Bishop Daniel Fernández Torres, Puerto Rico's bravest bishop, was removed from office by Pope Francis as a "troublemaker".
(Rome) Bishop Daniel Fernández Torres of Arecibo, the only bishop in Puerto Rico who opposed vaccine apartheid, was retired by Pope Francis at the age of just 57.
Monsignor Daniel Fernández Torres was born in Chicago to a Puerto Rican family but grew up in Puerto Rico. In 1995 he was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Arecibo. He studied dogmatics at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome and then worked in his Caribbean home as a pastor and from 2000 as regent of the seminary of Arecibo. In 2007 Pope Benedict XVI appointed him Auxiliary Bishop of San Juan de Puerto Rico and, in 2010, at the age of 46, Bishop of Arecibo.
As such, he attracted attention in 2020 when he took on left-leaning US Territory Governor Pedro Pierluisi and urged him to stop the gender agenda being promoted by the Biden administration.
The second conflict with Pierluisi has followed since August 2021, when the governor of Puerto Rico imposed compulsory vaccination against Covid-19. Bishop Fernández then made it clear that there would be no vaccination apartheid in the church areas in his diocese. The bishop recognized the right of conscientious objection to compulsory vaccination and gave his priests and deacons permission to grant exemptions to Catholic parishioners.
The bishop was the first pastor to be confronted with compulsory vaccination and made it clear that in his diocese there would be no division of the faithful and no segregation, i.e. discrimination, of healthy people.
However, he was left alone with that. The other five bishops of the Caribbean island shortly thereafter issued a decree with “pastoral guidelines” on behalf of the Puerto Rican bishops' conference, with which they instituted vaccination apartheid. The unvaccinated may only take part in the liturgy in separately designated parts of the church. The five bishops justified their decision with reference to "contagions and outbreaks,” although the SARS-CoV-2 virus koof or Covid-19 did not differ in any noticeable way from other seasonal flu waves. Above all, they emphasized that the new guidelines should be issued in order to show “solidarity” with Pope Francis. Francis had introduced compulsory vaccination in the Vatican and described "vaccination", which is in fact a gene therapy, as a "moral obligation". The bishops did not say that they were actually kneeling before the Pierluisi government. Priests and deacons who have not been able to present proof of vaccination by September 15 are no longer allowed to celebrate the holy liturgy in public.
Bishop Fernández refused to sign the guidelines. Rather, he made it clear that he would not tolerate this segregation of believers in his diocese. In doing so, he courageously stood alone against the Church's first apartheid regime of the 21st century.
Today, half a year after the beginning of the apartheid regime, Bishop Fernández was retired by Pope Francis, although the bishop of Arecibo is only 57 years old. The background is quickly explained. Bishop Fernández disrupted the "good relations" with the government and the consensus in the bishops' conference with his courageous stance on the Corona issue.
Other reasons are given behind closed doors and in some media in Puerto Rico as to why Bishop Fernández became a nuisance to his confreres. He openly and bluntly addressed the problem of pederastic priests and publicly criticized them. He also refused to use the believers' money to pay off the debts of the Archdiocese of San Juan.
In keeping with his nature, the deposed bishop was not silent about his removal. He had a final press release published through the press office of his previous diocese, confirming the rumors that had been circulating before. The bishop quotes from an unspecified document in which the reason for his dismissal was given:
"I have not been obedient to the Pope, nor have I been in sufficient fellowship with my brothers, the Bishops of Puerto Rico."
Bishop Fernández writes:
“In response to what is happening, I feel blessed to suffer persecution and slander (cf. Mt 5:10-11) for proclaiming the truth about human dignity in the present circumstances where 'it is uncomfortable: It is contrary to what we do...' (Wisdom 2:12). Today I can hold my head high, and even though I'm imperfect and a sinner, I know I did the right thing, and that gives me great inner peace. I am also comforted by the Hebrew meaning of the name Daniel that I received at my baptism: 'God is my judge'.
I am very sorry that in the Church, where so much is preached about mercy, in practice, some people do not have even the slightest sense of justice. One day the Apostolic Delegate simply told me by word of mouth that Rome was asking me to resign. A successor to the apostles is now replaced without proper canonical procedure for his removal.
I was informed that I had not committed a crime, but that I had allegedly 'not been obedient to the Pope and had insufficient fellowship with my fellow bishops in Puerto Rico'. It was suggested to me that when I resign from the diocese I would remain available to the Church if I was needed in another position; an offer that proves my innocence indeed. However, I did not resign because I did not want to become an accomplice in a totally unjust process that I am reluctant to see in our church.”
As the Vatican Press Office announced, Pope Francis appointed Msgr. Álvaro Corrada del Río SJ, Bishop Emeritus of Mayagüez, Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Arecibo ad nutum Sanctae Sedis.
