Monday, June 11, 2012

Pray for fifteen days with the Second Vatican Council

Prier 15 jours avec le concile Vatican II (Nouvelle Cité) de André Dupleix - Evene

Is it possible to pray with the Second Vatican Council, from the constitutions, decrees and declarations which constitute its basis? Certainly. By that which unites all the councils in the long history of the Church : the permanent breath of the Spirit of God . But also because the conciliar fathers have never dissociated their debates, as basic as they are, from prayer and liturgy. We will therefore be directed, taking into account all the conciliar documents, without omitting the messages to the world, how better to perceive this Council , expression of the faith of the people of God , which can now strengthen and nourish our spiritual lives spiritual and our responsibility as baptized. And all that, in connection and continuity with the strongest tradition of Christianity and the Church .

Cathcon- not a book that I will be purchasing any time soon.  We do not hear much of the Spirit of Vatican II these days-  not least because it is contrary to the one Spirit that ruled at all the other councils.  Needless to say  Msgr Dupleix graduated from seminary in.....1968.  See my earlier comments about Cardinal Ouellet eulogy of the Council and all its fruits.

Italian police have 200 page document detailing the secrets of the Vatican Bank

Vatileaks und mehr: Die Bankgeschäfte des Vatikans - Welt - Tagesspiegel

A comprehensive dossier the fired head of the "Institute for Religious Works" – the Vatican Bank- airs his frustration. The Vatican tried to stop Italian prosecutors from further investigating.

No snooping! With just a brief explanation, the Vatican wanted to prevent Italian prosecutors from deepening their investigation of the Vatican Bank, the "Institute for Religious Works" (IOR). It is a sovereign state whose internationally guaranteed rights must be respected, the Vatican notes. The fear of the Vatican is no accident. 

Because a unique source of information has opened up to the Italian prosecutors: During the search of home and office of the fired IOR chief Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, 47 folders of material fell into the hands of the prosecutors, inter-alia, a 200-page dossier, in which the frustrated banker shows his knowledge of the inside of the Vatican Bank. This paper was to be used by Gotti Tedeschi to defend himself against his dismissal three weeks ago, and it should, inter alia, be sent to the Pope, and - to a journalist - "in the event that something happens to me."  The banking professionals on the external board of IOR had passed a vote of no-confidence in Gotti Tedeschi on 24 May due to inadequate performance of his official duties. The Cardinal's Commission with overall responsibility then confirmed the dismissal.

The public prosecutor in Rome, is now hoping to be able to clarify some dirty money scandals thanks to Gotti Tedeschi's notes. In the train of the investigations, 23 million euros of the IOR have been seized: the origin and purpose of these funds which have to be assigned according to international regulations against money laundering is not sufficiently clear, as it was disclosed in September 2010.

In order to avert major damage to image, the then-president of IOR Gotti Tedeschi ran at that time to the Roman prosecutor- he wanted to ensure transparency and would also talk about mysterious anonymous accounts at the IOR.  It has not served much use: The millions were blocked for ten months- they were only released by Italy when the Vatican itself had imposed a strict law against money laundering.

Gotti Tedeschi however then began to fall from grace. The chief politicians of the Vatican State came to resent him, as he had worked so frankly with investigators of another state.  The Vatican at that time however could do next to nothing.  And so it fired Angelo Balducci, who bore the honorific title of "His Holiness's Honour."  Balducci, the Vatican's top advisor in real estate and investment matters, and at the same time head of the Italian authorities for all government contracts, had been wheeling and dealing with Roman builders and - after investigation – had hidden from the Italian tax inspectors in the Vatican Bank the millions that he had made.  Gotti Tedeschi says he wanted to bring light into the murky nature of secret accounts but had been blocked by internal "enemies" within the Vatican Bank.  On the other hand, the Vatican repeated that the bank president had not been fired because of this - "Transparency is close to the heart of the Holy See " - but because he had failed as a leader.

At the same time, another three internal letters came from the Vatican to the public. These show members of the IOR-board voicing their concern about the increasing international isolation and the "extremely fragile state" of the Vatican Bank. So writes the former General Manager of Deutsche Bank and now interim president of the IOR, Ronaldo Hermann Schmitz, that the situation had "so much worsened that I fear an imminent threat."

Gotti Tedeschi was "unfit to lead the Institute in such difficult times," as the IOR-President, was described by another member of the board, American Carl Anderson. It is noteworthy that both bankers do not accuse their former President of having created this situation, rather they say, he was no match for the situation as it was. Who the culprits are, remains open.

An example of the mudslinging as whole, which has been raging in the Vatican for weeks about the publication of secret documents, is given by the publication of the third letter. In a psychiatrist describes Gotti Tedeschi as "self-centered, narcissistic, partly detached from reality" and was suffering from a "psycho-pathological disorder."  The psychiatrist did not derive this analysis from a medical examination, but after a Christmas reception at which he had been placed next to Gotti Tedeschi - more or less randomly.

