Saturday, September 21, 2013

Pope Francis Replaces Cardinal Piacenza as Prefect for the Congregation of Clergy

(Vatican) Pope Francis's serious move has begun with the conversion of the Roman Curia, by the appointment of men of his choice. On Saturday, two important personnel reshuffles in the Vatican will be announced. The most important change concerns the dismissal of Cardinal Mauro Piacenza, prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy.

Cardinal Piacenza was appointed only three years ago by Pope Benedict XVI. to this important post. He distinguished himself as a staunch defender of the traditional image of the priest. He saw the solution to the shortage of priests not in other relaxations, but the shortage of priests, among other things as a result of too many accomodations. Thus Cardinal Piacenza encouraged more discipline and tried to deepen the theological, spiritual and practical understanding of the priesthood.

Archbishop Piacenza is an Advocate of Priest Celibacy - They Hindered the Dedication of the Cure of Ars Patron of Priests to

The appointment of Monsignor Piacenza in 2007 as Secretary of the Congregation for the Clergy should have "neutralized" the influence of the then Prefect of the Congregation, the Brazilian Cardinal Claudio Humes. The replacement of Hummes by Piacenza as Prefect of the Congregation in 2010 had to do with the recently failed survey of Saint John Mary Vianney as the Patron of Priests. Pope Benedict XVI. wanted to give the parish priest of Ars to priests for an example. Against this "pre-Conciliar" priest's image great resistence rose to the top of the Church. Cardinal Hummes was one of the opponents.

In mid-January, Pope Benedict XVI. assigned the Congregation for the Clergy the supervision of the seminaries. Cardinal Piacenza had initiated visitations of the seminaries immediately, especially the numerous Roman seminaries. Under his administration, a new Board of Directors for the priests had been adopted. In connection with "50 years of Vatican II", he published texts that aimed to rid the image of priesthood and the priestly formation of distorting interpretations and - as Pope Benedict XVI. desired - back to a stronger bond to a spiritual perspective. Thus, a technical-practical reduction of the priest as an administrator was to be pushed back.

Cardinal Piacenza will be Apostolic Penitentiary - The Chief of the Diplomatic Academy New Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy

On the appointment of Archbishop Pietro Parolin to the Curia, as the new Secretary of State, he unleashed a discussion about the abolition of priestly celibacy with a new urgency, followed by the dismissal of Cardinal Piacenza, a resolute supporter of the priestly celibacy. Piacenza is to be assigned to the honorable but less influential post of the Cardinal Poenitentiary by Pope Francis and there, to succeeded the Portuguese Cardinal Manuel Monteiro de Castro.

The new Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, is a Vatican diplomatic Archbishop, Beniamino Stella. To be precise, the Italian Bishop Stella has been President of the Diplomatic Academy of the Holy See since 2007 and thus responsible for the training of diplomats of the Church.

Monsignor Eterović New Nuncio to Germany - Archbishop Baldisseri new Secretary of the Synod of Bishops

The second relates to the reshuffle of the Croatian Archbishop Nikola Eterovic. He will be replaced as Secretary of the Synod of Bishops, an office which he held for nine years. He will be replaced by Monsignor Lorenzo Baldisseri, the Secretary of the College of Cardinals. He placed the purple Pileolus on the Pope after his election. Since then, he is considered as a candidate for the dignity of Cardinal. Monsignor Eterović will be the new Apostolic Nuncio to Germany.

The appointment of the new Secretary of State and the reshuffles at the top of the Congregation for the Clergy and the Synod of Bishops took place just before the first meeting of the eight-member Council appointed by the Pope Francis, which is to assist in the reform of the Curia and in the governance of the Church. The announced personnel decisions are the result of considerations of the Cardinal advisors.

The Pope Has Filled Key positions with Intimates - tit for tat for the dismissal the Pope's Friend Cardinal Hummes?

The dismissal of Cardinal Piacenza and Archbishop Eterović seem to be related to the fact that Pope Francis intends to use personal confidantes in two key positions that are important for his further activities. Cardinal Piacenza's age is likely to have played a role in the dismissal but substantive differences of opinion as well. Moreover, as Vatican expert Andrea Tornielli suggests, the transfer of Archbishop Piacenza is a kind of tit for tat for the 2010 dismissal of Cardinal Hummes, who is a friend and elector of Pope Francis.

Text: Giuseppe Nardi
 Image: Vatican Insider
Trans: Tancred



  1. Don't read too much into the replacement of Cardinal Piacenza, unless the replacement is a radical liberal.

    But perhaps Piacenza was replaced because he had a massive heart attack in the Spring, and a transfer of duties to something less strenuous perhaps was in order.

    But regardless, I don't expect the Pope to replace current people with anything but liberals, and maybe a few radicals too.

