¡Hagan lío! Synod Bishops revolt against leadership and get their way – UPDATE!



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.

My translation:

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?”

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in ¡Hagan lío!, Sin That Cries To Heaven, The Coming Storm, The Drill and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Muv says:

    Looking forward to seeing the pushers of the pastoral envelope well and truly licked.

  2. Andrew says:

    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.

    For the times they are a changing …

  3. David in T.O. says:

    Father, I’ve said this for years about the Internet, social media and Vatican II. Our poor parents and grandparents knew little or nothing of what was happening only that all of it was good. When things started to go awry, I can recall me poor mother (anniversary of her death today) saying, “Well, Father says it’s Vatican II”. Poor Father Carroll, a holy priest for sure, was told to do it and all prayed, paid and obeyed while the perpetrators preyed!

    What is even more interesting is that we see in the skullduggery and manipulation by these few how the Vatican II Fathers were also misled.

    God helps us.

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  5. Kathleen10 says:

    God bless the Bishops and Cardinals who have had enough!
    What any of us would give to be a fly on those walls. This will make an excellent film if the right Catholic production company takes it on. This is high drama.

  6. Wryman says:

    In my dreams … Pope Francis has read and carefully digested the contents of the letter that Pope Benedict XVI left sealed for him on the papal desk … but he has to come up with a solution. Aha!, he thinks, call a synod and act like all the dissenters are going to get their way. That will smoke them out! And it works! The Kaspers and the rest all come out charging.
    Then, at the end, everyone knows the truth about who is and who is not faithful to the Church! Those who are true are invited to stay, those who are not are invited to repent.
    >sigh< the alarm rings and I wake up wondering if it was just another dream, just like any other dream.

  7. Nightcrawler says:

    This is the first time I have heard of annibale bugnini (lower case on purpose). If it is true that he was a freemason, my gosh. The time invested, the planning, and the hatred is astounding. It just makes me wonder why so many people hate us with so much intensity. Those same people are cool with ISIS but hate us.

    Maybe we should encourage ISIS to set up soup kitchens, hospitals, orphanages, schools, etc. Then people will get angry.

  8. Gregg the Obscure says:

    “The controversial language was ‘ground-breaking’ but Card. Burke is a ‘hardliner’.” It’s necessary to have a hard line against breaking the ground when the ground in question is a levee keeping out the floodwaters.

  9. incredulous says:

    “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.”

    Andrew and Father Z, that is a major observation. The internet which is the vehicle which drives so many souls to hell is also the vehicle which brought the disinfecting nature of sunlight to this fetid process. Now that we know how VCII’s modernism got shoved down our throats, it’s time to revisit it and throw out the heresy and bad doctrine. These evil men have over played their hands and we know we aren’t dealing with anything reasonable. There is no need to reason with the unreasonable. There’s no need to justify our opposition to some of the gross liturgical reforms. We see the source of it on full display at this manipulated Synod.

    Thank you brave Catholic Bishops for standing up to what’s wrong. Most humbly, thank you Cardinal Burke for your love of the Truth and the Word and your lack of consideration of how Man looks at you. Thank you African and Asian Bishops for your understanding of Catholicism. You are all an inspiration.

    The Church is our road to salvation and we want Her back in Her full awesome glorification of God.

    “Notice how Left-leaning outlets always describe “conservatives” as “angry” or “hardliners”. They are clearly meanies. “Liberals”, on the other hand, are happy!”

    This is the propaganda drumbeat that has been used against us my whole life. I ask for suggestions on the proper Christian response to the anger that wells up inside me every time I see this totally diabolical tactic which has been used for years and is so subtle that only very astute people like Father Z recognize it, can articulate the presence when seen, and can continue to be outraged by it.

  10. wised says:

    I continue to pray to Our Lady, Protectoress of our Faith. I agree that satan is ever present and must be constantly battled. We do not need another “Spirit of Synod” to further confuse the poorly educated and embolden those with ulterior motives.

