This November, the U.S. Bishops’ Conference will meet to elect a new president. As the American media outlet The Pillar explains, the race is on as to who will succeed Archbishop Jose Gomez of Los Angeles. Usually, the incumbent vice president is elected, but that tradition has not been fully followed since the election of Cardinal Dolan in 2010. In addition, the current vice president, Archbishop Allen Vigneron of Detroit, is already 73 years old and therefore ineligible to succeed the California prelate. The Pillar lists the potential candidates and analyzes what their election could mean. One of the names put forward is Bishop Timothy Broglio, bishop of the Armed Forces, and current secretary of the Conference. He previously served as runner-up in the 2019 vice presidential election. Based in Washington D.C., he is a rational choice to rebalance power, after three years of relocated governance in Los Angeles. This former nuncio knows the Vatican well, but he was also the personal secretary of Cardinal Sodano, whom many bishops question for his handling of abuse, including in the case of ex-Cardinal McCarrick. In addition, Bishop Broglio is seen as too conservative by some in the progressive wing of the American bishops. The vote could go to Archbishop Paul Coakley of Oklahoma City, who represents the more conservative Communio movement in the United States. Another candidate is Archbishop Paul Etienne of Seattle, who could benefit from the votes of the progressive wing, even if they are in the minority. Another candidate is Bishop Kevin Rhoades of Fort Wayne-South Bend, who is valued for his work on the Eucharistic Coherence document. Other candidates include Bishop William Lori of Baltimore, Bishop Frank Caggiano of Bridgeport and Bishop Daniel Flores of Brownsville.
WHO WILL BE THE NEXT PRESIDENT OF THE U.S. BISHOPS’ CONFERENCE?