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Little Sisters of the Poor welcome new archbishop

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WASHINGTON — A rainy morning recently greeted the new archbishop of Washington as he began to get to know his Washington home.


The day after being named the seventh archbishop of Washington by Pope Francis, Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory, accompanied by his predecessor Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl, visited some of the sites and people of the Archdiocese of Washington, which includes the nation's capital and five surrounding Maryland counties.


The first stop was Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington where the new archbishop was greeted by Msgr. John Enzler, president and CEO of Catholic Charities, other leaders of the agency and some of its clients.


That afternoon, the archbishop visited the Little Sisters of the Poor at their Jeanne Jugan Residence for the elderly poor. The 11 sisters who live in the residence were joined by members of their community who traveled from other residences in nearby states.


Archbishop Gregory, who will be installed May 21 at St. Matthew’s Cathedral in Washington, also met and spoke with the home's elderly residents.


The archbishop told the sisters he saw the great work they did when he was an auxiliary bishop in Chicago. "Now I'm glad to be able to see the wonderful work that you do here, and to have a chance to visit with you on this first trip to my new home in the Washington Archdiocese. But I assure you, it won't be my last visit to you."


He also asked for their prayers.


"I heard Cardinal Wuerl tell one of the Little Sisters, or remind one of the Little Sisters, that she had promised to pray for him," he said. "So, I want to ask all of the other Little Sisters — I won't move in on his special prayer partner — but all of the other Little Sisters to please pray for me."


Archbishop Gregory stayed true to a pledge he made at the news conference after his appointment was announced: "The best time for any bishop is the time they spend with their people. I want to be in the midst of our people, listening to them, praying with them, dining with them. ... I want to be in the pews with the people."




© Arlington Catholic Herald 2019