In the current period of crisis within the Church Militant, bishops and religious superiors commonly explain that they are unwilling to put their heads above the parapet and to criticise the current management of the Latin Church because they have, they feel, a moral obligation to stay where they are so as to to protect their subjects. It would be mere self indulgence to let off their own steam when others would have to do the suffering.
It is easy for those of you who, like me, who have no such obligation, to be critical.
But what about the position when a bishop is just coming up to the age of seventy five?
How do things stand then? If he speaks out, then, before breakfast on the morning of his birthday his resignation will indeed have been accepted. But, well, his card was probably marked anyway, and his resignation would pretty certainly have been accepted without a great deal of delay. The delatores would have done their job!
So why should he not be frank?
Why should he not be frank and decline to submit his resignation? [vide the previous section of this piece, posted a couple of days ago.]
Think of the scenes of mayhem and panic from the top to the bottom of the marbled halls, in the crowded bars and jacuzzis, of the Domus Sanctae Marthae!
Of course, it will not be difficult for Roman functionaries to devise some canonical way of hoofing him out. That handsome, youthful Cardinal Coco will know exactly how to do it!
There's nothing worse, after all, than Naked Tyranny!!
But ... there is something worse: covert tyranny! Bullies fixing things behind the scenes.
My Lord, there are worse things to do than to go out in a cloud of glory ... your Lordship is in good health ... and in good voice ... and articulate ... your Lordship could hit the headlines with a Vigano-style Testimony!!!
My Lord ... you know it makes sense.
Go for it!