Theologian critical of bishop selection process

CT Post

John Burgeson

Updated 01:16 p.m., Saturday, June 30, 2012

BRIDGEPORT —- A professor at Fairfield University has criticized the process of choosing a new bishop for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Bridgeport, saying it’s geared less to finding a leader committed to the faithful of Fairfield County than to choosing a man who will rise high in the ranks of the Church.

“This is not just an ordinary diocese,” said Paul Lakeland, the Aloysius P. Kelley S.J. professor of religious studies at the Jesuit university. “You have a diocese that’s quite dramatically divided between the wealthy and those in poverty.”

William E. Lori, who had been bishop of the diocese since 2000, was elevated to archbishop of Baltimore on May 16. On May 22 it was announced by church officials that Monsignor Jerald A. Doyle will administer the diocese until a new bishop is appointed.

Lakeland was quick to point out that the Bridgeport diocese has sent other bishops to high positions; Lawrence Shehan and Edward Egan both were elevated to cardinal.

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