Our Second Century of Lay Apostolate
January 25, 1973
St. Paul, Minn.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – By an undisclosed but reportedly “overwhelming” vote, the Bishops of the United States have approved the document called “Basic Teachings for Catholic Religious Education.” Designed to set guidelines for the doctrinal content of catechesis, the document was prepared by an ad hoc committee consisting of Archbishop John F. Whealon of Hartford (chairman), Bishop Clarence Elwell of Columbus, Auxiliary Bishop John J. Graham of Philadelphia, Auxiliary Bishop John B. McDowell of Pittsburgh and Auxiliary Bishop William E. McManus of Chicago. The final draft was approved by the Sacred Congregation for the Clergy in Rome and then submitted to all the U.S. Bishops by the NCCB administrative committee. The Bishops were asked to vote on the document by mail, a procedure which caused unexpected delay in its final ratification because the balloting coincided with the Christmas mail rush. A two-thirds majority was required.