MALTA. CARD. BECCIU MAKES CLEAR WHO LEADS THE GAME.
18 Giugno 2020
Dear friends and enemies of Stilum Curiae, very important things are happening behind the scenes for the future of the Order of Malta, as you can see from reading the article below. Happy reading…
Cardinal Angelo Becciu, Special Delegate of the Holy See to the Order of Malta, wrote an extremely important letter on May 29 to Brother Ruy Gonçalo do Valle Peixoto de Villas-Boas, the Interim Lieutenant of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta; that is, the man who is in charge of managing this troubled period of the secular order after the death of the Grand Master, Brother Giacomo dalla Torre. It is an important message because it expresses the precise will of the Cardinal, who is also the Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints, and he enjoys full confidence for his work, at the order of Pope Bergoglio, of personally overseeing the transition and reform of the order. In doing so, he acknowledges the suffering present in many due to the imposing presence of the German party.
For those who have not followed the affairs of the last few years – beginning in February 2017 – we briefly recall that the Grand Master at that time, the Englishman Matthew Festing, was forced to resign in obedience during a meeting with Pope Bergoglio; that that crisis arose from the arguments and questions linked to a huge Swiss controversy, which is still not completely clear today, which involved members of the German party that was spearheaded in Rome by Albrecht Boeselager, whom Festing had expelled. After Festing’s resignation, the German party took over the leadership of the Order, and the present Lieutenant is, according to many, an agent of that party’s agenda.
But Cardinal Becciu’s letter turns the tables. He writes to the Lieutenant: “On my part there is every commitment not to leave you alone, assuming every responsibility in giving direction. All the more so since His Holiness has conferred on me “all the powers necessary to decide any issues that may arise regarding the implementation of the mandate entrusted to you.” This desire of the Holy Father was confirmed in his letter of May 3, 2018, written immediately after the election of Brother Giacomo as Grand Master and in which he invited me “to continue to carry out the office of Delegate until the conclusion of the process of reform, and in any case as long as I consider it useful for the Order.”
These are very significant expressions, which make clear that Becciu intends to play a central role, and they are reinforced by the words that follow, which speak of his desire “to promote the spiritual interests of the Order and not to disappoint the right expectations of those who intensely hope that it can fully recover its proper inspiration. Our Order ought to shine like a sign and instrument, in the Church, of the sanctification of her members and aim at the evangelization of the world…”
These lines, say those who are “in the know,” must be read against the background of the recent crisis, which actually arose from rather sordid motivations. It is evident from the letter that Cardinal Becciu wants to carry through a real reform of the Order, and one can intuit – although this is just my own personal sense – that he wants to accomplish the entire reform in a relatively short amount of time, perhaps before the end of the year. If the election of the Grand Master can take place in September and the General Chapter in November, then his intention could be realized. In the next few days Becciu wants to address with the Lieutenant “the current problems of the Order and to clarify some controversial points;” this will not happen as the result of a merely coincidental meeting. The problems and controversial points also regard the Teutonic hegemony over the Order…
An echo of this can be found in the words of the letter that refer to the reform. “There must be a considerable effort on the part of the classes [of the Order] to overcome self-referential visions and find a common point of agreement, aware that what is at stake is the survival of an Order that has acquired many merits in the history of the Church, and that, in my opinion, still has something to say to the contemporary world.” And then a very clear message directed to the current management and the present overseers: “In the reconstruction of our common House, no one must feel excluded or mortified, but everyone must be given the right to participate according to the rules established by the Constitution, the dictates of which we must execute scrupulously, since, as you well know, there will be no transparency nor credibility without the observance of the rules.”
And with this last warning the letter closes. In a preceding article we spoke about the panorama of possible candidates. One, if you recall, could be an Italian, Brother Luzzago, a candidate whom even the German party would not be displeased with, but who precisely for this reason is seen by many with no small amount of distrust. And the surprise is that Brother Matthew Festing is also among the possible candidates. His ready obedience when the reigning Pontiff asked him to step back based solely on the virtue of obedience was much appreciated in the Vatican, as well as his subsequent discretion. And the “grid” of “papabile” based on age, energy, and real physical capacity to take the helm of the Order does not leave many alternatives.
Translated by Giuseppe Pellegrino @pellegrino2020
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