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Friday, January 06, 2012

Cardinals


- cardinals, Brother Sun, Sister Moon

Jesuit Thomas Reese has a post at In All Things about the pope choosing some new cardinals. I was interested that one of the choices is a Jesuit and one is NY archbishop Timothy Dolan.

The choice of the Jesuit, Karl Joseph Becker SJ, is a little surprising because Ignatius seemed to be against Jesuits becoming bishops, and cardinals usually must be bishops before becoming cardinals ....

Jesuit priests at the time of their solemn and final profession in the Society of Jesus promise: I will never strive or ambition, not even indirectly, to be chosen or promoted to any prelacy or dignity in or outside the Society; and I will do my best never to consent to my election unless I am forced to do so by obedience to him who can order me under penalty of sin (Constitutions S.J., Part X, N°6 [817]). Yet because of various reasons and in different circumstances—for example, need of a bishop in an area where the Church has still to be developed, recognition of a theologian's outstanting contribution to theological reflection, etc.—several Jesuits have been made bishops or even cardinals. In such cases they remain only nominally Jesuit, as they lose active and passive voice within the Order and are no longer under the obedience of the Superior General. - Wikipedia

But the choice of Timothy Dolan is not surprising - it's depressing. He seems to be liked very much, though as far as I can see, his one claim to worthiness seems to be that he's jovial. The mean-spiritedness with which he's battled gay rights is well-known (Gay Marriage: New York, not North Korea), he's a signatory of the Manhattan Declaration, his dealings with the sex abuse problem have been checkered, and he's no friend to the future possibility of married priests or women's ordination. This from his past interview on 60 Minutes ...

[...] But if you think Dolan plans to push for changes in those doctrines and beliefs, think again: despite the jolly open demeanor, he's about as conservative as they come ........

"I don't wanna see changes in the church when it comes to celibacy or women priests or our clear teaching about the sanctity of human life and the unity of marriage between one man and one woman forever. I'd love to see changes in the church in the very area that you're hinting at over and over again, in the perception of the church as some shrill scold. We need to change that," Dolan said.

Dolan says he wants people to celebrate the beauty, charity and timelessness of the church, and not focus so much on what the church prohibits. "Instead of being hung up on these headline issues, let's get back to where the church is at her best," he told Safer.

"But the headline issues are where people are living their lives. And an awful lot feel that the church is going down the wrong road," Safer said.

"Yeah, I guess, you got two different world views there," Dolan replied.

"And you ain't gonna change," Safer remarked.

"I'm in one world. You're in the other," Dolan replied, laughing. "I'm glad you're visitin'."


In other words, he's a perfect choice for cardinal, from Benedict's point of view ... the college of cardinals elects new popes and thus the present pope can more or less stack the deck of the future in his ideological favor :(


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