Friday, March 08, 2013


American Cardinals Di Noia and O'Malley briefing the Press on the General Congregation
If anyone had any doubts about the improbability of an American being elected as Pope in the forthcoming Conclave, those doubts ought to have been swept away by the events of recent days.

The American Cardinals had in rotation, been taking it in turns to brief the Press on the activity of each of the General Congregations at its conclusion. The General Congregations are formal assemblies of the Cardinals to transact the business of the College of Cardinals leading up to the Conclave to actually elect the Pope.

In the best American tradition of living life in front of the Cameras and the Press, confusing real life and infotainment, the Cardinals were simply doing the American thing. Bu nothing could have more clearly shown their lack of appreciation of the unspoken consensus among the other Cardinals that such a thing was contrary to the spirit of the secrecy attaching to the Conclave itself. After several such Press Conferences they had scheduled yet another when they were " tapped on the shoulder".That further Conference was cancelled and there will be no more. Only people as self - possessed as Americans could operate in such an environment as the College of Cardinals and be oblivious to the well-founded views of their peers.

f course, no-one outside the United States would want to see the Church become identified with the United States internationally.Yet many Americans just can't see or understand that.

If there were to be an exception to that general view, it would be Cardinal Raymond Burke who is Prefect of the Apostolic Segnatura - the Church's Law administrator. He is American but absolutely atypical - but so much so, so very conservative, that one has to doubt he could garner anything like the numbers required for election.

Cardinal Burke in group photo. N.B. Cappa Magna

N.B. " The Americans Baby" is the Title of a book of essays by Australian Author Frank Moorhouse, published in 1972.My use of the Title does not endorse Moorhouse's work or views.

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