Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Cardinal Law's Secretary

Now, while it is enshrined in canon law that the diocese of a bishop emeritus is obliged to maintain his standard of living in retirement, Bernie's current arrangement makes this development noteworthy.

From the Herald:

The Boston Archdiocese is still paying one of Cardinal Bernard Law's closest friends to study church law and serve as Law's secretary in Rome.

Boston Archbishop Sean P. O'Malley, who took over Law's post after he resigned in 2002 at the height of the clergy sexual abuse scandal, mentioned Monsignor Paul B. McInerny's appointment in the April 1 edition of The Pilot, the archdiocese's weekly newspaper – but not that McInerny would remain on the payroll.

Asked why the archdiocese is paying one of its priests to be secretary to the disgraced ex-archbishop, archdiocese spokesman Terrence C. Donilon said, ``I would only deduce nothing more than monsignor's desire to resume his studies in Rome and the fact he has worked with the cardinal previously.''

O'Malley is closing roughly one-quarter of the archdiocese's parishes because of a shortage of priests and a financial crisis caused by plummeting donations in the scandal's wake....

``Cardinal Law is the best thing that's ever happened to the church in Boston in terms of leadership,'' McInerny told one reporter in the heat of the scandal in 2002.

Um, if Law made me a monsignor and elevated me to the lap of luxury, I'd say he was the best thing since sliced bread, too....

And for those who would wonder why a middle-aged priest is suddenly taking up canonical studies in Rome, it might just be that his mentor (a member of the Congregation for Bishops) is shopping him around for bigger and better things.

You just never know.



Blogger Jason C. said...

Monsignor McInerny used to run Boston Catholic Television. I don't know him personally, but I can say he always came across as a humble, devout and orthodox priest.

31/8/05 12:27  
Blogger Gyrovagus said...

But others in Boston remember the very unplesant pictures of him, looking anything but humble and devout, chasing the television crews away from the oceanfront property in Pembroke ("for the retired clergy") where the Cardinal had gone with some aides, McInerny among them, to get away from it all. Big cars parked in the circular driveway, like a scene from The Sopranos, and the Monsignor - in civvies - holding his hands up to the cameras and shouting: "This is private property! Get out of here NOW!"

The televised Rosary it wasn't.

31/8/05 13:25  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"But others in Boston remember the very unplesant pictures of him, looking anything but humble and devout, chasing the television crews away"

Ah yes indeed! T'was not one of Paulies better television moments, but I bet it is one that he will be most remembered for. ( I bet we can find the eight by ten still shots somewhere on eBay in the very near future)

I say bravo for the Monsignor for seeing to his ecclesiastical career! Looking out for number one. What the Church really needs is more ordained canon lawyers. Let the permanent deacons and lay pastoral assistants bring communion to the sick and lead the rites of burial and the daily communion services. As long as they don't allow married men into the priesthood for heaven's sake!

31/8/05 19:43  

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