John L. Allen of NCR on the restructuring of the PCED

My friend the nearly ubiquitous John L. Allen, normally fair-minded former Rome correspondent for the dissenting National Catholic Reporter has an article on the restructuring of the Pontifical Commission "Ecclesia Dei".

Let’s have a look with my emphases and comments.

Pope removes officials seen as responsible for Holocaust-denying bishop row [I hope the editor gave the title to the piece, because this is unworthy of Mr. Allen's high standards.]
By John L Allen Jr
Created Jul 08, 2009

Rome

In what could be seen ["could be" works, I am sure, for the editors and readers of the lefty-NCR, but it "shouldn't be seen"...] as another piece of fallout from Benedict XVI’s January decision to lift the excommunications of four traditionalist bishops, including one who is a Holocaust denier, the pope today restructured the Vatican office that handles relations with the traditionalist world — and, in effect, gently fired the officials who presided over the earlier fiasco

[Stop the presses.  Let's qualify a few things, such as "fiasco".  I agree that the way the Holy See handled news of the lifting of the excommunications was a "fiasco".  But the actual lifting thereof, despite the controversy, was not a "fiasco".  This was a necessary step for the project of securing ecclesial unity, something which even the NCR should want.  Also, no one was "fired", gently or otherwise.  Card. Castrillon turned 80 years old on 4 July.  At 80 it is usual that curial cardinals step down.  It was time anyway, and this was a perfect transition point.  Also, we don't know that Msgr. Perl won't be involved.  In any event, he came from the Cong. for Divine Worship with Card. Mayer, the PCED's first President.  Moreover, the restructuring of the PCED was a necessary and logical next step in the project with the SSPX.  All officials of the Curia serve at the pleasure of the Holy Father.  Restructuring doesn't equate with firing.  The change was not punitive, it was logical.]

As a result of a document issued by the Vatican today, titled Ecclesiae unitatem, Colombian Cardinal Dario Castrillon-Hoyos, who had served as President of the Ecclesia Dei Commission since 2000, and Italian Monsignor Camille Perl, the number two official at Ecclesia Dei, are both out of work.  [Again, Card. Castrillon turned 80 on 4 July and we don't know where Msgr. Perl may go.  I suspect he will go back to the CDW.  Even so, Msgr. Perl isn't a young man, and he has served in the Curia for a long time now.  Men do retire.] The Ecclesia Dei Commission was created by the late Pope John Paul II in 1988 to manage relations with the Society of St. Pius X founded by the late French Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre.

Both men played key roles in the decision to lift the ecxcommunications, [sic] including that of Bishop Richard Williamson, the traditionalist prelate who denied in an interview with Swedish television that the Nazis had used gas chambers and that six million Jews had died in the Holocaust.  [This is the really important issue for NCR, not that of ecclesial unity or the Pope's generosity.]

The so-called “Lefebvrites” rejected many of the reforms associated with the Second Vatican Council (1962-65). Most prominently, traditionalists clung to the pre-Vatican II Mass in Latin, [One tends to "cling" to what one loves and thinks important.] but many also have voiced objections to the council’s teachings on ecumenism, inter-faith dialogue and religious freedom.

In broad strokes, the restructuring announced today is seen by most observers as a sign that the Vatican intends to take a more careful, and perhaps a bit firmer, hand in its dealings with traditionalist Catholics[HUH?  Who are these "most observers"?  I don't buy that at all, unless they are observers who don't really understand what is going on.  "Bystanders", perhaps.  Most "observant observers" observe this as the next logical step in the ongoing process with the SSPX.]

Issued as a motu proprio, meaning an exercise of the pope’s personal authority under canon law, Ecclesiae unitatem brings the Ecclesia Dei Commission under the supervision of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the Vatican’s top doctrinal agency. That means ultimate responsibility for the church’s relationship with the traditionalists will belong to American Cardinal William Levada, prefect of the doctrinal congregation.  [No.... the ultimate responsibility is the Pope's.  As the Pope has said again and again, he has the responsibility in the Church to foster the unity of Christians.]

