Cardinal Blase J. Cupich

Birthday: 19 March 1949

Bachelor’s in Philosophy – College of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN
Bachelor’s in Sacred Theology – North American College and Gregorian University, Rome, Italy
Master’s in Theology – North American College and Gregorian University, Rome, Italy
Licentiate of Sacred Theology in Sacramental Theology and a Doctorate of Sacred Theology in Sacramental Theology – Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.

Ordination: 16 August 1975
Episcopate: 21 September 1998
Cardinal: 19 November 2016
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Cardinal Blase J. Cupich on the Issues

Viganò testimony

Does not support Archbishop Viganò
  • On October 8th, Cardinal Cupich said he supports Canadian Cardinal Marc Ouellett’s public statement regarding Archbishop Vigano. Ouellet’s letter accused Vigano of causing division and being in “open and scandalous rebellion” against Pope Francis. Cupich said Ouellett’s letter “called to account those attacking or countenancing attacks on the Pope and the Church.” (LifeSiteNews)
  • On August 29, 2018, Cupich spoke to 200 seminarians at Mundelein Seminary. One seminarian told the Cardinal he was “sick” and that he “couldn’t sleep” because of the sex abuse allegations. Cupich, according to the Chicago Sun-Times, responded by saying “I feel very much at peace at this moment. I am sleeping OK.” Multiple sources informed the Sun-Times that Cupich also told the group that, while the church’s “agenda” certainly involves protecting kids from harm, “we have a bigger agenda than to be distracted by all of this,” including helping the homeless and sick. (LifeSiteNews)
  • During an interview with the Chicago-based NBC affiliate, Cardinal Cupich was asked, “Does the pope need to tell Catholics exactly what he knew about Cardinal McCarrick and when he first knew it?” Cupich responded by saying that for Pope Francis to “get into each and every one of those aspects, in some way is inappropriate.” Cupich also said “the pope has a bigger agenda” and proceeded to argue that Francis has “gotta get on with other things” like “talking about the environment and protecting migrants and carrying on the work of the Church. We’re not going to go down a rabbit hole on this.” Cupich also claimed critics of Francis “don’t like him because he’s a Latino.” (LifeSiteNews)
  • Archbishop Vigano claims Cardinal Cupich’s appointment as Archbishop of Chicago was “orchestrated by McCarrick.” (LifeSiteNews)
  • Cardinal Cupich presented Theodore McCarrick with the “spirit of Francis” award at the exclusive Manhattan Club in New York in 2016. At the ceremony, Cupich praised McCarrick for his “own unique way of making a mark on the church.” The award is given to those who reach out to the “margins of society.” The organization that gave the award, Catholic Extension, took down the video of the ceremony after news broke about McCarrick’s decades of sex abuse. (LifeSiteNews)

Amoris Laetitia

Permits Communion for divorced and remarried Catholics
  • During a speech to a Chicago-based think tank in February 2018, Cupich said critics of Pope Francis “misinterpret and misunderstand” Amoris Laetitia, which he claimed ushered in a paradigm shift in Church doctrine. They cling to a “narrow” and “idealistic” view of the family that forgets “merciful accompaniment” with people’s lived experiences, Cupich said. (America)
  • Cardinal Cupich slammed the authors of the dubia during a press conference in 2016. Cupich claimed Pope Francis doesn’t need to defend Amoris Laetitia and that those who doubt the document need to have a conversion in their lives. (LifeSiteNews)
  • In 2015 during an interview with Chicago’s ABC 7 news, Cupich said Catholics who are in “irregular” marriage situations must follow their conscience in regards to receiving Holy Communion. The Church has to respect the decision they come to, he added. He also said it’s not up to the person distributing the Eucharist to deny communion to Catholics who are gay. (New Ways Ministry)
  • Cardinal Cupich told a pro-gay Catholic website that the 2015 Synod on Marriage and Family in Rome could have benefited from hearing from gay and lesbian couples, divorced Catholics, as well as Catholics who disagree with Church teaching on Holy Communion. (New Ways Ministry)

