An appointment with appointments

This is the traditional season in Rome for speculation about retirements and appoints to curial offices.

So this comes from Vatican Radio:

(28 Jun 10 – RV) Pope Benedict announced the creation of a New Pontifical Council dedicated to the New Evangelization on Monday evening, during the Vespers service marking the vigil of the Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul.

He said he wanted to give the new Pontifical Council the task of promoting a renewed evangelization in countries with deep Christian roots which are now experiencing a sense of the “eclipse of God”, and becoming increasingly secularized.

He said this situation presents a challenge in finding the appropriate means in which to revive the perennial truth of the Gospel of Christ.


Who will take charge of the brand new Pontifical Council for "New Evangelization"? 

I am sure this question is causing you to lose sleep at night.

Also, we don’t really know what this new office will be called officially…. but it will aim at getting God back into the public square (which is what I thought all the other curia offices were about too…).

I suspect that by midweek we will have more answers, now that the Pope made this announcement on Monday, St. Peter and Paul is on Tuesday.  So… what, Wednesday?

By the way, Archbishop Rino Fisichella the embattled President of the Pontifical Academy for Life, will probably get the nod. 

Who will take Fisichella’s place as Rector of the Lateran University? 

Another question I am sure that is helping you burn the midnight oil.

For that role, some are suggesting Fr. Enrico dal Covalo, who did the last papal retreat, who has probably been a ghost writer of some of the Holy Father’s Wednesday audiences on the Fathers (dal Covalo did a three volume Patrology set), and who is of course also an SDB… or Salesian.  The best thing to be right now for promotion in Rome is a Salesian.  In Rome curial wags say that SDB means "Socio di Bertone", rather than "Società di Don Bosco".

These questions might not seem terribly pressing, but do consider that what goes on in the City itself does have an effect on the whole Church.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Wayne NYC says:

    Archbishop Fisichella’s outspoken defense
    of “therapeutic abortion” in the Brazilian
    girl’s case is a position I would call truly

  2. Geoffrey says:

    I am very happy to hear about the creation of this new pontifical council. It is very much needed.

  3. lofstrr says:

    I would like to see this new dicastery called “The Pontifical Council for the Squashing of Secularism.” Make the liberals sweat a bit. But alas, this is why I am not the Pope and the Holy Spirit is certainly wise for that.

  4. doanli says:

    Re-evangelization of the Western World is BADLY needed.

    Thank you, Holy Father.

  5. ljc says:

    Fr. Fessio named rector of the Lateran and Fr. Thomas Euteneuer made President of the Pontifical Academy for Life, both being raised to the level of Bishop.

  6. Hieronymus says:

    I think we have found our solution for the cononical establishment of the Redemptorists of Papa Stronsay, the SSPX, and the traditional orders formerly covered by Ecclesia Dei — they are pretty much the only ones who think that there needs to be any missionary activity and seem to be the most successful at getting vocations and growing.
    I can see it now . . .Cardinal Fellay: head of the new Pontifical Commission for the Reconquista.
    I don’t have my finger to the pulse of the Society, but surely they couldn’t reject that offer!

  7. Lee says:

    Your Holiness,

    Forgive me, but before evangelizing others, don’t we we bady need to stop the de-evangelization that is taking place among Catholics by:

    a) getting the TV and mainstream mass media OUT of the Catholic home.

    b) by getting the Gospels and Lives of the Saints, good secular literature (the Chronicles of Narnia, etc.) back IN.

    c) by mailing Catholic parents a copy of the Baltimore Catechism and asking them to catechize their own children between ages 4-8 especially. This would go along way toward catechizing a generation of parents as well.

    d) by promoting Family Evenings Together as a time of reading together, catechizing the children, playing board games and singing around the piano. This is really semi-homeschooling, the solution to the fact that Catholic schools are out of reach for most Catholic parents. This way of life was very prevalent in the Church before the onslaught of radio and TV and we desperately need to recover it.

    e) In addition, we badly need our bishops to declare centers of de-evangelization such as DePaul University, Notre Dame, Georgetown etc. as no longer Catholic and a menace to the faith.

    Having done all this, by all means let’s evangelize.


  8. Supertradmum says:

    How about Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz, a real leader?

  9. Among it’s members, should be Archbishop Chaput, if part of it’s mission is to get people active in the public square.

  10. If you’re losing sleep about JPII’s call for a “new evangelization”, take a look at this:
    I’m not promoting it; haven’t read it…but Fr. Eutenauer is no “light=weight”; this is something to be considered.
    Pope Benedict knows what he is doing; far more than we can fathom. Let’s pray for him and for the “vision” he is setting before us. God is in charge.

  11. Geoffrey says:

    Fr. Eutenauer’s new book is at the top of my list of books to get ASAP! Very amazing that the name of Ven. John Paul the Great’s name causes such a reaction in demons! If I recall correctly, one of the titles of Saint Anthony of Lisbon (Padua) is “Terror of Demons”… it seems this could also be applied to JPII!

    “The Pontifical Council for the Squashing of Secularism.”

    Not bad, but how would one translate “squashing” into Latin? ;-)

  12. Tom in NY says:

    Congregatio de laicismo exprimendo?
    Congregatio de repropaganda fide? [ROFL!]
    Seriously, it may be difficult to turn some of our preachers into salesmen. But if you have staff for a “coming home” hotline, if you can have sound catechesis from the pulpit, public bible study classes (as so many Reform congretations), if you can hang tags or drop cards at every home in your parish, you’ll have a start. And don’t forget how Vianney worked in a country town rolled over by the Revolution some twenty years before.
    <Salutationes omnibus.

  13. catholicmidwest says:

    Not losing any sleep over any of this. This year, for some reason, I’m hearing this evangelization business left and right inside the church at all levels. Is someone who wasn’t worried before, worried now? Why the timing? Check the behavior of the other Catholics around you. Seriously, nobody was all that worried about this before and really still aren’t. Behavior doesn’t lie.

    And even though this appears to be the topic of the year, Catholics have no idea whatsoever how to accomplish evangelization, and they’re probably not going to manage it. It’s kind of funny to watch actually, and sad. I can tell you 100%, lock stock & barrel, take it to the bank, it’s not going to happen from some office in Rome, or even some class at the diocese. That’s not how evangelization gets done. Not at all. That’s how spending money gets done.

    Evangelization is an entirely different endeavor altogether. It takes dedication and time on the part of individuals who are willing to let GOD reach people through them. No official super-duper conference speaker, even if he is clergy, can teach you how to do this because it’s not like baking a cake using step-by-step directions. If you want to evangelize, you have to stop being touchy with each other. Hello, and if you think Catholics aren’t touchy, you don’t walk through the parking lot after 11AM mass. You can get run over in a minute. As in: there, that’s over with now let’s get the heck out of here.

    Evangelization will get done in the Catholic Church when Catholics start talking about their faith in a positive way in public and acting like selfless Christians for no reason whatsoever except for love of God and one another. Evangelization will happen in the Catholic church when people learn to move over and let God do the work. Evangelization will happen in the Catholic Church when Catholics, at least some Catholics, start taking their faith seriously enough to really be able to explain it in a coherent fashion with the help of Scripture and God Himself as a guide. Until that happens, we might as well spend the money on real estate or something.

  14. catholicmidwest says:

    And the really tragic thing about all this is that before 2002, people outside the church were more reach-able. Now it’s very difficult, you must realize, even to be the conduit for evangelization. There are a lot of people not willing to seriously entertain the Catholic Church at all. IF people wish to evangelize, behavior is going to have to change on a dozen levels, both individually and in the church.

    A little 2-class seminar on “telling your personal story,” which is the usual Catholic strategy, isn’t going to cut it. Many cradle catholics don’t really have much to tell if they’re going to be honest. A sizeable proportion of them feel as if they’re stuck with the church in some way, you realize. A strange realization for a convert like me, but it’s very true. Explains a lot of behavior, starting with the parking lot.

  15. Wayne NYC says:

    More about the “once(?}embattled” Archbishop Fisichella
    from Rorate-Caeli:
    “It would seem that,with his novel doctrine on tolerating
    abortions in situations of “emotional distress’,Archbishop Fisichella
    will have the utmost success in “new evangelization” efforts in
    cocktail parties and formal dinner events from Berlin to Paris,
    from London to New York, from Madrid to Buenos Aires.The new Pontifical
    Council is brought forth with a stain the size of Brazil….
    Auguri monsignor Fisichella!”

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