  11. LeeF says:

    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.

    What does this excerpt mean? That the writer thought the Holy Father was not pleased with Baldiserri’s manipulations, or with the actions of those objecting to same?

    [My take is that the Pope was not pleased with the reaction of the body of participants.]

  12. Phil_NL says:

    Well, I reckon the chances of having another Synod during this pontificate are decreasing by the day. It might be debatable which group is causing the Holy Father the most displeasure, but the undignified and clumsy result is surely not what he had in mind.

    [They will be back at it next year, same Bat-time….]

  13. “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.”

    I’m not sure I agree, Father. The propaganda of Catholic revolutionaries has changed over the years, evolving to use the new mass media to their advantage. See Fr. Dwight Longenecker’s recent essay, “Advice for the Pope in Light of the Synod.” He’s already seen instances, no doubt numerous, of divorced-and-remarried couples approaching him for the Sacraments and other adverse effects based solely on the impression of the Church created in the public sphere. This impression is controlled by the less-than-orthodox more often than not.

    [I stand firm.]

  14. Janol says:

    Wryman, your dream has been a cherished hope of mine for months!

  15. joecct77 says:

    I wonder if at the end of the Synod, the “traditionalists” will be exiled to places at the end of the world as punishment for not toeing the party line.

  16. Unwilling says:

    “synod” from Greek syn-odos (with, road) i.e. “a road taken together”.
    But “society/club” was the idiomatic meaning by the time of the Early Church.

  17. McCall1981 says:

    And Card Napier got added to the drafting committee! Along with Archbp Hart.

  18. donato2 says:

    As Pope Francis has taught us through his actions, being collegial does not mean playing nice. It is encouraging to see the bishops show a little back bone — but also not surprising, since no one likes to be taken for a fool. The interim report was a disaster not only for the cause of the Church’s teachings. It obviously was also a political disaster for the Kasper crowd, which is supported by Pope Francis. As an Argentinian commented here shortly after the last conclave, Bergoglio is a very cunning politician. But even the masters make mistakes.

    Obviously there is a long way to go and many fights to come. Let us pray that the faithful bishops continue to show resolve.

  19. acardnal says:

    All this makes one wonder about what goes on in the secret conclave to elect a pope!

  20. americangirl says:

    I have one thing to say: Cardinal Burke rocks and I am grateful to God for this man who so eloquently and powerfully instructed and stood firm on what was occurring in this debacle. Deo Gratias!!!

  21. CradleRevert says:

    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.

    I wish I knew what the Pope’s hand was.

  22. ChrisRawlings says:

    Have you seen Cardinal Pell? I wouldn’t deign to tell that guy “no.” Can you imagine HIM going all St. Nicholas on you? Between Pell, Cardinal Muller, Cardinal Napier, you have not only moral giants, but you have actual giants.

  23. Dennis Martin says:

    To me it’s ominous (and confirms Fr. Z’s “take” on things) that Cardinal Baldisseri turned to the pope who nodded his assent that the reports of the subcommittees be published. That would seem to indicate, if the report is indeed accurate, that the Holy Father was aware of the planned, manipulative procedures. [Not necessarily.]

    What is our basis for knowing that Cardinal Baldisseri sought and received a nod of assent from the pope? Am I correct to assume that Tossati and other journalists was NOT present in the asssembly but is reporting based on what his sources (bishops of the synod) tell him? How sure are we that the exchange between Baldisseri and the pope took place? Because, if it did, it’s incredibly significant. But did it take place? [It did. But you read it here first. That’s what I can say about that.]

  24. Dennis Martin says:

    I hasten to add that the Holy Father could be aware of the planned processes, which are manipulative, without realizing the degree of their manipulativeness. Then again, perhaps aware of both. Or of neither.

