26 November 2018

Fr Aidan Nichols on Episcopal appointments

In August 2017, the finest theologian of the Anglophone world gave a lecture which was partially published in the Catholic Herald. The fact that the full text was not subsequently available gives rise to an inevitable suspicion that Father was pressurised.

That in itself would, if true, be disgraceful enough; a very considerable scandal. The best we humble ordinary folk can do about this is ... for me to remind you by reprinting extracts from the lecture as published in the Herald, and for you to give what publicity you can to what he said.

Today, I would like simply to point out that, more than a year before Cardinal Mueller's disturbing recent words about the sort of questionable individuals, theological illiterates signed up to Bergoglianism, who are being appointed to senior positions in the hierarchy; and before His Excellency Archbishop Vigano's revelations about the same subject, Fr Aidan had spoken with great clarity. His antennae must be very sensitive!

"[The pope's] programme would not have got as far as it has were it not the case that theological liberals, generally of the closet variety, have in the fairly recent past been appointed to high positions both in the world episcopate and in the ranks of the Roman Curia."

"Of the closet variety" is an entertainingly old-fashioned phrase!

It was a few months before Dr Nichols' lecture that, on 19 November 2016, Cupich and Tobin were made cardinals.

The testimony this year of Archbishop Vigano asserted that the appointments of Cupich to Chicago (November 18 2014) and of Tobin to Newark (November 7 2016) "were orchestrated by McCarrick, Maradiaga, and Wuerl ... their names were not among those presented by the Nunciature for Chicago and Newark".

It would be a good thing if, henceforth, the terna of names submitted by Nuncios to the Holy See for a vacant bishopric were to be published. 

God's people should not have to wait for a Vigano (God bless him) to come along before they can know what is being proposed for their own Particular Church. They should not be deprived of the liberty to form their own minds both about the proposed three names, and ... if this occurs ... why all three have been set aside so that the job can be given to another.

They should be treated as Grown Ups.

This is what, in the Anglo-Saxon cultural world, is often known as ACCOUNTABILITY.


E sapelion said...

To continue with my current obsession - things used to be slightly more open, in that the terna was submitted by the Chapter, at least in England. Not something concocted by the Curial bureaucracy (the nuncio) and kept secret. Thus we know that in 1865 as Wiseman's successor the Westminster Chapter proposed: Errington, then Clifford or Grant.

Mick Jagger Gathers No Mosque said...

Pope Francis breaks Catholic traditions whenever he wants, because he is 'free from disordered attachments,' "the Rev. Thomas Rosica wrote Aug. 13. "Our Church has indeed entered a new phase: with the advent of this first Jesuit pope, it is openly ruled by an individual rather than by the authority of Scripture alone or even its own dictates of tradition plus Scripture.

Contrast this Self-Serving (Satanic) Will of Francis versus the privilege of serving Christ described by Father Joseph Clifford Fenton:

The efforts of each man or group of men are sharply limited. The effective work of one defender of Christ may reach a few listeners for a short time. Others will come and there in turn may go. But while men live upon this earth there is no more precious and sacred privilege than that of standing forth and speaking for Christ.

Francis clearly does not want to stand forth and speak for Christ. He thinks he has a better plan than the plan of Our Creator, Redeemer, Lord, and Saviour whom Francis is supposed to serve as His vicar.

Francis refuses to serve Jesus Christ. He is an antiChrist. He serves his own will and, thus, he serves Satan.

Tony V said...

Yes, the terna should be on public record, but more to the point, something has gone very awry with our ecclesiology when we have a single bishop (ie, the bishop of Rome) appointing and deposing bishops at will. I'd be interested in learning more about how we got to this place. Suggestions welcome.

See-hopping, which inevitably stokes careerism, strikes me as a very bad practice as well.

Mick Jagger Gathers No Mosque said...

Trent's advice has long been forgotten:

The same holy council, the same legates of the Apostolic See presiding, wishing to restore a very much collapsed ecclesiastical discipline and to reform the depraved morals of the clergy and the Christian people, has deemed it proper to begin with those who preside over the major churches [bishops], for unblemished character in those who govern is the salvation of those governed.

 (Decree Concerning Reform, Session VI, Chapter I) 

Finally, the same holy council, moved by so many very grave afflictions of the Church, cannot but call to mind that nothing is more necessary to the Church of God than that the holy Roman pontiff apply that solicitude which by the duty of his office he owes the universal Church in a very special way by associating with himself as cardinals the most select persons only, and appoint to each church most eminently upright and competent shepherds [bishops], and this the more so, because our Lord Jesus Christ will require at his hand the blood of the sheep of Christ that perish through the evil government of shepherds who are negligent and forgetful of their office."

Decree Concerning Reform, Session XXIV, chapter I 

A fun exercise would be to try and identify the last Pope who followed this worthy advice