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US bishops’ general counsel condemns Connecticut legislation; editorial boards differ

March 13, 2009

Anthony Picarello, general counsel of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, issued a statement condemning Connecticut legislation that would restructure parish governance in the state, granting lay boards control of parish finances and outreach. “This bill goes far beyond swatting a fly with a sledge hammer,” he said. “It takes the sledgehammer to the whole house, using the fly as an excuse.” Editorial boards have different positions on the bill after the bill’s sponsors cancelled a judiciary committee hearing. The Advocate of Stamford, Ct., criticized Bishop William Lori of Bridgeport and other critics of the bill, while the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and the Darien Times condemned it. Backers of the legislation cited the conviction of a Darien, Ct., priest for fraud as a reason for the restructuring of Catholic parish financial administration.


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