Skip to comments.Apparently It's True (Levada to be head of CDF?)
Posted on 05/10/2005 11:07:47 AM PDT by old and tired
It appears, based on very reliable sources, that indeed Archbishop William Levada of San Francisco is going to be appointed the new Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
This is not good news. Archbishop Levada is the prelate who compromised with the city of San Francisco over the citys demands that Catholic Charities and other Church organizations provide domestic partner benefits to employees. His archdiocese is also a mess with dissenting priests, homosexual activists running all over the place, the University of San Francisco trampling the faith, and more.
Im really very surprised by this. I would have thought that Pope Benedict would have seen this for what it was, especially considering his close association with Father Fessio, who had been in San Francisco for many years.
Maybe he sees something we dont. I hope.
(Excerpt) Read more at bettnet.com ...
It is a pretty senior post. Has it ever been filled by anyone except a cardinal with quite a few years in the grade? If no, then there are good chances it is just a rumor.
I know this is still just a rumor, but it is very disconcerting to me. For any who don't know Dom Bettinelli works for Phil Lawler as an editor at Catholic World News.
This may be true...then again, it may not. This rumor has been floating around for weeks. Yesterday, we were supposed to learn "within hours" of the announcment, but it never happened.
Thanks. I'm feeling better already...
From March 1999
By George Neumayr
Pope John Paul II asked bishops again this last year to show "pastoral attention" to Catholics attached to the Latin Mass. But in San Francisco the Latin Mass is forbidden. The reason: San Francisco Archbishop William Levada refuses to grant the Pope's indult.
"I'm not suprised by it," says a source who knows Levada. "He is keenly aware of priestly backlash...And he knows, like most American prelates, that traditionalists are an expendable group, what with their lack of money and institutions."
Levada, observers suspect, is afraid to anger and alienate priests attached to his predecessor's policies. Quinn vehemently opposed the Latin Mass, saying of the indult, "Not in my diocese." Quinn also called the indult "divisive" in a letter to a diocesan priest who petitioned for it in 1984.
I asked Maurice Healy, the archdiocesan spokesman, to explain Levada's refusal to grant the indult, especially since smaller dioceses like Santa Rosa and Stockton have granted it. "There is no groundswell of support," he said, adding, "He is not going to move forward on a timetable set by you."
In fact, San Franciscans have approached Levada on the issue, but he put them off. The Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter, a papally recognized Latin Mass order, appealed to the Archbishop, offering to send a priest to San Francisco. Unlike Sacramento Bishop William Weigand who welcomed the order, Levada rejected the offer.
"That story is accurate," said Jude Huntz, a spokesperson for the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter. "He just gave a very brief negative reply." Huntz finds it puzzling that prelates would treat the Latin Mass like a threat to Vatican II. "That doesn't make sense because the Pope" approves of it. Huntz invites prelates who consider the Latin Mass a loser cause to visit their packed-to-overflowing "seminary." He points out that the group is now in "19 dioceses" in America and is in the process of building a new seminary in Lincoln, Nebraska.
Monsignor Steven Ottellini, the well-respected president of Marin Catholic high school, sees no "problem with granting the Latin Mass indult. I think people who oppose that idea attach too much political significance to the Latin Mass and don't appreciate that there is a new generation of Catholics hungry for the beauty and prayerfulness contained in the Church's rich artistic and liturgical traditions and don't attach any significance to them beyond that. The Latin masses I attended in Paris and New York were filled with people who still feel the power of that tradition. Sure, there are some people who may support it for the wrong reasons, but does that negate it as a valid option for the universal Church?"
Indeed, the Pope and his chief doctrinal adviser, Cardinal Ratzinger, have repeatedly praised the Latin Mass, identifying the growing interest in it as a sign of spiritual health. "I invite the bishops...to understand and to have a renewed pastoral attention for the faithful attached to the old rite," the Pope said in October of last year to a crowd of 3,000 traditionalists gathered in Rome for a celebration of the 1983 indult.
"I am of the opinion, to be sure, that the old rite should be granted much more generously to all those who desire it," writes Ratzinger in the 1997 book Salt of the Earth. "It's impossible to see what could be dangerous or unacceptable about that. A community is calling its very being into question when it suddenly declares that what until now was its holiest and highest possession is strictly forbidden and when it makes the longing for it seem downright indecent."
Even more recently, Ratzinger said to an Italian publication that the Church needs a new generation of bishops open to the Latin Mass and that prelates should see the yearning for it as a "desire" for "divinity."
