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(RNS) The news that Pope Francis has fired the German churchman known as “Bishop Bling” set off speculation that other dismissals could be in the offing. Don’t hold your breath. Here’s why.


  1. Until Pope Francis fires and offers up for justice Cardinal Bernie Law, the pedophile ringleader of Boston now hiding in the Vatican closets, there will be no rest.

    “Bishop Bling” has done nothing different from other bishops – he’s just cashing in on telling lies about reality.

    But Cardinal Law is a gang leader and Pope Francis can’t offer up enough smoke screens of sheep stink to evade the criminal activity of this ridiculous preening institution.

  2. I wouldn’t move too quick in demanding the Pope fire bishops. It moves matters too close to making them apostolic vicars. Ordination is eternal so you can’t unmake a bishop. Law has his title but no current duties of authority in the Church. Finn is probably one of the rare cases when he needs to be let go.

    Perhaps there needs to be a reform of canon law. Rather than the Pope firing bishops at will, maybe the diocesan priests senate or chapter of canons should be allowed to pass a resolution of no confidence in their bishop, upon which it would trigger a mandatory review by Rome.

    • @Kurt,
      Yeah, here is something Pope Francis could try:

      He could just call the police and hand over the pedophiles.

  3. Steve McCluskey

    You’re probably right, but you missed another important reason. Pope Francis is committed to collegiality and wants decisions to be made locally. Bishop Tebartz-van Elst’s resignation was only accepted after the German bishops conference had submitted a detailed 108 pp.) report on the finances of the construction project to the Vatican.

    It is extremely unlikely that the USCCB, given its current makeup, would submit a similar report on Cardinals Mahoney or Law or Bihops Finn or Myers.

  4. Edward Borges-Silva

    As a former Catholic turned Evangelical, I find much to admire about the Catholic Church; It’s hierarchial structure is not on the list. The lavish ‘costumes’ of the bishops and cardinals are a direct contradiction of Christ’s instruction to live simply. The requirement for celibacy, which is not based in scripture, has contributed I believe, to the problem of pederasty, pedophilia, and the purportedly rare instance of fornication/adultery. If the bishops cited above are a representative sample of the Church’s leadership, Francis has his work cut out for him.

  5. I’m glad to see this article mentions other criminal activities apparently committed by bishops in the US, and I hope the President discussed that with the pope, but I hope they also discussed the criminal acts committed by Catholic bishops in California in 2008. The federal judge who revoked the 2008 California anti-gay H8te Vote had in his possession an email written by Catholic bishops to Mormon leaders in which they both agreed to violate California campaign finance laws to throw the H8te Vote by making secret, illegal cash and in-kind contributions to the H8te Vote. The email serves as proof positive they knew they were breaking the law; the email itself is an act of criminal collusion. The email is now in the possession of the US Supreme Court, which upheld that revocation.

    Here is documentation about that email:

  6. Maureen L Sullivan

    It’s too bad the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops does not feel as strongly as the German church did about censuring their bishop for his authoritarian and spending habits– Apparently, John Paul the Second ,wonderful pope that he was, put in many conservatives who have covered up child abuse, abuse of church funds, building of retirement edifices, etc.—when will it change?

    • It will change when people demand it, that is, when they no longer contribute time (attendance at services) or money to the Church until abusers are punished and reforms made.

  7. bravo pope frances for finally doing what should have been done centuries ago. a pope with guts, wow
    hes the best ever.he practices what he preaches like jesus did so long ago , today and forever. amen

  8. It is regrettable that people of high standing has no high esteem of their own public standing or position they hold. It all boils down to personal well being at most times, with scant regard to the eternal laws of mankind inscribed in the hearts of every human being. In Tamil Nadu we have the history of a king ( Pandya king Neduncheziyan) who fell from his throne and died the moment he knew that he had done injustice to a woman. Those were days of real character in mankind. It is highly deplorable these days these values and ethics have so evaporated that even when terminated or dislodged from their pedestal, some animals refuse TO GO! I earnestly pray that God be with the Pope. May God keep the holy father safe in the bossoms of His Sacred Heart. There are wolves all around the sheep, why not in vatican.

  1. […] of 2014 he fired four of the five cardinals that oversaw the Vatican Bank. In March of 2014 the Religious News services reported that “Pope Francis fired — or ‘accepted the resignation of’ — the […]

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