News Brief

Source: FSSPX News


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Vatican: one nomination and several rumors

As we announced in the previous edition (DICI 186) Cardinal Francis Arinze, Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments was replaced on December 9 by Cardinal Antonio Canizares Llovera, the archbishop of Toledo and the Primate of Spain. Aged 68, the Spanish prelate has dedicated most of his life to teaching. He was notably professor at the Faculty of Theology at Salamanca and at the seminary in Madrid. He is also the founder and president of the European Catechetical team and a director of the revue Teologia y Catequesis. On June 15, 2006, he declared to the Italian press that the policies of the government of the Spanish Prime Minister José Luis Zapatero, making divorce easier and legalizing marriage between homosexuals, was “a death sentence for the family”.

Furthermore, the Italian Daily Il Foglio of November 28, referred to the possibility of the imminent departure of the Prefect of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, Cardinal William Joseph Levada, who has just undergone surgery in the United States.

Under the headline, New Nominations in View or How the International “Tradi” is Feathering His Nest, the modernist revue Golias repeated “this rumor which is being heard more and more”, and offered the following hypothesis: Cardinal Levada will be replaced by the Austrian cardinal Christoph Schönborn, archbishop of Vienna; adding prudently that “other possibilities, however, remain possible: namely, that of the designation to this post of Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski, aged 69, a Pole currently in charge of education, or that of the archbishop of La Plata (in Argentina ), 65 year old Mgr. Hector Aguer.”

Still according to Golias, the Nuncio of France, Mgr. Fortunato Baldelli will come back to Rome to receive his Cardinal’s hat. Among the favorites for the succession to this very important post, the 67 year old Italian archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano has been much talked of.”

(Sources: Apic/Imedia/IlFoglio/Golias)

France: “Skirt Alliance” brings action against archbishop of Paris

On November 6, in an interview in Lourdes, by Notre-Dame Radio for the plenary assembly of Bishops, Cardinal André Vingt-Trois, the archbishop of Paris, replied to a question on the role of women in the celebration of religious services: “the most difficult thing is to find well trained women. The main thing is not to wear a skirt, but to have something in her head.” According to AFP, his words aroused appalled reactions on the radio’s website. To such an extent, that around fifteen women, gathered together under the name of the “Skirt Alliance”, have brought an action against the cardinal for sexist remarks, before the Ecclesiastic Tribunal of the archdiocese.

Returning to this controversy at the microphone of Radio Notre Dame on December 6, Cardinal Vingt-Trois agreed that his remarks had been “tactless and inappropriate”. “Which I regret, because it was the exact opposite that I wanted to express,” he said. According to La Croix, this clarification made a palpable response to the expectations of the “Skirt Alliance” which announced its retraction of the action. (Sources: AFP / La Croix)

Vatican: Statement on the decline in the monastic life

At this moment the Monastic life is going through “a moment of great difficulty” with communities “which are heading for a decline or even extinction.” These were the strong words of Cardinal Franc Rodé, the Prefect of the Congregation for the Institutes of the Consecrated Life and the Societies of the Apostolic life, during the opening of the plenary assembly of the Congregation which took place from November 18 to 20, 2008 on the theme, The Monastic Life and its significance in the church and in the world today. The prelate also warned of the danger of activism and evoked the “great risk” for the monastic life of a “temptation to be visible and over exposed.” (Source: Imedia)

Norway: Lutheran bishop and his wife ruined by the gambling debts of their son

The Lutheran bishop of Stavanger, Ernst Baasland, has announced his resignation as from June 2009. He and his wife have been ruined by the gambling incurred debts by their son on the Internet. He felt that this situation of bankruptcy would affect his ministry. “It has been very hard to discover the many loans and to see the pain inflicted on the lenders,” he stated in a press communiqué reported by the Ecumenical agency ENI.

In September 2008, it was revealed that the son of the bishop, Bjarte Baasland, aged 34, had spent 60 million Norwegian krones in the last few years. In November, he acknowledged having misappropriated more than 26.6 million Krones. He also admitted having abused the trust of his mother, who had borrowed significant sums of money from family friends, in seeking to come to his aid. At the end of November, the supreme court of Norway declared that the bishop guilty of negligence. In total, his son’s debts amounted to 50 million Krones, those of his wife, 33.7 million and of the bishop himself, 16.6 million Krones. (Sources: Apic /ENI)

- This trivial piece of news proves, if proof were needed, in ascending order of importance,:1) the danger of games of chance ; 2)the necessity of a firm parental authority ; 3) the wisdom of the Roman discipline of priestly celibacy.


Vatican: According to Benedict XVI the separation of the Church and the State is “an advance for humanity”

On December 13, during the visit of the Italian Ambassador to the Holy See, the Pope recalled the forthcoming celebration of the 80th anniversary of the Lateran Accords, signed in February 1929. On this occasion, he emphasized that: “not only did the Church recognize and respect the separation and the autonomy” between the Church and the State, but she rejoiced in this “great advance for humankind and this fundamental condition for her own freedom and the accomplishment of her universal mission of salvation of all peoples.” At the same time, said Benedict XVI, “the Church feels it her duty, following the laws of her own social doctrine, (…) to awaken in society moral and spiritual strength, in contributing to opening wills to the true demands of good”. “This is why, in recalling the value of certain ethical, fundamental principles for the private life, but also and above all public life, the Church contributes de facto, to guarantee and promote the dignity of the person and the common good of society,” he explained. (Source: Imedia)