Consistory talk

Consistory talk

The Italian media is full of talk about a consistory to create new cardinals. This isn’t anything new—there’s been talk for months—but it’s reaching a fever pitch. Catholic World News provides some good analysis.

The current rumor is that the consistory would be announced on February 22 and would be held on March 25. This would be doubly unusual. The pattern under John Paul II was that consistories were announced during a Sunday angelus; February 22 would be a Wednesday general audience. And consistories are rarely, if ever, held during Lent, which March 25 is. On the other hand, March 25 is the Feast of the Annunciation, a solemnity, and suitable for this kind of celebration.

As for the red hat recipients, some are obvious. The heads of Vatican dicasteries who are not yet, would definitely become cardinals: Archbishop William Levada of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and Archbishop Franc Rode of the Congregation for Religious, as well as Archbishops Josef Cordes, the president of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum; Stanislaw Rylko, the president of the Pontifical Council for the Laity; and Angelo Comastri, the archpriest of the Vatican basilica. It is likely that if there is going to be a shakeup of the curia, i.e. retirements and appointments, they will happen before the consistory so the new heads can be made cardinals sooner rather than later. It doesn’t mean the appointments will happen before the 22nd. Names are often added to the list after the initial announcement of the consistory.

Archdiocesan cardinals

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,

Written by
Domenico Bettinelli
  • At this point, I’d be pretty disappointed to see Bishop O’Malley made a cardinal. He’s been a pretty serious let-down, at least as far as can be told from publicly available evidence. He’s said nothing and done nothing about the immensely powerful politicians from his state that continue to call themselves Catholic and promote the murder of millions of the unborn. I’d hoped he’d provide leadership in the USCCB on this issue and others, but the courage he showed in other appointments was evidently not equal to this task…

    It’s also a little surprising to see the idea that folks consider the prospect of the next papal election as something off in the far future. The Holy Father (God Bless him), will be 79 years old on April 16th.

    As much as I love the Holy Father and his writings, my enthusiasm for watching his appointments has waned with the incomprehensible naming of Bishop Niederauer in San Francisco. He actually appears to be a significant step down from Bishop Levada, and also appears to be a pretty solid member of the Mahony club, God help us all. Here’s praying I’m wrong.


  • I think Archbishop O’Malley shows courage to get up in the morning and go to work. 

    At 61, if he’s given the red hat, he’ll be instant papabile. 

    I just thought of something.  O’Malley’s birthday is June 29th, feast of Sts. Peter and Paul, and the next (and last) pope on the list of St. Malachy is Petrus Romanus.

  • My predictions are that O’Malley will get the red hat as will Levada and Dziwisz.  I think Archbishops Foley is a long shot as is Archbishop Burke of St. Louis.  Actually, I think it would be a good move to restore St. Louis as a cardinalatial see and, based on Archbishop Burke’s courageous stands lately, would be well deserved.

  • Seamole,

    Perhaps this sounds like backpedaling, but I actually agree with your statement re: Abp. O’Malley. I think any orthodox (and O’Malley fits that description) Bishop or priest has to have guts to get up in the morning and do his job.

    What I’m saying is that there are different levels of courage. I’d hoped that Abp. O’Malley was one of those rare men (like Abp. Burke) with the incredible fortitude necessary to do his very hard job heroically. Because IMO, heroes are needed at this point in time, especially in the episcopacy.

    Leander- I agree on all points, especially with regard to Abp. Raymond Burke. He is a hero for Christ, in my opinion.


  • All,

    I agree that Archbishop O’Malley possesses immense courage simply to get up from bed and face the Hydra of clerical heresy, poor doctrinal formation, complacently pro-Democrat ethnic voting patterns especially among Irish Catholics, and a hostile secular media environment in this Archdiocese.  His task is daunting, and while I too long for some bold action such as excommunicating the entire lot of faux Catholic politicians (irregardless of party) in this state or firing his chancery bureaucrats who teach heresy or exiling the notoriously heretical priests who operate in his archdiocese, I also realize that he can’t do it all at once. 

    Also, having friends in St Louis, I am happy that they have Archbishop Burke.  I hope he gets the red hat.

  • While I appreciate how much people like Archbishop Burke (and others like Archbishop Chaput) for their willingness to be outspoken (I like that too!), someone of the style of Archbishop Burke would have been a DISASTER here in Boston.  His confrontational style would have been the wrong solution to what ails us here.  Noone needs the Archbishop of Boston to say that John Kerry or Ted Kennedy isn’t doing a good job of practicing their faith.  EVERYONE already knows that. Should O’Malley excommunicate them?  When we’re trying to recover from everything here?  Is that a good way to rebuild our church?

