Surprise! Today Card. Scola of Milan received his pallium from Benedict XVI.

palliumI saw in the Bolletino today that at Castel Gandolfo Pope Benedict XVI imposed the pallium today on Angelo Card. Scola, the new Archbishop of Milan.

In the normal course of events, the Pope gives the pallium to newly appointed archbishops on the Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul in St. Peter’s in Rome.

The Pope can give the pallium to whom it pleaseth His Holiness of Our Lord to do so.  The Pope can choose when and where to do this.

This unusual move, however, underscores the importance of the Archdiocese of Milan.  The imposition also could have been accelerated by the fact that this was a Cardinal Patriarch of Venice moved to be Archbishop of Milan.  The dignity of those offices could suggest a different schedule.  Also, it may say something about what Benedict thinks about Card. Scola.

Finally, and I don’t have any information or insight on this, there may be something going on in Milan or the province which could require Card. Scola to fill his role as Metropolitan.  In that case, it would be handy if he had his pallium.


I checked the website of the Archdiocese of Milan and found that today was also the 20th anniversary of Card. Scola’s consecration as a bishop.


A friend sent a shot of his invitation to the event.

UPDATE 22 Sept 1924 GMT:

A contact wrote to explain that the imposition of the pallium on this date had little to do with the 20th anniversary of Card. Scola’s consecration.  He was scheduled to get it a couple weeks ago, but he became ill and couldn’t make it then.

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  1. Jon says:

    “Also, it may say something about what Benedict thinks about Card. Scola.”

    I’d say so. Pope meets pope!

  2. TNCath says:

    Definitely an unusual move on the part of the Pope that seems to speak volumes about the esteem His Holiness has for Cardinal Scola. He is considered a front-runner among those who speculate on potential papabile. Interestingly, while I have seen a stole worn over choir dress, I’ve never seen the pallium worn over choir dress.

  3. irishgirl says:

    ‘Pope meets pope’…Errr, Not. Yet.
    May our Holy Papa Benedict continue to reign gloriously!

  4. Elizabeth D says:

    Jon that was what I thought too. I don’t know much about Cardinal Scola but there is not much room for ambiguity here about how Pope Benedict thinks of him.

  5. Centristian says:


    “Interestingly, while I have seen a stole worn over choir dress, I’ve never seen the pallium worn over choir dress.”

    That does seem odd, doesn’t it. I always regarded the pallium as a strictly liturgical vestment, to be worn over the chasuble by a metropolitan archbishop when he pontificates. This investiture (or whatever the correct term is), taking place as it did in some sort of drawing room or audience chamber (at Castelgandolfo, no less), seems unusually casual to me. This may be the way it happens most of the time, for all I know, but I would not have imagined it so. Interesting.

  6. John V says:

    That would be an invitation to the Mass and rite of reception for His Eminence as the Archbishop of Milan, rather than to today’s ceremony at Castelgandolfo, no?

  7. Gregg the Obscure says:

    Have there been other recent instances of a cardinal archbishop moving from his cardinalatial see to another see other than Rome? It seems quite unusual to me.

  8. don Jeffry says:

    Here is a short video of Cardinal Montini, later Pope Paul VI, in Milano in 1956.
    Cardinal Scola took possession of the Archdiocese of Milan by proxy already. The Mass Sunday will be his entry or in Italian, “ingresso” and his first Solemn Pontifical Mass as Archbishop of Milan.

  9. Andy Milam says:

    @ Gregg the Obscure:

    Card. Scola’s predecessor, Card. Tettamanzi was moved from Genoa to Milan. Yes, it has happened recently.


    The pallium is an ecclesiastical garment, not strictly a liturgical one. The ecclesiastical use has fallen out of use, but the Holy Father may allow for it’s use outside of Holy Mass. This was first noted when Pope Gregory I wrote to John of Revenna. It can be used in limited circumstances beyond the liturgical, for certain festivals and occasions. I took it to be of this notion that the Holy Father chose to do this now. As Fr. Z said, “The Pope can give the pallium to whom it pleaseth His Holiness of Our Lord to do so. The Pope can choose when and where to do this.”

