Cardinal Schönborn: Church made to look stupid

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Rocco Palma at the Loggia has in interesting commentary on Cardinal Christoph Schönborn’s rise as a strong critic of the Holy See’s handling of recent controversial issues such as the lifting of the excommunication of the SSPX clerics and the appointment of a Bishop in Austria who called Hurrican Katrina a punishment on New Orleans. Schönborn who is devoted to B16 is being realistic and sounding the alarm that perhaps the Holy Father is too isolated in the Holy See.  As another conservative commentator noted recently, what worker at the Holy See failed to to even simply “google” Richard Williamson’s name? Is there an inability to speak truth to power at the Holy See?  Yet, the Holy See still doesn’t get the magnitude of the problem. The Press Office is still offering the same line… the canonical difference between lifting the excommunication and lifting all suspensions against the SSPX.  It’s  hair-splitting. Perception of what is happening is as important as the actual content. What press person doesn’t get that? At ZENIT, the Legionaire of Christ news agency, an article by Kris Dmytrenko (from Salt+Light TV) reports on the Vatican Press director’s downplaying the problem and basically saying we should not ask any more questions, move on and follow B16’s next road show… look at the pretty pictures!  Perhaps Dmytrenko could have been a little more challenging in his questions?

Here are some of the challenging words of Cardinal Schönborn which are tough, but encouraging in their reflecting well the feeling of many of us. He gets it!

“I can imagine that many of you don’t feel too good at the moment. Neither do I,” he wrote. “Once again we are confronted with occurrences that cause grief and indignation. They make us shake our heads and seem incomprehensible. And once again the Church has been made to look stupid and so have we. And again we ask, ‘Is this really necessary? Have we deserved this? Are we to be spared nothing?’ At a time when the Church should really be dealing with the crucial worries that face people today such as the financial crisis and unemployment, it is confronted with debates about a small group of people who refuse to recognise the Second Vatican Council, or at least crucial parts of it, who think the Pope and the Church are on the wrong path and who consider themselves as the true Catholic Church. And on top of that we are now faced with the uproar concerning the new auxiliary in Linz. This is all a bit much and can give rise to a feeling of hopelessness.”…


  1. This Cardinal’s words are perfect here.

    But I think this “they could just have googled +Richard-son” just a little naive. I mean, sure. They could have googled his name and have seen that he doesn’t like The Sound of Music and thinks that women today shouldn’t go to university, or wear pants. That’s perhaps a little embarrasing, but nothing to have to warn the world about before remitting the “excommunication”. But they probably wouldn’t have found anything linking him to Holocaust denial. Today is a different story though. Now this is all he’s going to be identified with from now on. Whether or not he is orthodox in the faith (and not necessarily always in its application) won’t matter to some. It matters to me though. I don’t know where I’m going with this. Probably no where. Which is a good thing, seeing as I’ve probably broken the 100 word rule already. ;0)

  2. Lets be realistic here folks. Why would anyone presume Williamson was a nutbar before the facts were released? Would you like the Vatican to do a back ground check on everyone the SSPX?

  3. I don’t for a minute believe this pseudo-“scandal” is anything more than a rare opportunity to attack the Catholic Church.

    Bishop Williamson is not the SSPX and the SSPX is not the Catholic Church. If you’re going to dump on the Church on this one, you better also denounce democracy itself as corrupt and “out of touch.” (after all, Hitler rose to power by democratic means…)

    This is about reconciliation and saving souls.
    Even had Benedict XVI known about this man’s views, the Holy Father being a True shepherd, is trying to bring home 450,000 separated SSPX Catholics. He sees the big picture.

  4. I don’t for a minute believe this pseudo-”scandal” is anything more than a rare opportunity to attack the Catholic Church.
    – So you think the Cardinal is attacking the Church?

  5. I’m very disappointed Schönborn seems to have become a “please-love-me liberal” who plays down Truth and salvation for safe Sunday themes like the “financial crisis and unemployment.” As if that will get anyone into heaven. Schönborn’s Church as neutered NGO is NOT what Christ came for.

  6. “because he walked away from the Catholic Church?”

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but your statement could be defined as apostate right?

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