Some curial appointments


Three U.S. prelates given Vatican slots by Benedict XVI

Vatican City, May 6, 2008 / 11:03 am (CNA).- Today Pope Benedict appointed members to the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts and the Congregation for the Clergy. Among the appointees are two American archbishops and one cardinal.

The Council for Legislative Texts’ main task consists of interpreting the laws of the Church – both the laws concerning the Latin Rite and the common laws of the Eastern Catholic churches.

The new appointments are: Cardinals Giovanni Battista Re, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops; Ivan Dias, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples; Lluis Martinez Sistach, archbishop of Barcelona, Spain; Oswald Gracias, archbishop of Bombay, India; William Joseph Levada, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and Leonardo Sandri, prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches; Archbishops John Joseph Myers of Newark, U.S.A., and Raymond Leo Burke of Saint Louis, U.S.A.

The Congregation for the Clergy deals with the formation and continual training of priests. It also oversees any efforts to enhance the pastoral ministry of priests and the distribution of clergy around the world.

Pope Benedict has appointed Cardinals Polycarp Pengo, archbishop of Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania; Marc Ouellet P.S.S., archbishop of Quebec, Canada, and Jorge Liberato Urosa Savino, archbishop of Caracas, Venezuela to the congregation.

Also appointed by the Holy Father are: Archbishops Tomash Peta of Maria Santissima in Astana, Kazakhstan; Raymond Leo Burke of Saint Louis, U.S.A. and Willem Jacobus Eijk of Utrecht, Netherlands.

Archbishop Burke is getting more work on his already full plate.   Some opine that he might replace Card. Vallini, were the later be made Vicar of Rome. 

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  1. Patrick says:

    Wow. So, now Archbishop Burke is on the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, the PCILT, and the Congregation for the Clergy !!! Sounds like he’ll have to be in Rome a lot…and maybe permanently. Does the Prefect of the AS have to reside in Rome? Or could Arch. Burke do that from St. Louis?

  2. Romulus says:

    I was just thinking how great it would be for Burke to succeed in Chicago. But I agree, how much Roman business can he take on and not have to live there?

  3. TNCath says:

    As talented, articulate, and qualified as Archbishop Burke is, I’d really hate for the United States to lose him to Rome. If he does get a prefect appointment, I hope we have a few more Archbishop Burkes in key positions here at home beforehand.

  4. Patrick says:

    So, maybe he gets a red hat in Rome…and a white one a few years later.

    Chicago does need him, though. Card. George has done great things, but now it needs someone to take it to the next level.

  5. Brian Day says:

    No, no, no.

    Archbishop Burke needs to go West, not East. Send him to California to clean up the mess here!

  6. Matt Q says:

    TNCath wrote:

    “I hope we have a few more Archbishop Burkes in key positions here at home beforehand.”


    Burke and George are great bishops and definitely a plus for Tradition.

    Yes, we can only hope and pray there are more like them in the wings waiting to make their entrance. It seems like a lot of the younger bishops are Traditional-leaning. Look at Bishop Burbidge of Raleigh. Young guy ( whom a couple of girls I know said he’s the most handsome bishop they’ve even seen LOL ) who’s open to the Tridentine Rite and highly praised by Father Z.

    Bishop Finn–I think–who spoke at the Catholic Prayer Breakfast when the Holy Father was here, gave an excellent talk and the MC of the event said commented afterwards that “we’re in good hands.” EWTN carried that. It was good to see and there were a lot of great talks, not all but still a good, solidly Catholic event. It was the President spoke there also.

    In any case, may God pour His Grace on Los Angeles!! We need relief here also. Everyone, please pray. 2011 will be a defining moment here when Cardinal Mahony retires.

  7. Aelric says:

    Would cloning Archbishop Burke be an example of an illicit means to a good end?


  8. Patrick says:

    Matt Q,

    There are many good bishops in the midwest. In fact, in IL, IN and WI, all of the bishops are very good. It seems that all of the young priests being made bishops are very orthodox. The landscape is quickly changing.

  9. Happy in St. Louis! says:

    Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s Bishop!

    Speaking from St. Louis, I have to say I am perfectly happy with the current arrangement, thank you very much. When I wake up on Sunday, I have a choice of three different TLM’s to attend, all within 20 minutes of my home. If I want to lengthen the drive time, I can get that up to five or six. I get to listen to the heretics rage on the radio every time the good Archbishop does his job, and every time the Holy Father puts another something on his plate I get to hear the speculation in the media about whether or not it counts as support/reward for some unpopular position the good Archbishop has taken. As I said, I am very happy with the current arrangement, and do not enjoy exercises in creative ways of removing him from his current post!

