May 18, 2012. (Romereports.com)
This group of American bishops represents the Eastern Catholic Church of the United States. The meeting with the pope marks the conclusion of US Ad Limina visits.
The pope used the encounter as an opportunity to speak on a large extent about the issue of immigration in America.Benedict XVI
“I would begin by praising your unremitting efforts, in the best
traditions of the Church in America, to respond to the ongoing
phenomenon of immigration in your country.”
The pope's words come on the heels of a report by the U.S. Census Bureau
that showed for the first time there are more minority babies being
born that white babies.
Benedict XVI also recognized the Eastern rites efforts to work toward Catholic unity in the United States.
“Throughout our meetings, you and your Brother Bishops have spoken
insistently of the importance of preserving, fostering and advancing
this gift of Catholic unity as an essential condition for the
fulfillment of the Church’s mission in your country.”
The pope also expressed the “deep gratitude” he felt toward female
religious of the United States and prayed for the “welfare of society”.
These words came after the Vatican recently reprimanded an umbrella
group of US nuns for “serious doctrinal problems”.
LINK TO TEXT OF POPE'S FULL SPEECH HERE