Pro-life leadership

Does not actively engage in pro-life leadership
  • At the 2015 Bishops’ Fall gathering, Cupich complained that poverty and climate change weren’t being considered what he called “first tier” issues alongside abortion and euthanasia in the Bishops’ voting guide. (LifeSiteNews)
  • In 2011, Cupich urged priests and seminarians in his diocese not to pray outside abortion clinics with the 40 Days for Life campaign. Priests should focus on “teaching” people about abortion instead of using confrontational tactics, Cupich said in a statement. (LifeSiteNews)


Does not uphold Church teaching on homosexuality
  • Cardinal Cupich delivered a hand-written homily to a Catholic ethics conference in Sarajevo in August 2018. The event was organized by pro same-sex “marriage” Jesuit priest Fr. James Keenan. The gathering featured many feminist and pro-LGBT speakers. Cupich helped fund the event with USCCB money but couldn’t deliver the homily himself because a security issue at the airport disallowed him from arriving on time. (LifeSiteNews)
  • During the 2018 sex abuse crisis, Cardinal Cupich claimed that the real issue was “clericalism” and not homosexuality. Cupich told America, a liberal Catholic newspaper, that blaming the abuse on homosexuality was a “diversion” away from clericalism. (LifeSiteNews)
  • Cardinal Cupich said he “appreciates” what pro-gay Vatican adviser Fr. James Martin is doing for the church. “I think he has a wonderful message and the way that he brings that message to people,” Cupich said during an event hosted by the University of Chicago’s Institute of Politics in November 2017. “He really is one of the, if not the foremost evangelizer in the Church today, especially for young people.” (LifeSiteNews)
  • In July 2017, Cardinal Cupich indicated he disagreed with Bishop Thomas Paprocki’s decision to deny communion and funerals to homosexuals engaged in a same-sex “marriage.” Cupich told a Chicago media outlet that Paprocki’s policy “is not our policy.” (Chicago Tonight)
  • Cardinal Cupich said mass at the annual gathering of the pro-gay Association of U.S. Catholic Priests (AUSCP) on June 29, 2016. The AUSCP supports ordaining women to the diaconate, having lay persons run parishes and wants to have an open discussion about married priests in the church. The group’s website features links to many dissident social justice organizations. (Association of U.S. Catholic Priests)
  • Instead of explaining Church teaching on marriage and strongly rebuking the Supreme Court’s 2015 decision to legalize same-sex “marriage,” Cupich issued a pastoral statement calling on the Church to be mindful of accompanying “all people” and to show respect and support “to all families.” (Chicago Tribune)

Abortion politics

Does not uphold Church teaching on abortion politics
  • In an interview with Catholic News Agency in June 2019, Cardinal Cupich defended his stance on allowing pro-abortion politicians to receive Communion. He stated that it would be “counterproductive to impose sanctions” because it would not “change anybody’s mind.” (LifeSiteNews)
  • While most U.S. Bishops tend to conduct prayerful protests outside abortion clinics on Good Friday, Cardinal Cupich, in 2018, participated in a walk focusing on gun control. (LifeSiteNews)
  • Just weeks after Illinois Bishop Thomas Paprocki barred pro-abortion Senator Dick Durbin from Communion, Cardinal Cupich held a publicity stunt where he was video taped calling Senator Durbin urging him to enact laws that protect illegal immigrants. Cupich did not urge Durbin to give up his pro-abortion views. (LifeSiteNews)
  • After a 2015 undercover video showed Planned Parenthood employees discussing the sale of aborted babies, Cardinal Cupich wrote an op-ed for the Chicago Tribune arguing that selling aborted babies is “particularly repulsive,” but that Catholics “should no less be appalled” by a lack of decent medical care, racism, and joblessness. (Chicago Tribune)
  • In 2014, Cardinal Cupich was asked by CBS’s Norah O’Donnell if he would deny Communion to pro-abortion politicians. Cupich said he would not. “I would not use the Eucharist, or as they call it ‘the communion rail,’ as a place to have those discussions or way in which people would be either excluded from the life of the church,” he replied. (LifeSiteNews)
  • In 2004, several bishops said it was a sin to vote for pro-abortion politicians and that they would not give communion to Catholic politicians supportive of abortion. Cupich, who was serving as the Bishop of Rapid City, South Dakota at the time, told local media that “We cannot cherry-pick particular issues. We have to be willing to talk about all issues. Our position begins with protecting the unborn, but it doesn’t end there.” (Pittsburgh Post Gazette)


