Friday, November 7, 2008
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports Bishop Robert Hermann, head of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, is in a growing power struggle with the board of the Archdiocese's arm of Catholic Charities. While the Archdiocese characterizes the dispute as merely being over attempts to coordinate fundraising, at least one Catholic Charities board member claims that it is really an attempt to take control of the charity, which is the largest private provider of social services in Missouri. An October 30th memo from Bishop Hermann to the board characterized the current relationship as "at an impasse" and stated the Bishop wanted to combine the two organization's development offices. The dispute has apparently led several Catholic Charities board members to resign. The Bishop has the sole authority to appoint members of the charity's board and holds other reserve powers, which appears to make the result of any power struggle over the $80 million annual budget organization a foregone conclusion.