  2. And Abp. Di Noia has been transferred from Ecclesia Dei to adjunct secretary of the ex-Holy Office. If you read into that, you'd get the impression Francis is promoting Tradition. I wonder who's filling his shoes in Ecclesia Dei? Or is Ecclesia Dei being dismantled?

  3. I went to the Greek Orthodox Church yesterday for their Divine Liturgy. It was the first time I ever did that. I had contemplated doing that during the term of the late, ungreat John Paul II, but Benedict XVI ny word and deed and action (restoring Papal vesture like the fanon last year), gave me much hope and pride in being Catholic.
    Pope Francis I destroyed that in six months. His actions, agenda, appoitments and way of presenting himself as Pope is appaling, and his recent gestures about the possibility of married priests, and his calling a gay man on the phone and saying there is nothing worng with being gay etc. is such a departure from traditional Roman Catholicism that I really want nothing to do with him, or the kind of Roman Catholic Church he represents....the radical progressive/liberal wing. I hate everything they stand for.
    I must admit that at the Greek Orthodox Church, I felt the presence of God, like I did at the Tridentine Latin Mass. Yesterday I felt that I was transported back to a time of the very first centuries of the Christian Faith, when the liturgy and the Gospels etc. were all in Greek..
    The progressive liturgists claim that the Vatican II Novus Ordo represents what the first centuries of Christianity was like....LOL. More like the first decades of Lutheranism !!!
    I closed my eyes during the Greek Orthodox liturgy, heard the chanting and the swinging of the incense censors with their little bells on them and could imagine being back in Jerusalem, or Ephesus, etc. about the year 375, and hearing what the liturgy (East and West....because in those centuries the Mass in the West was very similar to the Orthodox) was like.

    After the Greek Orthodox liturgy, which is much longer than the usuall 40 minute ad lib Protestant style and music Catholic parish Mass, I visited a Catholic parish to pray for a second and walked in during Mass...feeling alittle guilty that I had gone to the Greek Orthodox liturgy.
    But that was wiped away in a second, when I heard the same, banal, music to the accompaniment not of organ but of violin. Sounded like something the Episcopalians (ugh), would do.
    Then I knew I made the right choice!

    Thank you, Pope Francis, for helping to drive me out of my own Church....a Church I loved and excepted despite disliking the Vatican II Mass.....until you came along. You're 100x more liberal than any other Pope. And I can't accept that.

    1. My dear friend, I am going to accept your comment as sincere and that the decision you came to was one that was made with much preliminary thought.

      Surely others have offered to you numerous reasons why this may not have been the right move for you to have made so I will not repeat arguments you have most likely already heard. I will merely say to you that it it never a good idea to throw out the baby with the bathwater.

      The Catholic Church is now in dire straits, going through what is possibly the worst crisis in its entire 20 centuries of existence. If it isn't the wirst it is definitely in the Top Ten. Maybe the Top Two. Regardless of that She has weathered all the storms and has always come back stronger than before. I have no idea how long this horrible situation will be allowed to go on but I do know that one day it will end and that silly aberrations like those we have been going through will disappear as wisps of smoke. In future people will read about a Schillebeeckx and think they are reading about some prehistoric bird, so forgotten will be this man and his rotten works. In other words these evils will pass, and for some strange reason God has chosen to plop us right into a period of time where evil seems to be all-pervasive. I don't question God's decision (even though I wish he had placed me in the 13th century instead!).

      But I ask you to reconsider leaving the One Church established by Christ, who placed Peter - flawed, vacillating, cowardly Peter - at the head of His Church. Jumping off the Ark just now is not in the best interests of our eternal salvation. But Christ founded only one Church, under Peter, and no others. It really is that simple.

      I admire and enormously respect much in Orthodoxy, and I long for the day when the terrible schism between the Orthodox and the Catholics will end. It will end, not in my lifetime, but it will end. I agree that their liturgies are exquisite, and that they bring us back centuries to our moorings in the Faith. And I agree totally that the New Mass is, as currently practiced, disgusting. But would it be too difficult in your area to find a quiet and reverent Ancient Rite Mass to attend? They do seem to be popping up everywhere so it should be possible for you to hopefully one somewhat nearby to you. If so, please try to find that Mass and attend it.

      I am hardly a theologian or expert in Canon Law so I cannot say that you are necessarily doing right or wrong by attending a beautiful but, alas, schismatic church. I have heard that as long as you don't accept the schism it would be lawful, under certain very strict conditions, to fulfill your obligation by attending such an Orthodox service but PLEASE investigate that with a competent priest before acting on it.

      Again, my friend, this time will pass. As awful as the time is please hang on to the One, True Church outside of which there is no salvation. And I wish you and yours God's choicest blessings.

      aged parent

  4. Patriarch Bart is far worse than Francis. Hey, don't say I didn't warn you.