Sabato, 22 Settembre 2018

Dolan on superpower, marijuana and the council


Vatican City, February 20 - ''Exciting, joyous,
profound.'' This was how Benedict XVI reacted, on February 17
2011, to the speech given by Timothy Dolan, the archbishop of
New York, in front of the gathered cardinals.
Dolan said the Second Vatican Council was like a ''compass
for the church today'', pointed to China, India, Latin America
and the West as some of the church's ''challenges'' and said
that in the future the institution should be ''confident, yes;
triumphalist never.''
Dolan, 63 years old, corpulent and with a contagious laugh,
is considered a possible successor to the outgoing pope.
However, he doesn't appear to see it that way. A few days
ago, asked by a journalist if he saw this possibility, Dolan
responded that whoever says this must have smoked marijuana.
Dolan is considered a conservative in politics for having
taken positions that contrasted with those of the Obama
administration, especially in matters of ethics, but it is
because of his theological solidity and pastoral zeal that
Benedict included him among the conclave's electors.
Sean O'Malley, the archbishop of Boston, is widely
considered to be another possible successor to Benedict XVI.
The 68-year-old O'Malley, a Capuchin who lives a Franciscan
lifestyle, has breathed new life into the Boston diocese, which
faced the pedophilia scandal with firmness and emerged
Recently, Benedict called for the canonist Robert Oliver,
from Boston, to replace Charles Scicluna as promoter of justice
for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, a position
of strategic importance in the Church's battle against abuses.
Until a few years ago, it seemed unthinkable that a son of
the world's economic superpower could one day become pope.
Today not even Latin Americans turn up their noses at the
However, even if the choice falls upon someone else, the
Americans will certainly bring creativity and solidity of faith
to the search for a new guide for the church, which has been
shaken by the unexpected resignation of Benedict XVI.
The American episcopacy, along with its German counterpart,
recently complained to the pope for the excessive ''Roman-ness''
and ''Italian-ness'' of the church, not only because of the
crisis following the Vatileaks scandal but also in terms of the
church's overall approach to its tasks and universal vocation.
''And we don't even know what Vatileaks is,'' said Luis
Tagle, the archbishop of Manila, last November when he was in
Rome to be dubbed cardinal during Benedict XVI's last
consistory, which didn't feature a single European.
On February 14 the pope, in bidding farewell to his vicars,
recounted his own experience of ''Vatican II'' and pointed to
the new nationalities which have ''made a strong entrance into
the Council.''
''Not just the Americans, but also Latin America'' and
''also Asia and Africa,'' said Benedict recounting his
experience of 50 years ago.
''So the problems, which I have to say we Germans hadn't
even seen at the beginning, grew.''
The cardinals called upon to elect the new pope will have
to wear new lenses through which to interpret the dialog between
the Church and the world and the North American church is
destined to carry weight, Vatican watchers say.

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