Has been unclear on Church teaching on contraception
  • In a 2012 article titled “Staying Civil,” Cardinal Cupich seemed to side against his brother bishops who were speaking against the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate. He wrote that “condemnations have a limited impact.” Cupich instead praised Obama for his “historic” contribution to the “national dialogue” on race relations and blamed the courts for also having restricted religious freedom. Cupich called on Catholics to find “common ground” with the Administration. (America Magazine)

“LGBT” ideology

Does not uphold Church teaching on “LGBT” ideology
  • In September 2018, a priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago burned a rainbow LGBT “pride” flag and prayed exorcism prayers with several parishioners in response to news about homosexual abuse going on in the Church. The ceremony was in defiance of Cardinal Cupich. The priest told PJ that two priests from Chicago’s Vicar for Priests Office warned him, on behalf of Cardinal Cupich, not to burn the flag. The priest said the representatives told him that Cardinal Cupich thinks he needs a psychological evaluation. The priest was threatened by an Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago to vacate Church property or face arrest. He fled the Archdiocese for fear of his safety. (LifeSiteNews)
  • Cardinal Cupich invited pro-LGBT Bishop Robert McElroy of San Diego to speak at the Archdiocese of Chicago’s Priest Convocation in June, 2018. (Archdiocese of Chicago)
  • After pro-gay Fr. James Martin had three speeches cancelled due to his controversial LGBT views, Cardinal Cupich invited him to deliver a talk titled “Encountering Jesus” at Holy Name Cathedral in Chicago during Lent 2018. More than 1,000 Chicago Catholics attended the event while 150 protested outside. (Religion News Service)
  • During an address to the City Club of Chicago on July 17, 2017, Cupich said he thinks Catholics should use whatever pronouns people who say they are “LGBT” want to call themselves. “People should be called the way that they want to be called rather than us coming up with terms that maybe we’re more comfortable with.” (America)
  • Cupich was scheduled to say mass for a conference hosted by the National Catholic Reporter in October 2015. The conference featured pro-gay, dissident theologians as speakers. The conference website sent out a message saying “All are welcome” to the mass Cardinal Cupich was scheduled to preside at. Eventually, Cardinal Cupich backed out of the conference because of a “scheduling conflict.” (Church Militant)


Does not support reverent liturgy
  • Cupich removed the priest of St. John Cantius Church in Chicago in 2018 over accusations of improper conduct. The church is a well-known, internationally-recognized Latin Mass parish. After a thorough investigation proved the priest innocent of all charges, Cupich still refused to allow him to go back to the church. (LifeSiteNews)
  • The Chicago Sun Times claimed Cardinal Cupich went “calmly ballistic” upon discovering there was not going to be any female altar servers at his installation Mass as Archbishop of Chicago in 2014. Only male seminarians served the mass. (U.S. Catholic)
  • As Bishop of Rapid City in 2002, Cupich ordered the doors of a Latin Mass church locked beginning on Holy Thursday until Easter morning, in essence, banning the parish from celebrating the Easter Triduum according to the 1962 liturgical books. The 220 members of the parish were forced to have their Good Friday service on the sidewalk in front of the church. (Rapid City Journal)

Marriage and Family Life

Not enough evidence collected on this issue
  • In 2018, Cardinal Cupich led a small group at the Synod of Young People. His group said there are “many other forms of family” instead of the traditional one. They also wondered if there was a way to “respect and even honor the family unit” young people find themselves in today. (LifeSiteNews)


Not enough evidence collected on this issue