Wednesday, June 21: Atlanta Assembly celebrates

Congratulations to new members of the AUSCP Leadership Team!

Wednesday: Participants discuss four resolutions: Healthcare, Immigration, Priest-less Parishes, Deacons Anointing. Images below.


See VIDEO HERE: 'They'll know we are Christians" from Tuesday morning prayer

Below: Archbishop Wester participates in Assembly.

Slide Show below: Bishop Hartmayer opens Retreat, participants react with smiles. "Gathering for Mission" welcomes participants to their display booth: Irene Rivera, Leslye Colvin at desk, Mary Priniski, OP, with pope poster. Sister Jackie connects at the registration desk. Thomas E. Dwyer answers a question about the St. Vincent de Paul Society. Previous slides included from January planning session with Archbishop Gregory.

Slides above: January meeting in Atlanta, preparing for June Assembly.

The AUSCP 2017 Assembly, Peacemaking in Our Fractured Society, is being held June 19-22 at the Airport Marriott in Atlanta.

Father Bryan Massingale, below, was the first keynoter.

Morning prayer on Tuesday was provided by the National Black Catholic Clergy Caucus.


Assembly speakers included social ethicist Father Bryan Massingale on "TO REDEEM THE SOUL OF AMERICA" — Martin Luther King’s Vision and Its Challenge to American Catholics, on Monday, June 19 at 7 p.m.; JustFaith founder Jack Jezreel on POPE FRANCIS AND A NEW PARADIGM FOR PARISHES, on Tuesday, June 20, at 9:30 a.m.; and Archbishop Wilton Gregory, on PEACE NOT AS THE WORLD GIVES, on Tuesday, June 20, at 1 p.m.

Click HERE to see the keynote address byFather Bryan Massingale

TAKE ME to the keynote address by Jack Jezreel

WATCH and HEAR the keynote address by Archbishop Wilton Gregory

Archbishop Gregory will also preside at Mass, on Wednesday, June 21, 3:30 p.m., at Our Lady of Lourdes Church near the King Center in Atlanta.

Bishop Gregory Hartmayer, OFM Conv., Diocese of Savannah, will guide a retreat on the first day of the assembly, Monday, June 19, on the topic, SABBATH SPACE FOR GRACE.

Our Atlanta Assembly also offers additional opportunities and activities:

  • Visit to the Martin Luther King Center
  • Assembly participation with Archbishop Wester
  • Colloquia on timely topics: Select the issues you care about
  • Prioritization of AUSCP's work: Add your voice!

The AUSCP will present its highest honors, the Pope John Paul XXIII Awards, during a banquet Wednesday Evening, June 21. Honorees will be Father Bryan Massingale “for his tireless efforts to create a world where the dignity of each person is respected and protected,” and Father Richard Rento, “for his dedication to priestly life and pastoral service, and for the pastoral wisdom he has embodied and exercised in his ministry, preaching and writing.”

Massingale is a professor of theological and social ethics at Fordham University in New York. His recent book is Racial Justice and the Catholic Church (Orbis, 2010).

Rento is a priest of the Diocese of Paterson. Over 58 years, he has ministered as pastor, administrator, educator, hospital chaplain, radio broadcaster, lecturer, and retreat-giver.

   2017   Assembly Schedule

                       Monday, June 19
   10:00 a.m.    Optional Retreat by Bishop Hartmayer, until 3:00 p.m.
   4:00 p.m.     Opening Session
   5:30 p.m.     Buffet Dinner
   7:00 p.m.     Talk by Bryan Massingale
   9:00 p.m.     Social time. Hotel bar available.

                       Tuesday, June 20
   7:00 a.m.      Optional Mass
   7:30 a.m.      Buffet Breakfast
   8:30 a.m.      Prayer Service prepared by NBCCC contingent
   9:30 a.m.      Talk by Jack Jezreel
   11:45 a.m.    Lunch
   1:00 p.m.     Talk by Atlanta Archbishop Wilton Gregory
    3:15 p.m.    Business Meeting
    5:30 p.m.    Dinner
    7: 00 p.m.   Business Meeting
    8:30 p.m.    Optional Movie

                         Wednesday, June 21
   7:00 a.m.      Buffet Breakfast
   8:15 a.m.      Morning Prayer
                       Association business for remainder of morning
   Noon            Lunch
     1: 30 p.m.  Depart to King Center
     3:30p.m.  Mass, Our Lady of Lourdes, with Archbishop Gregory
                       More information:
    6:00 p.m.    Open Bar
    6:30 p.m.    Banquet and awards.
                       St. John XXIII awards: Rev. Brian Massingale, Rev. Richard Rento
    8:30 p.m.    Optional Movie

                       Thursday, June 22
    7:00 a.m.     Buffet Breakfast
     8:15 a.m.    Morning Prayer
     8:30 a.m.    Two rounds of colloquia (50 minutes each)
    10:30 a.m.  Wrap up and Review

Arrive early or stay late: Rooms available three days before and three days after the Assembly. Click the link below or call Reservations at 1-800-228-9290 before May 29, 2017. 

Our theme: Peacemaking in Our Fractured Society. Join us in the See City of Archbishop Wilton Gregory. This will be our first return to the South since our initial assembly at St. Leo University in Florida in 2012, offering an opportunity to explore Southern Catholicism and the diverse Christian heritage of Martin Luther King Jr. and President Jimmy Carter.

CLICK HERE to see a flyer for ATLANTA 2017

Event Speakers


 Archbishop Wilton Gregory, Archdiocese of Atlanta, has served in many leading roles in the U.S. church, including president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and chair of the USCCB Task Force to Promote Peace in Our Communities. He has published numerous articles on liturgy.

Archbishop Wilton Daniel Gregory was born in Chicago in 1947. At St. Carthage Grammar School in 1958, he decided to become a priest – even before converting to Catholicism. He was baptized in 1959, and following studies at Quigley Preparatory Seminary South, Niles College in Chicago and St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelein, he was ordained in 1973.

He was appointed Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago in 1983, Bishop of Belleville in 1994, and Archbishop of Atlanta in 2004.

From 2001 to 2004, Gregory served as the President of the USCCB, the first African American ever to head an episcopal conference. During his presidency, the American bishops issued the "Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People" in response to Roman Catholic sex abuse cases.

Gregory writes a bi-weekly column for the Roman Catholic newspaper of the Archdiocese of Atlanta, The Georgia Bulletin titled "What I have seen and heard.” In a column in 2014 he announced that guns will not be allowed in Roman Catholic churches in Georgia, but for those military and civil service personnel who are required to have them.

Martin Luther King’s Vision and Its Challenge to American Catholics

Rev. Bryan Massingale, Archdiocese of Milwaukee, is a professor of theology at Fordham University, former president of Catholic Theological Society of America, consultant to USCCB, National Black Catholic Congress, Catholic Charities USA, Catholic Health Association and the National Catholic AIDS Network; author of Racial Justice and the Catholic Church.

See article in U.S. Catholic, October 2016

Father Bryan N. Massingale will address the assembly on the topic, "To Redeem the Soul of America:" Martin Luther King's Vision and Its Challenge toAmerican Catholics.

The Southern Christian Leadership Conference's mission during the Civil Rights Movement was not just to achieve racial integration, Massingale said. Its deepest goal was to "redeem the soul of America." His keynote address revisits King's vision and explores its challenges for the U.S. Catholic Church.

Massingale received his doctorate in moral theology from the Academia Alphonsianum (Rome). He specializes in social ethics and teaches courses on Catholic Social Thought, African American religious ethics, liberation theologies, and racial justice. His approach to social ethics focuses upon the impact of religious faith as both an instrument of social injustice and a catalyst for social transformation.

