Saturday, September 09, 2006

The House of Breda Gets a New Addition

Some of you may remember Dutch Bishop Tiny Muskens of Breda, who caused a bit of a stir last week by advocating an alternate stance from the Holy See's on the question of AIDS and condoms while on a trip to Uganda.

Well, it seems someone was listening across the Tiber... Not even six days after Muskens' statements came to light, Pope Benedict has given the 70 year-old bishop a 42 year-old coadjutor. Bishop-elect Johannes Harmannes Jozefus van den Hende, a Rome-trained canonist, has served as vicar-general of his home diocese of Groningen-Leeuwarden since 2000.

As for the timing, it's almost too coincidental to be a coincidence.

In other appointment briefs, the Pope has accepted the resignation of Bishop Faber MacDonald of Saint John, New Brunswick; MacDonald turns 75 in January and seemingly opted for the "early out."

Bishop Martin Currie of Grand Falls has been named apostolic administrator of the diocese, making it the third Canadian see to be placed under the temporary care of a neighboring bishop.