Now here’s a nice idea: Benedict XVI, in his earlier incarnation as head of the CDF, was known as “God’s Rottweiler”, for his diligence in guarding the faith from all threats. Every dog owner knows that Rottweiler’s for all their skill as watchdogs, need training, lest they themselves become a threat to those they are supposedly protecting. Ergo – train the Rottweiler.
Benedict’s career has been woefully short on pastoral or administrative experience. He started out as a celebrated academic theologian, in which capacity he made a renowned contribution to the proceedings of Vatican II. Later, he served briefly as Archbishop of Munich. Now, recall that the origin of the post of Bishops” was as an “overseer” for the diocese, implying management and supervision. We now know that in Munich, Ratzinger’s supervision skills in overseeing his priests and protecting the people were somewhat underdeveloped. EITHER he was remiss in allowing a know paedophile priest to return to active ministry against strong professional advice; OR he was remiss in leaving the required supervision to a junior underling, who has now accepted full responsibility. However, as has been pointed out elsewhere, one can delegate tasks and decisions to subordinates: one cannot delegate the responsibility.
He was soon recalled to Rome to head the CDF (successor to the old and notorious Inquisition) , where he earned the soubriquet “God’s Rottweiler” for his enthusiasm and vigour in reigning in and silencing dissenting opinion: opinions in dissent, that is, from the views of John Paul II and his own. Read the rest of this entry »