Pope Francis sets up a group of eight cardinals to advise him
Francis has taken a most significant decision by setting up a group of eight cardinals from all continents to advise him in governing the Catholic Church and reforming the Roman Curia
In a highly significant and ground-breaking move, indicating a new, more collegial style of leadership, Pope Francis has chosen a group of eight cardinals, from all continents and the Roman Curia, to act as his special advisors in governing the Catholic Church and reforming the Roman Curia.
The Secretariat of State broke the news in a press statement on April 13, exactly one month after his election. It said “The Holy Father, Francis, taking up a suggestion that emerged in the course of the General Congregations preceding the Conclave, has set up a group of Cardinals to advise him in the government of the universal Church and to study a project of revision of the Apostolic Constitution “Pastor Bonus” on the Roman Curia”.
The Apostolic Constitution “Pastor Bonus” referred to in the Vatican statement was issued by Pope John Paul II in 1988 and introduced reforms in the Roman Curia, the civil service that assists the Pope in the government of the Church.
The Vatican revealed the names of the eight cardinals chosen by Pope Francis:
- AFRICA: Cardinal Laurent Monswengo Pasinya, 73, archbishop of Kinshasha in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, former president of SECAM – the Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (1997-2003) and co-president of Pax Christi International (2007-2009);
- ASIA: Cardinal Oswald Gracias, 68, archbishop of Bombay, India, the current President of the FABC, the Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences;
- EUROPE: Cardinal Reinhard Marx, 69, Archbishop of Munich and Freising, in the Federal Republic of Germany; Since 2012 he has been president of COMECE – the Bishops Conferences of the European Community;
- LATIN AMERICA: Cardinal Francisco Javier Errazuriz Ossa, 79, emeritus Archbishop of Santiago de Cile, Chile, he was president of CELAM – the Council of Episcopal Conferences of Latin America ( 2003-2007);
- NORTH AMERICA: Cardinal Sean Patrick O’Malley, OFM, 66, archbishop of Boston, US Bishops Conference;
- OCEANIA: Cardinal George Pell, 71, the archbishop of Sydney, Australia;
- ROMAN CURIA: Cardinal Giuseppe Bertello, 70, the Italian-born Holy See diplomat and currently President of the Governorate of the Vatican City State;
- COORDINATOR: Cardinal Oscar Andres Rodriguez Maradiaga, S.D.B.,70, archbishop of Tegucigapla, Honduras, will coordinate the Group..
- SECRETARY: Bishop Marcello Semeraro of Albano diocese, Italy, will serve as the secretary of the group.
In the pre-conclave meetings, several cardinals spoke about the challenges the new pope would face in governing the Catholic Church and reforming the Roman Curia. Some suggested that it would be good if the new pope could develop a more collegial system of government by involving members of the College of Cardinals or of the Bishops Conferences to assist him in the monumental task of governance. Pope Francis listened carefully and has taken the decision to establish a group of eight to act as his counselors.
Pope Francis is a man of government. He knows how to take decisions, as his performance as Jesuit superior and later archbishop bishop in Argentina has shown. Now he brings that skill to the Vatican, where it is much needed.
An analysis of the eight cardinals chosen shows that seven have wide pastoral experience in governing dioceses and one is an experienced Holy See diplomat; they bring with them a rich and diverse field experience. They are not all like-minded men, and that too is a point in his favor. As in Buenos Aires, so too in Rome, he does not want to surround himself with ‘Yes’ men, he wants to avoid the ‘Groupthink” syndrome. He wants advisors who will tell him the truth, not simply tell him the things that they think or imagine he wants to hear. He wishes to listen to different points of view, so that he can reach good decisions for the benefit of the whole Church and of the wider world that it is called to serve.
Pope Francis is already in contact with the cardinals, and the Group will meet for the first time on October 1-3, the Vatican said.
Mumbai Definition of Universal Church
Can divisions be made among the Churches?
Can information be denied to a person merely on the ground that he is not a parishioner?
Do we really believe in a Universal Church?
Read the below attached mails and judge for yourself.
E-Mail Received From the Cardinal on 20/10/10 along with attachment dated 13/10/10
October 13, 2010
Dear Mr. Sodder,
This has reference to your e-mail of October 1, 2010.
Perhaps the Parish Priest, Fr. Aniceto Pereira, of Our Lady of Salvation Church, Dadar, has not replied to you because you do not belong to his parish.
With kind regards and best wishes,
Yours sincerely in Christ,
Cardinal Oswald Gracias
Archbishop of Bombay
Mr. A. M. Sodder
Mail sent by A.M.Sodder to Cardinal Oswald Gracias
Email sent on 21/October/2010
I am in receipt of the below attached mail and i wish to reply as under:
Perhaps the words in “I believe” will have to be changed from “the holy catholic church” to ” the holy catholic Churches” as per Fr.Aniceto Pereira.
Perhaps the guidelines given for flats by the archdiocese that all catholics of the the archdiocese shall be eligible , will have to be changed to only catholics of that parish as per his thinking.
Perhaps Fr.Aniceto fells that all the money given to Our Lady of Salvation Church Dadar by catholics who were not parishoners should have not been taken.
Perhaps Fr.Aniceto fells that all the money given to Our Lady of Salvation Church Dadar by catholics who were ex-parishoners of the said Church and who have now settled in different parts of Mumbai and Thane will now be returned.
Perhaps Fr.Aniceto feels that the transparency which was spoken of in the Examiner of June 2010 is meant to mean only for the Catholics of that parish.
Perhaps Fr.Aniceto feels that when parishoners from other parishes come to collect money for any worthy cause they should not be allowed.
Perhaps Fr.Aniceto feels that he will get a life long posting in Our Lady of Salvation Church Dadar.
Perhaps Fr.Aniceto has forgotten that all catholics irrespective of where they stay are benefactors of Trust.
Perhaps he has forgotten that the trustees are mere custodians and the laity of Mumbai and Thane are the true owners and beneficiaries of the said trust and considering that the persons in power are transparent and have nothing to hide it would be in the interest of justice and fair play that the said information is given to me on an urgent basis unless something has to be hidden.