Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Deal W Hudson and Deacon Keith Fournier

3/5/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

The mission of Christ and the Holy Spirit is brought to completion in the Church, which is the Body of Christ and the Temple of the Holy Spirit

We suggest that all of you following this series leading up to the Conclave join with the cardinals, now meeting, in asking for the Holy Spirit to guide their proceedings and the choice they will ultimately make.

We do not take 'iron fist' literally, but as a metaphor for one of the more obvious needs in the Church, that all Catholic educational institutions either embrace the Apostolic Constitution  Ex Corde Ecclesiae (1990) or stop calling themselves 'Catholic.'

We do not take "iron fist" literally, but as a metaphor for one of the more obvious needs in the Church, that all Catholic educational institutions either embrace the Apostolic Constitution Ex Corde Ecclesiae (1990) or stop calling themselves "Catholic."

Highlights

By Deal W Hudson and Deacon Keith Fournier

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/5/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Europe

Keywords: conclave, new pope, legacy, ex corde ecclesiae, interregnum, new pope, cardinals, Deal W Hudson, Deacon Keith Fournier


WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - Our Countdown, thus far, has focused on the hostile media's message about the Conclave: "The Church must elect a progressive pope who will not follow in the footsteps of John Paul II and Benedict XVI, but will finally fulfill the hopes born at Vatican II of a democratized institution, one that listens to the enlightened voices calling for women priests, more married priests, acceptance of contraception and same-sex marriage, and an end to abortion activism."

But there are other hopes for the Conclave, voices that are not heard in the mainstream media -- Catholics whose concerns, at best, are expressed publicly on Catholic radio and TV, Catholic blogs, or in emails passed virally along established pro-life, pro-marriage communication networks. These are voices usually ignored by religion writers and correspondents unless they are looking for a quote to caricature orthodox Catholics as mean-spirited and bigoted, in contrast to the justice and charity that characterizes their favorite Catholics.  

We hear these voices, and they are concerned -- in a different way -- about the future of the Church, praying that the true reform and aggiornamento begun by John Paul II in October, 1978, reaffirmed with the election of Benedict XVI April 19, 2005, will continue with the election to be held sometime in the next ten days.

These Catholics, because they are so active in the day-to-day life of the Church, know what goes on in parishes, chanceries, state conferences, and the USCCB. They are holding their collective breath, knowing there is no foregone conclusion given the deep divisions among the clergy and the bishops about the future of the Church.  

We talk to these people everyday. For example, an email exchange about the latest bit of nonsense coming out of a Catholic university, in this case DePaul University, led to the following comment last night from a friend of ours:

"This makes no sense.I hope the new pope will rule with an almost iron fist in regard to Catholic schools and Universities. They should not be able to be called Catholic if they do not support the teachings of the Church. This should trickle down to the politicians too."

We do not take "iron fist" literally, but as a metaphor for one of the more obvious needs in the Church, that all Catholic educational institutions either embrace the Apostolic Constitution  Ex Corde Ecclesiae (1990) or stop calling themselves "Catholic."

Local bishops, of course, have the canonical power to declare any institution or organization no longer "Catholic," as happened recently to the National Catholic Reporter. These type of decisions, call them the "iron fist" variety, do little good if the institution in question has a base of support that could care less, as is the case with NCR. 

That which is not directly funded by the chancery can continue to exists, to call itself "Catholic," in spite of opposition from the local ordinary. Thus, more a prudential perspective, the use of the "iron fist" can easily demonstrate the limits of a bishop's authority more readily than his purported power. It's our observation that bishops, including those working in the Vatican, are acutely aware of this dynamic and seek substantial change in ways that do not expose their incapacity. 

Today, 115 cardinals of the Church are meeting to determine the starting day of the Conclave and to reaffirm the rules surrounding the election, especially the special security measures that ensure the participants are cut off from communications with anyone from "outside." This is particularly important given the spectacle over the past year of the leak of papal documents by the pope's ex-butler. The dean of the College of Cardinals, Cardinal Angelo Sodano, who is leading the pre-Conclave meetings, has said the date may not be announced for a few days.

The cardinals gathered together are aware of the entire spectrum of concerns and expectations in the minds of Catholics around the world. As we outlined on our Day 1 report much of the time spent at the Conclave will be in prayer and worship: The Church, after all, teaches that Her life is directed and nourished by the Holy Spirit:

"The mission of Christ and the Holy Spirit is brought to completion in the Church, which is the Body of Christ and the Temple of the Holy Spirit. This joint mission henceforth brings Christ's faithful to share in his communion with the Father in the Holy Spirit. The Spirit prepares men and goes out to them with his grace, in order to draw them to Christ. The Spirit manifests the risen Lord to them, recalls his word to them and opens their minds to the understanding of his Death and Resurrection. He makes present the mystery of Christ, supremely in the Eucharist, in order to reconcile them, to bring them into communion with God, that they may 'bear much fruit.'" (Catechism of the Catholic Church 737).

