Friday, March 29, 2013

Pope has angered conservative Catholics- Der Spiegel Online cites Cathcon

It was a break with canon law: Pope Francis celebrated the Mass of the Lord's Supper in a juvenile prison in Rome - and washed the feet of two women. The liturgy provides that only men's feet must be washed. Now the Vatican must appease conservative critics.

Pope Francis has apparently angered the conservative wing of the Catholic Church. On Thursday evening, he celebrated in the chapel of the Roman youth prison Casal del Marmo the Mass of the Last Supper. He washed the feet of twelve prisoners . The taboo: Among them were two women. The liturgy for Easter , however, provides expressly that only men's feet must be washed.

"It sets a questionable example," wrote Edward Peters, a consultant to the Vatican on canon law, on his blog . "It is an issue with implications well beyond the foot washing," warned Peters. Basically, the Pope send the signal: "Why seek a necessary but difficult reform of the law, if you can simply ignore it?"

Many liberals welcomed the gesture of the Pope as it seems to be a sign that Pope Francis wants to open up the Catholic Church. In his "electioneering" pre-Conclave speech the Pope had relentlessly analyzed the state of the Catholic Church . One observer evaluated the speech as a reckoning with his predecessor, Benedict XVI.

A conservative commentator from the UK, Chris Gillibrand wrote, according to the British "The Times": "One can be concerned that he might be willing to ordain women to the priesthood." Exactly what Francis has always rejected so far.

​​Federico Lombardi, spokesman for the Vatican , now clarifies in soothing tones that the Pope did not want to break canon law. It was merely an exception.

"It was a special situation in which an exclusion of the girls would have been inopportune given the simple goal of sending a message of love to a group that certainly did not include any designated expert in liturgical rules," Lombardi wrote by e-mail to The Associated Press


See also

Pope begins Easter with liturgical abuse

Bishop washes feet of nine women and three men

Source article quoting Cathcon in The Times- behind paywall.

Bishop washes feet of nine women and three men in clear defiance of canon law

With a Mass on Holy Thursday, the Church began the celebration of the Triduum the of suffering, death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. According to the Gospels, Jesus on the night before his death shared a meal with the 12 Apostles and washed their feet during this meal. With this service, which only slaves would have done at the time, he pointed out to his disciples his own life and their future role as a loving service for the people and for each other. "having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them unto the end.", writes John (13.1).

Love is the legacy of Jesus, which he entrusted to his disciples. With the foot washing, Jesus gave an example, "that ye should do as I have done to you" (13:15). Bishop Rudolf Voderholzer washed the feet of 12 women and men from the diocese representing the 12 apostles during the Holy Thursday liturgy in the Great Cathedral of Regensburg.

Qualified social worker with Harl.e.kin Perinatal Aftercare - Interdisciplinary early support in Catholic youth care. (female)
Nurse on the Early Birth Ward of the St Hedwig Clinic (male)
Case worker in the Catholic Advice Centre for Marriage, Family and Life Questions (female)
Pregnancy Advisor with Caritas (female)
Older married couple (male and female!- how long before......?)
Younger married couple (male and female!- comment as above)
Presenter of seminars for marriage preparation (female)
Midwife from the Caritas-Hospital of St. Joseph's (female)
House mother and nursery carer
Single mother

In his homily, the bishop asked: Why should the washing of feet be a momentous occasion? Should a basin and a series of men's dirty feet - represented today by selected men and women (...), be really today the focus of our attention?

Foot washing is so important, because God chooses this image of affection to the people to show how He relates to each of us. Look how God presents Himself to you: This is the message of the washing of feet. There is a God who kneels, who is literally inclined towards you, who makes himself small to do you some good.

Bishop Rudolf: "His Church has thus displayed a legacy that is certainly not less obligatory, as (...) his Eucharistic legacy to us." Eucharist and foot washing show us both in the same and complementary way how God is. He is there for us. He, whom we want to follow.

As Christians we need to bend over and go down, we, who would prefer to rise quite high . We who are afraid to do something that damages us by taking us down from our high horse.

On the other hand, washing of feet occurs in many places in our everyday lives: where sickness and disease are accepted
and shared, where a disabled child is welcomed with fullness of love and with open arms, and recognized as a gift.

Foot washing is done, "where confront the need of others for help with their heart." Where people dare to "follow the viewpoint of Jesus: namely, not from the top down but from the bottom up."
Pope Francis washes around the same time as the Mass of the Lord's Supper in Regensburg the feet of young inmates in a Roman prison . A young man is reported to have said the day before: I finally learn even to know someone who says of himself that he was my father. Bishop Rudolf: "Pray for us. But let us also pray especially in these days in a special way for our Pope Francis, and that his testimony and that of all of us should be credible and always more credible. "


Cathcon- Would be glad to learn of any other Bishops, apart from the Pope, who include women among the Twelve.

The Bishop here clearly means this as a sign of progressive intent on the matter of female ordination. Or is he just raising false expectations?

Father Lombardi in a statement that the Pope's washing of the feet of female prisoners said that it was a particular situation.   It will clearly be extensively copied in years to come, whatever canon law says.

This was the former Diocese of the head of the CDF, Archbishop Müller. How can he do his job even if canon law is no longer properly applied?

Pope telephones Pope

Pope Francis on Holy Thursday telephoned his predecessor, Benedict XVI and had a "long and intense conversation" with him. The Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi told journalists on Friday. The discussion following the Chrism Mass, at which all priests repeat their ordination promises, have shown the community between the two, the spokesman said.

The Pope elected on March 13 already has telephoned his predecessor twice and last Saturday he paid a visit to the current residence in Castel Gandolfo. There was a detailed two-hour exchange of views.