The Vatican also announced today that the new head of the Ecclesia Dei Commission will be Italian Monsignor Guido Pozzo, 57, [About whom we wrote on 24 June] formerly an official in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and deputy secretary of the International Theological Commission, an advisory body to the doctrinal congregation. [Thus, a man well-positioned for the doctrinal discussion which the PCED will spearhead for the CDF.]

Levada released a statement today stipulating that as far as the Lefebvrite movement is concerned, “the doctrinal questions remain open. Until they’re clarified, Levada’s statement said, the ‘Society of St. Pius X’ cannot enjoy any canonical status within the church, and its ministers do not exercise in a legitimate way any ministry within the church.”  [Let's not get too excited about that, as if it were a new "hard line" with the SSPX.  That statement from Card. Levada merely repeated what the Pope wrote in Ecclesiae unitatem.]

Although the Vatican issued a similar statement at the time of the controversy surrounding Williamson, today’s repetition from Levada [from the Pope] makes clear anew that the lifting of the excommunications in January does not mean that the Lefebvrite bishops are fully “rehabilitated.”  [Old news, but I guess it doesn't hurt to repeat it.]

The Society of St. Pius X includes almost 500 priests worldwide, and claims to have a total following of roughly one million.

Castrillon-Hoyos, 80, who was once touted as a candidate to become pope, is widely seen as a doctrinal conservative who had hoped to engineer the full readmission of the traditionalist movement into the Catholic church. [Yes... that was his job description as President of the PCED.] When the controversy over Williamson erupted, many Catholic insiders [the same crowd as those bystanders, above?] pointed the finger of blame at Castrillon-Hoyos and his staff, suggesting that if anyone in the Vatican should have known William’s track record, it was the Ecclesia Dei Commission.  [Well... indeed they should have.  But the real problem was not the knowlege of the bizarre views of SSPXer Williamson.  Those views had nothing to do with the censure of excommunication.  That point should be made in this article, but it wasn't.  The impression is being offered that the wierd views of Williamson were somehow relevant to the reason for the excommunication.]

In early February, the Vatican spokesperson, Jesuit Fr. Federico Lombardi, appeared to single out Castrillon for responsibility in an interview with the French daily La Croix, although Lombardi later said that Castrillion-Hoyos couldn’t be expected to know the thinking of everyone in the Lefebvrite movement. 

Today’s Vatican statement expressed Benedict XVI’s gratitude to Castrillon-Hoyos and Perl, as well as the pope’s “paternal solicitude” for the traditionalists, “with the aim of overcoming the difficulties that still remain in order to reach full communion with the church.”

This article was tendentious, I think.  Mr. Allen is a good journalist, and he has my continued good will and friendly admiration.  But this was a stumble.
 

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About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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40 Responses to John L. Allen of NCR on the restructuring of the PCED

  1. Sal says:

    People should be THANKING Cardinal Castrillon for his service to the Church.

  2. Gerard says:

    Father,

    It really is an evil thing you do when you when you take your potshots either subtle or overt at Bishop Williamson. ["Evil"? Piffle. Bp. Williamson is not above criticism.] It’s ironic that you take issue with Allen’s attempt to bias readers yet you have no hesitation in calling Bp. Williamson’s views bizarre or weird. [They are bizarre.] Those are characterizations that you simply cannot intellectually prove. [Ridiculous.] They are solely intended to bias people against him. They are dishonest attacks and you should be ashamed of yourself. [Not in the least.]

  3. Finbar says:

    The article is not up to Allen’s usual standards.

    I’m not sure what point Gerard is making: it is hardly a secret that Williamson has a pretty impressive range of crackpot ideas about which he has written compulsively for two decades and more. [Let's not devolve into a discussion of Gerard.]

  4. Liam says:

    This essay seems like an extrapolation from a simpler, narrower point: that the “fiasco”, however unintentionally, created something of a brutta figura that the organization is trying to move past as quickly as opportune. Italians don’t like to wallow in things like this, unlike Americans.

  5. Finbar says:

    How old is Msgr Perl, by the way? He was not a child when he went to Econe with Cardinal Gagnon a year or two before the consecrations.

  6. Jack says:

    I quite like reading williamson’s rantings on dinocorpus: Long summer evenings, a glass of pimms and sniggering at the latest hair brained idea to formed itself from williamsons brain, having said that he has spent the better part of his ecclesial career taking potshots from librals/progressives so its no wonder he sometimes spouts funny stuff; its a pity however becasue some of the stuff he says is emminantly sensiable [Actually, I have received well some of the things that Bp. Williamson has written. But some of his ideas are just strange.]

  7. TomG says:

    Fr. Z, was it not you that observed that, journalistically, “some” and “most” almost invariably mean “I” and “we”?

  8. Spencer says:

    I really believe that this article from NCR only demonstrates the unchristlike behavior that stems from the overly progressive side. Allen himself biases his readers, downplaying the SSPX for their stance on ecumenism, inter-faith dialogue and religious freedom. When in most conversations I have with those who are the targets of NCR, and in some cases NCR itself, are completely close minded about religious practices. They live in perpetual contradiction of what they say. This is enfuriating.

  9. The Astronomer says:

    I tend to doubt that, despite Mr. Allen’s usual even-handedness, any charitable word towards Tradition or reportage on the FSSPX would ever emanate from the NCR. Just look at their contributing writers…McBrien, Chittister…et al.

    Let us pray that Our Holy Father is granted wisdom by the Lord Jesus and protection by His Blessed Mother as he shepherds the Barque of Peter. Pope Benedict knows what he is doing….just keep up the Rosaries and in the end, Her Immaculate Heart will triumph!!!

  10. AlephGamma says:

    IMHO the journalist’s party-line is that the title is the author’s and not from the editor.

  11. stigmatized says:

    by not celebrating mass publicly in the old rite, but drawing attention to it through summorum pontificum, the holy see has set up for humiliation, repeated insult, and degradation all those who worship according to the old usage. if this is what the ‘religion’ of the holy see is then it is nothing more than the owner of real estate. [The way you talk about "the holy see" reveals a lack of fundamental understanding of what is going on.]

  12. Deo volente says:

    Father,

    The Traditional Latin Mass Propers in English blog has a post authored by Robert Moynihan of “Inside the Vatican” — essentially a “news flash.” It contains some interesting insider info, comments, etc. and features a vignette on Msgr. Perl. I hope you can check it over. It would mean or reveal more to one familiar with Rome than yours truly.

    D.v.

  13. Jordanes says:

    IMHO the journalist’s party-line is that the title is the author’s and not from the editor. ***

    No it isn’t. Journalists have to take responsibility for all the stories that go out under their name, but the fact of the matter is that quite often they have nothing to do with the headlines slapped on their stories, and often enough the stories with their by-lines have gone through several editors and not uncommonly is quite different from the stories submitted by the journalists. Allen probably didn’t choose that headline . . . and editors may have tinkered with his article too . . . but no matter how much responsibility Allen bears for this hatchet job of an article, it’s unquestionably an unworthy piece of journalism and definitely an example of NCR wishful thinking and spin. “Seen by most observers” indeed! Next thing you know, he’s going to tell us that experts agree. Bad. Embarrassing stuff, really.

  14. Mark VA says:

    This article conflates, in my view, all Catholic traditionalists with the followers of the SSPX. Mr. Allen doesn’t make it clear at all that there already is a strong, growing, and vibrant traditionalist movement fully within the Church, namely, FSSP. This confusion leads him to write inaccurate statements to the effect that Cardinal Castrillion-Hoyos hoped for “readmission of the traditionalist movement into the Catholic church”. It would be more accurate to say that he hoped to reconcile just the SSPX with the Church. The traditionalist movement already is in the Church.

    I sometimes see similar confusion of all traditional Catholicism with SSPX elsewhere in the Catholic world. I can’t tell whether this is just very sloppy and uninformed thinking, or a willful attempt to present all traditional Catholicism as subsisting in the margins and the shadows of the Church.

  15. AlephGamma says:

    Article tinkeritis by editors (or others) is Verboten was the party-line I got from an SF Chronicle author. I do believe that editors monkey around an article though. [Funny you mention the SF Chronicle. I was interviewed in Rome during "papal April" 2005 by an SF reporter. The article came back with terrible distortion of what I said about Card. Law. It turns out that the editor rewrote the reporter's article to distort what I said.]

