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How to Cover the Catholic Church

peace issues and speaks on their behalf on a variety of issues in the U.S.

church and civil society. Its headquarters are in Silver Spring, Md. The phone

number is 301-588-4030. The website is .

Leadership Conference ofWomen Religious (LCWR)

LCWR is the first representative agency of U.S. provincials or other major

superiors of women’s religious orders recognized by the Vatican. Its members

lead about 67,000 sisters in 370 orders or congregations, representing about 90

percent of the nuns in the United States. Its headquarters are in Silver Spring,

Md. The phone number is 301-588-4955. The website is .

Council of Major Superiors ofWomen Religious (CMSWR)

Formed in 1992 by major superiors of women religious not affiliated with

LCWR, CMSWR is also recognized by the Vatican as a representative agency

of provincials or other major superiors of women’s religious orders. About

10 percent of U.S. women religious belong to orders or congregations whose

leaders belong to the CMSWR. Its headquarters are in Washington. The phone

number is 202-832-2575. The website is .

Vatican or Vatican-RelatedOrganizations and Agencies

Apostolic Nunciature

Since 1984 the Holy See and the United States have had full diplomatic rela-

tions. The Vatican ambassador to the United States is called the

apostolic nun-



papal nuncio

, and the Vatican Embassy in Washington is also called the

apostolic nunciature

. The nuncio is Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganó.

In addition to his diplomatic functions with the U.S. government, the

nuncio serves as the chief liaison of the pope and Vatican offices to the U.S.

church. Before diplomatic relations were established, the papal representa-

tive in the United States was called an

apostolic delegate

, his residence and

offices were called the

apostolic delegation

, and Vatican relations with the U.S.

church were his primary function.

The nuncio usually announces new episcopal appointments in the United

States at the same time that they are announced in Rome, and he often attends

episcopal ordinations as the pope’s representative.

The nuncio also serves as the Vatican’s permanent observer to the

Washington-based Organization of American States.

The nunciature’s phone number is 202-333-7121.