The cardinal creation of Jean-Claude Hollerich SJ, Archbishop of Luxembourg and President of COMECE.
Pope Francis wants to set the course for his successor so closely that the conclave cannot help but elect one of his crown princes. There are several of them, since the Argentine Pope is clear and unequivocal in his objectives, but also erratic and capricious due to his character. That's why new names keep popping up in his favor, while others don't resign because of it. Despite all the imponderables of a conclave, he not only wants to expand the circle of those who are committed to him but apparently also increase the chances of success. The Vaticanist Sandro Magister recently drew attention to a new name in papal favor.
“On the list of cardinals Francis would like to see succeed him, a new name has quickly jumped to the top. It is Jesuit Cardinal Jean-Claude Hollerich, Archbishop of Luxembourg.”
Cardinal Hollerich would combine characteristics of the two very different recent popes in a remarkable way. He comes like Benedict XVI. from the German-speaking area and, like Francis, is a Jesuit.
However, the latter is also the main obstacle, which a priori speaks more against than for him as a promising candidate. While Magister considers this hurdle “not necessarily insurmountable”, it is very unlikely that the papal electors will put two Jesuits in a row on the throne of Peter. Overall, Magister's assessment seems a bit too benevolent, but the punchline follows at the end. Let's hear the Vaticanist himself.
The Missionary from Japan
Hollerich's "only limitations would be his relatively young age, 64, and that he is a Jesuit. But these limitations are not necessarily insurmountable."
"In terms of age, Hollerich is just a year away from the other frontrunner dear to Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Filipino Cardinal Luis Antonio Gokim Tagle, Prefect of Propaganda Fide, and six years, so not much, from the most recognized of the alternative candidates, the Hungarian Cardinal Peter Erdö, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest. And as for his membership of the Society of Jesus, he has hitherto shown the best and least partisan sides of it, the most fascinating, especially for those twenty-seven years of missionary work in Japan, at the very frontiers of the faith.
Magister attests Cardinal Hollerich to speak “with a seriousness and depth that distinguishes him from the mediocre depth of most of the cardinals appointed by Pope Francis”.
The Luxembourger studied at the Jesuit University in Frankfurt am Main and in Munich, speaks several languages, including Japanese, and taught for a long time at the renowned Sophia University in Tokyo. According to Magister, this university has nothing to do with the university of the same name, founded in 2008 by Chiara Lubich and her Focolare Movement in Loppiano, according to Hollerich's official biography on the Vatican website, which is incorrectly stated.
The Jesuit worked in Japan until Pope Benedict XVI. returned to Europe in 2011 by appointing him archbishop of his homeland. As the seat of various EU institutions and as a mediator between the two core countries of the EU, the Federal Republic of Germany and France or the corresponding language areas, the small Grand Duchy of Luxembourg plays an important hinge function, which is usually exercised discreetly and in the interests of the supranational unification process.
This was also taken into account in the Church by electing Hollerich in 2018 to chair the Commission of the Bishops' Conferences of the European Community ( COMECE), which is composed of the delegated bishops of the Bishops' Conferences of the European Union. The Church has little weight in the current EU and seems to have largely resigned itself to playing an extra role. A rather rare exception was Hollerich's criticism against French President Emmanuel Macron's proposal to include a "right to abortion" in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. Macron made the corresponding move on January 19 in his speech to the EU Parliament in Strasbourg, with which he took over the French EU presidency.
Macron's initiative, which can hardly be surpassed in terms of cruelty and impudence, illustrated the state of affairs in the EU. With the icy coolness of the technocrat, who had never stood for election until the time when he was nominated in backrooms as a presidential candidate, he openly and publicly demanded that the killing of innocent people be made a "fundamental right" and "European value". Even more outrageous is the fact that MEPs sat idly by and listened to this incredible blunder.
Hollerich's objection came late and quietly, but it came nonetheless. He accused the Frenchman of "ideological guidelines" and expressed his "deep concern". As COMECE President, the cardinal spoke of an "unjust law without any ethical basis, which would lead to constant conflicts between the citizens of the EU". Human dignity is a core value of the EU. We are aware of the "tragedy and complexity" of the situation of women who are considering having an abortion. “Women in need should not be left alone, nor should the unborn child’s right to life be disregarded. Both must be given all the help and support they need.”
The Leap Forward
Hollerich stepped into the front row in the church when Pope Francis created him a cardinal in 2019. Since Francis follows idiosyncratic criteria when selecting those who wear purple, Hollerich's elevation to the rank of cardinal is to be seen as a special sign of favor. The Luxemburger is one of four Jesuits who were appointed to the Church senate by the Jesuit on the papal throne.