To the traditionalists gathered in Rome to celebrate the anniversary of the Pope's indult, Ratzinger said: "The orthodox forms of a rite are living realities born of the dialogue of love between the Church and its Lord--they are the expressions of the life of the Church in which are concentrated the faith, the prayer and the very life of generations, and in which at the same time are incarnated in a concrete form the action of God and man's response.... The authority of the Church can define and limit the use of rites in various historical situations but she never purely and simply forbids their use! Thus the Council ordered a reform of the liturgical books, but it did not forbid the use of the previous books."
Ratzinger rejected the notion that the Latin Mass is divisive, noting that the Church has always supported a multiplicity of rites: "Until the Council, there existed side by side with the Roman rite the Ambrosia rite, the Mozarabic rite of Toledo, the rite of Braga, the Carthusian rite, the Carmelite rite and the best known--the Dominican rite--and perhaps other rites as well that I do not know. No one was ever scandalized that the Dominicans, who were often present in our parishes, had their own rite and did not celebrate in the same way as the parish priests.We did not have the least doubt that their rite was as Catholic as the Roman rite; and we were proud of the richness of having a number of different traditions. Furthermore, it is necessary to state that the scope that the new Ordo Missae gives for creativity is often excessively widened; the difference between the liturgy according to the new books, and the liturgy in practice in different places, is often greater than that between the old and the new liturgy when both are celebrated in accordance with the norms prescribed by the liturgical books."
In the light of such high-level pronouncements, local Catholics attached to the Latin Mass find Levada's unwilligness to grant the Pope's indult mystifying, if not insulting. "Mickey Mouse liturgies are permitted here in the city, but the ancient rite for which saints and martyrs died is forbidden" says a local Catholic. "Isn't that mind-boggling? I guess we are bad Catholics for wanting the Pope's indult," he says sarcastically.
A diocesan priest familiar with local Church politics points out that the official reason for not granting the indult is bogus. "The indult doesn't say that there has to be a groundswell of support for it to be granted. And if you ask them what constitutes a groundswell of support, they won't tell you." Indeed, I asked Healy several times to define that phrase. He refused. "Traditional Catholics feel disenfranchised," says the priest. "Is it any wonder? The official Church treats them with contempt..They act as if the Holy Spirit woke up at Vatican II and everything before that is suspect...The new orthodoxy is heterodoxy."
A high-ranking Church official in America whom I asked to comment on this matter, said the resistance to the indult is "crazy." "Why not grant it?" he said. After all, left-wing clerics "permit everything else."
Disconcerting to me, too. I can't imagine how it could be true - the guy has been weak on what is going to be a big issue that is already challenging the Pope (gay "marriage," with the crisis in Spain) and he is not anywhere near the intellectual level of people usually in that position. He's also very involved with the raving heretic Episcopal bishop out there (the appropriately named Bishop Swing) and seems sympathetic to the United Religions Initiative. On top of that, I don't see why anybody from a country that by now has a reputation as a leader in heterodoxy would be appointed.
I sure hope this isn't true.
A very well suited article for the discussion at hand.
I've been spending half my life on Angelqueen trying to get the more hardcore trads to give Benedict a chance and quit expecting the worst.
To makes this jerk the head of his very influential former office would be a huge mistake.
Bad, bad, bad. The URI is a perfect place to hatch the "one world religion." They're truly a bunch of kooks.
Lee Penn's book should be out soon. In it I think he exposes the Catholic idiots aligning with the URI.
Interesting. I didn't know anybody was writing a book on it. The URI is all the rage in San Francisco (I know this because I have family living there and I visit from time to time).
Say it ain't so, Benedict!
If you look on the page, the writer of this piece makes a comment that maybe Archbishop Levada may only be considered for a lesser post. Even he doubts the reliability of this rumor. Aside from anything else, I find it hard to believe a U.S. bishop and a noncardinal would be picked for this job.
If one googles "Levada", one finds a very good article that Levada wrote in 1995 about pro-choice "Catholic" legislators. On the basis of this article, I would say that Levada is firmly orthodox and highly intelligent. Pope Benedict must know Levada's mind reasonably well after working with him for years on the CDF. Even if it is true that Levada was ineffective as the Archbishop of San Francisco --- which I am in no position to say --- that does not mean that he would be ineffective at CDF. The prefect of CDF largely deals with theoretical questions. It requires intellectual gifts rather than political ones. A man may be an excellent theologian and an ineffective administrator. I think it is really unseemly for people to be immediately second-guessing every decision the Pope makes.
Urp. Any friend of Mahony's is...
You're right, though, it seems improbable, and maybe we're jumping the gun. So far as I know, only Dominic Bettinelli has posted this; according to nickcarraway above, he has also said the Levada may be being considered for "a" post, not necessarily the leading post. And it's possible that the Pope is doing this to politely remove him from SF and replace him with somebody who's more with the program.
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