Pope Benedict is meeting behind closed doors today with the College of Cardinals including those who will join their ranks tomorrow. What are they talking about?
From the beginning, the meeting was characterized as an opportunity for any cardinal to bring up issues he thought was important, but it was also known that the Holy Father had some things he wanted to consult with the college about. According to sources, the four items on the Pope’s agenda were:
- Reconciliation with Traditionalist
- relations between Christianity and Islam
- the status of retired bishops
- and the preparation and use of liturgical texts.
The last two are particularly interesting. Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, brought up the question of how retired bishops can still serve the Church. With the advance of medical care, bishops who’ve passed the mandatory retirement age of 75 often still have many productive years left. While some remain in their dioceses, others are idled. Apparently there was some talk of raising the retirement age to 80. (I hope not, or if it is I hope it isn’t applied retroactively; there’s a few bishops who’s retirement days I’ve been counting down.)
There’s no news on the discussion of the liturgical texts, but I wonder if it has anything to do with the rumors that the apostolic constitution resulting from the Synod on the Eucharist last October will introduce a major liturgical reform.