  16. Ryan says:

    With all do [due] respect, Fr. Zuhlsdorf, I fail to see how Mr. Allen deserves the “good will” you grant him. This article by Allen is nothing short of deceitful. Maybe if it was some journalist unfamiliar with Rome an excuse could be made, but Allen is, after all, a vaunted Vatican insider. [I know Mr. Allen and have read him for a long time. He is an keen analyst and he tries to be fair. But he does have an editor and that publication has a policy.]

    There is no way he could be such an insider and not know this story is misleading and false. I remember than it was common knowledge that Cardinal Hoyos was leaving this year, long before the January episode. How could Allen fail to know that?

    The article also makes it sounds like Cardinal Hoyos is driving the process of reconciliation with the SSPX. It’s always been clear that Pope Benedict has been the one pushing it, and is more “eager” for it than Cardinal Hoyos has ever been. [I don't think it is correct to diminish Card. Castrillon's role. I am also pretty sure that you don't know the levels of eagerness of any of the players. Who is more eager than the other? Please!] None of the concessions of the last few years would have likely happened, EXCEPT for one man: Pope Benedict. [And Card. Castrillon was also Benedict's choice. Right?] I believe that Cardinal Hoyos sincerely wants reconciliation, but I don’t think he would have lifted the excommunications on his own. [Nor could he have...]

    I trust you Fr. Zuhlsdorf, but I truly don’t understand why you give the benefit of the doubt to someone who has long since proved he doesn’t deserve it. I don’t see how this article can be viewed as anything else but a breach of journalistic integrity. The only other explanation is that Mr. Allen is extremely ignorant on the subject of his expertise. [I thought you trusted me! o{]:¬) ]

  17. AlephGamma says:

    Father, I do not think even journalists are into biting the hand that feeds (especially when the author and editors are in agreement most of the time like the left coast’s SF Chronicle). But the fair minded ones are just like everyone else and mostly have to pick and choose their battles. It just feels to me that this pseudo-sacrosanct dictat (author is responsible) is one those mighty mouse journalist pseudo-axioms that no journalist challenges unless its violation super flagrant. BTW nice interview on Kresta.

  18. AlephGamma says:

    Multi-tasking results in packet (and verb) dropping…

    “its violation IS super flagrant.”

  19. Brian says:

    Mr. Allen may be “fair-minded” about many issues; but not this one.

  20. I am a bit confused here. Don’t the heads of Curial dicastries, tribunals and etc. offer their resignations at age 75 as do diocesan bishops?

    Certainly Cardinal Castrillon ceased to be a Cardinal Elector when he turned 80 but he must have had something going for him since he reamined in office until turning 80.

  21. stigmatized says:

    as it is said…you do not exist until someone looks upon you with love…summorum pontificum has resulted in many people having to ask priests for the old mass in writing, only to be completely ignored. once you ask priests to celebrate mass in your rite you will not be looked upon with love, but will be lucky if they even look your direction. so summorum pontificum actually stops people from existing, and if they do exist it is only for the purpose of scapegoating and humiliation, as this article shows.

  22. Carol says:

    I simply don’t know how anyone could say that John Allen is fair-minded, even-handed or any other description that leaves an impression that he is anything other than what he is – a liberal who rejects the tenets of the faith nuancing just enough to get by.

  23. Mark VA says:

    Stigmatized:

    In our diocese such people are known as “refuseniks”.

    But history teaches us that injustices will not last forever, so take heart.

  24. J.V. says:

    I think a shot should be called as it is yea… Slavish shots indeed, but that’s why I vote THE SOUR GRAPES AWARD …to…

    …DRUM ROLL….plzzz

    Fr. Federico Lombardi !

    Castrillon-Hoyos has worked “very-very hard” and “very very rough and tough” night and day & day and night, I mean traveling on jets around the globe, saying High Latin Pontifical Masses in all time zones, lining up Red Bulls con Leche for breakfast, being a Web Master/Builder of both Clerus and ECD Web Sites (and even advocating certain aspects of vatican.va itself), taking insults from Anglo-American Relations and even Vatican Insiders/Outsiders alike, saying “non placet” to the false appeals of simonist-thieves who want to take from Holy Mother Church her assets and also doing the same Contra Schisma (Sin Falta/Sine Culpa), maintaining an intellectual and social-political balance for his unique Colombian theater, taking heat from Latino Liberal Media and Zionist Groups, dealing with the Traddie Hard-liners/Soft-liners & low-blow punches which he termed “insatiable, incredible,” trying to look through the Unholy Smoke of Satan attacking the Vatican to realize Don Bosco’s Dream, and so on, ztc.

