Friday, December 5, 2014


This was posted by Catholic News Service last night and sees the light of day today, December 5th and I guess one could say they are simply reporting the news. But how serious is this if it is true????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

 .- The 2013 papal conclave that elected Pope Francis is news again now that four cardinals have denied a new book’s claim that they campaigned for Pope Francis to be elected – though the book’s author has clarified the Pope himself was not a part of their supposed campaign.

The London-based Catholic journalist Austen Ivereigh, in his new book “The Great Reformer: Francis and the Making of a Radical Pope,” contends that a group of cardinals on what he bills as “Team Bergoglio” worked during the last conclave to promote the election of Archbishop Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires as Pope.

According to Ivereigh, Cardinals Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, Walter Kasper, Gottfried Daneels and Karl Lehmann orchestrated a behind-the-scenes lobbying campaign which led to the election of Pope Francis.

Ivereigh wrote that the members of “Team Bergoglio” toured private dinners and other gatherings of cardinals the day before the conclave.

According to Ivereigh, a key role was played by Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, for whom Ivereigh worked as a spokesperson from 2004-2006.

Cardinal Murphy-O’Connor had turned 80, and he could not take part in the conclave due to age limits. However, Ivereigh claims that the cardinal teamed up with other cardinals in order to promote Bergoglio’s candidacy, as he already had done in 2005, when the Archbishop of Buenos Aires was the main competitor of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who would become Pope Benedict XVI.

“They had learned their lesson from 2005 and they first secured Bergoglio’s assent,” Ivereigh wrote. He added that the 76-year-old Cardinal Bergoglio’s advocates “got to work, touring the cardinals dinner to promote their man, arguing that his age should no longer be considered an obstacle, given that Popes could resign.”

The report of this campaigning has caused a certain media frenzy. Some have argued that if the report is true, the election of Pope Francis may be invalid.

An article of the of the apostolic constitution “Universi Dominici Gregis,” which regulates papal elections, has established that cardinals before the election “shall further abstain from any form of pact, agreement, promise or other commitment of any kind which could oblige them to give or deny their vote to a person or persons.”

The conclave rules in the apostolic constitution, issued by St. John Paul II in 1996, stressed that automatic excommunication is incurred by cardinals who commit to an electoral agreement for a papal conclave.

However, the apostolic constitution explicitly states that it does not forbid cardinals from exchanging their opinions during the vacancy of the papal chair.

Questions on the issues raised by Ivereigh’s claims drew a response direct from the Holy See Press Office director Fr. Federico Lombardi, S.J.

On Dec. 1, he stated that the four cardinals “explicitly denied this reporting, both concerning the request of approval from Cardinal Bergoglio, and concerning the conducting of a campaign to push his election.” (MY COMMENT: One of these Cardinals, the notorious Cardinal Kaspar, also denied a certain accusation that was later proven true! The statement of these four cardinals provides little comfort especially coming from Cardinal Kaspar!)

The four cardinals, Fr. Lombardi added, “wish that it is known that they are surprised and displeased by what is written.”

Ivereigh responded in a Dec. 2 statement, focusing on his book’s statement that the four cardinals “first secured Bergoglio’s assent.”

He said he “never meant to suggest” that the four cardinals had “some kind of agreement” with Cardinal Bergoglio. Rather, he had meant to suggest that, unlike the 2005 conclave, the cardinals believed that “this time Cardinal Bergoglio would not resist his election.”

“I am sorry for any misunderstanding arising from my choice of words,” he said, adding that his book’s future editions will have revisions to this statement. The new text will read, “In keeping with conclave rules, they did not ask Bergoglio if he would be willing be a candidate. But they believed this time that the crisis in the Church would make it hard for him to refuse if elected.”

Ivereigh said that he had found no evidence that Cardinal Bergoglio had been approached about his potential election to the papacy. He also found no evidence of “any violation of the conclave rules.”

