Cardnial Daniel DiNardo to Become Head of Catholic Bishop’s Pro-Life Office
by Steven Ertelt
November 17, 2009
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, the Archbishop of Galveston-Houston and the first Cardinal elevated from the Southern United States, is slated to become the next head of the pro-life committee at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. The position has seen an increased importance in the abortion-health care debate.
The Catholic bishops were instrumental in getting the House to approve the Stupak amendment to its health care bill to strongly restrict abortion funding in it.
Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia, the current head of the pro-life committee at the USCCB, wrote several letters to members of Congress in advance of the votes.
And USCCB officials, under his direction, went as far as meeting with Speaker Nancy Pelosi in her office hours before the vote to guarantee that lawmakers would have a chance to vote to stop virtually all of the abortion funding.
Now, as the nation’s bishops hold their annual meeting in Baltimore, Cardinal DiNardo is set to become the new pro-life leader once they conclude their meeting on Thursday.
The timing couldn’t be more apropos as the Senate is expected to cast its first vote that day, or on Friday or Saturday, for its version of the health care bill that is expected to include massive abortion funding.
Dierdre McQuade, the spokeswoman for the pro-life office, told LifeNews.com today she is delighted about Cardinal DiNardo coming on board and was happy with Cardinal Rigali’s leadership.
"The Pro-Life Secretariat is grateful to Cardinal Rigali for his sage leadership these last three years — along with the bishop members of the Committee for Pro-Life Activities," she said.
She added: "We now look forward to Cardinal DiNardo’s guidance as we help the bishops to implement their visionary Pastoral Plan for Pro-Life Activities and build a ‘great campaign in support of life.’"
Father Frank Pavone, the director of Priests for Life, also talked with LifeNews.com about Cardinal DiNardo’s leading the bishops’ pro-life efforts.
Priests for Life congratulates Cardinal Daniel DiNardo as he assumes his new position," Pavone said. "We likewise thank Cardinal Justin Rigali for his three years of service in this position."
While each bishop leads the Churchs pro-life activities in his own diocese, Cardinal DiNardos role will be an important one, especially at moments when the President and Congress need to hear the voice of the bishops on crucial public policy decisions," Pavone continued.
"Each parish, pro-life activist and organization should publicize the statements that the Cardinal and other bishops continue to issue about the dignity of human life," he added.
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