    I think Castrillon tries to see the “bona fide” of all persons, even with the most dangerous, problematic, and challenging situations, whether it’s Pablo Escobar, Richard Williamson, Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, Antonio Garcia, Raul Reyes, Licínio Rangel, or any other … he portrays a “willingness to be open” to all and for all! But at the same time he is an Enforcer–he’s the Milkman from Medellin. That’s right! He said that–don’t forget it! Yes ALL Local Latin Bishops–Got Milk? Castrillon said the Traditional Latin (Gregorian) Mass codified by the Council of Trent and St. Pius V is “Pro Omnibus” not just for the rich or elite, not only for a certain spectrum of intellectuals, not for an isolated group here or there, but for all! All cathedrals! All parishes! All oratories! All missions! All chaplaincies! All Latin altars! All pueblos! All vistas! Ztc…

    I motu-motion that all Bishops ought to “read the black amd do the red” while resting assured the Tridentine-Cap of the Milk Bottle was never screwed shut, that is–never abrogated, obrogated, or derogated–but once and forever for all just as Pope St. Pius V promised in Quo Primum.

    Castrillon made that crystal clear!

    Despite Castrillon preaching “Misercordia, Misercordia…”, he has taken all the scratches, attacks, backlashes, and yes even the betrayals. I can only imagine the anguish and feeling of betrayal that Castrillon felt when recently one of his former Latin priests who worked for him (we’ll call him The Cute Scarface) went outside the Catholic Church to get “married” in the Episcopalian Sect, and brought forth a very ugly (un-cute) scandal worldwide to a certain Pan-American Archdiocese has been shaken to its roots, and still there are many clergy and leaders that don’t REALLY get it!

    And that acceptance, that moral choice of being raised to the Duty and Dignity of the Priest must be nourished through an Orthododx Catholic Spirituality and the Foundation in Sacred Tradition with Tridentine Discipline to give it support. For, lest we forget again, the Council of Trent gave the basis of true Reform of Sacerdotal Life through the establishment of a body to enforce its Sacred Canons, that is called the Congregation for Clergy, but truly named in the ink of Tradition as the “Sacra Congregatio Cardinalium pro executione et interpretatione concilii Tridentini interpretum” which was made a Roman Congregation by Pope Pius IV (Medici).

    Anyhow, I know the “Big Challenge” from personal experiences with some Latin Mass chapels/groups and even to some extent the situation of “episcopi vagantes” that have not yet been admitted an office and a Episcopal See. I can think of a dozen or so bishops who sent their letters of communion, without receiving a canonical mission back, at least not yet. So that does happen, for whatever political reasons, I don’t know! What I do know, what I think people can control is their pledge of Mercy and Forgiveness. It’s true “Bickering Priests” have condemned each other, it’s sad, it’s really tragic. Some won’t even want to talk to the other. Why? There’s reason of Indifference, Mis-communication, and sometimes an implicit desire that never becomes explicit enough to mean anything. Please, reach out your hand to your so-called foes or enemies (I use this term loosely, could be someone you hold a grudge, dislike, lack charity, or just have no deep relationship–you think you have nothing in common or lack eye-ball to eye-ball spectronomy)–and go even “out of space” to moonwalk the extra-mile–nay go to other planets or even go “Where no [Traditionalist] man has gone before”, turn the other cheek, be friendly, try to be “the nicest, the most friendly Traditionalist” they ever met! Don’t cast the “First Stone”! Don’t tell them to make brick without straw, and if the brick offered before falled away or maybe someone even dropped the brick, picked it up for them and hand it back. Yeah–”brick by brick”, that’s it “brick by brick” will all things be restored in Christ (Instaurare Omnia in Christo). But don’t pick up the brick and through it at someone. That’s not nice! Pick it up, hand it to that person, shack their hand (there’s nothing Protestant about that btw), and smile, tell them a joke, give them a healthy–but “A Hearty Laugh” every once in awhile, there is nothing wrong with that!

    CHANGE IS IN THE AIR: The the Cup–nay–the Chalice–of “Caritas in veritate” is about to be shared with O’POTUS, I think it’s time that Zyzzybalubah should remove any forcefields toward “Communio una cum Dinoscopus”, and rather then remaining “out of space”, why not make a Novus Motus Amicus?

    “Can’t we all just REALLY get along?” Don’t you think that is what “THE PRAYER” Really Says?

    Just ask’n. Could you “shed some light” on that? Shed some light, PleazzzZ :-)

    [Incoherent... but entertaining!]

  25. John says:

    Allen is a human piece of shit. No wonder he is ypur friend, Father Z.

  26. John says:

    Allen is a human piece of shit. No wonder he is your friend, Mr. Fr. Z. Keep makng mockery of Bishop Williamson. You only diminish yourself.

  27. Hidden One says:

    Well, John’s latest two comments got the first 4 words right… I might add that personal attacks diminish those who make them, spiritually.

    @JV: I’m curious to know who those bishops are.

  28. John: I think I will leave your comments here, just to show people what sort of person you are… what sort of supporter Bp. Williamson has. Good job!

  29. Andreae says:

    John Allen is no more than a paid piper of the Catholic dissenters. He tries to pontificates on everything as if he’s the Pope. Don’t waste your time reading him or his paper.

  30. John F. says:

    Thank you Fr. Z for leaving the other John’s post up. You helped show that charity MUST go both ways. Just because someone tells someone they made a mistake it is not uncharitable or malicious. Quite the opposite is true. A person shows real concern when they have the courage to confront a serious error rather than dismiss it to avoid confrontation. I don’t intend to speak for you Fr. Z, but from what I have read in your blog you seem to be the type of priest that is willing to forgive unconditionally if a true apology and intent to repent is offered. You also seem to have enough concern for everyone’s souls to do as the Church has always done and present corrections with the intent to rehabilitate rather than punish the offender. Please correct me if I am wrong on any of the points I addressed.

  31. J.V. says:

    @H.O.

    There are many bishops from what I read that have sought in the past an office and Episcopal See.

    We can think back to Arnold Harris Mathew who ended up dying in the Anglican Church, but who “demanded” an Episcopal Career in the Catholic Church. St. Pius X excommunicated him, and he died in Schism functioning as a simple Anglican layman. It’s quite a Tragic Story.

    But today there are various Lines of Episcopi Vagantes seeking a “deal” with Rome.

    I think (correct me if I’m mistaken) the list is very long actually… but in the past names include Thom Sebastian, Terrence Fulham, Anthony Chadwick, 4 SSPX Bishops: Bernard Fellay, Bernard Tissier de Mallerais, Richard Williamson and Alfonso de Galarreta (Plus Georg Schmitz if he is still around?), 4 Greek-Ukranian Rite Bishops (I think associated with SSPX): Eliáš A. Dohnal OSBM, Metod?j R. Špi?ík OSBM, Markian V. Hitiuk OSBM, Samuel R. Oberhauser, Patrick Taylor SVM, Joseph Macek, and many others…either from Thuc, Costa, Matthew, or Vilatte lines.

    Ironically, the TAC, lead by John Hepworth, seeking Roman Communion also claim valid lines, but from the PNCC, and I guess there are about a dozen bishops, maybe more?

    As far as I know, Bp. Rangel, and his successor Bp. Rifan are the only ones who the PCED has declared an Episcopal See & Office of Communion to:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kk_KhRG8J4c

    And of course it was Castrillon who made this happen, back when he was doing double agency work with Clerus and PCED!

    Interesting to note, always pointed out by those seeking investiture, they usually bring this up:

    Bp. Carlos Duarte-Costa ordained Salomão Barbosa Ferraz to the priesthood on July 18, 1945. On August 15, 1945, he consecrated Ferraz a bishop [without papal mandate]. Ferraz was later (1957/1958) reconciled to Rome and was in 1963 appointed to a titular see, even though he was married, and actively ministred as an Brazilian auxiliary bishop in Sao Paulo.

    http://www.catholic-hierarchy.org/bishop/bferraz.html

  32. abbé F.H. says:

    I believe that Mgr Perl was nominated vice-president of the PCED, so the motu proprio tells us about the new president and the secretary. But it seems that Msg Perl is still vice-president. [No, I resolved this. Msgr. Perl is now retired. There is no position of Vice-President for the PCED.]

