Bsp. Wuerl Goes to Washington

Well, apparently the rumors were true this time. I guess you can’t refuse promotion forever.

"Pope Benedict XVI has appointed Bishop Donald W. Wuerl to succeed Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick as archbishop of Washington."


" Archbishop-designate Wuerl will continue to serve as bishop of the Diocese of Pittsburgh until his installation as archbishop of Washington on June 22, 2006."

Bishop Wuerl had the following to say about his promotion.

"The decision of our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, to transfer me to the Archdiocese of Washington, DC, is one I embrace in the context of faith in God’s providential care. Although I am greatly aware of my own limitations, I find strength in the Pope’s trust in me and also in the prayerful support I have always found from the Catholic faithful I have attempted to serve here in the Diocese of Pittsburgh."

Here’s a summary of his pastoral letters.

Here’s what St. Blog’s Parish has to say about him.

I wonder who’ll replace him. Will an auxilliary bishop be elevated? Will someone be transferred from another diocese? Will the replacement desire more indult masses? In a perfect world, Father Bryan Summers would be elevated, but this is not a perfect world. 😉

What are your thoughts on possible replacements?

Addendum: American Papist has links to more coverage than you can shake a crozier at.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , on by .

About Funky Dung

Who is Funky Dung? 29-year-old grad student in Intelligent Systems (A.I.) at the University of Pittsburgh. I consider myself to be politically moderate and independent and somewhere between a traditional and neo-traditional Catholic. I was raised Lutheran, spent a number of years as an agnostic, and joined the Catholic Church at the 2000 Easter Vigil. Why Funky Dung? I haven't been asked this question nearly as many times as you or I might expect. Funky Dung is a reference to an obscure Pink Floyd song. On the album Atom Heart Mother, there is a track called Atom Heart Mother Suite. It's broken up into movements, like a symphony, and one of the movements is called Funky Dung. I picked that nickname a long time ago (while I was still in high school I think), shortly after getting an internet connection for the first time. To me it means "cool/neat/groovy/spiffy stuff/crap/shiznit", as in "That's some cool stuff, dude!" Whence Ales Rarus? I used to enjoy making people guess what this means, but I've decided to relent and make it known to all. Ales Rarus is a Latin play on words. "Avis rarus" means "a rare bird" and carries similar meaning to "an odd fellow". "Ales" is another Latin word for bird that carries connotations of omens, signs of the times, and/or augery. If you want to get technical, both "avis" and "ales" are feminine (requiring "rara", but they can be made masculine in poetry (which tends to breaks lots of rules). I decided I'd rather have a masculine name in Latin. ;) Yeah, I'm a nerd. So what? :-P Wherefore blog? It is my intention to "teach in order to lead others to faith" by being always "on the lookout for occasions of announcing Christ by word, either to unbelievers . . . or to the faithful" through the "use of the communications media". I also act knowing that I "have the right and even at times a duty to manifest to the sacred pastors [my] opinion on matters which pertain to the good of the Church, and [I] have a right to make [my] opinion known to the other Christian faithful, with due regard to the integrity of faith and morals and reverence toward [my and their] pastors, and with consideration for the common good and the dignity of persons." (adapted from CCC 904-907) Statement of Faith I have been baptized and confirmed in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. I, therefore, renounce Satan; I renounce all his works; I renounce all his allurements. I hold and profess all that is contained in the Apostles' Creed, the Niceno- Constantinopolitan Creed, and the Athanasian Creed. Having been buried with Christ unto death and raised up with him unto a new life, I promise to live no longer for myself or for that world which is the enemy of God but for him who died for me and rose again, serving God, my heavenly Father, faithfully and unto death in the holy Catholic Church. I am obedient to the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. That is, I promote and defend authentic Catholic Teaching and Faith in union with Christ and His Church and in union with the Holy Father, the Bishop of Rome, the Successor of St. Peter. Thanks be unto Thee, O my God, for all Thy infinite goodness, and, especially, for the love Thou hast shown unto me at my Confirmation. I Give Thee thanks that Thou didst then send down Thy Holy Spirit unto my soul with all His gifts and graces. May He take full possession of me for ever. May His divine unction cause my face to shine. May His heavenly wisdom reign in my heart. May His understanding enlighten my darkness. May His counsel guide me. May His knowledge instruct me. May His piety make me fervent. May His divine fear keep me from all evil. Drive from my soul, O Lord, all that may defile it. Give me grace to be Thy faithful soldier, that having fought the good fight of faith, I may be brought to the crown of everlasting life, through the merits of Thy dearly beloved Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen. Behind the Curtain: an Interview With Funky Dung (Thursday, March 03, 2005) I try to avoid most memes that make their way 'round the blogosphere (We really do need a better name, don't we?), but some are worth participating in. Take for instance the "interview game" that's the talk o' the 'sphere. I think it's a great way to get to know the people in neighborhood. Who are the people in your neighborhood? In your neighborhod? In your neigh-bor-hoo-ood...*smack* Sorry, Sesame Street flashback. Anyhow, I saw Jeff "Curt Jester" Miller's answers and figured since he's a regular reader of mine he'd be a good interviewer. Without further ado, here are my answers to his questions. 1. Being that your pseudonym Funky Dung was chosen from a Pink Floyd track on Atom Heart Mother, what is you favorite Pink Floyd song and why? Wow. That's a tuffy. It's hard to pick out a single favorite. Pink Floyd isn't really a band known for singles. They mostly did album rock and my appreciation of them is mostly of a gestalt nature. If I had to pick one, though, it'd be "Comfortably Numb". I get chills up my spine every time I hear it and if it's been long enough since the last time, I get midty-eyed. I really don't know why. That's a rather unsatisfying answer for an interview, so here are the lyrics to a Rush song. It's not their best piece of music, but the lyrics describe me pretty well.