Hollerich had first taken over the leadership of the church in his homeland, then a leading position at the EU level, and now he has stepped onto the global stage. An apparently unstoppable rise. On July 8, 2021, Francis appointed him General Rapporteur of the multi-year Synod of Bishops on Synodality. The concept of synodality plays a central role for the reigning pope, and he made Hollerich the standard-bearer of this synodality, under the auspices of which Francis wants to transform the Church.
The role of the reporter general does not have to be given as much weight as Magister does, but Hollerich's appointment is nevertheless a signal: "Compared to Francis, who always remains indecipherable even when he opens up space for new solutions, Hollerich stands out with greater clarity.”
What is essential about Magister's analysis is that it shows Hollerich's positions, which he has made in several recent interviews. Magister writes:
“In recent weeks he has given lengthy interviews in which, apparently with intuitive approval from above, he has made clear directions that the pope does not wish to articulate in his own words, which is certainly linked to the wave of extreme demands now being poured out by the almost schismatic synodal path in Germany.”
“I used to be a big advocate of celibacy for all priests, but today I wish there were 'viri probati' [Hapless old boomers, short on orthodoxy and long on professional accomplishments.]It's a deep desire. And yet it is a difficult path for the Church because it can be felt like a rupture. After the Synod on Amazonia, one of the reasons why the Pope did not allow viri probati could be that they were too strongly demanded and the Synod was too reduced to this issue. But I think we have to go in that direction, otherwise, we'll soon run out of priests. [BS, dioceses that promote the Catholic Faith don't have a shortage of priests.] In the long term, I can also imagine the path of orthodoxy, in which only the monks are obliged to be celibate.”
“It seems to me that the first problem is not whether or not women should become priests, but more importantly whether women have any real weight in the priesthood, which is common to all baptized and confirmed members of the people of God, and whether they in this way exercise the associated authority. Would that also mean preaching at Mass? I would say yes.
"I wouldn't mind. But the reforms must be based on a stable foundation. If the Pope were to suddenly allow 'viri probati' and deaconesses, there would be a great danger of division. There is not only the situation in Germany, where maybe only a small part would break away. In Africa or in countries like France, many bishops would probably not participate.”
4) German Synod
“Sometimes I have the impression that the German bishops do not understand the Pope. The Pope is not liberal, he is radical. It is the radical nature of the Gospel that brings about change. I share Tomás Halik's attitude: we can't just talk about structural reforms, spirituality must also grow again. If it just reforms as a result of a conflict, things can quickly turn around. In this case, everything depends only on the greater influence of one group or another. That way we don’t get out of the vicious circle.”
5) Sexuality and abuse
“We need to change the way we look at sexuality. So far we have had a rather repressed view of it. Of course, it's not about telling people they can do anything, or getting rid of morality, but I think we have to say that sex is a gift from God. We know that, but are we saying it? I'm not sure. Some people attribute the increase in abuse to the sexual revolution. I think just the opposite: in my opinion, the most horrible things happened before the 1970s.”
“The Church's position that homosexual relationships are sinful is wrong. I believe that the sociological and scientific basis of this doctrine is no longer correct. It is time for a fundamental revision of the Church's teaching, and the way Pope Francis has spoken about homosexuality may lead to a doctrinal change. In the meantime, in our archdiocese in Luxembourg, no one is dismissed for being homosexual or for being divorced and remarried. I can't throw them out, they would be out of a job, and how can something like that be Christian? As for homosexual priests, there are many of them and it would be good if they could talk about it with their bishop without his condemning them.”
“In Tokyo, I gave communion to everyone who came to Mass. I have never refused Communion to anyone. I have assumed that when a Protestant comes to Communion, he knows at least as well what Catholics mean by Communion as do other Catholics who go to Mass. But I would not concelebrate with an evangelical pastor. In Tokyo I got to know and appreciate Protestantism very well. But I attended one of their evening meals and was horrified when the remaining wine and bread were thrown away. That shook me a lot because as a Catholic I believe in the Real Presence.”
8) Latin Mass
“I like the Latin Mass, I find the texts very beautiful, especially the first canon. When I celebrate Mass in the chapel of my home, I sometimes choose a Latin prayer. But I wouldn't do that in a church. I know that the people there don't understand Latin and can't do anything with it. I have been asked to celebrate a Latin Mass in Antwerp according to the current rite. I will, but I wouldn't celebrate the old rite. That doesn't mean that others might not be able to do it in a good way. But I can not. In our language and in our imagination, the past is behind us and the future is ahead of us. In ancient Egypt, it was the other way around. The past was seen as something that lies ahead because we know and see it, while the future lies behind us because we do not know it. The Catholic Church still seems to me to have an Egyptian touch. But it doesn't work anymore. God opens up for the future. Some say that the fair used to be much nicer. But what form do they refer to? Mostly they imagine a certain past that is 'stylized' into a tradition. This is where Egyptian civilization ultimately failed. She was no longer able to change herself.” God opens up for the future. Some say that the Mass used to be much nicer. But what form do they refer to? Mostly they imagine a certain past that is 'stylized' into a tradition. This is where Egyptian civilization ultimately failed.”
