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Bishop Speaks
April 3, 2008 Edition

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Under the Gospel Book (en Español)
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Bishops' Schedules:
Bishop Robert C. Morlino

Thursday, April 3, 2008
7:00 p.m. -- Speak at Theology on Tap, The Speakeasy, Janesville

Saturday, April 5, 2008
4:30 p.m. -- Preside and preach at Sacrament of Confirmation at St. Matthew Church, Shullsburg

Sunday, April 6, 2008
10:00 a.m. -- Preside and preach at Sacrament of Confirmation at St. Charles Borromeo Church, Cassville

3:00 p.m. -- Preside and preach at Sacrament of Confirmation at St. Mary Church, Bloomington

Tuesday, April 8, 2008
5:30 p.m. -- Attend Bishop's Respect Life Dinner, Edgewater Hotel, Madison

Wednesday, April 9, 2008
7:00 p.m. -- Preside and preach at Sacrament of Confirmation at St. Joseph Church, East Bristol

Bishop William H. Bullock

Sunday, April 6, 2008
10:15 a.m. -- Preside and Preach at Sacrament of Confirmation at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church, Monona

Monday, April 7, 2008
12:00 noon -- Preside and Preach at Celebration of the Eucharist, Bishop O'Connor Catholic Pastoral Center, Madison

A capital campaign is planned - but not yet

illustration of Gospel Book being held open over bishop's head

Under the
Gospel Book

+ Bishop Robert
C. Morlino

(printable version)
(en Español)

Dear Friends,

As you all are aware, the Diocese of Madison has been undertaking a feasibility study to determine what support might be available for a large scale capital campaign for certain needs of the diocese, including, principally, the building of a new cathedral. Thousands of men, women, and families from throughout the diocese responded to a questionnaire and voiced their opinions on what might be raised and what they perceived to be the key priorities for the diocese.

More articles on
St. Raphael Cathedral

Over the last two months, I have been carefully considering the feasibility study report and praying about its contents, as I also continue to check "the signs of the times." And so it is that, after my reflection on the feasibility study, I have decided that a capital campaign for the Diocese of Madison will not begin officially for at least one year.

Let me be clear that I do not detect opposition to a capital campaign in the feasibility study, but I do observe unanswered questions, to which I hope to give a response in this intervening period.

It is clear that more catechesis needs to be done, on a systematic basis, as to the necessity of a cathedral church, and it is equally clear that the case needs to be made more effectively for assistance to be provided to campus ministry at St. Paul's, Madison, and St. Augustine's, Platteville, through a capital campaign. I believe we are blessed in the general conviction of our people, in support of the cathedral project and in support of the "Bless our Priests" initiative.

So my first reason for a pause, in terms of initiating the capital campaign itself, has to do with catechesis, instruction, and explanation. John Richert, whose firm was contracted to conduct this feasibility study, has indicated his agreement with my reading of the study, in this particular regard.

Secondly, we are all aware of the economic difficulties which our country presently faces, in terms of the "credit crunch," the spike in housing foreclosures, the cost of gas and energy, and the current weak value of the dollar. It seems clear to me that this is not the moment to ask our good and generous faithful for longer-term, substantial commitments. The ups and downs of our economy are certainly unpredictable, and the present moment does not seem appropriate for the initiation of such a pledge-drive. Along with the need for catechesis, instruction, and explanation, the economic conditions provide the second reason for my decision to wait at least a year before the formal initiation of a capital campaign.

There is an abundance of fine lay faithful and priests who up to this point have been extremely helpful in the process, and once again I would like to thank all of them. As we move forward, we will again ask who best might help us to carry through with the capital campaign. I am deeply grateful to John Richert for his genuine support and wise study, which has helped me to arrive peacefully at this present stage of decision making. John and his team have truly done their best to serve our diocese, as have I, in terms of coming to the decisions of the moment.

Our determination to move toward a capital drive and toward a new cathedral is steadfast. The feasibility study and our economic environment indicated to me the advisability of a pause, but, in great hope, we will surely go forward.

Thank you for reading this and thank you for your continued prayers for me and for our diocese as we move forward in this important endeavor. Please be assured of my continued prayers that all the joy and peace of the Easter season will be with you and yours in great abundance.

Praised be Jesus Christ!

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