As with the Blume appointment, we can see the roots of a new trend: diplomatic postings being given to prelates with first-hand experience in the places to which they're sent. This turns on its head the previous State convention that the nuncio should be an unblemished arbiter free from prior connections with the place which would affect his objectivity.
It's nice to see that the Vatican is finally figuring out that experts with on-the-ground experience are more likely to get done what needs to be done effectively rather than guys who've made a name for themselves in the Curia. Hopefully, Sodano's successor will be of the same model. The Vatican can't risk any more 'insensitivities'.
Papabile continues his coverage of the Pope's meeting with the Society of St. Pius X. This is interesting:
While I [Papabile] won't reveal all details in this, I do think it's strange that he demanded the SSPX recognize the validity of the election of the Pontiff. They do that on the front page of their web sites, and mention the local Bishop and the Pontiff in all their Masses.
This may be more of a detail item regarding the Priests, a small minority of whom are crypto-edevacantist.
Various sources have suggested that any rapproachment between the SSPX and the Vatican could possibly lead to a break-up of the SSPX as its more radical members refuse to compromise. We'll see how that plays out as mid-level discussions continue.
The always well-informed Amy Welborn looks at Father Richard O'Brien's moonlighting as a consultant to The Da Vinci Code movie production:
It's sort of like a bad, ironic joke
...that Fr. Richard McBrien is the hired gun consulant on the DVC movie. Perhaps it's a natural step for him, who can say? Nevertheless, news of his work was published in the Notre Dame magazine last spring.
I wonder if Father O'Brien will get a role in the movie like Father O'Malley S.J., who was one of the principal consultants for The Exorcist and at the same time played Father Dwyer, the best friend/confidante of Jason Miller's Father Karras...
On a side note, I recommend the book American Exorcism by Michael Cuneo. Aside from its in-depth look at the various forms of exorcism in the United States, Cuneo's book also talks about the role of The Exorcist in creating the 'hero-priest' mystique that remains with us to this day (in contrast to Bing Crosby's sweet, laid-back do-gooder image).
The Catholic Church would do well to consider the impact of Father Karras on its image and what it could do to try to recapture some of that magic. Posters of Neo-as-Priest are one thing... A movie with Jason Miller and Max von Sydow quoting the Roman Ritual is quite a bit more powerful.