Learning the business of being a bishop

Learning the business of being a bishop
At the Catholic Business Network of South Jersey’s monthly breakfast on Nov. 14 at Woodcrest Country Club, Bishop Dennis Sullivan spoke to area businessmen and women. Above, Bishop Sullivan with the Executive Board: Sheila McGirl, founder and vice-president, of the Diocese of Camden; Jim Turpin, president, of American Prosperity Group; Denis Lathrop, treasurer, of Wells Fargo; Gary Zimak, chaplain, author and speaker; Jeff Morris, founding member and chairman of membership, of Morris Graphics; and Barry Phillips, founder and president of the Catholic Business Network of Greater Philadelphia, of Devon Financial. Photo by James A. McBride

At the Catholic Business Network of South Jersey’s monthly breakfast on Nov. 14 at Woodcrest Country Club, Bishop Dennis Sullivan spoke to area businessmen and women. Above, Bishop Sullivan with the Executive Board: Sheila McGirl, founder and vice-president, of the Diocese of Camden; Jim Turpin, president, of American Prosperity Group; Denis Lathrop, treasurer, of Wells Fargo; Gary Zimak, chaplain, author and speaker; Jeff Morris, founding member and chairman of membership, of Morris Graphics; and Barry Phillips, founder and president of the Catholic Business Network of Greater Philadelphia, of Devon Financial.
Photo by James A. McBride

CHERRY HILL — On the morning of Friday, Nov. 14, Bishop Dennis Sullivan spoke with 100 area businessmen and women here at Woodcrest Country Club, encouraging them to “bring Catholic values into the business world.”

The occasion was the monthly breakfast of the Catholic Business Network of South Jersey, which brings together area professionals for fellowship and sharing of their common Catholic faith.

Talking in front of business executives and managers, school administrators and small business owners, Bishop Sullivan praised the work of the attendees, “who have a desire to join your faith with your business practices.”

The Camden leader recalled his seven years as vicar general of the Archdiocese of New York, immediately before becoming bishop of the Diocese of Camden, where he daily was taught about the “business” of the archdiocese.

“I learned from counselors and advisors on how to deal with issues with personnel, with unions, and with the budget, and how to make tough decisions,” he said.

In his work in New York, he brought with him “the love of Catholic social teaching,” and its tenets of dignity of the human person (“needing to support, encourage human growth”); solidarity (“We have a responsibility to others, and need to look beyond ourselves, to improve the situations of others, in our businesses and communities”); subsidiarity (“Decisions are made at the lowest level, and I trust those making decisions”); and the rights of workers (“Who are participating in the work of the creator”).

Concluding his presentation, Bishop Sullivan expressed his hope and prayers that “the Catholic Business Network of South Jersey continues to grow.”

One of the first-timers in attendance was Greg Gardner, a Haddon Heights resident and client solutions executive for Micro Strategies, a technology solutions organization.

“The bishop made an easy connection with me, not only as a businessman but as a father,” he said, admiring Bishop Sullivan’s “welcoming spirit.”

The bishop was “very real,” said Orlando Rivera, vice president at Tennenbaum Business Brokers and Cherry Hill resident. “He talked about practical, real world situations in an intimate setting.”

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