Leadership Roundtable to Hold Summit to Address Twin Crises of Abuse and Leadership in Catholic Church

Papal Nuncio, Cardinal Cupich, Cardinal O’Malley, Cardinal Tobin and other bishops to co-host

The Catholic Church in the United States is facing twin crises: a crisis of sexual abuse and a crisis of leadership and management failures that covered up the abuse and have led to distrust. Catholic leaders are looking for emerging best practices to implement in their local dioceses and nationwide.

“Leadership Roundtable believes that any solution to the crises must include a plan to build a new culture of leadership and management,” says Kim Smolik, Leadership Roundtable CEO. “This new culture needs to value collaboration between clergy and laity and promote transparency, accountability, competency, justice, and trust.”

Leadership Roundtable was founded in the wake of the sexual abuse crisis of 2002 to address these long-term, underlying roots of the crises and will convene the Catholic Partnership Summit, February 1–2, 2019 in Washington, DC. The Summit is envisioned as a way to model clergy-laity collaboration, to identify best practices, and create actionable recommendations that can be shared with Church leaders nationwide to address the current crises.

More than 200 Catholic leaders will attend, including cardinals and bishops, diocesan staff and college presidents, C-suite corporate leaders, theologians and canon lawyers, abuse survivors, experts in abuse prevention, philanthropists, and others. Attendees hail from 43 dioceses across the United States, and individuals from Canada and Rome will participate, as well. The recommendations generated from the event will be shared with all U.S. bishops and other senior Church leaders.

Kim Smolik notes, “Catholics are looking for authentic, lasting change and eager for increased co-responsibility. As lay, religious, and ordained Catholics, we recognize that these crises affect us all, and thus each of us needs to be part of the solution.”

A highlight of the Summit will be a dinner on February 1st at which three Catholic families will receive the J. Donald Monan, SJ Distinguished Catholic Philanthropy Medal. The Lynch, Perry, and Shea families are based in the Boston, Chicago and Los Angeles Archdioceses and have made a significant impact on the Church in the United States by helping support best practices in management and leadership.


This press report was published by Leadership Roundtable on January 30, 2019.

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