a decree that allowed him to minister outside the diocese with specific permission to do so from Bishop Zurek. The decree was dated May 18, 2012, and became public about a month later.

“As a gesture of good will,” the bishop said in a June 2012 statement, “I will grant permission to him in individual cases, based upon their merits, to participate in pro-life events with the provision that he and I must be in agreement beforehand as to his role and function,” the bishop added.

The disagreement between Father Pavone, who remains a priest in good standing in the diocese, and Bishop Zurek first became public when the bishop sent a letter to other bishops raising questions about the finances of Priests for Life and its affiliated organizations.

In its statement about Cardinal Dolan’s decision to cut ties with the group, Priests for Life said: “We agree with the Vatican that it does not serve the needs of the church or the cause of life to argue a matter in public that is still being worked out in private. We will only say that the issue has little to do with finances, the organization has had clean independent audits for the past 15 years, but rather about control.”

The organization said it was not “appropriate to comment” further at this time. For now, the matter “is in the hands of the Vatican, where it belongs, and we will continue accomplishing our mission,” it said.

A Dec. 16 fund-raising letter from Priests for Life to its supporters called the group’s financial situation “grim” and said donations were urgent if the group is meet its $8 million dollar budget for 2015 that would allow to “press forward in our mission to preach the Gospel of Life throughout the country and end the injustice of legalized abortion in America.”

The letter outlined Priest for Life’s five main goals for the coming year: “Maintain the pro-life momentum that’s sweeping the country”; get Congress to pass the Pain-Capable Child Protection Act, which would prohibit abortion after 20 weeks, when an unborn baby can feel pain, unless the life of the mother is in danger; “make health care in America abortion free”; “make every state in the Union” abortion free; and win the lawsuit against the federal health care law’s contraceptive mandate.

 

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Cardinal Dolan backs decision to allow gay groups to march in St. Patrick’s Day Parade

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Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York said he continues to support the city’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee after it lifted a ban prohibiting gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender groups from marching openly in the annual event.

A flag twirler from Seaford High School in Seaford, N.Y., smiles as she marches in the 253rd annual St. Patrick's Day Parade in New York March 17. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)

A flag twirler from Seaford High School in Seaford, N.Y., smiles as she marches in the 253rd annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade in New York March 17. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)

The cardinal, who will be the grand marshal of the 254th St. Patrick’s Day parade in March, said in a statement Sept. 3 that neither he nor his predecessors determined who could or could not march in the parade. He said he has “always appreciated the cooperation of parade organizers in keeping the parade close to its Catholic heritage.” “My predecessors and I have always left decisions on who would march to the organizers of the individual parades,” the cardinal’s statement said. “As I do each year, I look forward to celebrating Mass in honor of St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland and the patron saint of this archdiocese, to begin the feast, and pray that the parade would continue to be a source of unity for all of us.” The parade committee’s decision comes in an effort to defuse the controversy that arose prior to this year’s parade over the exclusion of gay banners in the annual celebration of Irish and Catholic heritage. The ban led New York Mayor Bill de Blasio to refuse to march earlier this year. Guinness also withdrew its sponsorship. The NBC television network, which has broadcast the parade for years, also was prepared to drop coverage of the event unless a compromise was reached to allow a group of the network’s gay employees to march under a banner identifying the organization, Irish Central reported. There was no immediate word on whether the decision would lead to a wider gay presence in the parade.

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Faith is strongest when it is ‘educated faith,’ says honoree at dinner for Catholic U.

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Catholic News Service

New York broke its own fundraising record, to the tune of $2.1 million in scholarships, when it hosted the 25th American Cardinals Dinner on behalf of The Catholic University of America in Washington.

New York Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan delivers the homily during a Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral before the 25th annual American Cardinals Dinner in New York May 30. The dinner raised nearly $2.1 million for scholarships to help students attend The Catholic University of America in Washington. (CNS photo/Edmund Pfueller, Catholic University of America)

Each year, a different archdiocese or diocese hosts the black-tie event for the benefit of the university, which was founded by the U.S. bishops more than 125 years ago.

This year’s dinner, held May 30 at the Waldorf Astoria in Manhattan, marked New York’s third time as host. At the 12th annual dinner in 2001, a total of $2 million was raised, a record that stood until this year. New York also hosted the second dinner in 1991.

“Daily do I meet proud and grateful alumni” of Catholic University, New York Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan said in welcoming remarks at the evening dinner he co-hosted with John Garvey, the university’s president. The gathering drew 750 guests, many of whom who were university alumni, friends and major benefactors. Cardinal Dolan earned a doctorate in American church history at Catholic University.

At the dinner, Thomas Moran, president, chairman and CEO of Mutual of America, received the Cardinal’s Appreciation Award. Moran is a product of Catholic schools of the New York archdiocese, including college, and a major benefactor of the Catholic Church, including Catholic University.

“Catholic education allows every child to achieve their potential,” Moran said after the story was told of how he was unable to speak when he began grammar school.

“The nuns of the Daughters of Divine Charity worked with him and by the time he was in second grade, he didn’t stop talking, and he hasn’t stopped talking,” quipped Rosanna Scotto, news anchor of WNYW’s “Good Day New York,” who introduced Moran.

Moran thanked the cardinals, archbishops and clergy present. “Each of you knows that our faith is strongest when it’s an educated faith. And we can thank the Catholic system for that education. The Catholic University of America is the symbol for all of us for Catholic education and great education.”

Since its inauguration, the Cardinals Dinner has raised more than $31.5 million to support scholarships for Catholic University students.

The dinner followed a late-afternoon Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Cardinal Dolan was the principal celebrant and homilist, with visiting cardinals, bishops and clergy as concelebrants.

Eight American cardinals attended the event. In addition to Cardinal Dolan and Cardinal Edward M. Egan, New York’s retired archbishop, others attending were Cardinals Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, Francis E. George of Chicago, Sean P. O’Malley of Boston (who delivered the dinner invocation), and Donald W. Wuerl, of Washington, Catholic University’s chancellor.

Other prelates at the dinner were Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick, retired archbishop of Washington; Cardinal Justin Rigali, retired archbishop of Philadelphia; Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, apostolic nuncio to the United States; and Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron of Detroit, chairman of the university’s board of trustees.

Father Michael Morris, the New York Archdiocese’s archivist, credits Catholic University of America for his vocation to the priesthood. He received his bachelor’s in European history and master’s in American history there. He was ordained for the archdiocese in 1989 after completing studies at St. Joseph’s Seminary in Dunwoodie.

“Having gone to Catholic U. back in the late ’70s, early ’80s was really the catalyst that pushed me to the priesthood,” he told Catholic New York, the archdiocesan newspaper. The “dignity, bearing and kindness” of the priest professors there personally resonated with Father Morris.

“Even though they were academics, they were also very pastoral,” he said.

 

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Restoring St. Patrick’s in New York to cost $175 million

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Catholic News Service

NEW YORK — St. Patrick’s Cathedral, “America’s parish church and the soul of the capital of the world,” will undergo a $175 million, five-year restoration project that is necessary for its survival, according to Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York.

Cardinal Dolan made the announcement on the steps of the cathedral March 17, hours before reviewing the 251st St. Patrick’s Day Parade up Fifth Avenue. He said the 133-year-old landmark is a “supernatural home” for Catholics, all believers and people with no explicit religion “who come here for a hint of the divine and assurance of help.”

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