  25. ChrisRawlings says:

    I also agree that the 24/7 news cycle actually had an inverse effect here and probably moved the narrative quickly enough to force the bishops to respond. News moves over hours, not days, which means that stories don’t have time to implant themselves and germinate in the narrative. With social media providing the news NOW, it almost inserts new media voices directly into the debate in Rome. That isn’t always a good thing–indeed it often isn’t. But if liberals can use the media to mive a debate, why can’t we? And that probably more than anything is what stunned progressives in and around the Vatican.

    As it turns out, conservatives are much more “with the times” than people probably realized.

  26. markomalley says:

    ¡Vaya lío!


  27. LarryW2LJ says:

    Fr. Z,

    I am going to assume that your take about the Pope not being pleased with the pushback from the Bishops to the Relatio is correct. Which leads to an interesting thought, and please correct me if I am wrong. Early on in this Pontificate, didn’t Pope Francis express a desire for less centralism? That idea that the Vatican should relinquish some control and allow the Bishops more input? Could this be a case of “Be careful what you wish for because you just might get it?”

    [I believe that the Holy Father did, indeed, suggest less central control.]

  28. MariaKap says:

    Power of prayer and fasting which I believe many (including myself) took up with greater intensity for the synod in light of Monday’s revelations. And yes, without social media – that would not have happened.

  29. mrshopey says:

    We will finally get to see what they have been talking about, really, and voting on!

    That is interesting that Cardinal Kasper wasn’t present. Maybe he is reconciling with his African brothers in Christ?

  30. Federico says:

    Silent, eh?

    ?? ???? ??????? ??? ?? ??????.

    We can pray for him.

  31. Federico says:

    Greek characters are not supported?

    ?? ???? ??????? ??? ?? ??????

    [Use unicode.]

  32. Fr. Erik Richtsteig says:

    Diocletiana ought to have been suppressed.

  33. lh says:

    Thanks be to God! God bless those good Bishops!

  34. mrshopey says:

    This is interesting:
    “The second major development: Fr. Lombardi reported that “the Pope decided to act” by adding two new members to the writing committee that will synthesize the reports from the small circles of language-based discussions meeting this week. There have been loud grumbles about the makeup of the original group appointed by Pope Francis for its lack of geographic range. The two new appointments are Cardinal Wilfrid Napier of South Africa and Abp. Denis J. Hart of Melbourne.”

  35. Federico says:

    Thanks, Fr. Z, for the tip. Retrying my posts using unicode.

    Bottom line: let’s all pray for the Holy Father. He will need the help.

    Το ψάρι βρωμάει απο το κεφάλι

    [Much can be done with unicode. And this sentiment has been borne out countless times through history.]

    Fr. Z's Gold Star Award

  36. Theodore says:

    Richard Fernandez (aka Wretchard) has an excellent essay on pjmedia.com about the concatenation of troubles which our current administration is experiencing. One of of the commentators made this observation which is very analogous to what has happened to the Church since Vatican II.

    “For over 50 years the Left Totalitarians disguised as Democrats have advanced by incrementally breaking laws and social conventions secure in the beliefs that their actions were justified by their intentions, the rational behind Civil Disobedience, and that their victims would not reciprocate. They convinced themselves and their victims that if they provoked a reaction then The System would implode. Once an institution was exposed as powerless to control them, such as the Universities that caved after attempting to expel Sit In demonstrators in the 60s, it became open to capture. Once they captured an institution that had been a source of legitimacy and authority for the despised traditionalists the Left would use it as a base of coercion far more ruthlessly than the evicted traditionalists would ever have dreamt of.” http://pjmedia.com/richardfernandez/2014/10/16/game-over/?show-at-comment=967710#comment-967710

    It looks like the victim Bishops have finally gotten their backs up. Good for them, and good for the faithful.

  37. LeeF says:

    If the Holy Father is indeed aware of and also approving to some degree or another, of the manipulations of Baldiserri, and also wishes a more liberal interpretation of doctrine or practice, then I think we can expect the next year to be a lot of pressure on the bishops from him to change their views prior to the next synod. He has kind of painted himself into a corner with his desires for more collegiality, so it will make him look a hypocrite if both synods don’t support what he wishes and he enacts same anyway by fiat. Maybe he opened Pandora’s box and it doesn’t contain what he thought it did.

