Apr 15, 2002


Online Edition – Vol. VIII, No. 2: April 2002


Latin Not Dead Yet — Enthusiasm for study jams web site
Archbishop wins "Common Ground" honor

"Shared Thoughts" on a better and stronger Church
ICEL secretary resigns–new consultants appointed

Campion College’s progress overcomes setback
Sed contra


Latin Not Dead Yet — Enthusiasm for study jams website

When the Salesian University of Rome started a Latin course on the Internet "to all who wish to register", they probably did not foresee that their web site would be impossibly jammed — within days of the announcement March 12 — as reported by Zenit, an Internet news agency based in Rome.

The Latin course initiative was originally presented February 22 at a congress celebrating the 40th anniversary of Pope John XXIII‘s apostolic constitution on the importance of Latin study for seminarians, Veterum Sapientia.

"This language is a patrimony of humanity entrusted in a particular way to the Catholic Church", Father Biagio Amata, conference organizer and dean of the Salesian University’s school of Christian and classical literature, said.

He stressed that Latin is "indispensible" to priests in order to have access to certain current Church documents as well as early Christian writings that have not been translated.

Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski, Prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education, and Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone, Secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith were among those who attended the conference.

The Salesian University’s web site is (http://www.geocities.com/blas3/)


Archbishop wins "Common Ground" honor

Catholic Common Ground, a group started by the late Cardinal Joseph Bernardin, will give its annual "Initiative" award to Milwaukee Archbishop Rembert Weakland.

The Initiative Report, the group’s newsletter, made the following announcement in its March 2002 edition (p 6):

"Archbishop Rembert G. Weakland of Milwaukee is the recipient of the 2002 Initiative Award, given to someone who has furthered reconciliation and/or dialogue on important issues within the church.

"A staunch defender of the directions set by the Second Vatican Council, Archbishop Weakland is no stranger to controversy. Yet, his approach to conflict has consistently involved entering into a dialogue with his critics and actively listening to their concerns. His leadership in two highly public conflicts illustrate this point — his chairing of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops committee that drafted a pastoral letter on the economy in 1984 and his recent engagement with the Roman Congregation for the Liturgy over the proposed renovation of the Milwaukee Cathedral".

On reaching his 75th birthday on April 2, Archbishop Weakland submitted his resignation to the Holy See, as required.

The same issue of Initiative Report reports that Cardinal Walter Kasper will address the Common Ground group (June 21, 2002, 8 p.m., Silver Spring Hilton, Silver Spring, MD). A year ago Pope John Paul II appointed the newly-made cardinal (the bishop of Rottenburg-Stuttgart, 1989-1999) president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.

Cardinal Kasper has been deeply involved in dialogue between Catholics and Lutherans, and was instrumental in arranging the October 1999 Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification. He also publically criticized Dominus Jesus, a document released by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and approved by Pope John Paul II. The document explained that though other religions have merit, and though those outside of the visible Catholic Church can be saved, salvation comes through Christ alone by way of the Catholic Church.


"Shared Thoughts" on a better and stronger Church

The present scandals involving sex-abuse by priests can lead to a "better and stronger" Church — with a married priesthood, according to Archbishop Rembert Weakland, OSB.

In his March 19 column, "Shared Thoughts @ the Bishops’ Domain", addressed "to those with whom he shares ministry in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee", the archbishop stated:

"We will be better and stronger if we struggle realistically, but with Faith, to confront the difficult issue of pedophilia and what it might be saying to us about priestly ministry in the Church in general.

"For example, having had so many contacts with the Orthodox churches around the world, I have come to a more acceptable stance about the option of a married clergy. When the Holy Father granted permission for married Episcopalian clergy to function in the Catholic Church, he opened the door to this experience among our people. When the possibility of a married diaconate was introduced here in the United States, some bishops hoped it would also be a way of introducing our people to the acceptance of a married clergy. These experiences should be coolly analyzed and studied now. We have much work to do. It could be the kind of breakthrough that will force us to move ahead in unexpected ways".

Cardinal Roger Mahony of Los Angeles echoed these views in a news conference March 24, following the Chrism Mass. Asked about the married priesthood, Cardinal Mahony responded, "I think all these questions are open. I never said they should not be raised".

Archbishop Weakland shared other thoughts in his column:

"Sometimes you just can’t win. The criticism about the renovation of St. John’s Cathedral that I heard most often was that it was bound to be just another infliction of ugliness on the people, with no sense of the aesthetic or the transcendent. Now that it is finished, those same critics have called it nothing but a glorification of art and the aesthetic.

"The newsletter of the ‘Adoremus’ society, known for its more conservative position in liturgy, carries two photos of the renovated Cathedral in their March edition. Nothing of the renovation is seen, because both are really photos of me. One was taken near the font during the press conference before the dedication; the other is the painting of me in an arch in one of the side aisles. I was surprised to read: ‘A unique feature is Archbishop Weakland’s painted portrait, overlooking the interior from a roundel in a side-aisle’. I am afraid it has been hanging there with the other archbishops of Milwaukee for over ten years, long before the renovation — without beard, too. I am surprised they did not also show the bas-relief below the statue of Mary where I see I am also a part of the scene. I am sure they wanted to avoid showing the real renovation since their readers might have liked it.

"Sometimes you just can’t win".

We were surprised to read that the archbishop believes he did not "win". The cathedral renovation was accomplished exactly according to his plans, as a plaque placed inside attests.

The two illustrations in our brief story on the renovation of the Cathedral of St. John (AB March, pp 1, 3) appeared on the Milwaukee Sentinal-Journal’s web "slide show" on the renovation. The illustrations show the renovated "east end" of the cathedral, and the archbishop — with beard — celebrating the rededication Mass. The painted portrait of the archbishop in the nave of a church remains unique, no matter when it was installed.

Several AB readers who are Latin scholars observed errors in the Latin inscription as we printed it. The inscription said, in part, that the cathedral was renovated "not without difficulty" [sine non difficultate]. We presume the errors were in the transcription we used and not in the original. We should have caught the gaffes.


ICEL secretary resigns; new consultants appointed

The resignation of John Page, 61, secretary of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy (ICEL) since 1980, was announced February 22, and becomes effective August 15.

The resignation was not unexpected. In 1999 the Congregation for Divine Worship had directed that ICEL, the "mixed commission" that has provided English translations of liturgical texts since 1964, submit plans for restructuring. Among other items on the CDW’s suggested list of changes was that the secretary serve for a set term. Some ICEL members objected to "Vatican interference" in translation matters.

The restructuring is not complete. However, there are signs that the process is progressing. For example, the recently reported appointments of two new consultants, mentioned in the February 2002 newsletter of the new Liturgical Institute at the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary in Chicago.

The newsletter, Tidings, mentions that the Institute’s director, Monsignor Francis Mannion has been appointed to ICEL’s "reorganized consultants’ committee", along with Father Bruce Harbert, of the Archdiocese of Birmingham, England, a visiting faculty member at the Institute. Dr. Denis McNamara, whose articles have appeared in AB, is associate director of the Institute.

Chicago archbishop Cardinal Francis George, who founded the Institute, is the US bishops’ representative to the ICEL episcopal board.

Information: Monsignor Francis Mannion, Liturgical Institute, 1000 East Maple Avenue, Mundelein, IL 60060; Ph: 847-837-4542; web: www.usml.edu/liturgicalinstitute.


Campion College’s progress overcomes setback

Applications to study at the new Campion College in San Francisco, a 2-year "great-books" program of studies initiated by Father Joseph Fessio, SJ, of Ignatius Press, have exceeded expectations, officials say.

The new college plans to open in the fall of 2002 on campuses in both San Francisco and in Washington DC, according to Mark Brumley, president of Guadalupe Associates (d/b/a Ignatius Press).

In March, Father Fessio was ordered by his superiors to sever his ties with Campion, and was assigned to become assistant chaplain of a small hospital in Duarte, California, beginning in May, although he will continue as editor of Ignatius Press.


Sed contra

"Today centrist voices are not being heard, and so we witness a pullback from the openness of Vatican II. We see an orchestrated applying of the brakes to liturgical renewal…. Liturgists must become more pro-active….

"As we strive to meet these future challenges, let us be mindful of what Blessed Pope John XXIII said, ‘In essential things, unity, in non-essential things, freedom, and in all things, charity.’"

Bishop Donald Trautman – address to Southwest Liturgical Conference, January 17 , 2002 (Origins, March 14, p. 653)

The classic quote, "in essential things, unity, in non-essential things, liberty, and in all things, charity", is most often attributed to Saint Augustine of Hippo (d. 425).



The Editors