Responding to the Needs of the Church in a Time of Crisis

The Catholic Church is in crisis. Its inability to address clergy sexual abuse has caused a crisis of faith,
a breach of trust. The Catholic University of America has an opportunity, and a responsibility,
to help restore what has been broken. That is the work of The Catholic Project.

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Current Projects


Sharing Marie Reilly's work on Catholic Dioceses in Bankruptcy

Certificate Program

Want to help keep kids safe? Online Certificate in Child Protection and Safe Environment

Harvard Conference

Co-sponsored "Faith and Flourishing: Strategies for Preventing and Healing Child Sexual Abuse" with Harvard, April 8-10, 2021

Victim Assistance Coordinators

An online conversation with victim assistance coordinators on April 15, 2021

What We Do

The Catholic Project serves the Church as part of The Catholic University of America, so our work reflects the particular mission of our university, which is “to discover and impart the truth through excellence in teaching and research, all in service to the Church, the nation and the world.”

The Catholic Project seeks renewal and healing in the Church through education and formation, by deepening understanding through research, and through events, conferences, and media initiatives, which promote collaboration and genuine dialogue.

Our Work

News & Commentary

Unpacking news and information

Stephen's Column
‘Centesimus Annus’ turns 30
Stephen White of Catholic University reflects on the anniversary of Pope St. John Paul II’s encyclical Centesimus Annus. “Anyone interested in today’s most hotly contested debates – about the viability… Read More
In the News
Go, and Die for your People
Stephen White, director of The Catholic Project at Catholic University, writes about the recent news about Bishop Hoeppner of Crookston, MN and former auxiliary Bishop Binzer of Cincinnati: “The Church… Read More
Child Abuse Prevention Month
Dioceses Marking April as Child Abuse Prevention Month
The USCCB and dioceses across the United States are marking April as National Child Abuse Prevention Month in various ways, including statements from bishops, packets from the office of safeguarding,… Read More
Stephen's Column
Not a Loaf, but Leaven
Stephen White of Catholic University reflects on recent polls about the number of Americans who are members of a church, synagogue, or mosque, and the number of Catholics in America.… Read More
April is Child Abuse Prevention Month
The Catholic Project at Catholic University is dedicated, in part, to the prevention of abuse in the Church. The month of April is recognized as National Child Abuse Prevention Month.… Read More
Stephen's Column
What Covers a Multitude of Sins
Stephen White reflects on the gospel story of the rich young man in the context of the CDF’s answer to a question about blessing same-sex couples: “What the Church asks… Read More
VAC Interview
Victim Assistance Coordinator (VAC) Interview: Courtney Chase, Archdiocese of Washington
About Courtney Please tell us a little bit about yourself. Do you have a family? Where did you go to school? I am a Washingtonian – born and raised in… Read More
Stephen's Column
The Gardening Animal
Stephen White of Catholic University reflects on the parallel between keeping a garden and Lenten penances: “In all of this, the garden is more than an allegory for harmony with… Read More

Collaboration Between Clergy & Laity

Over 50 years ago, Vatican II articulated the role of the laity in the Catholic Church in a document entitled Lumen Gentium. All members of the Church, not just the clergy, “contribute toward the renewal and building up of the Church.” Lumen Gentium says pastors should “willingly employ” the “prudent advice” of the lay faithful, and “confidently assign duties to them” in service to the Church. With the help of the laity, “pastors can more clearly and more incisively come to decisions regarding both spiritual and temporal matters.“

The Catholic University of America is uniquely situated to be a place where laity and clergy can come together in a spirit of mutual respect and charity to address the most challenging issues of our times. We believe, in the words of Lumen Gentium, that by drawing on the contributions of all its members, “the entire Church . . . may more effectively fulfill its mission for the life of the world.”

Our Mission

A new state of affairs today both in the Church and in social, economic, political and cultural life, calls with a particular urgency for the action of the lay faithful.
—  St. John Paul II,   Christifideles Laici, 3

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