  10. Laura R. says:

    Just a guess (I’m no expert in these matters) but couldn’t it simply be that Cardinal Scola is wearing the pallium over his vestments because the Holy Father has just placed it on him?

  11. Tim Ferguson says:

    one could argue that since the Holy Father, The Supreme Legislator, has given the Archbishop of Milano the pallium, and allowed it to be worn in his presence over choir dress, the Arcbishops of Milano now has the privilege of wearing the pallium over choir dress. Lets see in a hundred years if it’s caught on and become an entrenched privilege! Cool.

  12. JonPatrick says:

    Would that Mass for his eminence as Archbishop of Milan be according to the Ambrosian Rite? I wonder how different that is from the normal Latin Rite and whether it is in Latin or has a “Novus Ordo” form as well?

  13. puma19 says:

    There are a couple of things here to note, which are fascinating.
    1. The cardinal has not yet had his formal installation Mass, not till next Sunday, three days away.
    2. The cardinal would have to wait another 9 months for the next group presentation of the pallium to new metropolitan archbishops. Long time to wait.
    3. Scola is a member of the College of cardinals and has been a cardinal patriarch so it would be quite normal for the Pontiff to bestow this individually on such a senior ranking cardinal.
    4. There will be all types of rumours arising out of this to make for blog-food. But remember, enter the conclave pope and exit a cardinal. Anything could happen between now and then (and then could be years away). I advise readers to be aware that the Buenos Aires cardinal gained a very large number of ballots (reputedly) at the 2005 conclave and no one expected that to happen. There could be and there will be dark cardinal horses out there whom many will and do not expect to be the next pope sometime within the next few years, so be careful on predictions. The last 2 popes have been non-Italian. It is a trend not seen for hundreds of years, but may well now be THE trend of future pontiffs.
    |Finally, I so think there is a close relationshiop between BXVI and Scola and when the appointment to Milan was being rumoured there were many in the vatican not too happy, BUT BXVI was his own man and made the choice of his friend. Did Bertone agree? Who cares really, too many SDBs in senior roles now.

  14. Centristian says:

    @Andy Milam:

    Thanks for the clarification. Another question, though: why wouldn’t Cardinal Scola already have a pallium as Patriarch of Venice? Also, why is this move considered a step up, I wonder (and a stepping stone to the papacy)? The Patriarch of Venice is a patriarch, after all…and three 20th century patriarchs of Venice ascended the Chair of Peter (St. Pius X, Pope John XXIII, and Pope John Paul I). So, what does Milan add?

  15. ErnieNYC says:

    The pallium is permanently linked to the prelate in his See. For example: Archbishop Dolan, when appointed Abp of Milwaukee, received the Pallium in June of 2003. When he was transferred to NY, he was not entitled to wear THAT specific pallium (in essence, the vestment was retired from use), and had to wait until June 2009 to re invested with ANOTHER pallium for NYC.

    Different pallia! Similarly, Card, Scola has a pallium as Patriarch of Venice. He will physically retain the garment, but not the privilege of wearing it in Venice. As he is translated to Milan, and invested with the new pallium, he is entitled to wear it in Milan. It is a sign of particular Metropolitan jurisdiction.

  16. Andy Milam says:


    When a metropolitan leaves his archdiocese, he gives up the pallium. The pallium is a mark of jurisdiction, except in rare cases of Papal privilege, such as when Pope John Paul II gave it to Card. Ratzinger and Papa Ratzinger then passed it on to his successor as dean of Cardinals, Card. Sodano. However, when a metropolitan takes possession of his new see, he receives his new pallium for that archdiocese. So, it had to be imposed again. Another fun fact, when a metropolitan has received more than one pallium, he is buried in his first pallium, when he goes to his rewards.

    @Tim Ferguson;

    I wonder? Perhaps we need to write to His Emminence and confer with him on said matter. Papal privilege is nothing to scoff at.

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