  33. David says:

    Either Mr. Allen is telling the truth or he is lying about Cardinal Dario Castrillon-Hoyos and Monsignor Camille Perl being fired. [No, I can't accept that. I know John Allen and he would not lie in an article. I think he is mistaken, or that the editor of the NCR twisted his text. But I think it is wrong to say that it is either truth or a lie.] This isn’t spin; this is stating something that is either true or false.

    Based on Cardinal Castrillon-Hoyos’ own comments, Mr. Allen’s claim appears false. Fr. Z claims it is false.

    If it is false, how can this be called a “stumble”? If what Mr. Allen claims is false, it is an unethical misrepresentation. [No, he could be making a mistake in interpretation of the facts.] We can speculate as to motives, but nothing can change the fact any journalist who would willfully [That is the point, isn't it. You leap to the conclusion that because what he wrote is probably wrong, he is therefore deceitful.] misrepresent the facts, and risk defaming the good name of individuals, isn’t a good journalist in the Christian estimation.

    Why continue to rub elbows with such a journalist?

    I’m just ask’n. [I think your have strayed into a rash judgment here. I hope you reconsider what you wrote.]

  34. Mickey says:

    As I see it we have four Bishops adhering to Catholic Doctrine, they are not spreading errors or preaching heresy. They were consecrated validly but, illictly. Granted, one bishop put forth his own personal views concerning the horrific treatment of the Jews which, in no way reflect the views of the SSPX. Then we have the twisted views of the facts by Mr. Allen’s article which just fuels the flames and we have some German Bishops whose miters are turning and one even said Christ didn’t die for our sins. What about the Corpus Christi procession where a round piece of bread was carried around on a stick in Germany. So tell me, all you Cathloics out there who, would you rather be standing with before God come judgment day?

  35. Vianney33 says:

    Father,
    How about if you put the speculation about Mr. Allen to rest by asking him if
    the words in the article are his own or have been edited to portray a
    completely different meaning? I share most of the other commenters thoughts
    on this that he is more and more expressing the views of the publication he
    writes for. It also seems that you have shown concern for what he has written more
    and more lately. Perhaps it is time to call a spade a spade?

  36. RBrown says:

    I am a bit confused here. Don’t the heads of Curial dicastries, tribunals and etc. offer their resignations at age 75 as do diocesan bishops?

    Certainly Cardinal Castrillon ceased to be a Cardinal Elector when he turned 80 but he must have had something going for him since he reamined in office until turning 80.
    Comment by David O’Rourke

    The heads of Ecclesia Dei have always been Cardinals between 75 and 80 yrs old.

    IMHO, the situation with Msgr Perle simply is someone losing his job during a re-org. Levada probably wanted his own man in the position.

  37. RBrown says:

    Ironically, the TAC, lead by John Hepworth, seeking Roman Communion also claim valid lines, but from the PNCC, and I guess there are about a dozen bishops, maybe more?

    As far as I know, Bp. Rangel, and his successor Bp. Rifan are the only ones who the PCED has declared an Episcopal See & Office of Communion to:
    Comment by J.V.

    I would not consider the Rangel-Rifan situation the same as those from TAC. The latter have been historically anti-papists.

  38. Matt says:

    It amazes me what some people will say on a priest’s blog comment box.

  39. This article is in line with what NCR would spin while claiming honest reporting. However, it also seems out of character for John Allen based on his past articles, who is normally “mild” when it comes to dissent-like reporting compared to the rest of NCR. It does make me wonder if his editor played hacker, or he caved into pressure, or his cover is being removed (book pun intended).

  40. Fr. Marie-Paul: No, I now think that Mr. Allen’s take is his actual take on what happened in the restructuring. He really does see this as a punitive move. His latest piece from Rome restates what he wrote in the entry (above), though in a slightly calmer way.

    This is Mr. Allen’s take. I think he is wrong, but it is possible to read the events as he does.