Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington

From Bishop Cupich

by Bishop Blase J. Cupich

(From the Sept. 30, 2010 edition of the Inland Register)

Dear Friends in Christ,

Just two weeks ago, I was installed as your new bishop. Much has happened in this fortnight, and I want my first words to communicate my thanks to you as you gather in your parishes for Mass this weekend. I know you have been praying for me and with me, and I genuinely appreciate your support and encouragement.

Media reports this week carried the news of a recent decision by the bankruptcy court, which deserve both comment and clarification from me. There are various moving parts and at first blush the situation may come across a bit complicated. However, as I have tried to get my arms around the issues, it is clear to me that you deserve accurate and concise information, particularly when news reports lead to confusion. A case in point is the story this week that we now need to come up with another $800,000 to pay future claims. This is inaccurate. It may be that if future claims are awarded at this level and beyond, that obligation may be forced on us, but at this time, that is not the case.

I also want you to know that I am committed to pursuing every avenue to resolve the present situation. While respecting that some discussions for resolution may be sensitive, and therefore developments may not be mature to share at a given moment, I am committed to provide regular and timely updates through the pastors. They have been extraordinary in their patience and support of me as I am brought up to speed on these matters and I will continue to rely on the wise counsel they and other advisors offer.

As I noted in my installation homily, we cannot let this moment divide us, nor can we lose sight of the harm that was done to children who were abused. Healing at various levels has to take place, for those abused but also for all who are suffering in this time of uncertainty about how the future will unfold. In a very radical way we are being invited to place our trust, as St. Paul tells us today, in “the one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as ransom for all.”

Thank you again for your untiring patience, your prayers, your words of encouragement. Assuring you of a place in my prayers and with abiding respect, I am

Sincerely yours in Christ,

+Blase J. Cupich
Bishop of Spokane



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