Cardina Zen replies to Dean of College of Cardinals’ circular letter

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

On Feb. 26, Cardinal Giovanni Battisa Re, the Dean of the College of Cardinals sent a circular letter to every member of the College in response to the letter of complaint about the Vatican-China accord which Cardinal Joseph Zen, of Hong Kong, had sent likewise to every member in October of 2019.

Cardinal Re’s letter was published here and commented upon, yesterday.  Today, Cardinal Zen published his response. Here is the text and my brief comments.

First the original Italian, which I copy here from Cardinal Zen’s personal Blog, then my English translation below:

A S.E. Rev. ma Sig Card. G.B. Re

Decano del Collegio Cardinalizio

Sig. Cardinale

Mi sia permesso di usare il mezzo di una lettera aperta per una comunicazione più tempestiva.

Per via indiretta ho preso visione della sua lettera del 26 Febbraio la quale (Prot. N. 1/2020) ha anche l’onore di aver così inaugurato il suo alto ufficio di Decano del Collegio Cardinalizio.

Ammiro il suo coraggio nell’avventurarsi in questioni che Ella pure riconosce essere “complesse”, mettendo a rischio il prestigio del suo appena inaugurato onorevole ufficio. Ma si sa che oggi c’è un vicepapa che riesce a mettere coraggio a tutti i servitori nella Santa Sede.

Veniamo alla lettera.

1. Per chiarire la visione di Giovanni Paolo II e di Benedetto XVI riguardo al comunismo mi basta ora rimandarLa a pag. 161-162 del libro “ultime conversazioni” (Papa Benedetto mi fece avere una copia con la dedica “in comunione di preghiera e di pensiero”).

La domanda del giornalista Peter Seewald:

“Ha condiviso e sostenuto attivamente la Ostpolitik del papa (Giov. Paolo II)?”

Benedetto rispose: “Ne parlavamo. Era chiaro che la politica di Casaroli, per quanto attuata con le migliori intenzioni, era fallita.

La nuova linea perseguita da Giov. Paolo II era frutto della sua esperienza personale, del contatto con quei poteri.

Naturalmente allora non si poteva sperare che quel regime crollasse presto, ma era evidente che, invece di essere concilianti e accettare compromessi, bisognava opporsi con forza.

Questa era la visione di fondo di Giov. Paolo II, che io condividevo.”

2. Per provare che l’accordo firmato era già stato approvato da Benedetto XVI basta mostrarmi il testo firmato, che fino ad oggi non mi è stato concesso di vedere, e l’evidenza dell’archivio, che Ella ha potuto verificare. Rimarrebbe solo ancora da spiegare perchè allora non è stato firmato.

3. Il cambiamento “epocale” del significato della parola “indipendenza” temo che esista solo nella testa dell’eminentissimo Segretario di Stato, indotto magari da una errata traduzione dal cinese fatta dal giovane minutante della Congregazione dell’Evangelizzazione dei Popoli, ormai monoculus rex in regno caecorum, il quale fu corresponsabile anche degli almeno 10 errori nella traduzione della lettera di Papa Benedetto del 2007.

Data però l’intelligenza dell’Eminentissimo mi è difficile credere che sia stato ingannato, è più probabile che abbia voluto “lasciarsi ingannare”.

4. Non capisco l’ultima parte della sua lettera, quantomeno confusa. I fatti sono lì. Ho evidenza che Parolin manipola il Santo Padre, il quale mi manifesta sempre tanto affetto, ma non risponde alle mie domande. Davanti a delle prese di posizione della Santa Sede che non riesco a capire, a tutti i fratelli desolati che si rivolgono a me dico di non criticare chi segue quelle disposizioni. Siccome, però, nelle disposizioni si lascia ancora la libertà a chi ha una obiezione di coscienza, incoraggio questi a ritirarsi allo stato delle catacombe, senza opporsi a qualunque ingiustizia, altrimenti finirebbero per rimetterci di più.

In che ho sbagliato?

5. Sono al cento per cento d’accordo con l’invito a pregare.

Ricordo che recentemente la Santa Sede pure ha raccomandato l’invocazione alla Madonna “Sub tuum praesidium” e quella all’Arcangelo S. Michele.

Ovviamente c’è l “Oremus pro Pontifice” che conclude con “et non tradat eum in animam inimicorum ejus”.

Le auguro momenti più felici nel suo lungo servizio come Decano del Collegio Cardinalizio.

obblig, mo

Card. Zen

Now, my English translation, for those who do not read Italian:

To His Eminence, the Most Rev. Lord Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re

Dean of the College of Cardinals,

Lord Cardinal,

Permit me to use the means of an open letter as a quicker response.

Indirectly, I came to know of your letter of February 26 (Protocol number 1/2020), which also had the honor of having thus inaugurated your high office as Dean of the College of Cardinals.

I admire your courage to jump into question which You yourself recognize are “complex”, risking the prestige of your just inaugurated honorable office. But now everyone knows that there is a Vice-pope who is succeeds in encouraging all the servants of the Holy See.

Let us come to Your letter.

1. To clarify the vision of John Paul II and Benedict XVI in regard to communism, it is sufficient for me to direct your to pages 161-162 of the book, “Recent Conversations” by Pope Benedict (a copy of which he gave me with the dedication, “in a communion of prayer and thought“).