  10. ArlingtonDio says:

    “No, no, no.

    Archbishop Burke needs to go West, not East. Send him to California to clean up the mess here!”

    California? Nah. He needs to be made a Cardinal of the (Arch)diocese of Arlington to show Abp. Wuerl how it’s done.

  11. TNCath says:

    Honestly, I was hoping St. Louis would be restored as a cardinalatial archdiocese. and that “Cardinal Burke” would be able to remain in place. However, I suppose we must be open to whatever the Holy Spirit wills. Ironically, Archbishop Burke may have more influence on what happens in the Church in the United States in a position at the Vatican than he might have as an archbishop in the U.S! Regardless, wherever Archbishop Burke goes, he will no doubt make a significant contribution to the “new springtime” in the Church.

  12. David D. says:

    How about just declaring the United States as one Metropolitan Archdiocese
    with Archbishop Burke as Cardinal Archbishop…then everyone can have him!

  13. Tom says:

    The various names mentioned as good bishops in the US makes many of us on the eastern side of the pond extremely jealous (in a truly Catholic sort of way).

    We’re hard-pushed here to name one bishop of the calibre of Archbishop Burke or Bishops Bruskewitz, Burbage and Finn – though we do have our fair share of Tod Brown’s and Donald Trautman’s, to say nothing about our own version of Cardinal Mahony.

    May the good Lord look kindly on the responsibilities taken on by Archbishop Burke.

  14. embajador says:

    Funny the post given to Cardinal Sistach of Barcelona. Right now there is a major uproar going on in his diocese on account of one of his priests having publicly declared that he (the priest) personally funded the abortions of several women.

    Calls from gravely concerned priests and lay people to take hard action on this particularly priest have been responded with virtual absolute silence from the Archbishop, except for a less than half-baked note from the prelate.

    More (In Spanish) here:

  15. Jeanne says:

    We envy all that have good Holy bishops. We have been begging our bishop since last September for the Extraordinary form of the Mass. He continues to tell us to be patient even though we have a qualified priest to say the Mass. He is up for the position in New York and we are very fearful that he will leave and not give it to us as promised. Please keep the people in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee in your prayers. We need many more bishops like Archbishop Burke.

  16. John says:

    The Archbishop of Milwaukee is an honest man. I have never known him to not follow through with something he has said he will do. I knew him when I was in the minor seminary in St. Louis and went to him for spiritual advice on many occasions. He was then and still is an true Roman Catholic faithful to the Church and her teachings.

  17. Marc says:

    I love AB Burke! He has given us in the Midwest, as well as the rest of the USA, many gifts such as the new Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe and the Marian Catechist program. I think it would be a good thing if he were in the Vatican as he could tell of the problems of the USA (such as in California).

    I hope our new Archbishop will be a leader in the same manner as AB Burke has been over the years.

    St. Paul, MN

  18. Paul Murnane says:

    In any case, may God pour His Grace on Los Angeles!! We need relief here also. Everyone, please pray. 2011 will be a defining moment here when Cardinal Mahony retires.
    Matt Q

    Matt Q,

    2011 is a defining year for California. The bishops in LA, Orange and SF will all be 75 that year. What an opportunity. May God bless Pope Benedict with many more years.

  19. Steve says:

    Anybody got information on the Church in Spain? The English and Scots used to train their priests at the local university in Valladolid. Talking to one of the local bishops, he told me that the course in question had become “peculiar”. The Scots pulled out and moved to Salamanca but they have no vocations. The English use their facility in Valldolid as a pre-seminary. What on earth has happened to the Spanish? The Church down there seems devastated.

  20. Patrick says:


    I thought Milwaukee has EF Masses by ICKSP at St. Stanislaus?

  21. Jeanne says:


    We live an hour north of Milwaukee and an hour south of Green Bay. I know that we shouldn’t complain because we only have an hour, but many large families are driving a great distance and giving a lot of money to the oil companies. (choir,serving practice etc.) We just don’t understand why we are being put off. As the old saying goes “honest is as honest does”.

  22. PMcGrath says:

    Abp. Burke to succeed Cardinal Egan in New York!

  23. Maria says:

    I like Patrick’s comment about red hats and white hats…

  24. Andy says:

    Milwaukee does have the EF at St. Stanislaus.