New World Man He's a rebel and a runner He's a signal turning green He's a restless young romantic Wants to run the big machine He's got a problem with his poisons But you know he'll find a cure He's cleaning up his systems To keep his nature pure Learning to match the beat of the old world man Learning to catch the heat of the third world man He's got to make his own mistakes And learn to mend the mess he makes He's old enough to know what's right But young enough not to choose it He's noble enough to win the world But weak enough to lose it --- He's a new world man... He's a radio receiver Tuned to factories and farms He's a writer and arranger And a young boy bearing arms He's got a problem with his power With weapons on patrol He's got to walk a fine line And keep his self-control Trying to save the day for the old world man Trying to pave the way for the third world man He's not concerned with yesterday He knows constant change is here today He's noble enough to know what's right But weak enough not to choose it He's wise enough to win the world But fool enough to lose it --- He's a new world man...
2. What do you consider your most important turning point from agnosticism to the Catholic Church. At some point in '99, I started attending RCIA at the Pittsburgh Oratory. I mostly went to ask a lot of obnoxious Protestant questions. Or at least that's what I told myself. I think deep down I wanted desperately to have faith again. At that point I think I'd decided that if any variety of Christianity had the Truth, the Catholic Church did. Protestantism's wholesale rejection of 1500 years of tradition didn't sit well with me, even as a former Lutheran. During class one week, Sister Bernadette Young (who runs the program) passed out thin booklet called "Handbook for Today's Catholic". One paragraph in that book spoke to me and I nearly cried as I read it.
"A person who is seeking deeper insight into reality may sometimes have doubts, even about God himself. Such doubts do not necessarily indicate lack of faith. They may be just the opposite - a sign of growing faith. Faith is alive and dynamic. It seeks, through grace, to penetrate into the very mystery of God. If a particular doctrine of faith no longer 'makes sense' to a person, the person should go right on seeking. To know what a doctrine says is one thing. To gain insight into its meaning through the gift of understanding is something else. When in doubt, 'Seek and you will find.' The person who seeks y reading, discussing, thinking, or praying eventually sees the light. The person who talks to God even when God is 'not there' is alive with faith."
At the end of class I told Sr. Bernadette that I wanted to enter the Church at the next Easter vigil. 3. If you were a tree what kind of, oh sorry about that .. what is the PODest thing you have ever done? I set up WikiIndex, a clearinghouse for reviews of theological books, good, bad, and ugly. It has a long way to go, but it'll be cool when it's finished. :) 4. What is your favorite quote from Venerable John Henry Newman? "Ten thousand difficulties do not make one doubt." 5. If you could ban one hymn from existence, what would it be? That's a tough one. As a member of the Society for a Moratorium on the Music of Marty Haugen and David Haas, there are obviously a lot of songs that grate on my nerves. If I had to pick one, though, I'd probably pick "Sing of the Lord's Goodness" by Ernie Sands.

9 thoughts on “Bsp. Wuerl Goes to Washington

  1. Emily T

    I thought I heard somewhere that auxilliary bishops aren’t typically elevated.

    It’d be nice to have the next bishop bring some good religious orders into the area. I think Pittsburgh could be set on fire with some solid orders.

    Someone more like Chaput than Trautman and I’ll be happy. 🙂 We should pray.

  2. edey

    bishop gomez, the former auxilary bishop of denver got his own See. he’s now archbishop of San Antonio.

    some of the solid religious orders aren’t ready to branch out yet, though. for example, the sisters of life and the dominican sisters of Mary, mother of the Eucharist have been invited to other places, but want to become more “established” first. so, you never know. wuerl *could* be inviting orders but just hasn’t invited ones who are ready yet. unlikely, but possible.

    chaput or burke would be nice…or bruskewitz. ok, so chaput and burke aren’t gonna come…but maybe bruskewitz. 😉

    i’m with eric, tho, Fr b for bishop 🙂 (i know that’s not gonna happen either)

  3. Tom Smith

    With religious orders, I think it’s typically the other way around: they desire to move to a particular place, and need the bishop’s indult to do so. . . though I may be wrong.

  4. edey

    i think it depends on the order. maybe more established orthodox orders like the nashville dominicans (or–if they have the numbers–some heterodox orders), but the “young” (aka less than ~20 years old) orders seem to want to become more established before “branching out” and when they branch out they want to do so at a reasonable pace so they dont’ spread themselves too thin. that’s what i’ve noticed from talking to a few bishops and a fair number of orthodox women’s orders.

  5. rat

    Somewhat off-topic question (sorry): Does anyone know anything about today’s other episcopal appointment, Bishop Sartain to the Diocese of Joliet? Obviously Bishop Wuerl heading to Washington is bigger news, both locally and nationally, but the Joliet Diocese is where I grew up, so I’m kinda curious… I know next-to-nothing about Bp. Sartain.

  6. Anthrakeus

    Tom & edey, regarding religious orders, you’re both right. Some orders choose not to expand; some are not entirely welcome (depending on the diocese and the order). For the most part, however, bishops don’t micro-manage these things. If they see a particular need, they fill it. That’s why Bishop Wright brought the Oratorians to Pittsburgh, it’s why Bishop Tobin brought the FSSP to Youngstown. However, by and large, the situation in America rarely requires new orders (at least in the mind of bishops). Everything’s getting taken care of (again, in the mind of bishops).

    Bishop Wuerl tended not to like male religious in his diocese (so they weren’t getting an invite). There are a reasonable number of women’s religious in Pittsburgh. You may not like them, but that’s another matter.

    Emily, generally auxiliary bishops don’t succeed to the sees in which they are auxiliaries because those sees are usually quite large and important. Too much for a first time appointment. Pittsburgh just happens to be small enough that it could happen. Oddly enough, while only Bishop Leonard was an auxiliary before becoming the ordinary, Phelan, Canevin and Cardinal Dearden all succeeded to Pittsburgh after being made coadjutors (which more or less gives a bishop automatic succession).

    I’m all for Bishop Summers (hey we have an auxiliary bishop Winter- let’s go for the match set). I recommend we call the Vatican. Does any one know a few curial cardinals who owe a few favors?

  7. rat

    Emily T said – “We should pray.”

    I completely agree – it’s fun and all to engage in speculation, but don’t forget that now’s a great time for some old-fashioned prayer and fasting. Both for Archbishop-Designate Wuerl, and for the Church in Pittsburgh as she awaits a new shepherd.

    I had the good fortune to briefly talk to Fr. B today – but I forgot to mention the people’s desire to see him in a Bishop’s mitre 😉

  8. The other Emily

    Again, I ask: Where is the bishop of Youngstown? Youngstown has been waiting for another shepherd for more than a year, since the end of March 2005. We continue to pray, but some people in the diocese have been very discouraged as other sees (made vacant more recently) have received bishops before Youngstown.

    Kyrie eleison…

  9. cosmas

    Other Emily,

    There are quite a few dioceses, in fact 7, in the United States right now that are vacant…Youngstown, OH, and Birmingham, AL, have been vacant since about the time John Paul II died. Sioux Falls, SD has been vacant since Dec. 2004. Larger sees are filled more quickly, for example, right after Card. McCarrick’s retirment was accepted, a new Archbishop of Washington was named. I think that Pope Benedict will be very careful about whom he puts in Birmingham because he knows personally of history of the conflict between EWTN and the local ordinaries. Youngstown doesn’t have the same situation, but it seems like the Holy Father (and the new Apostolic Nuncio, Abp. Sambi) been careful with appointments and we need to be patient both in Youngstown and in the future in Pittsburgh.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *