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New York is mission territory: Cardinal Dolan

July 18, 2012

New York is “mission territory,” according to Cardinal Timothy Dolan.

Writing on his blog, the New York prelate explained that in an important sense every diocese is always mission territory. “And every committed Catholic is a missionary,” he added.

However, Cardinal Dolan went on to say that New York has become mission territory in another sense, because of a “societal crisis of faith.” Noting that Archbishop Charles Chaput has spoken of the need to re-evangelize neighboring Philadelphia, the cardinal said that the same need is evident in New York.

“Maybe we have gotten way too smug,” Cardinal Dolan wrote. “We have taken our Catholic faith for granted.” He suggested that Catholics have come to rely on physical plant, entrenched programs, and social clout rather than recognizing the constant need to proclaim the Gospel message.


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  • Posted by: impossible - Jul. 19, 2012 10:14 AM ET USA

    Well-said dagbat. There needs to be either conversion or closing down of the USCCB.

  • Posted by: dagbat - Jul. 19, 2012 12:10 AM ET USA

    Cardinal Dolan is correct and in fact every city in the United States that has a significant Catholic population should be considered mission territory. Catholics in America are confused because they no longer know what the Church’s real position is on the key moral issues confronting Catholics today. I believe that one of the primary reasons for this confusion is the pervasive silence of the Church’s pulpits - to speak out on these key moral issues in a fashion that is clear, loving, and steadfastly Catholic. As a result, many Catholics have been lead astray by a secular oriented society, and by various high profile Catholics who have publically embraced and defended it. These high profile Catholics are in the government, media, academia, social services, and even the clergy/religious. It appears that Cardinal Dolan, Archbishop Charles Chaput, and other Church leaders are finally realizing the true nature and seriousness of this problem. Hopefully this will result in the Bishops taking the lead and also directing their local parishes to boldly speak out against the forces of secularism confronting today’s Catholics. For too long the pulpits have been asleep (Bishops and local parishes). It is now time that they are awakened.