While U.S. bishops took a lunch break from their spring plenary assembly in Orlando, Florida on June 15, The Pillar caught up with Archbishop Timothy Broglio, USCCB president and Archbishop of the Military Services, for a brief hallway conversation about the Eucharistic Revival, the Los Angeles Dodgers, and how to respond to anti-Catholicism.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
The bishops today are talking about the Eucharistic Revival and the Synod on Synodality. Are those two things connected to each other? Are they related?
I think they are.
I thought the apostolic nuncio gave an excellent sense of the relationship between the two. The synod is a moment of listening, whereas the Eucharistic Revival is moment of celebration, but I think the two go together, in this sense: [We discussed] the whole notion of the Revival ending with a mission, and the notion of the synod ending with the mission of a Church which continues to listen to the peripheries.
Do you think the synod will have a long-term effect of broader consultation from the bishops?
I certainly hope so. Particularly in the present day, that’s a good way to go forward — to listen to people and to see where their concerns are.
People are talking right now about the fracas over the Los Angeles Dodger and the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, which you mentioned today in your presidential address, and the USCCB has called Catholics to make prayers of reparation to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
What is the right way for Catholics to respond to these kinds of things, which the conference has called a display of anti-Catholicism?
Well, I think one way might not to patronize people or businesses who engage in this kind of anti-Catholic activity.
I think prayer is obviously the first response, and praying also for the people who perpetrate these kinds of things — because the Lord tells us to pray for our enemies.
Is there an appropriate public response? In LA there are some demonstrations planned, while the archdiocese will hold a Mass in the cathedral June 16 — what is the right way to navigate that?
The question in my mind always is: What is more effective? Do you give more attention to the event by protesting it, or do you better by ignoring it? That would be the question I would ask.
And where do you land?
I would land more towards ignoring it.
There are Catholics who say they want to stand up against the kind of anti-Catholicism they see with the Dodgers — they say that if we have events like the March for Life, it also makes sense to have a march or demonstration in a context like this.
What would be your guidance? Is that a valid approach, or do you see too much risk there?
I think there is a lot of risk there. Also the thing that would concern me would be the danger of violence. The March for Life is very well organized, and it’s very respectful, but there’s also several decades of experience there. These kinds of things that are more organized on the qt are a little harder to control, and that would be my concern.
For the Archdiocese of Military Service, one thing you must deal is helping soldiers to deal with challenges to their faith or conscience in the military.
How do you approach that?
Well, we try to defend the First Amendment rights of Catholics. That’s easier for chaplains, because they can’t do anything that I say they can’t do, whereas for lay Catholics, it’s much more of a minefield — and so we try to give them guidance and we try to protect them as much as we can.
What’s the over-under on me getting a new breviary by 2030?
[laughs] Well, he said 2026, so… [laughs]. Ok, thank you very much!