Tuesday, July 19, 2011

It's pronounced "sha-POO"

Archbishop Charles Chaput
As had been speculated for a couple of days now, Pope Benedict formally announced this morning in Rome that he has accepted the resignation of Cardinal Justin Rigali as archbishop of Philadelphia. To take his place, the pope has named Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver.

This is a big development because it signals a further shift in the hierarchy of the Catholic Church in the US towards strong but kindly leaders who are both very orthodox and unafraid to speak the truth in the public sphere. You may remember that two years ago, Archbishop Timothy Dolan was appointed to lead the Archdiocese of New York and earlier this year, another Benedictine appointment, Archbishop Jose Gomez, took over the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. The appointment of Archbishop Chaput to Philadelphia (another important archdiocese), is the latest move in this direction.

Three years ago, Archbishop Chaput penned a book about living out the values of the Gospel without compromise in our society. It's called Render Unto Caesar. I haven't read it yet, but it made the New York Times best seller list. In honor of today's announcement, it is going to be my first iBook purchase and the first book I read on my new iPad. :-)

In all seriousness, please pray for Archbishop Chaput and for all of our bishops, that they will lead the faithful with grace, charity, dignity, and steadfast devotion to the Truth. And, by the way: his name is pronounced "sha-POO."