Head of U.S. Catholic bishops to speak at BYU

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Cardinal Francis George, archbishop of Chicago and president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, will speak Tuesday at Brigham Young University as part of the Provo school's forum series.

George's talk will be titled "Catholics and Latter-day Saints: Partners in the Defense of Religious Freedom," according to an announcement by the Salt Lake City diocese of the Roman Catholic Church.

He will speak at 11:05 a.m. in the Marriott Center. Tickets are not required.

A native of the Windy City, George was ordained in 1963 after studying theology in Canada, according to his biography posted on the Chicago archdiocese Web site.

He has master's degrees in philosophy and theology as well as a doctorate in American philosophy, all from various U.S. universities. George also earned a doctorate in sacred theology from the Pontifical Urban University in Rome.

George served his order, the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, as a provincial superior in the Midwest and was elected vicar general for the order in Rome from 1974 to '86.

He returned to the United States and became coordinator of the Circle of Fellows for the Cambridge Center for the Study of Faith and Culture in Cambridge, Mass.

In 1990, he was appointed bishop of Yakima, Wash., and was archbishop of Portland, Ore., for less than a year before Pope John Paul II named him archbishop of Chicago in 1997.

The pope elevated George to the College of Cardinals in early 1998, and he was part of the papal conclave that elected Pope Benedict XVI in 2005.

In addition to English, the cardinal speaks French, Italian, Spanish and some German.

His 2009 book, The Difference God Makes: A Catholic Vision of Faith, Communion and Culture , explores Catholics' responsibility to engage culture.

-- Kristen Moulton