When a group of priests whine publicly that their superior is being "authoritarian", we must admit that our immediate reaction is to defend the superior; and when the "climate of fear" decried by these priests is a "climate" of "internal police" related to, shall we say, "homosexual matters" - well, then we are absolutely certain that the superior is correct and that whatever he is doing is certainly in the right direction.
Here is our support to Cardinal Vicar-General Vallini: we do not know what you are doing, Your Eminence, but you are doing it right.
[Source: Il Messaggero; Tip: Papa Ratzinger blog]
Letter of Roman priests against [Cardinal Vicar-General] Vallini - "Impressive authoritarianism"
by Franca Giansoldati
ROME - The gossip-letter writer has acted once again - but this time, the letter that arrived four days ago for all heads of offices across the Tiber [in the Roman Curia] is not anonymous, but signed by "The priests of Rome". Even Pope Ratzinger has received it on his desk, himself being the first addressee ("Your Holiness, this is an open letter, and not one of those that go around in the Curia in these weeks.")...The letter is composed of two computer-written pages, in eight paragraphs from which transpire suffering, delusion, and, in certain parts, exasperation for a sad climate of "impressive authoritarianism".
The cardinal - former prefect of the Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, chosen by the Pontiff to replace Camillo Ruini in 2008 - is accused of displaying "attitudes worthy of an officer of the carabinieri, not of a bishop". The discontent moves through the diocesan clergy and perhaps, considering the initiative, [it does] not [date] from yesterday. In the curia, this is all that is being discussed. The authors of the letter regret being unable to have serene conversations with their own superior due to a "climate of suspicion regarding everything and everyone" which has been created with time. In sum: the Lateran palace [seat of the Diocesan administration] is depicted as a place not of dialogue, but as an "unhappy place where no one is trusted and one is bound to silence."
...[From the letter:] "Another painful chapter is the relationship with us, priests. We hoped - it is written - to have a day of the week at our disposal to be received without appointment. We now even fear approaching that office. We are looked upon with suspicion, judged and criticized without being able to defend ourselves and blackmailed with the possibility of being left without stipend."
But why has so much hostility been piling up against the Cardinal-Vicar, a man trusted by Pope Ratzinger, from the Roman priests, to the point of writing an open letter to the Bishop of Rome? Vallini has been blamed for an excessive firmness in moving forward with an action of internal police in order to expel from the diocese the rotten apples, gay priests [sic]. The toughness with which he has moved with no regard for anyone would have aggravated many minds? Priests would have been deposed suddently and without many explanations, without real reaons. [From the letter:] "He [Vallini] is obsessed about the suspicion of homosexuality, as if rare cases which happened in the diocese should compromise the integrity of the entire presbyterate."
"Rare cases"?... There have been magazine reports and books dedicated to just a few of them! Auguri, Eminenza! Il mondo cattolico è con voi!