Clergy and Laity Together

An initiative from The Catholic University of America to foster
effective collaboration between the clergy and the laity of the Church
in the wake of the sexual abuse crisis.

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National Study of Catholic Priests

Well-being, Trust, and Policy in a Time of Crisis

The largest priesthood study in over 50 years
looking at the Church's response to abuse.
Watch the presentation

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Current Projects

National Study of Catholic Priests

National survey of Catholic priests and bishops about the impact of the abuse crisis

Certificate Program

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

Synod on Synodality

Catholic University will participate in a synod series in the Spring of 2022

Diocesan Bankruptcy

Sharing Marie Reilly's work on diocesan bankruptcy

What We Do

The Catholic Project brings together clergy and laity to address the challenges that the Catholic Church faces in the U.S. As the bishops’ university, Catholic University is uniquely situated to bring about needed change in accordance with its mission, “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 addresses accountability, transparency, evangelization, reform, and renewal. The facets of our work include education and formation, research, events, and media.

Our Work

News & Commentary

Unpacking news and information

Stephen's Column
God is Good
Stephen White of Catholic University writes about this season of many sacraments: “Pentecost is almost upon us. This Easter Season, so overflowing with grace for our family and our parish,… Read More
Stephen's Column
Men at Work
Stephen White of Catholic University reflects on St. Joseph the Worker, celebrated on May 1. “The life of Joseph is a reminder that our sharing in the work of creation… Read More
Stephen's Column
Takeaways from the Maryland Attorney General’s Report
Stephen White of Catholic University writes about the Maryland Attorney General’s report on clergy abuse in the Archdiocese of Baltimore. “The Maryland report is not something to celebrate. It contains… Read More
Stephen's Column
On Unity in the Church
Stephen White of Catholic University writes on what the “oneness” of the Catholic Church consists of. “The credibility of the Church’s witness is diminished when unity is lacking, not just… Read More
Sara's column
God Forbid
Sara Perla of Catholic University writes on the strange refusal of some Christians to accept suffering. “None of us can know what may be asked of anyone else by God,… Read More
Stephen's Column
The Gospel in Lent
Stephen White of Catholic University reflects on the content of the Gospel message in the midst of controversy and in the season of Lent: “What Pope Francis perhaps did not… Read More
Sara's column
The glory of confession
I imagine that most seven-year-old’s confessions are about the same: being mean to one’s sibling; disobeying one’s parents; being greedy at the store; stealing one’s brother’s gum balls out of… Read More
Stephen's Column
Looking Forward to Lent
Stephen White of Catholic University reflects on Lent, suggesting two practices focused on Scripture: “Most Catholics encounter Scripture in the Mass. But rarely do we read an entire Gospel as… 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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