Sunday, March 23, 2014
Is it Springtime yet?
Is there a trend in our newly appointed Bishops. The last two are both members of religious orders and Bishop O'Toole was a seminary Rector, as more and more secular priests live alone I can't help wondering if new Bishops are expected to be 'community people', rather like the Pope to enjoy the chatter of others around them. I suppose most priests like that, but the particular feature of these three latest appointments seem to indicate they actually like priests in particular, absolutely necessary but not always easy for a Bishop to do. The last two appointments had chosen to live their in a community with priests. Archbishop Mennini seems to have a preference for Religious, which as a secular priest I thing is probably a good thing.
The other thing that seems important is that Bishop McMahon and Fr Byrne both have good records of encouraging vocations, as does, in a different way, the former Rector of Allen Hall Bishop O'Toole of course.
Others have commented on both Bishop McMahon and Fr Byrne have been friendly towards the Traditional Mass, and personally it gives me joy, but it is deeper than that, it is about being at ease with the history and Tradition of the Church. The fourth Commandment tells us that if we honour our father and mother we will live long in the land. It is about rootedness. I don't know too much about Bishop O'Toole but friends in the Ordinariate speak incredibly highly of him embracing this initiative of Pope Benedict, and them.
Though Bishop O'Toole might well be described as following the traditional career path to the Episcopate: Cardinals Secretary, Seminary Rector, everyone seems to agree he is exceptionally capable, both Bishop McMahon and Fr Byrne are relative outsiders.
The other encouraging thing is that we seem to have put behind us the promotion of men with little education over an STL collected on passing through Venerable English College.
Do three swallows, make a Spring? I hope so, I am hopeful.
Posted by Fr Ray Blake