Transcript Staff

Father Richard McBrien will speak on "The Catholic Church in the 21st Century" 1 p.m. March 25 at the Rose State College Tom Steed Center, I-40 and Hudiburg Drive in Midwest City.

In his presentation, McBrien will examine directions the Church might take in the new millennium with the new Pope Benedict XVI as the Church is challenged by leadership and rank-and-file members alike to ongoing renewal and reform in the spirit of Vatican II.

McBrien will consider what to expect in the exercise of papal authority, in the selection of bishops, in the ordained priesthood and in non-ordained ministries, as he addresses likely priorities for an increasingly globalized and multicultural Church. He also will compare how the Church in the third Christian millennium might differ from the earlier Church and if the promise of Vatican II can still be realized.

Richard McBrien has written 20 books including "Catholicism," "Lives of the Popes" and "Lives of the Saints." He is the general editor of the HarperCollins Encyclopedia of Catholicism that received a first-place award from the Catholic Press Association in 1996. In addition to other articles and reviews in professional and popular journals, McBrien writes a syndicated weekly theology column for the Catholic press that has several times won awards from the Catholic Press Association as the best column in its field. McBrien received the 1976 John Courtney Murray Award for outstanding and distinguished achievement in theology.

Father McBrien's presentation is sponsored by HOPE (Helping Our People Emerge), a community of baptized women and men who wish to live and share with others the Good News of Jesus. This small faith community is, according to their press release, "committed to living and growing in the joy of the Spirit, especially as expressed in the documents and intent of Vatican II." Admittance to McBrien's speech is free; however, donations will be accepted to help continue the work of HOPE. For more information, call Sheila Mueller at 478-4044 or John Vrana at 634-7513.

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