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Issue: #28 May 2016

Lots of news to share in this month's newsletter!

We mark many new beginnings with the installation of Archbishop Bernard Hebda and the installation of a new papal nuncio, Archbishop Christophe Pierre.   At the Council of the Baptized Open Forum, we discussed the priestly formation in our local seminaries.  We anticipate the exploration of the laity in liturgy in our June, 2016 Open Forum.   Women deacons is a topic that will be addressed by Pope Francis.  This issue is being worked on locally, as well.  Stay tuned!

So, read on, and learn more . . . 

CCCR and the CoB News

c CCR/Council of the Baptized extended an April 26th letter of welcome to the new papal nuncio, Archbishop Christophe Pierre, in which CCCR/CoB said, in part:  

     "We are acting upon the mandates of the Second Vatican
     Council to contribute our knowledge, experience, and
     wisdom to the whole Church....We are looking forward to
     working with Archbishop Bernard Hebda, our newly
     appointed shepherd.  We are impressed with his pastoral
     commitment....You can expect to hear from us on issues
     of Church governance and practice....Please feel free to
     call on us when you need to consult with typical,
     mainstream Catholics, who love our Church."

The papal nuncio's office responded to us: 
     "I convey to you his sincere gratitude....Please know that
     he asks the Lord's abundant blessings upon you and all
     your endeavors."

Council of the Baptized Open Forums conti nue . . .

M ary Ellen Jordan and Carol Tauer led the  What's Right and Wrong at the Seminary?  Open Forum on May 10, 2016.  They shared their research and findings in a paper which fleshed out five recommendations:
  1. Approach human and spiritual formation in a more realistic and wholisitic way.
  2. Counteract clericalism by stressing collaborative and servant leadership as the model for the 21st century priesthood.
  3. Deliberately foster the involvement of women in the formation of seminarians.
  4. Educate seminarians for ministry to 21st century Catholics.
  5. Reconsider the value of the college seminary program, and review the curriculum pursued by the students.
Work is already underway on executing Recommendation 5. 
In 2017, Pope Francis will be publishing new seminary guidelines, which will address these issues on a broader scale.

On June 14th, come  to hear Kathryn Lien share her work on laity involvement in the liturgy and sacramental life.  Her paper, Experiencing Liturgical and Sacramental Life, summarizing her work will be a part of the Pastoral Recommendations Project.  Add your voice to the discussion.

When:  June 14, 7:00 - 8:00 p.m.
Where: Gloria Dei Church, 700 Snelling Ave. S., St. Paul, 55116.

Installation of Archbishop Bernard Hebda

T he installation of Archbishop Bernard Hebda was celebrated with a series of events culminating in the formal installation ceremony held on May 13

We look forward to working with Archbishop Hebda on a wide range of issues, many of which are discussed in this newsletter.

Women Deacons

P ope Francis met with Sr. Carmen Sammut, president of International Union of Superiors General [UISG] regarding opening a commission on women deacons.  Pope Francis agreed to Sr. Sammut's call for a commission to study the issue of women deacons in the Catholic Church.

She said:
     "He [the pope] was very strong about the fact that women
     should be in decision-making processes and positions of
     the Church  and that this should not be linked solely with
     the  priesthood or sacramental status."
F ollow the work of the commission when it is formed.  In addition, work is being done locally.  Be assured, future developments will be shared here.

Archdiocesan Pastoral Council Plan Progress
C CCR and CoB continues to express hope and willingness to make an Archdiocesan Pastoral Council a reality in our Archdiocese.  In 2012, the Council of the Baptized published a position paper entitled,  Archdiocesan Pastoral Council in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis: a recommendation for re-establishment  - (Council of the Baptized, 2012), which provides an excellent background on this topic.

In their April 26th letter to Archbishop Hebda, CCCR/CoB said: 

     "Please be assured that we have volunteers ready,
     willing, and able to help with the planning and 
     implementation of the Pastoral Council." 

P astors were informed of the CCCR/Council of the Baptized's work on revival of an Archdiocesan Pastoral Council in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis.  In the "Talk to Your Pastor" campaign, the CCCR Board appealed to 162 pastors in our Archdiocese by e-mail, and said in part:

     " We hope you agree that open, transparent, and honest
     communication between lay people and Archdiocesan
     decision-makers is necessary for the mission of the

We will keep you updated on this important issue.
Pastoral Recommendations Project Progress
W ork is in full gear on seven areas of the Pastoral Recommendations Project, which will be presented to Archbishop Hebda as our invitation to create a more responsive archdiocesan community.  Each area will be summarized in a short paper.  Several of the topics are being discussed at Council of the Baptized Open Forum presentations:

   1. Personal Growth and Community Health--Ken Pierre and
       Mary Beth Stein
   2. Developing the Parish Community--Ken Pierre and Ed
   3. Developing Servant Leadership--Carol Tauer and Mary
       Ellen Jordan
   4. Experiencing Liturgical and Sacramental Life--Kathryn
   5. Supporting Social Justice Outreach--Delore Rockers
   6. Building Structures for Communication --Paula Ruddy
    7.  Archdiocesan Healing--Ed Walsh and Mary Lou Caskey
T he last community review of the recommendations was held at Cabrini on May 17th.  The community input affirmed the overall set of recommendations, and provided updates to them, and additional items for consideration.  The consensus for the night is that the participants want it known that the recommendations are coming from people who love the Church and want to see us move forward as a community.
A ll of the Pastoral Recommendations are available for your review on the  CCCR/Council of the Baptized website .   The recommendations are expected to be completed by mid-June, at which time they will be presented to the Archbishop and the Archdiocese.

Recommended Reading

Make today a declarative act of living,
not a defiant part of speech.