According to the USCMA, laypeople now make up about 400 of the 5,000-plus -- about 8 percent -- U.
While the lay missioners were in their morning rap session, the USCMA board was meeting next door before the start of its conference.
s Pearson said the USCMA conference should let laypeople define themselves to it, rather than being defined by it.
The USCMA gave its annual mission award to the Tekakwitha Conference of Native American Catholics.
USCMA executive director, Sister of Notre Dame Margaret Loftus, said there was a chance that next year's conference would focus on lay missioners (see accompanying story).
The effect is ghostly, absurdly technological and dehumanizing, but by the time the conference ended Sunday noon it was clear that the missioners in the USCMA dance to a far different tune.