“I know men and women, including those on the left, who identify as committed Christians fighting climate change, but vote in the European Parliament to make abortion a fundamental right and restrict doctors' freedom of conscience. They tend to confine their religious preferences to the private sphere. But in this case, it is no longer a religion but a personal belief. Religion needs a public space in which to express itself. For example, I am absolutely against abortion. And as a Christian, I cannot take any other position. But I also understand that it is about the dignity of women and that what we used to say against the abortion law is no longer audible today. What other actions can we take at this time? At this point, what else can we do to protect life? If discourse is no longer followed, you shouldn’t bite your teeth, but look for other ways.”
Aside from the fact that Hollerich says deaconesses but means female deacons, it would be interesting to know what he is referring to when he says that the "most horrible things" of sexual abuse happened before 1970, which his age and his choice of words make him not seem to have what I know from my own experience that the positions of the Jesuit cardinal are frighteningly clear. He proves to be a more liberal spirit – despite the fact that he is the same as Francis in terms of content. However, this does not predestine him as a candidate for the Petrine ministry.
On another point, the liturgical blessing of homosexual couples, "on which the German synod got into an uproar and Pope Francis himself showed signs of giving in", Hollerich, according to Magister, made "short work":
"I don't agree with marriage blessings, because we see marriage only as a bond between a man and a woman."
However, Hollerich distances himself from something that is not (yet) demanded in this form even by the Church homosexual lobby. The man who, according to the Magister, formulates "with greater clarity" than Francis, also uses veiling means of dialectics.
According to the Vaticanist, Hollerich's vision of the Church also differs from the "hyper-democratic" view that the Limburg bishop and chairman of the German Bishops' Conference, Georg Bätzing, recently confirmed in an interview. But that doesn't seem so sure.
Magister doesn't mention it, but it fits the picture: Hollerich advised Cardinal Rainer Woelki, Archbishop of Cologne, in early February to resign. Such "advice" could already be heard from Munich. With Hollerich, Santa Marta is not far away.
“However, one unknown factor remains open. How long will Hollerich's reform guidelines, which consist of many yeses but also some nos, last if the disturbing proposals of the German synod in Rome meet the synod of the whole Church on synodality?
At a press conference on February 3, Bätzing said that after meeting Hollerich and Maltese Cardinal Mario Grech, general secretary of the synod of bishops, in Luxembourg, he was received in audience by Pope Francis, who advocated the establishment of a working group to reconcile the German synod with of the Synod of the Universal Church.
In the summary, Magister sounds devastating criticism:
“Hollerich as a reform candidate for the papacy seems to promise a more straightforward and coherent path than the current shaky and contradictory pontificate. However, he is a banal echo of Bergoglio, even if he repeats the litany so important to the incumbent Pope: 'Even the shepherd does not always know the way and knows where to go. Sometimes it is the sheep who find the way and the shepherd who laboriously follows, step by step'.”
Not to mention, according to Magister, the ruthless mockery of the Aristotelian principle of non-contradiction, in which Hollerich does not shy away from turning it into its opposite "with a touch of coloring à la japonaise" - like Pope Francis:
“I am a bishop who is from Japan and I think these experiences have given me a different perspective of thinking and judgement. Unlike the Europeans, the Japanese do not think in terms of the logic of opposites. When we say something is black, it means it's not white. The Japanese, on the other hand, say: 'It's white, but maybe also black'. In Japan, you can combine opposites without changing your point of view.”
Text: Giuseppe Nardi Image : Vatican.va/MiL/La Croix (Screenshots)
Traditional Society of Familia Christi by the papal commissioner in fact dissolved.
(Rome) The Commissar appointed by Pope Francis has de facto dissolved a traditional
fraternity. Not one reason for the drastic measure was mentioned. The Priestly Societt of Familia Christi is the first genuinely Italian Ecclesia Dei community. This is the name given to the traditional communities that are committed to the traditional form of the Roman rite and are therefore subordinate to the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, today a division of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. It also appears to be the cause of the profound aversion to the Society which progressive Italian Churches hold against them and the Archbishop, who recognized them as ecclesiastical.
