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By Phil Lawler, Catholic Culture, May 30, 2022

 Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at CatholicCulture.org.


What message did Pope Francis send to the American Church by naming Bishop Robert McElroy to the College of Cardinals? How will his latest choices shape the prospects for the next papal conclave? Which other choices deserve a second look, and which prelates were conspicuously absent from the Pope’s list? Let me answer those questions, one by one.

The message to American Catholics.

Some analysts have suggested that the choice of Bishop McElroy is a slap at the US bishops’ conference. It is more than that; it is a whole series of slaps:

  • A slap at the full US Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), which rejected Bishop McElroy’s bid to scuttle their mild statement on voters’ responsibilities— and at the former president of the USCCB, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, who was forced to rebuke the cantankerous Bishop McElroy when he pressed the argument too aggressively.  …

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