This is too good to pass up.
Voice of the Faithless is encouraging their members to get involved in the selection of Cardinal George’s successor.
Heh heh heh.
They’ve set-up a survey, which you can find here. Here’s how VOTF describes it:
On his 75th birthday, January 16, 2012, Cardinal Francis George submitted a letter of resignation as Archbishop of Chicago to Pope Benedict, who will appoint his successor in the near future. Before that, the Apostolic Nuncio, Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, will submit recommendations to the Congregation for Bishops. To help him in this process, Voice of the Faithful is using two web surveys to encourage lay Catholics to express their views.
This process is rooted in Church practice from its earliest years, when all Church members elected their bishop as a sacred obligation. Current Canon law states: “Christ’s faithful are at liberty to make known their needs, especially their spiritual needs, and their wishes to the Pastors of the Church.” Moreover, “they have the right, indeed at times the duty, in keeping with their knowledge, competence and position, to manifest to the sacred Pastors their views on matters which concern the good of the Church. They have the right also to make their views known to others of Christ’s faithful…” (Can.212:2-3)
The appointment of our new archbishop surely ranks high among those “matters which concern the good of the Church,” so Catholics of the Chicago Archdiocese may feel not only entitled but duty-bound to express their opinions. The Apostolic Nuncio Vigano wrote us in February 2012 that he “would willingly receive any expression of a lay Catholic in regard to his/her own concerns in regard to a new bishop or recommendation(s) that he or she might propose. Members of Voice of the Faithful are, therefore, free to encourage such communications…”
This web survey is part of VOTF’s independent effort to encourage Catholics to express their needs and wishes to the Apostolic Nuncio. The survey asks you to indicate how strongly you agree or disagree about the importance of 15 leadership qualifications. Our report will present only summary response patterns – not respondents’ individual answers.
At the end of this survey we will provide a link to a second VOTF website that will allow you, if you have not already done so, to express in your own words your views about needs and opportunities in the archdiocese and the qualities you think the new archbishop should possess to tackle these needs and opportunities. VOTF will provide those views verbatim and unedited to the Apostolic Nuncio.
Chances are the Nuncio isn’t going to pay much attention to the survey results. To me, this is more a “not a hill worth dying on” sort of appeasement. Mostly harmless. That’s my opinion.
But get a load of some of the Leadership Qualifications VOTF deems important -
- Have a proven track record as a collegial leader skilled in collaborative solutions. (ack!)
- Have demonstrated commitment to the spirit and values of Vatican II. (whatever that’s supposed to mean)
- Be a leader who gives greater weight to theology and the magisterium than to practical experience. (this must be a mistake, or just a chance for them to express their disdain towards the magisterium)
- Have experience preventing litigation against the diocese, especially stopping the settlements paid to survivors of priest sexual abuse. (what if the litigation’s false? can’t the bishop prevent it?)
- Embody the servant leadership style of Cardinal Joseph Benardin. (oh,my.Lord.)
Given the slants of the VOTF types, you can imagine how those statements and the others will be rated by their members and supporters.
Given the slants of someone like me, you can probably imagine what I’m going to suggest.
Let’s mess with ‘em. Spike the numbers. If you live in the Archdiocese of Chicago, go take the survey. Get your solid Catholic friends to take the survey too. Facebook this. Tweet it, too. Tell the Nuncio exactly what type of archbishop ought to be considered for Cardinal George’s replacement. Obviously, VOTF wants someone not like George. Chicago, though, needs someone just like George, if not more stalwart and faithful (I’m not implying George wasn’t stalwart and faithful, but he is 75 and might not have the fight in him he once had). Does Chicago need Catholycs like Quinn and Pfleger running the show, or do they need an archbishop like Chaput or Burke? We all know the answer to that question.
And even if you aren’t a member of the Chicago archdiocese…
“But LarryD! LarryD!”, you say. “The survey requests your zip code and parish, meaning they’re filtering out non-Chicago residents!”
I have one word for that: So.what.
Because if someone wanted to, they could look up Chicago zip codes, and Chicago archdiocesan parishes too. If they wanted to. And complete the survey, with a name and email address. If they wanted to. Perhaps even using multiple email addresses, if they have more than one. I’m not saying your should – but you certainly could.
I look at it this way: if dead people can vote early and often in Chicago elections, then why can’t non-residents complete a survey? This is, after all, Chicago we’re talking about here.