The Priestly Fraternity Familia Christi (FSFC) is ecclesiastically a clerical society of Apostolic life of diocesan right. Its founder, at that time still as a lay association, is the Vatican diplomat Msgr. Giuseppe Canovai, who died in 1942 at the age of only 37 years. Before joining the diplomatic service of the Holy See, Canovai was a student pastor in Italy. In this capacity, he founded the lay association Familia Christi, which was recognized in 1938 under canon law. His spiritual diary, which he kept from the age of 15, is considered a special treasure and aid for personal sanctification. His beatification process is under way. After a long journey, priestly vocations grew out of the lay association, eventually leading to the founding of the fraternity. In 2014, after a long examination, it was first recognized by the then Archbishop of Ferrara-Comacchio, Msgr. Luigi Negri, and canonised on 8th September 2016, the Feast of the Nativity, with the benevolence of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei according to diocesan law.
Archbishop Negri, who was praised by Pope Benedict XVI., among the diocesan bishops of Italy. He was attacked accordingly. After the election of Pope Francis, his opponents tried to get rid of him as soon as possible. At the same time, people did not shy away from public discrediting. Although Msgr. Negri remained in office until the age of 75, it was not one day longer. In his book he spoke in connection with these hostilities, of a "climate of retribution". The change at the Church hierarchy at the top made it possible.
With his retirement, though in good health, the problems for the Fraternity of Familia Christi began. The appointment of the successor meant a provocative break with Negri's line. The new archbishop was Msgr. Giancarlo Perego, a "street priest" who "works on the margins" in February 2017, as he was officially described. A "super-progressive migration advocate", as the Vaticanist Marco Tosatti put it.
The same was repeated in Ferrara, which had previously happened in the archdiocese of Mechelen-Brussels. There, too, Pope Francis retired Archbishop André Joseph Leonard, hated in progressive church circles, as soon as he was 75 years old. Previously, he had already denied him the cardinalatial dignity, which is traditionally associated with the most important diocese of Belgium. No sooner had Leonard's successor, the progressive Jozef De Kesel been installed than he began to dismantle Leonard's acknowledged, New Rite, but "too conservative" brotherhood of the holy apostles.
The numerous priestly vocations of the Society did not speak well for them, but were a thorn in the side of the progressive church circles with their empty seminaries. Finally, the Priestly Fraternity, whose priests were very popular in the parishes entrusted to them in and around Brussels, was banished from Belgium by De Kesel, whom Francis, unlike Leonard, was immediately called to be a Cardinal, and dissolved by Pope Francis.
Christmas Mass 2017, the Superior General of the Priestly Fraternity, blesses Santa Maria in Vado.
Like De Kesel, Msgr. Perego immediately showed an open aversion to the traditional fraternity of Familia Christi. He deprived the priests of the parish church of Santa Maria in Vado, an ancient basilica in the center of Ferrara, where in 1171 a Eucharistic miracle took place, which had been
entrusted to them by Archbishop Negri. The expulsion took place under the pretext of a "structural reform" through parish mergers to pastoral units. On October 1, 2016, Archbishop Negri, in the presence of the mayor of Ferrara and other officials, had canonically appointed the Superior General of the Society in the traditional rite as Pastor of Santa Maria in Vado and other Friar Ministers as chaplains.
Further unfriendliness by Archbishop Perego followed. He banished the Brothers to a secluded church and denied them the public celebration of Holy Mass in the traditional rite of the churches entrusted to them. At the same time he set up a "people's altar" in a central chapel of the Ferrara Cathedral, where Archbishop Negri celebrated Mass in the traditional rite.
On December 1, 2018, the Prefect of the Roman Congregation of the Faith, Cardinal Luis Ladaria Ferrer SJ, appointed the Auxiliary Bishop of Rome, Archbishop Daniele Libanori SJ, as "the Commissioner Plenipotentiary sent by the Holy See". Father Libanori, co-brother of the Pope in the Order of the Jesuits, was appointed as auxiliary bishop by Francis in November 2017.
The Commissar, with all authority, took over the leadership of the Society with the task of clarifying whether "the elements and conclusions" that had emerged in the course of a canonical visitation were well founded, and "if necessary to establish future paths for the fraternity".
What "elements and conclusions" were found, is still unknown.
Marco Tosatti wrote:
"And again the question arises: what such a serious thing can these priests have done to attract the canonical attention of a church, such as the Franciscans of the Immaculate, the Gospel of the Gospels, or the Sisters of Laval, to any kind of doctrinal and theologically approves and favors bizarre and affirms prelates without hesitating in important and delicate offices, which speak out for the gay marriage and the women's priesthood. "
Archbishop Perego had had a canonical visitation of the Brotherhood in 2018 and sent his report to Rome on September 30. The wish he expressed in it was promptly fulfilled by the Holy See: Rome sent a Commisar.
Tossati in December 2018:
"And then one wants to make us believe that this pontificate is merciful, rich in dialogue and tolerant of the various sensitivities and by no means biased and hostile to certain ecclesial realities," Tosatti said in December 2018.
Commissar Daniele Libanori SJ
On 30 June, the Commissar issued a decree unbinding all priests, novices and subjects of all promises and commitments. In a nutshell, he dissolved the Society and sent home all those who are not yet ordained priests. Although the Society of Familia Christi was not dissolved by formal law, all its activities are prohibited. It may no longer accept, arouse, or look after any vocations. The Society members, who are already ordained priests, "remain in a kind of limbo," according to the traditional side Messa in Latino.
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: Priestly Fraternity Familia Christi (screenshot)
Trans: Tancred firstname.lastname@example.org
Pope Francis yesterday warned the apostolic nuncios (ambassadors) with an unusual footnote.
(Rome) "Because of the mental health", so Pope Francis assured, he does not read internet pages and blogs that criticize his administration. Yesterday, he warned the apostolic nuncios from "blogging" or "even joining groups," who are critical of him. In the same speech, however, Francis quoted just one of those websites that he says he does not read at all. Such as?
On January 16, 2018, Pope Francis met in Santiago de Chile with the Jesuits of that South American country. The main reason for the trip to Chile and Peru was the imminent Amazon Synod as his confidant, Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, explained. That was only a few days before the storm of homosexual abuse scandal in the Church began to break over Francis.
Francis also approached his confreres of the Society of Jesus SJ) about heresy allegations that had been made to him indirectly a short time before in connection with the controversial post-synodal letter Amoris laetitia. Contentwise, he did not respond to the criticism, but demanded “not to read” such websites and blogs for reasons of "mental hygiene.”
Yesterday, the Pope received in audience all the Apostolic Nuncios who are doing their diplomatic service in different countries worldwide. Their meeting, to which he called them to Rome, ends tomorrow.
In his speech which was published only in Italian, Francis warned the ambassadors of the Holy See against criticism of his person. The head of the Church said:
"It is therefore incompatible to be a Pontifical Representative and to criticize the Pope behind his back, to have a blog or even to join groups hostile to Him, the Curia and the Church of Rome."
The third person in which Francis spoke of himself is capitalized in the original Vatican publication. The speech was published on the official website of the Holy See and in today's edition of Osservatore Romano. It should not be forgotten that Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, a retired apostolic nuncio, criticized the current pontificate with the greatest publicity so far and called for the resignation of Francis.
When the pope quotes what he does not read out of "mental hygiene"
Remarkably, Francis quoted yesterday for the nuncios, just one of those websites, of which he - as a directive to the Jesuits (and not just them) - said not to read them. The reference can be found in footnote 14. The source quoted by Pope Francis is Corrispondenza Romana, whose founder and editor, Professor Roberto de Mattei, is one of the intellectual critics of the current pontificate.
Footnote 14: an essay by Prof. Roberto de Mattei on Corrispondenza Romana.
The Bergoglians tried to correct this "embarrassment" immediately, first of all Il Sismografo, the digital press review hosted somewhere between the Vatican Secretariat of State and the Communications Dicastery, led by Luis Badilla, a former Chilean Minister of Popular Front Government of Salvador Allende. There, in tortuous form, an apology is sought, cited in Santa Marta for what was considered there a scandalous "Faupax", from such an illustrious and honorable, intellectually outstanding and deeply traditional source as the historian Roberto de Mattei:
"After numerous checks and verifications, we have come to a conclusion and present it to our readers, just as this conviction has formed in our editorial staff in these hours: in all probability the Pope was not adequately informed, without complete information and not consciously aware of the very nature of the source used in footnote 14 of his speech.”
Luis Badilla must have swept aside this formulation like the beads of sweat on his forehead. There were "so many" references to this source that Il Sismografo felt compelled to respond in order to protect the image of the Pope. Prof. de Mattei is presented by Badilla as an "anti-Bergoglian Italian intellectual" who "in those years did not spare Pope Francis allegations, epithets, adjectives and criticisms, often morally aggressive and not very polite to the Bishop of Rome.”
Il Sismografo: semi-official press review of the Vatican.
But what did Pope Francis quote from Corrispondenza Romana? At first glance "only" the litany of humility of Cardinal Secretary of State Rafael Merry del Val (1865-1930). Francis recommends it to the apostolic nuncios, stating that it comes from a "colleague," Merry del Val, son of a Spanish diplomat, himself serving many years as a diplomat in the service of the Holy See.
However, the essay by Roberto de Mattei on the Spanish-Irish cardinal cited in the source not only includes the litany, but a tribute to the "true aristocrat" whom St. Pius X, though only 38 years old, made Vatican secretary of state.
The red cape for the close circle of Francis, however, is Roberto de Mattei, the quoted author himself: historian, university professor, like his father and grandfather, descendant of the Sicilian nobility and one of the leading figures in Catholic tradition. It was about them he wrote under the title "Defense of Tradition," a book that was published in 2017 in translation by the theologian and philosopher Wolfram Schrems and with a foreword by the writer Martin Mosebach in German and is to be regarded as a standard reference work in German.
(Paris) On November 7, André Cardinal Vingt-Trois completed his 75th birthday. He has offered Pope Francis his resignation according to canon law. Who will succeed him as Archbishop of Paris?
The Cardinal has been the head of the Archdiocese since 2005, which had been evangelized by Saint Dionysius of Paris (Saint Denis). According to La Croix, the daily newspaper of the French bishops, the Apostolic Nuncio and the Permanent Council of the Episcopal Conference have already prepared a tripartite proposal, which will be examined by the Congregation of Bishops and presented to Pope Francis for help in any decision. The Pope is completely free in his decision.
He can leave Cardinal Vingt-Trois in office for another two years or more. He may if he wants to retire the Cardinal, he may or may not stick to the proposal of the Bishops' Congregation. While his predecessors rarely deviated from this, Pope Francis also strikes his own course on this point. Above all, he has appointed the important episcopal sees on his own, that is, past the competent Congregation of Bishops. As it happened in Chicago, Madrid, Sydney, Palermo and Bologna, to name just a few examples. Paris is one of the important episcopal sees, which is why the Pope is likely to take a similar approach.
Search for "the most progressive candidate"
It is not just a papal willfulness, but a directional decision. On 19 April 2016, Le Journal de Montréal quoted Quebec's Alain Pronkin, a journalist specializing in religion and good connections with his fellow countryman, quoted Cardinal Marc Ouellet, Prefect of the Congregation of Bishops as saying:
Pope Francis is looking for "the most progressive candidates".
"It is disturbing because it is the task of Cardinal Ouellet in Rome to propose the name to the Pope, but he ignores it and opts for completely different candidates".
A few days earlier La Croix had written:
"It has already happened that Pope Francis rejected all three of the names presented to him by Cardinal Marc Ouellet, Prefect of the Congregation of Bishops, [...] and even sought others from his direction."
In order to seek "others from his own direction," the Pope, in order to obtain information, makes use of the Jesuit order. The decisive factor for Francis, according to Pronkin, is the progressive attitude of the candidate, which must be confirmed to him by a confidant. This confirmation is sufficient. The Pope would then need no dossiers and reports, as presented to him by the Congregation of Bishops. The recommendation of a person whom he trusts is enough to make someone a bishop.
Candidate for the Archdiocese of Paris
Several names have been mentioned in the past for the Archdiocese of Paris, which are given alphabetically:
Msgr. Michel Aupetit, 66, Bishop of Nanterre since 2014
Mgr. Jean-Marc Aveline, 58, Auxiliary Bishop of Marseille since 2013
Msgr. Jacques Blaquart, 65, Bishop of Orleans since 2010, Chair of the Solidarity Committee of the Episcopal Conference
Msgr. Jean-Paul James, 65, Bishop of Nantes since 2009
Msgr. Dominique Lebrun, 60, Archbishop of Rouen since 2015
Mgr. Éric de Moulins-Beaufort, 55, Auxiliary Bishop of Paris since 2008, Chairman of the Faith Commission of the Episcopal Conference
Msgr. Pierre d'Ornellas, 64, Archbishop of Rennes since 2007
Msgr. Laurent Ulrich, 66, Archbishop of Lille since 2008, former Vice-Chairman of the Episcopal Conference
Msgr. Pascal Wintzer, 57, Archbishop of Poitiers since 2012
There is also a name that has recently been given special mention and is also highlighted by La Croix:
Father François-Xavier Dumortier, 69, Jesuit, former Rector of the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome.
For the Paris See, Francis may not only use the Jesuit order to obtain information, but make another Jesuit Archbishop.
The Jesuit Dumortier was born on November 4, 1948 in Levroux, France. His family is from French Flanders. He studied Political Science at the Institut d 'Etudes Politiques de Paris and Law at the Université Panthéon-Assas Paris with a specialization in Legal Philosophy. At the age of 25, in 1973, he entered the Society of Jesus and studied philosophy and theology at the Center Sèvres of the Jesuit order in Paris and at the Weston Jesuit School of Theology in Cambridge Massachusetts. In 1982 he was ordained a priest and in 1990 also took solemn vows in his order. For 20 years he taught philosophy, mainly ethics, at the Paris Jesuit College Center Sèvres of which he was its principal from 1997 to 2003. His research focus was the work of Hannah Arendt. In 2003 he was appointed Pro-Provincial of France. In 2010, Pope Benedict XVI made him the rector of the Roman Jesuit College Gregoriana. This is a post he held until 1 September 2016. Since the beginning of 2014 he is a Knight of the French Legion of Honor. Pope Francis personally made him a Synodal participant for the Double Synod of the Family in 2014. In 2008 he was already talked about as successor to Msgr. Gerard Defois as Archbishop of Lille. Now he is considered the most promising candidate for the Episcopal See of Paris.
