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Monday, February 08, 2010

Bertone: The Worthy Successor of Sodano?

Rorate Caeli has a post on an ongoing conflict where certain powers in the Roman Curia have been attacking their perceived enemies in the Italian bishops' conference. Rorate has a lengthy excerpt from an Italian daily on the situation and the article sums up the situation well:

The rumors, never denied by the Vatican, specifically accuse the Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the Pope's number two, and the director of L'Osservatore Romano [the Vatican's semi-official newspaper], Giovanni Maria Vian, of hatching a Machiavellian plan to hit Boffo [the former and allegedly driven out director of the Italian bishops' newspaper], in order to attack his mentor, powerful Cardinal Camillo Ruini, former president of the Italian Episcopal Conference, and his successor, Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, considered too independent. Everything in a dark and serious plot now under the observation of Benedict XVI [Rorate note: a report on the matter has been prepared for the Pope by his personal secretary, Mons. Gänswein, according to this Sunday's edition of La Repubblica]. A conspiracy that reflects the harsh internal struggles within the Italian Church.

According to the article excerpt, it was thought that the Boffo affair came about in the first place as a part of an ongoing conflict between the Church and the Italian PM, but the excerpt instead brings to light information that the dossier besmirching Boffo's reputation came from inside the Church.

That sums up the excerpt at Rorate, but it has more detail and the comments are always interesting and informative after some sifting.

As I stated in a comment at Rorate, the Holy Father missed his chance when Sodano stepped down to do it, but his chance is coming up again with the impending retirement of Cardinal Bertone (he's nearing/at the retirement age of 75): once the secretary of State is out of office, the Pope needs to exercise some serious authority and break up the secretariat once and for all.

2 comments:

Louis E. said...

Once more...Bertone (who turned 75 in December and was specifically asked to stay on,as JP II had done with Sodano) is a particular favorite of Benedict XVI...his former Secretary at CDF,he has been appointed by the present Pope as Secretary of State (his quinquennium expires in September of next year),as Camerarius of the Holy Roman Church,and as a Cardinal-Bishop (empowering him to preside over a conclave held between Cardinal Re's 80th birthday in January 2014 and his own that December).Expect his replacement to be slow.

So what issues divide Boffo from Bertone?

Several key offices in the Secretariat (Sostituto,Assessor,Secretary for Relations With States) have already changed in this pontificate.

Jacob said...

While I am aware of Benedict's honoring of Bertone, when push comes to shove, I don't think the Pope will sit idly by while the great Ruini Project of remaking the Italian Church is attacked.

As for Boffo, it seems as though he's just a battle in the overall war described between Ruini and his protege and Bertone and Vian of the OR.