Saturday, August 25, 2007

Attack of the (Bertone) Clones; US Church on Alert

In his latest Letter from Rome, the venerable Robert Mickens of The Tablet quotes an Oltretevere high-hat's recent musing that Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone was “making more appearances, and with greater fanfare, than even the Madonna!”

Sure, veteran readers of these pages know well that B16’s chief intermediary with mankind's been keeping quite the high profile of late. However -- and just like our Blessed Lady -- it's looking as if every reported apparition of the Secretary of State isn’t as genuine as the faithful might wish to believe.

After learning that “some priests” in the States “have been receiving phone calls from someone claiming to be” Bertone, the Apostolic Nunciature in Washington circulated an official advisory earlier this week saying that the purported outreach from above was, in fact, “bogus, having no merit whatsoever.”

Similarly deceptive e.mails were also believed to have been transmitted, with some of the communications claiming to be from the papal residence at Castel Gandolfo.

Clearly, the scammer didn’t do his homework – a number of the messages were said to be in English, which Bertone doesn’t speak.

As with the best (and most amusing) of everything -- like Bertone's own report last summer that the late, great Papa Wojtyla appeared to him -- it's just another bit you couldn't make up if you wanted to.

In other news from the papal inner circle, the invites have gone out for the 29 September episcopal ordination of Archbishop-elect Mietek Mokrzycki, who served as deputy private secretary to John Paul II and Benedict XVI before his July appointment as coadjutor to the Ukrainian archdiocese of Lviv of the Latins.

Suffice it to say, the guest-list for ecclesiastical Rome's first big event after the summer recess has been drawn from far and wide.