    Archbishop O’Malley is one of the best genuine, holy, leaders in the Church.  When you meet him one-on-one, his sincerity comes through and you know you’re dealing with a true shepherd, not a bishop that wants to be a CEO, a politician, a media darling, a rock-star, or a Pope. 

    Not all priests and bishops are born to be confrontational.  Thank God!!  While we need more Burkes and Chaputs (too few bishops in the USCCB are willing to do this) we don’t need ALL bishops to be cut out of that mold.  Certainly we don’t need that type of leader in Boston at this time. 

    I ask people to really appreciate what we have here in Archbishop O’Malley.  He strives for holiness everyday and might someday be a saint.  He is a great spiritual leader, yet he’s generally non-confrontational.  It’s incorrectly assumed that bishops/priests that aren’t confrontational “lack a spine.”  That’s not true in the case of our leader.  Certainly Jesus was confrontational at times, but other times he was gentle with sinners (and all of us are sinners). 

    The Church needs leaders like Burke/Chaput AND O’Malley.  We’re lucky we have O’Malley here in Boston, as he is a credible messenger that people will listen to.  The Church massively betrayed our trust under the previous regime – O’Malley (I pray), over time, can help restore it.  Someone that would come in confronting the Kerry’s and Kennedy’s of the world might energize a small group but create many more open wounds to those that really don’t know what to make of their Catholic faith – through little fault of their own – there have been 2 generations of Catholics in MA that have been taught garbage in CCD.  Let’s keep all 100 sheep in the fold now.

  • Bill,

    A disaster in Boston? You mean as opposed to the disaster of having John Kerry run for president and claim that he’s a faithful Catholic? Or the disaster of having these guys receive Communion at Abp. O’Malley’s installation Mass?

    I think there is plenty of disaster already, and I think the kind of courage that Abp. Burke has shown is the right thing for every situation.

    We’ve had 40 years of utterly non-confrontational spinelessness. It has demonstrably failed. It’s time for something else.


  • Rob –

    Was Our Lord Jesus confrontational in EVERY situation?  Did he shout down the tax collectors and rebuke the sinners before he would dine with them? 

    Non-stop confrontation of everyone not living up to their calling seems more like the Pharisees than Christ.  Definitely not right in this situation.

    Have you ever been in a leadership position Rob?  Do people join you and follow you when you confront them and point out their flaws before you listen to them?

    Non-stop confrontation is not the answer for Boston now/yet. 


  • Bill,

    You’re strawmanning me a bit. I certainly didn’t suggest non-stop confrontation. Nor did I suggest shouting anyone down. I suggested that courage is always the right thing. Sometimes courage combined with prudence and mercy dictates a confrontational action, sometimes not.

    Indeed, what I’d suggest is that we stop being shouted down, and stop giving in at virtually every turn.

    Being confrontational when it’s appropriate is not equal to “non-stop confrontation”. Courage, as demonstrated by Abp. Burke, is always needed.

    If I may point out: One of the first times that Abp. Burke came to my attention was when a “catholic” politician he had been *privately* counseling took the Archbishop’s letters public. Only at that point did Abp. Burke comment publicaly at all. That’s exactly what I’m talking about. First, act privately. If that doesn’t work, and it seems the right thing to do, take more public and forceful action.

    At absolute minimum, when pro-abort/pro-gay-marriage/anti-Catholic Catholic politicians invoke their Catholic background as if they are following Church teaching, speak out strongly so that everyone knows the truth. Then at least you don’t have heretics speaking for you in your own diocese.


  • To Rob:

    Your comments clarified the issue perfectly: ‘Being confrontational when it’s appropriate is not equal to “non-stop confrontation”. Courage, as demonstrated by Abp. Burke, is always needed.

    First, act privately. If that doesn’t work, and it seems the right thing to do, take more public and forceful action.’

    Right on!  I think we’ve had way too much private counseling and gentle cajoling of the scandalous pro-abort/pro-sodomy allegedly “Catholic” politicians in this state (and others I might add) to vote the Catholic way.  But without exception, these politicians arrogantly take the private counseling they’ve received and throw it back in each bishop’s face through the media and continue their obstinate persistence in heresy and cooperation with evil.  At that time, it is time for the bishop to throw them out publicly.  See 1 & 2 Timothy and 1 & 2 Titus.

    I too like and respect Archbishop O’Malley, but he needs to act and act now.

  • But, you know what?  Even if the bishop did “throw them out publicly,” it has gotten to the point where nobody respects bishops anymore.  The whole thing is rotten, except for a handful of bishops, a host of priests, and the Holy Father.