One thing is certain: the smuggling of these letters cannot be put down to the account of Paolo Gabriele.  The Butler of Pope Benedict, who had stolen the documents from the Vatican folder by folder has sat for three weeks in a cell of the Vatican Police, but the "ravens" as they are known- often in Italy also called a "mole" - who leak documents to the media continue to fly .

Monastery of St Barnabas in Cyprus on this his feastday


Cardinal Ouellet: Let Us Rejoice at Fruitfulness of Vatican II

ZENIT - Cardinal Ouellet: Let Us Rejoice at Fruitfulness of Vatican II:

"Leading up to the Eucharistic Congress to be held in Dublin, Ireland, a theological symposium at Maynooth opened Wednesday.

One of the speakers was Cardinal Marc Ouellet, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops and papal legate to the 50thInternational Eucharistic Congress. His lecture was titled, “The Ecclesiology of Communion, 50 Years after the Opening of Vatican Council II.

He started by noting that Blessed John XXIII set two main goals for the Council: to bring the presentation of the Church’s doctrine up to date and to promote the unity of Christians.

“In order to attain these objectives, the Council Fathers undertook a fundamental reflection on ecclesiology, in the hopes of better defining the Church’s profound nature, her essential structure, and the meaning of her mission in a world increasingly emancipated from her influence and tradition,” Cardinal Ouellet explained."

Cathcon- so how does the Cardinal explain the present state of the once great Church of Ireland?  Almost needless to say the Cardinal graduated from seminary in 1969.   It will be for the next generations to break away from the complete myth of the fruitfulness of the Council.    It is a damaging belief to hold for someone tipped for such high office.

There are only a few prelates left who are burdened with actually having been at the Council, the present Pope among them.     At the Seventh Ecumenical Council, the Western Church saved the Eastern from iconoclasm,  perhaps at the next the Eastern Church will save the Western from modernism.  It all takes time.

Professor reads the Koran instead of calling ambulance


A professor of Islamic religion at the  Athénée Royal  of Uccle was dismissed last Friday as he began to recite verses from the Koran instead of calling the ambulance when one of his students had a seizure in the playground, De Standaard and Het Nieuwsblad reported on Saturday.

Another dismissal was also decided on recently in the  Athénée Royal  of Anderlecht, where a professor of Islam declared he would take gay students to an imam to get them exorcised. Both schools involved are responsible to the Flemish education authorities. Verdyck Raymonda, managing director of Go!, the Flemish educational authority considers it necessary to open the debate on the issue. "The authorities and principals need to take a lead on quality monitoring, including with respect to matters of outlook," she says. The Flemish Education Minister, Pascal Smet (Socialist Party) has promised the arrival of more inspectors of Islamic religion as well as the establishment of academic teaching on Islamic religion for 2014.

Protestants in Germany hand over their church to Islamic use

Mönchengladbach: Muslime übernehmen Kirche in Gladbach

A Christian church has been converted into a Muslim assembly hall. In Moenchengladbach-Rheydt the Alevi community gathers in the former Holy Cross Church of the Evangelical Methodist Church. Three years ago, the Methodists celebrated their last church service in the church and sold it in 2010 to the Alevis. The renovation of the building took one and a half years.

This was an unprecedented event in Germany, writes the newspaper "Welt am Sonntag". So far, an interdenominational consensus had prevailed, not to allow the conversion of abandoned churches to Islamic worship.

The Evangelical Church in Rhineland rejects this as before. The Methodists are an independent Protestant Free Church, which claims in Germany some 55 000 members. Worldwide there are approximately 70 million Methodists, mostly in the US. A spokesman for the Rhenish Church said: "We do not question a transfer to non-Christian religious groups. Exceptions are Jewish communities."

Unlike Sunni or Shiite Muslims, Alevis do not pray in mosques, but in so-called Cem houses. You do not fast during Ramadan, but at another time. The Koran plays in comparison only a minor role. Alevis do not feel bound by the Islamic Sharia legal system.

Swiss bishops worried that SSPX will split

Schweiz: Bischöfe diskutierten über Piusbrüder

Switzerland: SSPX bishops were discussed

if the Holy See agrees with the SSPX on a full reintegration into the church, this would have far-reaching consequences, especially for the Catholic Church in Switzerland, says the President of the Swiss Bishops Conference, Bishop Norbert Brunner to Vatican Radio. Econe, the headquarters of the SSPX lies in Brunner's Diocese of Sitten. The bishops met in the recent days for their plenary meeting in Einsiedeln.

