BIG UPDATE BELOW!
Apparently the bishops at the Synod are tired of being manipulated.
They created a little lío of their own.
In full view of the Pope, they rose up pretty much as a body and rebelled against the way Card. Baldisseri, who seems to be the chief architect of what may have been a pre-determined agenda, has been handling them.
I am reading Marco Tosatti’s piece at La Stampa.
Synod, more censorship, protests
The General Secretary of the Synod [Card. Balidsseri] announced the decision not to publish the reports of the Circuli Minores [subcommittees by language groups, tasked with contributing elements to the final report]. The announcement provoked the protest of Card. Erdo [the president or chairman for this Synod], and numerous other Synodal Fathers. The Pope, silent and very serious. At last, Fr. Lombardi announced that the reports of the commissions would be made public.
Erdo took the floor, implicitly distancing himself from the report that bore his name, and saying that if that “disceptatio” had been made public, then the others of the Circulo Minores ought to be made public.
His speech was followed by an avalanche from many others along the same line, underscored by thunderous applause.
The Secretary of the Synod, Card. Balidisseri, was watching the Pope, as if in search of advice and lights, and the Pope remained silent and very serious.
Silent also were the Under-secretaries of the Synod, Fabene, Forte, Schoenborn and Maradiaga. [What a list.]
Kasper wasn’t there.
Finally, Fr. Lombardi announced that the reports of the Commission would be made public.
This is a big deal because the bishops didn’t simply roll over and let the appointees running the Synod run them over.
This Synod has been characterized by an unusual amount of information control. There has been little transparency about the workings of the Synod. Instead, the outside world was “informed” about what was being discussed through summaries. Sure, the leadership of the Synod said that the participants could talk to the press on their own, but that’s not the same thing as knowing what went on the Synod hall. Then, what one might be able to imagine was a pre-positioned midpoint report was sprung on everyone, with weird and disturbing paragraphs that didn’t seem to reflect the workings of the Synod over all. That caused Card. Erdo, who had signed it, openly during a presser to give up Archbp. Forte as the perp.
Then Card. Balidisseri determines that the reports of the subcommittees wouldn’t be published. That was a bridge too far.
This in full view of the Pope, who seems not to have shown his hand, but also who seems not to have been pleased at what was going on.
Meanwhile, Nicole Winfield of AP, who seems never to tire of calling Card. Burke a “hardliner” or something like, has a piece about the origin of the language in the infamous midpoint Relatio about homosexuals:
Erdo has already named the official who wrote the section on gays, Monsignor [Archbp.] Bruno Forte, appointed by Pope Francis as the special secretary to the synod. Forte is an Italian theologian known for pushing the pastoral envelope [that’s one way to put it] on dealing with people in “irregular” unions while staying true to Catholic doctrine. [Oh?]
Technically speaking, Forte and all the members of the drafting committee had access to far more material than the bishops themselves since they had the lengthy written speeches each synod “father” submitted prior to the meeting. Those written speeches factored into the draft report, even if the bishops didn’t utter them during the four minutes each was allowed to speak. [Or see them at any point. This was another procedural point that some expressed concern about before the Synod. Everyone was to submit their speeches to Card. Baldisseri ahead of time. Who knows what happened to them then?]
In fact, the Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, said he recalled only one speech out of about 265 about gays during the debate.
So it’s not surprising that bishops didn’t recognize everything in the draft report since these written submissions weren’t made public or distributed to the bishops themselves, and the oral presentations only reflected a summary or particular point that a bishop wanted to make. But at the same time, there is no real way to know which bishop or bishops had proposed such ground-breaking language or whether it was more a reflection of Forte’s view. [The controversial language was “ground-breaking” but Card. Burke is a “hardliner”. Just so we’re clear.]
Left-leaning Religion News Service has also taken up the standard liberal line (big surprise). They also never tire of calling Card. Burke a “hard-liner”, through they use a hyphen. Perhaps liberal outlets are comparing notes. I was amused at the beginning of a piece by RNS’s Josephine Mckenna:
After two days of fighting between happy liberals and angry conservatives, the Vatican dispatched a leading moderate from the US Church to tell both sides to temper their expectations about impending changes in Church doctrine.
The problem is that the speakers at the presser were scheduled a few days in advance.
Notice how Left-leaning outlets always describe “conservatives” as “angry” or “hardliners”. They are clearly meanies. “Liberals”, on the other hand, are happy!
Meanwhile, ¡Hagan lío!
Little known fact…
Did you know that Card. Baldisseri, before he was elevated to the College of Cardinals, was first the Titular Archbishop of Dioceletiana?
Who else has been the Titular Archbishop of Diocletiana?
- Adolph Gottfried Volusius † (22 Jun 1676 Appointed – 17 Mar 1679 Died)
- Jan Kazimierz Opalinski, O. Cist. † (8 Jan 1680 Appointed – 17 Nov 1681 Confirmed, Bishop of Chelmno (Culma, Kulm))
- Maximilien Bormann † (6 Apr 1682 Appointed – 1687 Died)
- Cristoforo Arduino Terzi, O.F.M. † (10 Jul 1945 Appointed – 11 Jul 1971 Died)
- Annibale Bugnini, C.M. † (6 Jan 1972 Appointed – 3 Jul 1982 Died)
- Pietro Rossano † (7 Dec 1982 Appointed – 15 Jun 1991 Died)
- Lorenzo Baldisseri (15 Jan 1992 Appointed – 22 Feb 2014 Appointed, Cardinal-Deacon of Sant’Anselmo all’Aventino)
- Wojciech Zaluski (15 Jul 2014 Appointed – )
What is interesting about this Synod is the role of the media and social media.
Had the social media existed at the time of the Second Vatican Council, it would never have been possible to ram through the radical liturgical “reforms” of the 60’s and 70’s.
UPDATE 16 Oct: 1454 GMT
Apparently, Card. Pell was the first one to rise up against Card. Baldisseri. When Baldisseri made the announcement, Card. Pell took the floor and said that the reports had to be published and that they were tired of the manipulation.
From that point, the bishops also rose up. When Baldisseri repeated his position, he was effectively shouted down.
At that point, Card. Baldisseri turned to the Pope and got the nod to publish.
UPDATE 16 Oct: 1530 GMT:
The reports of the Circuli Minores are available on the Vatican website. HERE
Card. Burke’s would be in Anglicus A. Sample:
For example, where the Relatio appeared to be suggesting that sex outside of marriage may be permissible, or that cohabitation may be permissible, we have attempted to show why such lifestyles do not lead to human fulfillment. At the same time, we want to acknowledge that there are seeds of truth and goodness found in the persons involved, and through dedicated pastoral care these can be appreciated and developed. We believe that if we imply that certain life-styles are acceptable, then concerned and worried parents could very easily say “Why are we trying so hard to encourage our sons and daughters to live the Gospel and embrace Church teaching?”