On 15 April 2016, just a week after the presentation of the post-synodal letter Amoris laetitia , Rector Dumortier hosted a conference on this highly controversial document. Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, Secretary General of the Synod of Bishops, and Archbishop Vicente Paglia, at that time President of the Pontifical Council for the Family, attended the meeting. In his greeting, Dumortier expressed his unreservedly positive response to Amoris laetitia, in whose establishment he had himself participated as a synod.
His introduction and the conference papers are in video:
New Ways Ministry is proud to announce the presentation of our Bridge Building Award to Father James Martin, SJ, in recognition of his ministry of communication which has helped to expand the dialogue on LGBT issues in the Catholic Church.
The award will be presented at a ceremony on Sunday, October 30, 2016, 2:00-5:00 p.m., at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, 1726 Reisterstown Road, Pikesville, Maryland, 21208 (near Baltimore). Immediately following the presentation Fr. Martin will offer remarks. An hors d’oeuvre reception will conclude the event.
Fr. Martin serves as Editor At Large for America magazine, the national Jesuit opinion journal. In addition, he is one of the most widely recognized Catholic personalities on social media, with a Facebook following of close to half a million people. Fr. Martin has used his communication skills and channels to allow for an extensive discussion of LGBT issues among Catholics of varying ideologies.
Father Antonio Spadaro SJ (Left) with Pope Francis
(Rome) Pope Francis has criticized on numerous occasions what he calls "curas de aeropuerto" ("Airport-priests") who spend their priesthood in order to travel from one airport to another. A travel activity, dedicated to meetings, congresses and conferences, but not to urgent pastoral care. "So let's take a look at the passport of Father Antonio Spadaro, the highest exponent of these new priests direction," said Gabriel Ariza from independent, Catholic News Service InfoVaticana in Spain. His research, he published under the title: "Antonio Spadaro - traveling around the world at the expense of the Jesuits." As the Jesuit Spadaro, editor of the Roman Jesuit journal La Civilta Cattolica and one of the closest confidants of Pope Francis, happily publishes enough information on Twitter about his stays and departures, says Gabriel Ariza, take a look at his Twitter messages. The list is not exhaustive:
(Madrid), the Spanish Jesuit and Bioethicist Juan Masiá Clavel has again defended the killing of unborn children. For years, Father Masiá distinguishes between "abortion and abortion" (see separate report Jesuit Justifies Abortion - And What do the Bishops and Rome do ) "There are situations where it is irresponsible not to perform abortion," the Jesuit wrote on New Year's Day on his blog, which is connected with the Spanish daily El Pais. Critics accuse the Jesuits of being abortion apologists. All knew it, but no one has taken action.
Although Father Masiá is talking about extreme cases, the context of his Speeches on abortion serve at the same time for the justification of prenatal infanticide. Thus the criticism of Info Catolica and the Spanish church historian and Catholic blogger Francisco de la Cigoña on the most recent blog entry by Father Masiá. The most recent opinion has taken place at a moment in which the abortion debate has been rekindled in Spain by a government bill. The Jesuit wrote that in the abortion debate two "extreme opposite positions" are in existence in Spain, one can look at neither as the "only valid" view. Thus, the Jesuit is relativizing the Catholic right to life position and places the culture of death with a culture of life as equivalent and "neutral" on the same level.
"Juan Masiá is still a Catholic Priest and a Member of the Society of Jesus"
"The worst thing is that these statements are not new. They are repeated by the Jesuits for years without anyone contradicting. Quite a few therefore think that this is the teaching of the Church," said de la Cigoña.
Info Catolica wrote: "As we write on the 2nd of January 2014, and Father Juan Masiá Clavel is still a Catholic priest and member of the Jesuit order." In the Order and in Rome "it is known exactly" what Father Masiá does and yet neither the Superior General Father Adolfo Nicolas, or a Roman Pontifical Council [Or even a pontifical commissioner] gets involved. It is time to clarify, so info Catolica whether Masia's position is the Catholic position. If not, then "clear countermeasures" would have to be taken. "I support the criticism of Luis Fernando Perez Bustamante (Info Catolica) completely. I too have had it with Masiá. And Father Adolfo Nicolas and his inaction, " said de la Cigoña.
Father Juan Masiá is Professor of Ethics at the University of Sophia in Tokyo and a research associate of the Center for Peace of the Japanese section of the interfaith World Conference of Religions for Peace (WCRP) in Tokyo, also known as Religions for Peace (RfP).
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
image: La cigüeña de la torre