Arguing that lay Roman Catholics are a sleeping giant on the U.S. political scene, the Catholic Campaign for America has launched an effort to renew Catholic identity and encourage "moral restoration" in the public arena. Lay Catholic leaders from around the country gathered in Baltimore to endorse 10 "principles of public Catholicism" that they hope will provide a springboard for organizing a Catholic political movement. "If any society was in need of Catholicism, it is America now," former Secretary of Education William Bennett told the group. "If all 60-million Catholics lived their faith and voted their faith, it would transform American society."
Priests in decline in northeast Wisconsin
GREEN BAY, Wis. _ The number of Roman Catholic priests serving area parishes is expected to drop a third by the year 2005, and the church must make that loss its top priority, Bishop Robert Banks said. Discussions of priesthood as a vocation should be included in all levels of religious education, said Banks, who has asked parish priests to identify good candidates "and invite them personally" to consider priesthood. The number of priests in the northeastern Wisconsin diocese is expected to decline from 207 today to fewer than 144 by the year 2005.
Boston archdiocese faces deficit
The Roman Catholic archdiocese of Boston, the largest private social service provider in the state of Massachusetts, is facing a multimillion-dollar deficit, the Boston Globe has reported. Cardinal Bernard Law told state business leaders that the archdiocese faces a $3.4-million deficit. _ Compiled from staff reports and news services stories