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*Image: The Pope greets USCCB President Broglio at the meeting of heads of the regional assemblies of the Synod of Bishops, Monday 11/28/22. (CNS photo/Vatican Media)

By Stephen P. White,  The Catholic Thing, Dec. 1, 2022

Stephen P. White is executive director of The Catholic Project at The Catholic University of America and a fellow in Catholic Studies at the Ethics and Public Policy Center.

Note: I’m happy to see that yesterday – an ordinary fundraising day – we received almost as many donations as on the artificial “giving day” before it. It reinforces my belief that our readers and donors are adults who have always been reliably supportive of our work. We even got two donations of $365, something a donor started a couple of years ago as an expression of gratitude for the daily (365 days a year) TCT. But whatever you can give and however you choose to do it – checks and cash are still welcome (make sure to look at the mailing address when you click the Donate button), please, do so today. We’re into December today and the work we’re facing in 2023 is that much closer. The challenges don’t wait and neither should our responses. Do your part without delay. – Robert Royal

Last month, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops met in Baltimore, as they do every November, for their annual plenary. As they do every three years, they elected a new president – this time, Archbishop Timothy Broglio of the Archdiocese for Military Services, replacing the outgoing president, Archbishop José Gómez of Los Angeles.

The election produced an eruption of hysteria from some of the usual suspects in Catholic media who claimed the vote was a “repudiation” of Pope Francis or a vote for “post-episcopal Catholicism.” The arguments, such as they were, were largely specious and partisan, not worth rebutting here.

What is worth challenging is the disproportionate importance that has been increasingly attributed in recent years to elections for conference leadership and even to the episcopal conference itself.  …

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