Ivereigh also stressed that his book’s chapter on the conclave, read in its entirety, “makes clear” that Cardinal Bergoglio “played no role whatsoever in the bid for his election.”

However, Ivereigh on Dec. 1 also reiterated the point on Twitter that “what the cardinals are denying is an agreement with a particular candidate. They are not denying they urged his election.”

He said it is “normal for cardinals to urge voting for candidates,” citing as examples Cardinals Jorge Medina Estevez and Alfonso Lopez Trujillo, who backed Cardinal Ratzinger in the 2005 conclave.


Anonymous said...

It's Cardinal KaspEr, not Kaspar.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

which one's the friendly ghost?

Anonymous said...

If the story is true, and it does not seem beyond the realm of possibility, then everyone involved is excommunicated and Francis is not the pope.

If the story is true and they all get away with the deceit they will meet justice face to face before Christ Himself. It ain't gonna be pretty.

But the accusation does beg questions. The whole world has seen that Cardinal Kasper is full of deceit and was proven a liar. It needs to be investigated not brushed under the carpet by the usual excuses of Fr. Lombardi. Let's look at history shall we. At one time the Church had 3 "popes". So how was it resolved. of them had to be valid.......what did they do.......oh yes all 3 resigned. Maybe the only way to settle this if for Francis in all his humility to renounce his claim to the papacy, have another conclave (without of course any of the "cardinals" made by Francis) and elect the true pope. Seems good to me, problem solved.

Anonymous said...

I was wondering how long it would take you to post something about this.

If there actually ARE grounds for excommunication, this would be a terrible thing for the Church and would cause divisions that would be nearly impossible to heal.

However, if it is true, it wouldn't surprise me. The big question is, what was truly behind Benedict's decision to abdicate? This whole thing has seemed too orchestrated.

Rood Screen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rood Screen said...

By the way, this book appears to be popular among the US bishops.

Rood Screen said...

A ghost cannot be a cardinal, but can a cardinal be haunted by a ghost?

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Leaving the validity of Pope Francis aside (given what the article says) I have wondered (and I am not a canonist) if Pope Benedict resigned under duress, would that invalidate the renunciation? It could have been that he was blackmailed--but I don't think so, or he was pressured by certain Cardinals, but I don't think so.

The big "if" is "soundness of mind" at the time of the renunciation. He was clearly depressed about what had happened at the bank and in his curia. Was he clinically depressed and did this compromise his ability to make a sound decision in his renunciation.

Keep in mind, he looked horrible in the days after his renunciation but today he looks so much better!

Pope can be clinically depressed, they can also have dementia, but neither are grounds for renunciation but if a pope renounces in a stressed state of mind is it valid?

this is a canonical question I cannot answer.

Gene said...

Well, so much for the guidance of the Holy Spirit…I see Luther and Calvin huddled behind the Heavenly barn taking odds on what happens next…LOL! St. Augustine is thinking, "...maybe I should have had fun a little longer before I prayed for chastity.' The Borgias are whooping it up...

Anonymous said...


As Cardinal Ratzinger said (in effect) . . . Considering the results of papal elections throughout history, who could possibly believe that the Holy Ghost guides the selection of popes? The Church may have survived due to the papacy, but not to her popes.

Gene said...

…and all the sedevacantists said, "We told you so…"

Anonymous said...

What we've learned is that unless you get Cardinal Kasper on tape, you're unable to find out the truth.

Rood Screen said...

I think Cardinal Bergoglio had a depth of faith that the other cardinals admired, and perhaps wished they had. Now as pope, his desire to discuss his faith with the faithless leads him to push the boundaries of acceptable behavior, and his seeming lack of concern for the hard-core faithful can be disappointing. But all of this seems to be born of a desperate desire to convert as many lost souls as possible while there's still time.

I think we all know he is the legitimate bishop of Rome, so I'd suggest we make the best of it by trying to win as many converts for the Faith as possible.

Juden said...

