"Today Our attention is directed to one of the most common of them (abuses), one of the most difficult to eradicate, and the existence of which is sometimes to be deplored in places where everything else is deserving of the highest praise; the beauty and sumptuousness of the temple, the splendor and the accurate performance of the ceremonies, the attendance of the clergy, the gravity and piety of the officiating ministers. Such is the abuse affecting sacred chant and music."- St. Pius X, Pope
I boarded the plane and took my seat. An older, rather
heavy-set Italian who looked like he’d eaten his fair share of pasta sat down
next to me. We exchanged greetings, and he introduced himself as an official of
the former Pontifical Council for the Family, headed by Archbishop Vincenzo
The official seemed to feel quite free to speak, and
was keen to express that he knew Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, secretary general
of the Synod of Bishops. There were a couple of moments during our conversation
when he admitted he had spoken at length to Cardinal Baldisseri, but he could
not reveal the contents of their conversation.
Our conversation quickly turned to the upcoming Synod. I
simply asked questions and was sincerely listening and interested in his viewpoint.
Also on this account, I think he felt free to speak. The beginning of our
conversation focused a lot on the Kasper proposal,* and I was trying to
understand the logic behind it.
Question: [After asking repeatedly about how
someone can enter a second union when the first marriage is sacramental and
valid] I don’t understand. If the first marriage was sacramental and valid, how
can someone be admitted to Communion if they are in a second civil union? What
about the indissolubility of marriage?
Response:What do you do when the
indissolubility is dead, when there’s no more feeling?
[“Come si fa quando l’indissolubilta è morta, quando non c’è
I thought to myself: This is the last thing a priest
should say to a newly married couple who is experiencing difficulty.
After some back and forth, I asked:
Question: But what about Pope John Paul II’s Familiaris
Response:How can we accept [“ammettere”] it? It was
written 30 years ago …
Question: But what about where Pope John Paul II
says, in FC 84, that according to the Sacred Scripture and Tradition, someone
who’s first marriage is valid and who is in a second union can’t be admitted to
Holy Communion unless they live as brother and sister.
Response:We can’t expect a man and woman who
are sleeping in the same bed to live as brother and sister.
Our conversation turned to some of the people the Pope
had appointed to the Synod.
Question: The Pope chose Cardinal Kasper to
attend the Synod. Do you think this means the Pope agrees with Kasper?
Response: [Notable Pause] … Yes
Question: What do you think of Kasper?
Response: “He’s the most intelligent man in the
Question: And Cardinal Burke? …
Response: [Quickly he said] He’s not
coming. He doesn’t count for anything; he’s too Lefebvrist. [“Non conta
per niente; è troppo Lefebvrista”]
Question: But I imagine there will be a lot of
opposition from some of the bishops and cardinals at the Synod, especially from
Africa, America, Poland. What will Pope Francis do?
Response:“He will listen, and then he’ll do
what he wants.”
Question: But what about Pope Benedict? I don’t
imagine he would agree.
Response: He’s a theologian, but he’s got no
Question: And the Congregation for the Doctrine
of the Faith?
Response: [With what seemed a disparaging
tone] They think they are the guardians of the faith! The Pope is the
guardian of the faith.
Question:I heard that the Pope appointed
Cardinal Danneels*** to attend the Synod …
Response:Ah, what a good man … he is refined …
Our conversation eventually turned to other more benign
topics, then ended until we arrived in Rome. When we landed, he gave me his
name and telephone number.
"What a good man," eh? that Cardinal Danneels, a protector of a homosexual priest rapist.
What a perverted mind in this corpulent cleric who spoke so imprudently but revealed so much. Look at these two. Plotting. Conniving. Would Christ do this?