    A further thought is if in pursuit of collegiality he would like to reverse the previous discipline whereby a national episcopal conference cannot teach authoritatively unless unanimous, how is he going to like it when different conferences teach opposite views of doctrine?

  38. Gerard Plourde says:

    “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.”

    I am troubled by the tone of this comment and what it appears to imply. If NCR or the Tablet (or, had it then existed, Crux) made such a speculative remark that hints at questioning the integrity of the Holy Father during the pontificate of St. John Paul or Pope Benedict we would rightfully be calling them on the carpet for it. As Catholics we believe that the Holy Spirit dwells in the Church and that the final authority rests with Christ’s Vicar on Earth as Supreme Legislator guided by the Holy Spirit. I worry that the author of that quote is attempting to subvert that belief.

  39. Johannes de Silentio says:

    Leave it to Cardinal Pell to unabashedly cut through the synodal fog machine and give the green light to the rest of his confreres to do the same.

  40. Sonshine135 says:

    It is a shame there is no video of this happening. I quite imagine it was a sight to see, and the body language would have spoken volumes.

  41. “From that point, the bishops also rose up. When Baldisseri repeated his position, he was effectively shouted down.”

    hooray. Testosterone! Backbone!
    The only thing missing now is that punch in the nose.

  42. As requested by Cardinal Burke, daily I have been saying frequently “Let God arise, let His enemies be scattered, let them that hate Him flee from before His face” for the present Synod. [Sin-Odd?]

    I am praying that good will come from this Synod, that ‘good’ to be according to God’s Will. For instance, if the end-result is evil enough perhaps our fence-sitters, moderates, even progressive hierarchy will then be faced with how abominable this evil really is. And THAT will open horrified eyes and change behavior enough that they will turn and do battle against the forces finally recognized.
    Oremus! This is the battle of the Immaculate Heart. Listen to her.

  43. gracie says:

    On Monday, Cardinal Burke said that a statement from Pope Francis defending Church teaching ‘Is long overdue”.

    Sound of crickets chirping.

  44. Diane at Te Deum Laudamus says:

    pparently, 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.

    Wow. That’s an awful lot of “hard-liners.”

  45. aviva meriam says:

    Thank you Cardinal Pell.

    Thank you your Eminences/your Excellencies.

    The Holy Father and all the leaders of the Church will remain in my prayers.

    PS: once again, thank you Fr. Z for all you do.

  46. Venerator Sti Lot says:

    So, there is the Instrumentum Laboris (pre synod document which is a digest of all the response from around the world: Paul Butler’s gloss), and there are “the lengthy written speeches each synod “father” submitted prior to the meeting” and “these written submissions weren’t made public or distributed to the bishops themselves”. I hadn’t twigged to that and was assuming that everybody had access to everything (whatever use they might make of that fact)! So even the Synod Fathers were kept in the dark about each other! And nobody beyond the handful of ‘drafters’ would have known up to this point who – if indeed anyone – had contributed what!

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  48. M. Solomon says:

    This is fascinating, I’m glad to hear they’ve found their voice. And that what had been whispered is true, the bishops have had enough.

    My worry/question is; this attempt at manipulation, is this coming from Pope Francis or is this the people who Pope Francis appointed and then have been lying to him ever since? I pray it’s the latter, so that next year we’ll see something to akin to Humanae Vitae.

  49. Pingback: Father Z on the synod uprising | Foolishness to the world

  50. Traductora says:

    Thank God! (Literally.) I’m so happy that the bishops realized that the Holy Spirit doesn’t work through remote control and that they have to stand up and speak.

    The point about social media was very true. One of the ways Vatican II got through was that people – opponents – really couldn’t communicate with each other, and there was a great effort made by the Bugnini crowd during the really bad part of it to simply suppress information and present everything as a fait accompli.

