Sunday, April 14, 2013

PASTOR BONUS

Cardinal F.J. Errázuriz Ossa of Chile.

Logo of the Schönstatt Movement.
Logo of the Society of Jesus known as Jesuits.
 
As a Jesuit Pope Francis is well capable of multi-tasking.  While busy doing the populism routine in the Vatican and Rome he has also been moving against the deplorable behaviour and corruption in the Vatican Curia, which is the governing body of the Roman Catholic Church.

He has now appointed a group of Cardinals from around the World covering each Continent to address the Pastor Bonus.  The "Pastor Bonus" is the constitution that governs the operation of Vatican Curia the current edition of which is itself a revision from the 1990's.

The group of Cardinals selected are interesting because only one is a member of the present Curia, Giuseppe Bertello, president of the Vatican City State governorate which is in a sense the Mayor of Vatican City.  Of the others, our family being partly Chilean, the Cardinal Francisco Javier Errázuriz Ossa a Cardinal-Priest and Cardinal-Archbishop Emeritus of Santiago de Chile is of particular interest.  He is a member of the Fathers of Schönstatt (beautiful place) a self governing Society of Priests as is the Society of Jesus or Jesuits of which Pope Francis is a member.

The Errázuriz family have been in Chile since its beginning the first Errázuriz a Basque arriving in Chile in the 18th. Century.  It is a family which has been totally involved in all aspects of Chilean life and two of whose members have been Presidents of Chile.  It has also had its notorious family members, both male and female, which sadly have been involved in scandals and two prominent suicides.

As to Cardinal Errázuriz Ossa he in addition to his native Spanish speaks Italian, German, and French however he may not speak his original family language of Basque.  The founder of the Society of Jesus Ignatius Loyola was Basque, there is a strong connection with the Basque people and language amongst Jesuits.  The Cardinal was ordained as a priest of the Schönstatt Fathers in 1961 and thereafter advanced through the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church to his present position.

The Schönstatt Movement was founded by Fr. Josef Kentenich in Germany in 1914 near Koblenz.  The Schönstatt Movement emphasizes a strong devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary by establishing a Spiritual Covenant with her.  The Movement is particularly directed towards youth and addresses issues of economic, social, ethical, political, and religious needs of all people. By applying the original principles of Christianity in a new way it wishes to restore a disturbed relationship between the individual person and society, the person and business, the person and technology and the person and social advancement.

While all this is very noble and no doubt well intended it is a Movement which needs careful monitoring and continual assessment.  As with many organisations of involving powerful adult leaders and impressionable youth their have been accusations of inappropriate involvements.  Unfortunately Cardinal Errázuriz while Cardinal of Santiago refused to meet with some such accusers and the priest involved was later found to have been guilty as an abuser and forced into retirement.

So as Pope Francis and Cardinal Francis of Chile try to reform the Curia both already have failed in the past to address one the very issues where the Clergy of the Roman Catholic Church have betrayed the Lay Persons of the Roman Catholic Church.  Each person is due a second chance so one sincerely hopes that this Pope and his group of Cardinals remembering past mistakes will address all the issues and not just the "Pastor Bonus".  If they are NOT successful it could well be the end of the Roman Catholic Church as it is today. Indeed this may be necessary to correct its deplorable and despicable behaviour by which its Religious have betrayed its Lay Persons.

Finally one hopes that the New Vatican Curia will open ALL the Vatican Library for study of ALL its documents removing the Secrecy Issue which causes so much doubt into the facts of this 2013 year old religious movement to both the Roman Catholic Religious and its Lay Persons, of which this writer is one.

Count D. Peter Boucher, Kt. SMOM.

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