We suggest that all of you following this series leading up to the Conclave join with the cardinals, now meeting, in asking for the Holy Spirit to guide their proceedings and the choice they will ultimately make.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for September 2014
Mentally disabled:
That the mentally disabled may receive the love and help they need for a dignified life.
Service to the poor: That Christians, inspired by the Word of God, may serve the poor and suffering.



Comments


More Europe

Millions displaced from homes due to natural disasters Watch

Image of Last year, seasonal floods caused significant displacements in sub-Saharan Africa, notably in Niger, Chad, Sudan and South Sudan, countries also affected by conflict and drought.

By Laura Onita, Thomson Reuters Foundation

Almost 22 million people were forced to flee their homes due to natural disasters last year and the numbers uprooted could increase as urban populations grow, a refugee agency said on Wednesday. (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - The majority were in Asia, where 19 million ... continue reading


Pope Francis invites Chinese President Xi Jinping to meet with him Watch

Image of It's not yet known how Chinese President Xi Jinping will respond to Pope Francis' request for a special meeting.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis has reportedly invited the President of China, Xi Jinping to meet with him, either in the Vatican or Beijing. The pontiff wants to speak to the president in order to build a lasting global peace, which the Pope says is engaged in a "piecemeal" ... continue reading


Marriage and Holiness: Pope Marries Twenty Couples on the Exaltation of the Cross Watch

Image of One of the twenty couples who exchanged their vows in the presence of Pope Francis

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

Much of the Press, including circles of the Catholic Press, focused on the unique path which some of the couples followed to the Sacrament of Marriage; even though they had all arrived at the Altar, offering their love to the Source of all true Love, for ... continue reading


Pope Francis Gives Impassioned Plea for an End to War: What Does it Matter to Me? Watch

Image of Pope Francis walks inside the Austro-Hungarian cemetery at Fogliano in Redipuglia September 13, 2014. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini

By Catholic Online

With this - What does it matter to me?-  in their hearts, the merchants of war perhaps have made a great deal of money, but their corrupted hearts have lost the capacity to cry.  That - What does it matter to me?- prevents the tears.  Cain did not ... continue reading


SOLVED AT LAST: DNA testing nails Polish emigre as JACK THE RIPPER! Watch

Image of Aaron Kosminski, inset, a hopelessly insane Polish immigrant - unable to care for himself and left in the care of relatives - was able to successfully evade justice as the dreaded Jack the Ripper of 19th Century London.

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

London's most notorious serial killer, Jack the Ripper or "Springheel Jack" slashed and killed five prostitutes in the Whitechapel district in the 1880s. Never caught, countless theories sprung up over his identity through the 100-plus years. Some postulations ... continue reading


Rare U.S. coin discovered in Britain could fetch well above a million dollars at auction Watch

Image of Amateur treasure hunter, 42-year-old John Stoner had just begun to search a field in Nottinghamshire, England when he made a most remarkable discovery --

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Amateur treasure hunter, 42-year-old John Stoner had just begun to search a field in Nottinghamshire, England when he made a most remarkable discovery. He uncovered a 350-year-old threepenny coin, used by America's Pilgrim Fathers. The rare coin is expected to ... continue reading


What is this mysterious ring in the Danish countryside and from whence did it come? Watch

Image of The Viking forts found so far in Denmark all match this particular style, which may mirror earlier Roman camps used in England.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Archaeologists working in Denmark have discovered a distinctive ring-shaped Viking fortress, which is thought by some historians to have been used to launch an invasion of England. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The fortress was found on Zealand, a Danish ... continue reading


Pope Francis Reminds Us the Church is Our Mother Watch

Image of St. Peters

By Pope Francis

The Church is our mother because she has delivered us in Baptism. Whenever a child is baptized, he becomes a son of the Church, from that day, he is in the Church which cares for him as a caring mother, she makes us grow in faith and shows us, with the power of ... continue reading


Where can they go? A million Ukrainians have fled their war-torn country Watch

Image of Ukrainian refugees at a Russian train station.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The United Nations has reported that the conflict in Ukraine, which began back in February 2014, has uprooted more than a million people, with even further mass displacement feared as fighting continues. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The total includes ... continue reading


Archaeologists find a very different type of 'treasure' - a 2,000-year-old toilet seat Watch

Image of Discovered at Vindolanda fort on Hadrian's Wall in Northumberland, the

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Accustomed to finding priceless coins, artwork and historical artifacts, archaeologists in Great Britain have found an altogether different type of treasure - one that was desperately needed in ancient times - a wooden toilet seat, believed to be 2,000 years ... continue reading


All Europe News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Corinthians 12:31--13:13
31 Set your mind on the higher gifts. And now I am ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 33:2-3, 4-5, 12, 22
2 Give thanks to Yahweh on the lyre, play for him on ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 7:31-35
31 'What comparison, then, can I find for the people ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 17th, 2014 Image

St. Robert Bellarmine
September 17: Born at Montepulciano, Italy, October 4, 1542, St. Robert ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter