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Italian bishops to elect own conference leaders under Pope's proposed reforms

Catholic World News - November 25, 2013

A plan by Pope Francis to allow the Italian bishops to select their own leaders has drawn praise from the current head of the episcopal conference—although the change could lead to his resignation.

The Pope has traditionally chosen the president and the secretary-general of the Italian bishops’ conference. Pope Francis plans to move toward a system like that in other countries, where the nation’s bishops elect their own leaders.

Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, the current president of the Italian bishops’ conference, welcomed the reforms as “a moment of grace.” If the reforms are put in place before Cardinal Bagnasco’s presidential term expires in 2017, he may be asked to step down and allow for the election of his successor.

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