January 8, 2012 Choosing the next pope (See update Feb 23, 2013 below)
Pope John Paul II died on April 2, 2005.
There has been much speculation about the politicking that went on
to produce Pope Benedict XVI
Joseph Girzone wrote "Joshua, the Homecoming" in 1999, six years before John Paul's death
With the appointment of 22 new cardinals
and accompanying speculation about the next pope
chapter 13 of "The Homecoming" provides much food for thought:
|Even before the pope died,
people were maneuvering in an attempt to influence the election of the
The deceased pope was a good man, but rigidly
As bishop, then archbishop, then cardinal, he was leader of the Church in Poland, a country where there were few Protestants to stimulate interest in ecumenical togetherness
It was a monolithic Church, a Church whose power was in its solidarity and unity of faith and purpose
The purpose was to preserve the faith of the people,
especially the young, against the onslaughts of an atheistic state.
When Karol Wojtyla became pope, his conditioning of a lifetime did not change. As pope he was still concerned about people's faith being diluted and watered down by the onslaught of a liberalism in theology that was even more dangerous, in his mind, than communism
Though generally respected and loved by many, his rigidly conservative proclamations and regulations were looked upon as regressive, oppressive, and offensive to the Christian freedom of spirit
The worldwide movements toward Christian unity were
....a mean spirit seemed to take hold throughout the Church....This mean spirit did much to destroy the camaraderie that so wonderfully characterized the previous generation of priests
Now that the election of a new pontiff was imminent, powerful groups of every persuasion were working frantically behind the scenes in desperate attempts to influence the outcome of the election
One very wealthy group in particular, more faithful to
the Council of Trent in the sixteenth century that to the recent teachings
of the Church, which they considered suspect, was notorious for its
generous gifts to important cardinals working in the Vatican.....
As Girzone tells it, the balloting got down to two candidates:
a conservative corner German cardinal (!),
and an Italian named Montarini from northern Italy (read Martini from Milan!),
with the Italian scoring a narrow victory.
The Italian then announced he would follow a program of healing, compassion, unity etc
But as we know, in the real story, the German cardinal was
and has followed an even stricter program than JPII
If Girzone is right, the "wealthy conservative
groups" will again be out
to lobby for a JP2-B16 man
Which means, now is the time to start lobbying for a new pope
who will get back to the vision of Vatican 2
How can we lobby? Prayer will always be the number one
and one way of such lobbying prayer is a load of rubbish!
Update Feb 23, 20123:
The last conclave in April 2005 showed how a well-organized group who had met in advance (mainly at the Opus Dei headquarters on the Viale Bruno Buozzi in Rome), had chosen their candidate (Joseph Ratzinger) well before the conclave started, could succeed. The brevity of the conclave showed that the majority of the cardinals were disorganized and unprepared, including the supporters of Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini, SJ.
- Dr Paul Collins writing for Catholica Feb 22, 2013