    Also, it was much more difficult for the folks on the ground – laity or clergy – to communicate with the hierarchy, so I think that the cardinals and bishops were much more out of touch and unaware of how opposed the average Catholic was to the changes the progressives wanted to make. If it had been up to the US laity (and most of the clergy) of the time, the “Spirit of Vatican II” would never have gotten out of its birdcage.

  51. robtbrown says:

    After two days of fighting between happy liberals and angry conservatives . . .

    No doubt that Hitler was also happy after Germany invaded Poland (metaphor intended).

    Those who have said this was going to be another Vat II have proven to be correct. But they failed to realize that the sides have been reversed. Now, unlike Vat II, those opposing the leaders of the Synod are defending doctrine.

  52. dover_beach says:

    Have you seen Cardinal Pell? I wouldn’t deign to tell that guy “no.”

    This Australian is walking a little taller this afternoon. BTW, Cardinal Pell used to play Australian Rules Football in his younger years – as ruckman – and could have played professionally if he wasn’t called by God to serve in His Church. He must have know one such as Pell would be needed at such a moment.

  53. Urs says:

    yes, Thank you Cardinal Pell and the bishops who rose up…and thank you Fr Z.
    I certainly hope those supporting Cardinal Kasper are not just pushing the envelope knowing it won’t work but aiming for a compromise to advance their agenda in increments…

  54. jmgarciajr says:

    1- Wryman, some people I know who would be in a position to know have speculated – in seriousness – along the lines of what you have written.

    2- Someone please correct me, but isn’t Cdl. Pell also in the Holy Father’s inner circle?

  55. Dr. Edward Peters says:

    Thank you for doing that translation.

  56. Geoffrey says:

    “Someone please correct me, but isn’t Cdl. Pell also in the Holy Father’s inner circle?”

    Yes, Cardinal Pell is indeed one of the “8”. He was also chosen by His Holiness the Pope to be the very first prefect of the new Secretariat for the Economy.

  57. Maynardus says:

    From wryman’s keyboard to God’s ears! I have wondered about this myself, but even if this isn’t a clever gambit by the Holy Father to smoke-out the clerical moonbats we can hope AND PRAY that it will ultimately have some of the same effects. It’s not like Pell, Burke, et al are suddenly learning that Kasper, Forte, and their ilk are a bit soft on, um, er, The Faith; but it sure is a chance for the faithful to see where the battle lines are drawn and who’s really on which side. I’m not sure whether to analogize this to a (just) (holy) war or an existential struggle for the Church, or if either of these is too melodramatic. But… amongst our shepherds we have stouthearted men taking the lead, the cautious becoming bold, and the faithful of the flock can see clearly who they are. Meanwhile, we can only hope that amidst the fallout the traitors and quislings will be scattered and disarmed. And that the Holy Father will be empowered to lead unambiguously in Christ’s Name.

    Alas, perhaps I am dreaming too…

  58. robtbrown says:

    jmgarciajr says:

    2- Someone please correct me, but isn’t Cdl. Pell also in the Holy Father’s inner circle?

    He has a very powerful position as Sec of the Economy, but I doubt that he had much if anything to do with naming those to run the Synod. More and more it seems that it is an attempt to shove Karl Rahner down the throat of the Church.

    It will be interesting to read what Sandro Magister says about all this.

  59. joan ellen says:

    “High drama.” “Interesting.” “Fascinating.” I add hopeful. Many of the comments on this blog post seem, rightly, to indicate appreciation for some of the Synod bishops. Could these bishops, in their stands for Truth, be the beginning of the resurgence in the faith that a couple of my acquaintances say is badly needed? Could that really and truly be? Praised be Jesus Christ, now and forever. And for His Glorious Church! And in thanksgiving for all of us who are ‘seeing’ this living Church History. Thank you, Fr. Z, for providing the opportunity to ‘see’ this.

  60. This Australian is walking a little taller this afternoon. BTW, Cardinal Pell used to play Australian Rules Football in his younger years – as ruckman – and could have played professionally if he wasn’t called by God to serve in His Church. He must have know one such as Pell would be needed at such a moment.

