UPDATE 16 Oct 1700 GMT:
Card. Kasper’s interview at ZENIT has, as if by magic, disappeared.
Card. Kasper denied giving the interview, but Pentin had openly recorded it and it was on the record!
Pentin posted it.
Card. Kasper has been at the epicenter of the controversies surrounding the ongoing Extraordinary Synod. He set the ball rolling in a speech to a consistory of Cardinals in which he made now infamous proposals. For example, he suggested allowing the civilly remarried access to Communion under a “tolerated but not accepted” model.
Now Card. Kasper has been interviewed by ZENIT. He made curious comments that have me scratching my head.
First, some background. As I observed the other day, Pope Francis appointed some additional members to the committee to draft the Relatio the Synod will turn in. None of them were from Africa. Today, Marco Tosatti made the same observation. HERE That seems… odd, since Africa is exploding with Christians. However, the fact is that African Catholics are far more doctrinally conservative than their counterparts in the 1st world.
Perhaps their contributions would have … muddied? … the desired results.
Anyway, today Card. Kasper speaks again. Here is the relevant section:
It has been said that [Pope Francis] added five special rapporteurs on Friday to help the general rapporteur, Cardinal Peter Erdo. Is that because he’s trying to push things through according to his wishes?
I do not see this going on in the Pope’s head. But I think the majority of these five people are open people who want to go on with this. The problem, as well, is that there are different problems of different continents and different cultures. Africa is totally different from the West. Also Asian and Muslim countries, they’re very different, especially about gays. You can’t speak about this with Africans and people of Muslim countries. It’s not possible. It’s a taboo. For us, we say we ought not to discriminate, we don’t want to discriminate in certain respects.
But are African participants listened to in this regard?
No, the majority of them [who hold these views won’t speak about them].
They’re not listened to?
In Africa of course [their views are listened to], where it’s a taboo.
What has changed for you, regarding the methodology of this synod?
I think in the end there must be a general line in the Church, general criteria, but then the questions of Africa we cannot solve. There must be space also for the local bishops’ conferences to solve their problems but I’d say with Africa it’s impossible [for us to solve]. [NB] But they should not tell us too much what we have to do. [?!?]
Here is the inverse argument.
Kasper’s view reminds me of when Augustine tried to convince Donatists that the Church wasn’t just in Africa. The Donatists thought they were the only Church and anyone in contact with Catholic bishops was tainted.
I respond that the Catholic Church in Africa is older than the Church in Germany. Not only that, the Church doesn’t subsist only along the Rhine.
The only things missing from what Kasper said here are the words “tribal” and “primitive”.
If I recall correctly, Anglicans tried this too, at the their Synods. They needed to exclude Africans who weren’t going along with their groovy new ideas. How that’s working out for the Anglicans now?
UPDATE 16 Oct 1548 GMT:
From a priest friend:
A few years ago Cardinal Kasper compared London to a Third World country. HERE
And he did not mean it as a complement.
He refused to apologize – and then flew back to Rome claiming to be ill.