V II And Your Poor Knees

Piacenza, “Palazzo Gotico”. I really didn’t want to post a photo of the Cardinal, you see…

Cardinal Piacenza has suggested some days ago the VII documents should be read on one’s knees, because V II is “en event of the Holy Spirit”. All 141,000 words of them, I think he meant.

I have been trying for a while to give some sense to this rather extraordinary declaration. I could not find any other possible explanation than the following ones:

1. The Cardinal is a fun-loving person, always ready for a joke. Well said, Your Grace!

2. The Cardinal loves physical exercise, and thinks it should extend to one’s knees. I am not sure about the appropriateness of this particular suggestion, but I commend the concern for our physical health.

3.  The Cardinal is very fond of penance, and well aware of the redeeming virtue of sufferance. Therefore, he wants to add to our spiritual penance (the self-infliction of the V II documents in their entirety, so that we may say “never again!” with renewed conviction) a strong element of physical pain. I for myself would suggest such a penance only to the strongest souls, but again one understands where the Cardinal is headed.

On a slightly more joyous and therefore less suffering note, the Cardinal might be aware that the Society of St Pius X is on the brink of being fully reconciled to Rome; an event which, no doubt, goes to the great credit of the latter.

It would be interesting to know:

a) whether the cardinal thinks this is an “event of the Holy Spirit”, and

b) whether the Holy Father has demanded the SSPX bishops perform the above mentioned penance, seen that the V II documents were an event of the Holy Spirit…

But no, really, I think His Grace wanted to be funny.


Posted on May 7, 2012, in Catholicism and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Piacenza’s comments puzzle me. He was ordained by Cardinal Siri. I know other things about him (about which I am not at liberty to remark — sorry) which would lead me to believe he may be trying to throw the liberal Bertone apparatchiks in the Vatican off his scent.

    I could be wrong about him; I hope not.

    • Senrex, I am not sure that who ordained him is so relevant, and as Piacenza was born in Genoa and was ordained there it seems natural to me the local archbishop (Siri) would ordain him. I doubt Siri would personally examine the candidates to make sure they were as conservative as he was. Alas, Pope Pius XII made Montini archbishop in Milan… By the way, Bertone was the one who gave him his episcopal consecration.

      If you mean Piacenza wants to throw a symbolic stone for V II to avoid the noise concerning the SSPX to become too loud, I can’t see how statements in direct contradiction to what the SSPX has always maintained can help them… Rather, this seemed to me an uncalled-for intervention in the best of cases, and a blow below the belt line in the vigil of the reconciliation in the worst.


  2. Didn’t mean to imply anything from Siri’s ordaining him — other than the fact that I understand him to be an admirer of Siri. Nor did I intend to contradict you; just offering a possible reason for his, admittedly, puzzling statement.

    • Thanks Senrex, but are we sure it’s so puzzling? I mean, I wanted to be a bit ironic, but I have more than a gut feeling the target of the torpedo is clear…

      I may be a bit biased in this, but I think when the defence of V II goes beyond the defence of its (alleged) orthodoxy and becomes, in a way, a canonisation of V II as such, I begin to smell a bad odour…

      In my experience, when an orthodox prelate defends V II (it takes all sorts…) he does so by stressing the continuity and orthodoxy of the (orthodox) parts of the documents. But this is, in my eyes, different. This is the sanctification of V II qua V II.



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