As usual, I agree with JBS

Gene said...

People, I'm telling you, the jokes just write themselves. Today the Pope spoke to the International Theological Commission and, in a talk that seems to me to be more dissimulation and feminist-liberalizing, he referred to women as "the strawberries on the cake." ROTFLMAO! Seriously…

So, may I offer the following additional metaphors for women:
Little dumplings
Cherries in the pudding
Sugar in the coffee
Honey on the pancakes
Whipped cream on the sundae
Custard in the pie
Apple of my eye
And, these endearing references, as well:
Betty Jo Downyshanks
Mary Lou Headlights
Tanya Tanlines
Betty Doubledee
Dolly Tearsheets (from the Bard)
…and the little Italian girl from high school…
Gina Statutori

Bot, this is going to be fun!

Gene said...

That should have read: "Boy, this is going to be fun." And it will be. I mean, can you picture the LCWR as "strawberries on cake?"

Fr Martin Fox said...

Well, here's my take on this.

If those four cardinals were circulating amongst the rest, encouraging them to go for Bergoglio, I would expect that to hurt him more than help.

Look again at those four. They are the most identifiably left-leaning cardinals.

If they were really going to organize a drive to get "their" guy elected, they would know not to have themselves be the face of the effort.

Juden said...

Help me out pastor. You didn't say "LOL", so I don't know whether this is funny or not.

How are we supposed to tell...(even if you're rolling on the floor)?

George said...

"The Church may have survived due to the papacy, but not to her popes." That is correct Gene.
The Church has had some less than desirable Popes (less than God would desire them to be for sure) but the belief, the doctrinal operative principle is that whomever occupies the Chair of Peter cannot and will not err on matters of faith and morals. In other words, if someone meeting the minimal prerequisites walking the streets of Rome were to be elected, that person would not proclaim heretical doctrine. The papacy was instituted by Christ Himself and had that not been the case, the Church today, 2000 years later, would be in a far different state if it even still existed at all.

Anonymous said...

"I think we all know he is the legitimate bishop of Rome, so I'd suggest we make the best of it by trying to win as many converts for the Faith as possible."

But the bishop of Rome doesn't have any interest in converting anyone to the Faith. I believe he said it was solemn nonsense.

Jdj said...

Fr. Fox makes a very interesting observation.
Step back, deep breath... There is very little to be gained by pursuing this line. JBS 2:55 gives excellent counsel.

Anonymous said...

Catholicism (politics) as usual. All a crock of bull.

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:14...The way I heard it, the Bishop of Rome said he's not interested in proselytizing...he prefers to "teach" by example. I don't remember the part about "solemn nonsense".

Gene said...

Well, if he is teaching by example, God help us...

Anonymous said...

"I think we all know he is the legitimate bishop of Rome, so I'd suggest we make the best of it by trying to win as many converts for the Faith as possible."

Late to the thread here.

I, too, wholeheartedly agree with JBS... and we should start winning converts via those who "identify" themselves as - well, *sort of* Catholic. (as Father's latest post shows where the children of baby boomer "Catholics" now aren't even burying their parents with a Catholic funeral - dear Lord help us)

Some have been asking me about Pope Francis and his... Francisisms.

I just tell them I cannot control, nor will I *ever try* to control, what comes out of Rome, the chancery or even the local parish.

My task, that is *every* Catholic's task, is to bring souls to Christ as best we can according to the particular situations our Blessed Lord has put us in.

I suppose all of the politics and intrigue are... um, interesting.

Yet all of this "As the Vatican Turns" soap opera leaves me simply flummoxed. I refuse to get caught up in it (but I won't point fingers at others who do follow it and tell them they are wasting their time - if that's their thing then go right ahead).

Our Blessed Mother told the children at Fatima souls are falling into hell like snowflakes in a snow storm. So, for me, I have better things to do and that is *try* to save some of those souls to the best of my God- given ability as I can.

Catechist Kev