  25. St. Louisan says:

    First I’ll say I’m St. Louis, but I’d like to point out that if you want to “clone” a good Bishop (and those who have never met Archbishop Burke can not really imagine how saintly a man he is) he has to fulfill his role as Spiritual Father. If you want more Archbishop Burke’s give him time to train priests, to name other bishops. A bishop is married to a diocese and it takes time for that to bear fruit. So often in the US we move one good guy, be he priest or bishop, from disaster to disaster, so he can just barely plug the damn before he is sent off to a even bigger mess as a reward. If our saintly bishops are to sent from one disaster to another they never have time to really change a diocese. The monastery at Cluny reformed the whole of the western Church. If we keep wrenching bishops away from their diocese, their “wives,” once they have put the fires out, how can anybody ever rebuild?

  26. Escandal says:

    Cardinal Lluis Martinez Sistach has a priest in his diocese; Manel Pousa, who in an interview in a Spanish newspaper, acknowledged that he had paid abortions, thus demonstrating that it is progressive. The Cardinal has not done anything with this person. From Spain we need, that we uphold our pastors of these scandals. And the Vatican rewards Martinez Sistach appointed member to the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts and the Congregation for the Clergy.

    I do not speak English well, I hope you will understand …

  27. Dilaf says:

    About Cardinal Sistach and the priest funding abortions, check this:

    It´s in spanish.

  28. Dennis Martin says:

    Please, everyone, keep in mind that even the best bishop cannot “fix” or “clean up” a diocese all by himself overnight. The worse the situation he steps into, the more limited he is in what he can do. A bishop stepping into a situation where the majority of his clergy are “progressives” and have had their way for decades will face open revolt if he tries to move too fast. And while, in theory he could crack down with iron hand and show them who\’s boss, in practice, he cannot. A bishop who “loses” the majority of his clergy (and the people they have shaped along their own lines) cannot govern effectively. They know that, the bishop knows that. It is part of a good bishop\’s armament to have the prudence to know where the tipping point is and how to do what he can at the pace that circumstances permit.

    When traditional Catholic laity turn on a good bishop because he’s not “cleaning up the mess,” they stab him in the back. Chicago is a good example. The carping at Cardinal George from some traditionalists does not help achieve the goal they (and he) want–a restoration of vibrant Catholic faith and life.

    Dreaming of how Archbishop Burke could, like Superman, fly into Archdiocese X or Y and \”clean it up\” is not really helpful. As an earlier poster rightly pointed out, the main way that a good bishop can turn around a diocese is the same way John Paul and Cardinal Ratzinger laid the foundation for the turn-around that is just now moving into high gear: by going for the next generation of priests and people, not by knocking heads of recalicitrant 1960s and 1970s-era clergy and CTA types together. That only makes cause celebre martyrs of them and they know that the media is on their side. The bishop becomes the bad guy and gets relegated to the dustbin of history.

    Going for the next generation, winning for the cause as many of the clergy he inherits as he can–these are what a good bishop can do when he steps into a Stygian diocese that needs mucking out. But that means that the change a Cardinal George inaugurated 10 years ago will only really be visible 10 years from now.

    Sadly, too many frequently “burned” traditionalists refuse to believe that real change is underway, hidden from view in some ways, in the seminary or in key diocesan offices. They cherish their understandable bitterness at having been betrayed so many times when they complained to bishops over the last 30 years and were ignored. So they assume that “nothing is really happening.” I could name specific examples of the ways the groundwork is being laid for future renewal in Chicago right now, but this post is already too long.

    It\’s hard to be patient after so many decades of being ignored, even abused, but things are happening, in large and small ways, in many different places. Will it be enough to return us to the vibrant Catholic culture of the 1940s and 1950s? No. And, as vibrant as that was, it had it\’s flaws and breached walls that permitted the craziness of the 1960s and 1970s to take place. The future Second Spring, as Benedict and John Paul II told us many times, will not be a return to Christendom but to a missionary, evangelistic, martyr Church–vibrant but a minority in the Culture of Death. What is asked of us is faithful Witness, not Cathedral-building-Christendom-making triumphalism.

    Where “rad trads” hanker after the latter rather than the former, they actually impede the Renewal rather than aid it.

  29. Dennis Martin says:

    Correction to my previous posting: Augean, not Stygian, in case anyone was trying to follow my allusion and coming up frustrated.

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