    Dover Beach, me old china – how nice to see you here!

    I second that. I am so proud of Cardinal Pell. I only come up to his knee – and can testify to this because I’ve met him in person several times – but I’m so glad he’s there, and I’m so glad he’s had enough.

  61. kmtierney says:

    Gerard Plourde,

    To imply the Pope wasn’t happy isn’t to say the Holy Spirit isn’t guiding the Church. It might not even be required to look at things in a negative light. The Bishops more or less revolted against the way the Synod was doing business, and that method of doing business was by the Pope’s design. I’m sure this has happened in history. Sometimes popes overstep their boundaries in power, lording it over bishops and more or less treating them as functionaries. I honestly think that’s what happened when Francis rejected their relators, chose his own, and had them write the relatio, which appears to have had little to do with the actual synod.

    So the Bishops stood up and defended their rights. They will advise the pope and matters and give him advice. but they won’t be his rubber stamp. That’s a healthy dynamic, and honestly, I think part of the Holy Spirit moving in the Church that you spoke of. Infallibility is primarily about protecting the Pope and the Church from their own bad ideas. You don’t see it acting, but you know it’s there. This might have been one of those moments.

  62. kmtierney says:

    What is most fascinating is how the truly global church has taken the lead with this. the “ringleaders” of said revolt were from Africa and Oceania, with an assist from North America. 50-60 years ago, these places were relatively irrelevant in Church governance.

    I would not be surprised that this was a moment of the African Church finding its voice, and like the ents, they are going to wake up and find out they are strong.

    The only way this would have come from the silly part in my brain more is if the bishops chanted “this is what collegiality looks like!” as they shouted down the cardinal.

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  64. The Cobbler says:

    Well, we wondered where the Athanasiuses and Nicholases of our generation are… I guess now we know!

    I know I really don’t listen to normal “news” sources on Catholic matters because I never know whether what they say is accurate or where it’s actually coming from (with Fr. Z, even if I disagree with his take, I can at least tell what’s his take and what info he’s getting from where). I waited to believe or disbelieve the reports on Benedict’s abdication till I got home and could check in here because I still remember how many times St. John Paul II was reported to have died while still alive. So, the new media are a big deal — to the extent they help us find the original sources of info for verification purposes. But an even bigger deal is the truth expressed by the old, not quite Texan saying, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”

    Ask any orthodox Catholic more than a generation or two old how the self-styled progressives managed to change the whole Church during and after Vatican II, and they’ll tell you, “Well, it used to be we faithful trusted the Pope and the bishops and if they said to change things, what else were we supposed to do?”

    Ask any non-SSPX-sympathetic conservative Catholic how Vatican II can have been ok if so much rot came out of it and they’ll tell you, “Those who were actually doing the Council’s work were both orthodox and well-meaning in their attempt to engage the modern world, but their writings were taken out of context and misinterpreted by liberals who usually controlled the implementation across the world.”

    You can argue till you’re blue in the face over whether the latter is accurate, or about how much which people of which theological intentions influenced which aspects of Vatican II, sure. But everyone agrees we the faithful were had by manipulative ne’erdowells. It’s common knowledge by now even among people who wouldn’t for an instant consider that abolishing the Novus Ordo could be a good idea.

    So, to manipulate any gathering of bishops at this point in time, especially toward a… shall we say morally or theologically loose direction… well, it’s like trying to sucker-punch a guy who just got back on his feet from having been sucker-punched a minute ago. He may not be in great shape to fight, but it’s simply impossible for it to work again as a sucker-punch — he’s going to see it coming because he just got hit like that.