To the question of the journalist, Peter Seewald:  “Did you share and sustain actively the Ostpolitik of the pope (John Paul II)?”

Benedict replied:  “We spoke of it. It was clear that the politics of Casaroli, as much as it was implemented with the best of intentions, had failed.

“The new direction pursued by John Paul II was the fruit of his personal experience, of his contacts with those powers.

“Naturally, then, one could not hope that that regime would quickly collapse, but it was evident that, instead of being conciliatory and accepting compromises, it was necessary to oppose it with force.

“This was the basic vision of John Paul II, which I shared.”

2. To prove that the Accord as signed had been approved by Benedict XVI it would have been sufficient to show me the signed text, which even til today has not been permitted to me to see, and the evidence of the Archive (of the Secretary of State), which You were able to verify.  There would then only remain to be explained why it was not signed.

3. The “epochal” change of meaning for the word “independence”, I fear, exists only in the mind of his eminence the Secretary of State, caused perhaps by a faulty translation of the Chinese by a young clerk of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, which already has become a monoculus rex in regno caaecorum (a one eyed king in a kingdom of the blind), who was co-responsible for at least 10 errors in the translation of the Letter of Pope Benedict in 2007.

Given, however, the intelligence of His Eminence, it is difficult for me to believe that he was deceived, and more probable that he wanted to deceive others.

4. I do not understand the last part of Your letter, as much as it is confusing.  The fact are this: I have evidence that Parolin manipulated the Holy Father, who always showed me great affection, but never responded to my questions. In regard to some of the positions taken by the Holy See, which I do not manage to understand: to all the desolate brothers who turn to me, I say do not criticize those who follow those directions. For just as, however, in the directions there is still left the liberty for the one with objections of conscience, I encourage these to withdraw to the state of the catacombs, without opposing any injustice, otherwise they would end up dealing worse with us.

In this, have I erred?

5. I am 100% in agreement with the invitation to pray.

I remember that recently the Holy See also recommended the invocation to Our Lady, “Sub tuum praesidium” and that to Michael the Archangel.

Obviously, there is the “Oremus pro Pontifice” (Collect for the Holy Father) which concludes “et non tradat eum in animam inimicorum eius” (and do not hand him over to the desire of his enemies).

I wish for you happier moments in your long service as Dean of the College of Cardinals.

With respect,

Card. Zen

Read the letter again to see the subtle irony used by the Chinese Cardinal. The Dean will serve only 4 years as such, before he must retire, and his admiration for the courage of the Dean to enter into questions which are not his competence. He also refers to the fact that the Dean did not share with him his backstabbing circular letter. This is one mad Chinese Cardinal.

Cardinal Zen also called Cardinal Re’s bluff and demanded the evidence of the Papal Signature by Pope Benedict. He also pointed out that he has intelligence on how the document was prepared on the basis of intentionally faulty translations.

In short, Cardinal Zen just dropped the bomb on Parolin and Re, and exposed them both as clumsy liars. The real implication of his letter, then, in wishing a long career to Cardianl Re is to say that Re has just doomed himself in the eyes of the members of the College as not reliable nor trustworthy, which are the key requirements to remain Dean.

___________

CREDITS: The Featured Image is a screenshot of the header image of Cardinal Zen’s blog, used here in accord with fair use standards for editorial commentary, and with the text of the open letter, with the presumed permission of His Eminence.

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10 thoughts on “Cardina Zen replies to Dean of College of Cardinals’ circular letter”

  1. The Zen Strikes Back

    Very subtle slice and dice.

    Card. Zen only needs to stop pulling punches, and permitting the false Bergoglio to hide behind the skirts of Parolin. And now Re.

    False pope Bergoglio deserves no false deference. No deference at all. Please see my earlier post on Bergoglio’s true aims for the Church in China, and at large. (https://fromrome.info/2020/02/29/dean-of-college-of-cardinals-attacks-cardinal-zen-in-public-letter/?c=3648#comment-3648 )

    It would also behoove the good guys ++Zen, +Viganò, +Lenga (+Schneider Phone Home!) to unite, maybe coordinate, Heaven forbid.

    “Rejoice O Virgin Mary, alone thou hast destroyed all heresies throughout the world.”
    Bro. B.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Cardinals against Cardinals, Bishops against Bishops, it’s all playing out as predicted. I look forward to reading Cardinal Re’s response by Tuesday, that is if he has one. In the meantime PF, Cardinal Parolin & Mr.McCarrick the main perpetrators, seem to be getting off the hook.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What is it with faulty translations?!

    “Given, however, the intelligence of His Eminence, it is difficult for me to believe that he was deceived, and more probable that he wanted to deceive others.”—ZING by Zen.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. These events may be the hand of God reaching down to bring the sorrowful plight of the Chinese people to the world through the news medias. Wow did Cardinal Zen ever get his points across with aplomb! God bless him!! We need his voice out there!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The expression, was not deceived but wanted to deceive, is the customary one in English, even though the Italian is, not deceived but wanted to be deceived. But according to the context both are equally good, because the errors were used by Parolin to deceive, not to deceive himself, but the whole Church. So it is the case of a translation according to the cultural equivalence, here.

      Like

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