He is the author of Racial Justice and the Catholic Church (Orbis, 2010), which received a First Place book award from the Catholic Press Association, and over eighty articles, book chapters, and book reviews. His current research projects explore the contribution of Black religious radicalism to Catholic theology; the notion of "cultural sin" and its challenge to Catholic theological ethics; and the intersections of race and sexuality in both social life and Catholicism.

 He serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Moral Theology and the Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics.  He also serves on the North American Regional Committee of the “Catholic Theological Ethics in the World Church” project. He has served as president of the Catholic Theological Society of America and convener of the Black Catholic Theological Symposium, and holds two honorary doctorates.

J. Patrick Hornbeck, PhD, chair of Fordham’s theology department, said it’s difficult to move around the realm of progressive Catholic theology without coming across Father Massingale’s contributions.

“His work on advocacy for both racial justice and justice in the realm of sexual ethics is incredibly well known all around the country. Many Fordham colleagues assign his work in their classes, and several Fordham doctoral students draw heavily on his work in their dissertations,” he said.  “There really is no person in the Catholic theological academy who excels at doing such work in a creative and intersectional way than Father Massingale.”



 Jack Jezreel, Founder of JustFaith Ministries, birthed this ministry to invite and prepare people of faith for the life-changing and world-changing call of the Gospel to help heal the world and experience a deeper faith, a more fulfilling life, and a community of care and vitality. 

Jack Jezreel, Just Faith Ministries was hired as Parish Social Minister at a 1200-household parish in Louisville, KY in 1988. He found himself spending most of his time recruiting people to get involved. He concluded that parishioners lacked spiritual formation regarding catholic social teaching.

So he developed a program to prepare people of faith for the life-changing and world-changing call of the Gospel to help heal the world and, in so doing, experience a deeper faith, a more fulfilling life, and a community of care and vitality. Over time his program grew into JustFaith Ministries (JFM).

Since 2001, over 50,000 people in 1500 churches across the U.S. have completed a JFM program. The original process evolved into an array of offerings, all crafted to provide people a substantial opportunity to explore the link between their faith in God and care of their neighbor.

JFM invites people to wrestle with Matthew 25 surrounded by fellow travelers, prayer, compelling learning tools, and opportunities to form relationships with sisters and brothers whose lives have known struggle and suffering. JFM’s 21 member Board of Directors includes committed folks from Springfield MA to Seattle WA, from West Palm Beach FL to Eagan MN.

Join us in Atlanta to catch the prophetic and healing energy of JustFaith. It is right and just, our duty and our salvation!  You might start with Jack’s U.S. Catholic essay on best practices for parish charity and justice (


RETREAT DAY: Monday, June 19 10 a.m. — 3 p.m. prior to the opening of the ASSEMBLY at 4 p.m. Retreat Leader is Bishop Gregory Hartmayer, OFM Conv., Diocese of Savannah.

Bishop Gregory Hartmayer, OFM Conv., a native of Buffalo NY, was ordained by Bishop Howard Hubbard in Albany NY in 1979. He has served as Bishop of Savannah since 2011 after years of pastoral experience in high school teaching and administration in Maryland, New York and Florida. He also pastored parishes in Jonesboro and Lithia Springs GA.

In the Archdiocese of Atlanta, Bishop Hartmayer served on the Committee for the Ongoing Formation of Priests and Mentoring of Newly Ordained, the Council of Priests as Chair, and Archdiocesan College of Consultors. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Catholic Legal Immigration Network and the St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary in Boynton Beach FL.

For the USCCB, he serves on the Committee on Priorities and Plans as well as the Administrative Committee.  Bishop Hartmayer holds masters degrees in secondary school administration, theology, and pastoral counseling.

Take advantage of AUSCP’s day of Retreat and Reflection with Bishop Hartmayer on Monday, June 19, 10-3 – no charge!