Dear Members of the Movement to Restore Trust,
Like most of you, the MRT Organizing Committee has been waiting and watching the situation in the Diocese since early September when we determined that the MRT could not make progress on its reform agenda while Bishop Malone remained in office.
After calling for the Bishop’s resignation on September 5, the MRT was in touch with Cardinal Timothy Dolan in New York City, and Archbishop Christophe Pierre, the Apostolic Nuncio in Washington, about the deteriorating situation in the Diocese. As we waited for a reply from them, we received notice of the Vatican’s decision to have Brooklyn Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio conduct an apostolic visitation of the Diocese.
We have received several inquiries from MRT members as to whether MRT was contacted by Bishop DiMarzio, so we wanted to confirm that John Hurley and Nancy Nielsen of the Organizing Committee met with Bishop DiMarzio in separate meetings. Bishop DiMarzio requested that we keep the substance of our meetings confidential which we will respect. We think it is fair to say that after 75 interviews in Buffalo, Bishop DiMarzio has an accurate picture of what is happening here in the Diocese. How that will translate into his final report and what the Vatican will do with that report is the question.
The New York bishops will be traveling to Rome this week for their ad limina visit with Pope Francis. Whether Bishop DiMarzio’s report will be a topic of discussion at those meetings is unknown at this point.
You should know that according to www.catholic-hierarchy.org, there are currently 17 dioceses in the United States that have a vacancy or are being served by an archbishop or bishop who has already submitted his retirement letter to the Vatican. There are another six dioceses where a bishop will reach retirement age over the next several months.
While we are in this interim period, we think it necessary to continue to work on the reform agenda of the MRT that you helped to develop. We are planning another symposium at Canisius College on Saturday, December 7, 2019 from 9:00-11:00 a.m. We will gather in prayer and discuss the next steps to be taken by the MRT to advance the cause of healing and reform in our Diocese. Further details will follow.
The Organizing Committee of the Movement To Restore Trust,
Mary Travers Murphy
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