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New Baltimore Archbishop Prepares To Take On Controversial Issues

BALTIMORE (WJZ)—The new leader of Baltimore's half a million Catholics is starting to settle into his new home.

Mary Bubala reports.

Archbishop William Lori says his mission is to get to know the people, priests and parishioners of the many churches he will oversee.

The next Archbishop of Baltimore, William Lori, 62, is in town setting up shop as the new spiritual leader of Catholics here after serving 12 years as bishop in Bridgeport, Conn.

"When I told my mom that I was appointed Archbishop of Baltimore she recalled instantly that wonderful day we had spent together in Baltimore," Lori said.

Archbishop Lori has strong ties to Maryland. His first assignment was as associate pastor in Largo.

He was bishop in Washington, D.C. before heading to Connecticut. There Lori restructured Catholic schools, and became a voice for religious liberty and traditional marriage-- a charge he will continue to lead here in Maryland as our state's same-sex marriage law heads to a referendum this fall.

Lori plans to "teach, teach, teach some more about what marriage is, and we will do so in love. This isn't about trying to advance some ideology; it's trying to communicate the truth," he said.

Lori comes down stronger on President Barack Obama's health care mandate. He testified on Capitol Hill against a rule requiring Catholic organizations to cover contraceptives.

"Government has no business defining churches and no business saying we have to abandon our teaching," Lori said.

Bishop Lori officially becomes the 16th Archbishop of the nation's oldest Archdiocese next month.

"I am just so happy to come here, very honored to serve," he said.

His installation is on May 16 at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen.

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