"It was not a main theme of our General Assembly. But on the sidelines of the Bishops' meeting, we talked about it because various media have announced that an agreement between Rome and the SSPX is imminet. Of course, it is difficult to comment on it, unless specific details of the agreement are known.  But a point which concerned us relates to a possible schism within the SSPX. 
Because then we would have solved only part of the problem. "

Moreover, it would depend on what structure the SSPX would obtain said Bishop Brunner. A personal prelature based on the model of Opus Dei was a topic of conversation.

Topic: Ecumenism

The official theme of the General Assembly this week, however, was an extension of the recognition of baptism. So far, a settlement was reached in 1973 which included the Catholic, Protestant and Old Catholic Churches. The expansion will involve all possible churches in Switzerland, which are members of the so-called Council of Christian Churches.

"Because there are also other churches represented, mutual recognition should therefore now be extended. This is especially true for the Orthodox churches."

The Orthodox community is growing in the Alpine country and is now one of the largest denominations in the country. Recently, the Catholic bishops have also officially met representatives of the Orthodox. At the meeting there were at Einsiedeln to a review of this ecumenical meeting.

"That was the first meeting ever, that we have done undertaken in this form. We raised some issues that we want to pursue. This will take place especially between the Ecumenical Centre at Chambesy near Geneva and Bishop Charles Morerod, who is our bishop with this responsibility".

Topic: asylum in Switzerland

The Union of Orthodox churches in Switzerland has only existed for about a year. For several years, however, the subject of "asylum" is a hot issue in Switzerland that affects the church.

“Human dignity and the dignity of Christians should be granted in all countries. It is then particularly a matter of solidarity with minorities. This is a concern that we share with many people. This concern applies not only to asylum seekers who seek refuge in Switzerland, the same goes for others who are persecuted in other countries."

Bishop Brunner recalled the plight of Christians in the Middle East. Unfortunately according to Brunner, few doubt that the situation will get worse rather than better.

Topic: sexual assault

The guidelines of the Bishops' Conference on "sexual abuse in the church context" have been revised in recent months. They adapt to changing requirements of canon law, which relate to the changing of the statute of limitations and because of some changes resulting from the experience of recent years. The revision was suggested by the CDF.

SSPX fail in their attempt to sue politician for libel

Keine Verleumdung der Piusbruderschaft: Ermittlungen gegen Burger eingestellt / Bedauern statt Freude - Neue Rottweiler Zeitung Online. Nachrichten aus der Region Rottweil.

Beginning of the story can be found here

"Their investigations have not given the Rottweil Prosecutor's Office apparently sufficient cause for legal action so the case against me for defamation of the German District Superior of the SSPX, Franz Schmidberger, has been set aside," Burger wrote on Sunday.

The Rottweil City and District Councillor Burger had to defend himself because of the contents of a letter to the press. As he was angry over what he sees as completely uncritical reports in the local daily newspaper about the dedication of the church of the ultra-conservative SSPX in Sulgen, Burger wrote a letter to the editor about the "Communion of Saints" as he called the Society. He incurred a criminal complaint from Schmidberger.

The Rottweil Prosecutor's Office interrogated Berger in the meantime, the investigation being set aside on 6th June. Those who think that Burger was pleased are simply wrong. Rather, the long time chairman of the Rottweil area Green Party says: "That it is not now coming to trial, I regret. As it would become a matter of public record what nasty right-wing sectarians work mischief in our locality."

Burger alludes to the newly consecrated church of the SSPX. And their leaders and members with this choice of words will probably be upset. What is good is also intention and calculation.

For the City and County Councillor, his criticism of the medieval-looking theological mindset of the SSPX is not so much in the foreground, as he further explained All German bishops distanced themselves clearly from the SSPX, says Burger. "Like other questionable sects, they are still legitimized by religious freedom." Burger condemned "that the secular political attacks of Schmidberger, his reactionary SSPX and its bishops – among them Holocaust denier Richard Williamson – in our polity to date go unpunished by the state. " 

Schmidberger has argued in various publications of the Society against adopting large parts of the constitutionally protected human rights, says Burger. In his essay, "Principles of a Christian social order", 2007 published in the journal, Civitas, Schmidberger formulates the objectives of a theocracy, "which is clearly contrary to the free standing, democratic fundamental order," said the Green politician. Further Burger says "Schmidberger is not the only person to represent this opinion in the SSPX".

Other SSPX members such as Rafael Hüntelmann (Cathcon- a philosopher and not a priest as far as I can see) and Marc Grensbittel (a priest) have repeatedly called for the repeal of key rights such as freedom of speech, freedom of religion or the equal treatment provisions of the Basic Law. " The Green Party member concludes: "Had representatives of non-Christian religions formulated such theories in our country, they would have been dubbed by the media long ago as preachers of hatred and be banned or, at least, monitored by the Constitutional Protection Office."