    For that reason above all, that basically orthodox Catholics (by which I mean to signify those that acknowledge the Church’s magisterium, without here getting into any lengthy debates over subtle alleged heresies) of all manners and degrees of traditionalism are still trying to figure out how best to handle such manipulation perpetrated in living memory, I think this more than anything done by Popes Benedict XVI and St. John Paul II may be the moment when the tide comes back around — to throw a few more cliches out there, let’s say it sounds far more like the moment of truth at the point of no return than even Summorum Pontificum did. There’s no doubt in my mind that it would never have been possible without a great many things Benedict and John Paul did — but if in the near future basically orthodox Catholics stop beating each other up, take the kid gloves off and, well, “ride the damn bike” as our gracious host always exhorts us… I wouldn’t be surprised in the least to see such a movement traced back to a wacky “midpoint summary” document that shocked the minds and consciences of the very synod fathers it was allegedly supposed to present, simply because we’re not going to take this stuff sitting down again, not after last time.

    That’s my opinion anyway. It probably helps that Francis throughout his pontificate thus far has been, whether intentionally or not, ruffling the feathers of churchmen who want to actually teach the Faith without watering down it or its requirements: I imagine many a decent bishop has had time to wonder if he’d end up having to stand up and protest in front of the Pope well before it came to this point. To a lesser extent the same thing might be true of Cardinal Kasper going on about his sloppy theology for the better part of a year: bishops and cardinals are getting used to having to argue within their own Church and getting over the fear of calling a spade a spade, so to speak.

  65. Joan A. says:

    A bit premature, but why not get our long-shot bets down early – it’s possible Cardinal Pell could end up our next Pope if he keeps up this leadership and integrity. Many of his fellow Cardinals may be seeing him in a new light today.

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  69. ssoldie says:

    God bless archbishop Marcel Lefebvre and the F.S.S.P.X. This is the continuation of the Vatican II agenda of the progressives and ‘modernism’.

  70. jmgarciajr says:

    Dear Geoffrey & robtbrown: Thanks. My question was not guided so much by His Grace’s involvement in Synodal Administration so much as to gauge the esteem his esteem/regard in the Holy Father’s eyes.

    I think that (for whatever reason) Cdl. Pell is someone who has the ear (and respect) of Pope Francis in a way that others of a similar “stripe” might not enjoy.

  71. Judith says:

    As an ex Anglican I can tell you this is how it works. Pre-scripted meetings with a preset outcome. If one disagrees he is labeled a “hater” or a “bigot” and shut down. Censorship is paramount. If you want to see the outcome just ask the previously Anglican priests and laity who have fled to the true Catholic Church. If we stay on this path and we will have married & gay & women “priests” and theology gifted from the Unitarian/Universalist “church”.

    Been there, done that, ain’t doing it again.

  72. Maineman1 says:

    Am I the only one who feels a chill wind by the connection between Baldisseri and Bugnini?

    I shuddered. Perhaps Diocletiana is due for a major exorcism.

    Can anyone verify if there are even any TLMs offered in this region?

  73. BobP says:

    >God bless archbishop Marcel Lefebvre and the F.S.S.P.X. This is the continuation of the Vatican II agenda of the progressives and ‘modernism’.<

    If they can persuade Card Muller they're on his side, maybe the odds improve that they become fully united with the Church again. Maybe this is the silver lining we've been looking for.

  74. johnnycuredents says:

    Card. Baldisseri clearly has the role of ”heavy” in all this. But is it even imaginable that Pope Francis is an innocent bystander blindsided by a small cabal of evil cardinals? The appointments of liberals to the committee, after all, were his and his alone; the decision just before the Synod to demote “hardliner” Burke was also uniquely his; he has not silenced or in any way even reprimanded Cards. Marx and Kasper for ”envelope-pushing” proposals they frequently repeated to reporters ; Francis never refuted several public assertions by these same two cardinals that their views were secretly the pope’s own; and, finally, it’s very difficult to swallow the notion that the draconian rules of silence applied to this Synod’s procedures, rules very helpful to the deceitful cabal of evil cardinals, escaped entirely the pope’s notice.

    There is indeed a revolt afoot in Rome, but I am not at all convinced that it is solely against an evil cabal of duplicitous cardinals.

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