1989 in Rome

In the real 1989 I was a student at Fribourg University. A friend knocked on my door and told me the Soviet empire had imploded. You must be joking! – I said, but saw the amazing footage on TV. The Berlin Wall was down.

I draw your attention to Damian Thompson’s Conclave 2013: a battle between ‘Rome’ and ‘reform’?.

It’s not about liturgy, theology or politics: it’s about the Roman culture of secrecy that Sodano, Bertone and the old guard in the curia did so little to dismantle, despite the urgings of Pope Benedict. That culture enabled child abusers to escape justice and punished senior clergy who called for fundamental reform of a sleepy and malignant bureaucracy.

The “business-as-usual” brigade are surely going to be working very hard over the next few days like the Old Guard in Moscow in the early 1990’s.

The meaning of the word “liberal” seems to have changed, and surely has nothing to do with other people’s freedom. It seems, according to this article, that the old guard that was able to frustrate everything good Benedict XVI tried to do is discredited. If this isn’t wishful thinking, changes are on the way.

Mr Thompson favours Cardinal Schola, Archbishop of Milan, known to be infuriated by curial corruption and fully implementing Benedict XVI’s liberation of the Latin Mass.

The elephant in the room still glares – the old Pope is still alive. We can only wait and see. Already, if the conclave takes more than three or four days, something is really afoot…

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