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Catholic University offers series to help people move forward from church crisis

The Catholic University of America in Washington will host the second in a series of conferences called “Healing the Breach of Trust” Feb. 6 from 8:15 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

“The primary aim is that people come away from this conference with more context for understanding the church crisis,” said President John Garvey. “We also hope that this conference, and the ones to follow, become the place where solutions begin to come to light. There is a way forward, and we will find it if we come together in good faith as a church.”

Participants include Galveston-Houston Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo; Garvey, Christopher Ruddy, associate professor of historical and systematic theology; Benedictine Sister Nancy Bauer, assistant professor of canon law; and Michael Root, ordinary professor of systematic theology, all from Catholic U.; Bronwen McShea, associate research scholar with Princeton University's James Madison program; and Carlos Eire, professor of history and religious studies at Yale University.

“It’s been six months since the church was hit by the current series of sexual abuse scandals, and it seems like every day a new revelation appears,” said Garvey. “I think we all need help — not only to process what we’ve learned, but to find tools to put the crisis in context.”

The day will begin with Mass celebrated by Cardinal DiNardo in Caldwell Chapel at 8:15 a.m. Mass is followed by an introductory address, presentations and lunch. The event will be livestreamed at livestream.com/CatholicUniversity/events/8528618.

The first part of the series took place in November with a panel discussion of journalists, including New York Times columnist Ross Douthat, J.D. Flynn of the Catholic News Agency, Liz Bruenig of The Washington Post, and Chris White of Crux.

“The panelists were honest and forthcoming in their comments, but also respectful of the church and her members,” said Garvey. “We could not have asked for a better way to launch this discussion.”

The next conferences are scheduled for March 26 featuring Boston Cardinal Sean O’Malley, and April 25, featuring Detroit Archbishop Allen Vigneron.

Find out more

Go to ihe.catholic.edu/event/healingthebreach2/.

© Arlington Catholic Herald 2019