Plan for Archdiocese’s
reorganization provides survivors $210 million
ST. PAUL, Minn. — The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis has reached a plan with a committee representing clergy sexual abuse survivors to resolve its bankruptcy, offering $210 million for restitution to claimants. The settlement is the largest ever reached in a bankruptcy case related to clergy sex abuse. The consensual plan includes more than $50 million in increased funding from the archdiocese’s previous plan of reorganization, which offered $156 million for restitution. Additional funds came from insurers, archdiocesan funds and parish contributions.
Franciscans in six provinces vote to form one organization
CINCINNATI — Franciscans of the Order of Friars Minor in six of the order’s U.S. provinces voted May 30 to form one new organization to reinvigorate Franciscan life in this country. Friars in each of those six provinces took the vote at meetings in their respective communities. The provinces have been in dialogue about unifying since 2012. The organization would be made up of the almost 1,000 Franciscan brothers and priests who belong to the existing provinces. A location for its headquarters will be determined later. The next step is to obtain approval to unify from the order’s minister general, Father Michael Perry, based in Rome. The U.S. provinces participating are: St. Barbara in Oakland, Calif.; Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Franklin, Wis.; Holy Name in New York; Our Lady of Guadalupe in Albuquerque, N.M. Sacred Heart in St. Louis; and St. John the Baptist in Cincinnati.
Bishop named for Byzantine Ruthenian Catholic eparchy
WASHINGTON — Pope Francis has appointed Auxiliary Bishop Father Milan Lach of Presov, Slovakia, to head the Byzantine Ruthenian Catholic Eparchy of Parma in Ohio. The appointment was announced in Washington June 1 by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio to the United States. The 44-year-old prelate has been serving as apostolic administrator of the eparchy since the pope named him to the post in June 2017. The eparchy’s geographic spread takes most of Ohio, as well as Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Missouri, Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota.
Vatican asks German
bishops to set aside plans for eucharistic sharing
VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis has asked the Catholic bishops’ conference of Germany not to publish nationwide guidelines for allowing Protestants married to Catholics to receive Communion at Mass, but to continue having diocesan bishops judge specific situations. Greg Burke, director of the Vatican press office, confirmed the authenticity of a letter published June 4 on the Italian blog “Settimo Cielo.” The Holy Father has reached the conclusion that the document has not matured enough to be published,” according to the letter signed by Cardinal-designate Luis Ladaria, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. The prefect had hosted a meeting May 3 with a group of German bishops and with officials from the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts. A Vatican statement issued at the end of the meeting stated, “Pope Francis appreciates the ecumenical commitment of the German bishops and asks them to find, in a spirit of ecclesial communion, a result as unanimously as possible.”
Sports on Sundays OK, except when used to skip Mass, states Vatican
VATICAN CITY — A new Vatican document cautions against the dangers of highly competitive children’s sports, political and economic pressures on athletes to win ‘“at all costs” and the unsportsmanlike or violent behavior of fans. The 52-page document on sports also calls on every group or institution sponsoring sports programs to have expert-guided child protection policies in place and it urged bishops, parishes and lay Catholics to be proactive in helping “humanize” sports. The document, “Giving the Best of Yourself,” also noted sports on Sundays could be a means of bringing families and communities together in joy and celebration, but only as long as such events are not used as an excuse to miss Mass. The document was released June 1 by the Dicastery for Laity, the Family and Life, and is the first Vatican document on sports, said Cardinal Kevin Farrell, the dicastery’s prefect.
Pope appoints first
layperson to head Pontifical Lateran University
VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis has appointed the first layperson to head Rome’s Pontifical Lateran University. The pope named Vincenzo Buonomo, 57, rector of the university, a Vatican press release announced June 2. As of July 1, he will succeed 67-year-old Bishop Enrico dal Covolo, a Salesian who was appointed rector in 2010. Born April 17, 1961, in Gaeta, Buonomo specialized in international law and received his doctorate from the Lateran in 1983. He began teaching civil law at the university in 1984 and became a full professor in 2001. He also assisted the Holy See’s permanent observer at the U.N. food and agriculture agencies based in Rome in 1983 and became its office manager in 2007.
— Catholic News Service