NEWARK, N.J. (CNS) — Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin of Newark told the people of his archdiocese Sept. 21 that Pope Francis has granted his request that he stay at home to remain with them during this “time of crisis” in the U.S. church.
The synod will meet Oct. 3-28 at the Vatican to focus on “young people, faith and vocational discernment.”
On Sept. 15, the pope had added Cardinal Tobin and other cardinals, bishops, priests to the list of members of the Synod of Bishops elected by national bishops’ conferences.
“This synod is a uniquely important moment in the life of the church, and I was honored to have been named by the Holy Father as a member of this special gathering,” Cardinal Tobin said in a letter to the people of Newark, adding that the topic for the synod “is of vital concern to the church today and in the future.”
“However, as you are aware,” he continued, “the Archdiocese of Newark suffers greatly as a result of the crisis that continues to unfold.”
“After the revelations of the past summer, I could not see myself absent for a month from our archdiocese and from you, the people entrusted to my care,” he said. “After prayer and consultation, I wrote to Pope Francis, asking that he dispense me from attending, but assuring him that I strongly support the objectives of the synod and that I would obey whatever he decided.”
The pontiff “responded the next day with a beautiful pastoral and compassionate message.,” Cardinal Tobin said. “He told me that he understands why I need to stay close to home, and he released me from the obligation to attend the synod next month.”
Editor’s Note: The full text of Cardinal Tobin’s letter can be found here.
Help keep Catholic media free, support CatholicPhilly.com
You may have noticed “pay walls” greeting you when you visit the websites of newspapers and magazines, both large and small. These mechanisms allow you to read a few articles for free before you’ve got to pay an annual fee if you want to see more.
You won’t find a pay wall on CatholicPhilly.com because we’re more than a news organization. We’re informing, inspiring and forming readers in the Catholic faith every day through the news, features and commentaries that we post on this site and share across social media.
It costs money to provide high-quality coverage of the local Catholic communities we primarily serve, while also distributing national and world news of interest to Catholics, plus the orthodox teachings of the Catholic faith.
Help us in this mission by making a single gift of $40, $50, $100, or more. Your gift will strengthen the fabric of our entire Catholic community.
Make your donation by check:
222 N. 17th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
or by credit card: