Rorate Caeli

Albenga-Imperia Update:
Bishop Oliveri stripped of all authority, will remain bishop of the diocese in name only; Coadjutor appointment "begins a Copernican revolution" in the diocese

What was predicted by Italian media in October last year, as reported by Rorate at the time, has taken place exactly as foretold: Msgr. Mario Oliveri, 71, the exceptionally Traditionalist-friendly Bishop of Albenga-Imperia, has been stripped of all powers and is now Ordinary of the diocese in name only.

The appointment of his Coadjutor Bishop, Guglielmo Borghetti, was announced on January 10, but the full extent of the powers given to him was not reported at that time. This has now been publicized thanks to a series of articles in the Italian media and blogosphere in the last few days. The full text of the bull appointing Msgr. Borghetti was read out to the Consultors of the Diocese on March 25, and published on the diocesan website (h/t Messa in Latino). The bull specifies that he is nominated Coadjutor Bishop "with special faculties" consisting of no less than the same jurisdiction that a diocesan bishop has according to Canon 381 of the 1983 Code of Canon Law. 

The new Coadjutor Bishop himself confirmed to the Italian news agency ANSA that he now has full powers. ANSA also mentions that "the priests who attended his first celebration in the seminary have expressly said that for the Diocese of Albenga 'begins a Copernican revolution.'"

It must be kept in mind that even when a Bishop receives a Coadjutor, the former does not necessarily lose his normal powers as ruling bishop until he steps down. The current situation in Albenga-Imperia is therefore exceptional, and can only be the result of the express will of Pope Francis. 

As our readers will certainly realize, this humiliation of yet another Traditional-friendly Bishop stands in dramatic contrast to the Pope's inaction over the crisis enveloping his scandalous appointment of Juan Barros as Bishop of Osorno in Chile, despite credible and multiple allegations linking him to the sexual abuse of minors.