Tuesday, October 24, 2006

George: B16 "Very Concerned" About US Church

Freshly returned from his first trip to Rome following bladder cancer surgery, Cardinal Francis George of Chicago tells the Tribune about his trip... and a papal surprise.
On his second day in Rome, as planned, George attended the canonization of Mother Theodore Guerin of Indiana, the first U.S. saint in six years. What wasn't planned, he said, was an invitation that day to concelebrate mass with the pope....

"I hadn't expected that, and I was very pleased to do that," he said.
Last Monday, as vice-president of the Conference, the cardinal joined USCCB president Bishop William Skylstad of Spokane and Msgr David Malloy, the body's general secretary, for the group's biannual papal audience.
George said the pope was worried about the state of the church in the United States.

"He was very concerned about the seminary system and the morale of priests who have been ordained for some years, especially in the current crisis," he said.
Bit of a counterpoint to the "there's no crisis of morale" response often heard on this side of the Pond, eh?