Fr. Pavone suspension lifted


#1

Good news for the pro-life movement: patheos.com/blogs/deaconsbench/2012/06/vatican-father-pavone-is-not-now-nor-has-ever-been-suspended/.

I suppose in the wake of the Fr. Corapi debacle, perhaps the bishop was afraid of a "cult of personality" arising in his diocese. My own diocese had a similar case in which a priest was limited in what he could do outside his parish. Do bishops often put such strictures on their priests if they become too engaged in work outside their parishes?


#2

Since he was never really suspended in the first place, it's not entirely accurate to say that his suspension was "lifted." ;)

Diocesan priests promise obedience to their bishop and they only function as a priest at all with his permission. So, yeah, a bishop can tell one of his priests to focus on his work for the diocese rather than some external apostolate. Usually they would only do so if they felt there was a good reason. And there can be lots of different reasons, some of which would have nothing to do with the priest himself or his outside ministry.


#3

May God bless Father Pavone:thumbsup:


#4

Have to say I'm sorry to see this, mainly because I wish the Congregation for Clergy had upheld the Bishop's authority over his priest. All this is going to do is feed the cult of celebrity surrounding Fr. Pavone, and my guess is that Bishop Zurek's statement was intended to mitigate that consequence as best he could given that he'd been shoved under the bus by the Congregation.


#5

I truly hope the pro-life movement is capable of going on without any specific individual.

Every priest serves under the authority of his bishop. The Bishop decides what his work will be and where he can work. If a priest is outside his home parish, he also needs permission from the bishop who’s parish he is in to work there (but he still ‘belongs’ to his home bishop).

We all have to remember that the work of the Church is bigger than any individual person. The Holy Spirit certainly uses people, and some people are specially gifted for certain ministries, but the success of something like work for the dignity of all people from conception through natural death, cannot and does not depend on any specific priest or lay person.


#6

[quote="Tabby, post:4, topic:289551"]
Have to say I'm sorry to see this, mainly because I wish the Congregation for Clergy had upheld the Bishop's authority over his priest. All this is going to do is feed the cult of celebrity surrounding Fr. Pavone, and my guess is that Bishop Zurek's statement was intended to mitigate that consequence as best he could given that he'd been shoved under the bus by the Congregation.

[/quote]

I'm sure we're not all privy to all the finer points of this whole ordeal (and that's probably for the best). I am kind of left wondering what the whole thing is about. I presume that regardless of how this appeal turned out, Fr. Pavone is still bound to obey his bishop. :shrug:

I'm just glad it is over and both of them can move forward.


#7

It sure seems to me that Father Pavone is having to pay for the sins of Mr. Corapi. Is it possible that Father Pavone can be assigned to a different Bishop? It appears that his relationship with his current Bishop has soured, for lack of a better term.


#8

[quote="Tighty_Whitey, post:7, topic:289551"]
It sure seems to me that Father Pavone is having to pay for the sins of Mr. Corapi. Is it possible that Father Pavone can be assigned to a different Bishop? It appears that his relationship with his current Bishop has soured, for lack of a better term.

[/quote]

Fr. Pavone's already been through one "re-incardination" to another diocese (for lack of a better term). He originally was a priest of the Archdiocese of New York and moved to Amarillo when things "soured" with the Archbishop of New York (who I think was, at that time, Cardinal Egan). He moved to Amarillo to get away from the authority of Cardinal Egan. Since a diocesan priest's transfer to a new diocese must be approved both by the bishop of the current diocese and the bishop of the new diocese, it's a safe bet no bishop is going to want to take on Fr. Pavone after this debacle, even if Bishop Zurek might be happy to let him go.


#9

[quote="Mrs_Sally, post:5, topic:289551"]
I truly hope the pro-life movement is capable of going on without any specific individual.

[/quote]

True, but Fr. Pavone has done a great deal for it and, as I understand it, simply wanted to continue to do it.

Every priest serves under the authority of his bishop. The Bishop decides what his work will be and where he can work. If a priest is outside his home parish, he also needs permission from the bishop who's parish he is in to work there (but he still 'belongs' to his home bishop).

Of course. Unlike Fr. Corapi, Fr. Pavone used legitimate channels to settle his dispute with his bishop. The bishop still has and always did have authority over him. So, nothing has changed there.

We all have to remember that the work of the Church is bigger than any individual person. The Holy Spirit certainly uses people, and some people are specially gifted for certain ministries, but the success of something like work for the dignity of all people from conception through natural death, cannot and does not depend on any specific priest or lay person.

No, it doesn't, but Fr. Pavone seems to be taking up the slack for a good many other people who could have done something and simply didn't/were reluctant to get involved. It's only now that a good many priests and bishops are awakening to the danger the Church is facing from those who are bent on taking from the Church its ability to speak in the public square. Fr. Pavone was a pioneer in this, and I hope and pray many others will join him in their own diocese/parishes, making him less needed. :)


#10

This seems a reasonable decision. The bishop still has control. The appeals process prevents this control being exercised unjustly. Fr. Pavone obeyed the his bishop in the meantime. He still has to have his activities approved, as is proper, being a diocesan priest. All priests have to be obedient to someone. Kudos to Fr. Pavone and Bishop Zurek for their patience and humility.

Remember, this is not a situation of two opponents in a lawsuit, but rather two brothers who let Dad straighten out a disagreement.


#11

Fr Fravone is an awesome pro life defender.


#12

Actually, while a bishop and priest are, in one sense, brothers, a bishop is also a father to his priests. A better analogy would be to liken the Congregation for Clergy to child-protective services.


#13

[quote="Tighty_Whitey, post:7, topic:289551"]
It sure seems to me that Father Pavone is having to pay for the sins of Mr. Corapi. Is it possible that Father Pavone can be assigned to a different Bishop? It appears that his relationship with his current Bishop has soured, for lack of a better term.

[/quote]

I don't think we should presume to know what the relationship is between Fr. Pavone and Bishop Zubek.

Priests aren't priests in a vaccuum. They are attached to a religious order or a diocese. If Fr. Pavone wanted to, he could request to be incardinated into another diocese, and this would need to be approved by both the bishop of the diocese he is leaving and the bishop of the diocese he wishes to transfer to. Fr. Pavone already did this to get transferred to the Diocese of Amarillo from the Archdiocese of New York in the first place.

Personally, I think it would be unwise to make a habit of moving from diocese to diocese. For all Fr. Pavone knows, he could transfer to another diocese and then Bishop Zubek would get transferred there three months later. :p


#14

I know the differences, but I do not like using child protective services. The whole procedure is within the family. How about father, child and grandfather? In any case, we think in terms of legal rights and that doesn’t work so well in Christianity, if we are to listen to St. Paul.


#15

[quote="pnewton, post:14, topic:289551"]
I know the differences, but I do not like using child protective services. The whole procedure is within the family. How about father, child and grandfather? In any case, we think in terms of legal rights and that doesn't work so well in Christianity, if we are to listen to St. Paul.

[/quote]

I'm not going to belabor the point, but the various Vatican congregations are legal entities -- canonically legal, but still legal -- set up to ensure the rights and responsibilities of the family members. They may be staffed by "family," but they are not intended to take a familial role but a legal one. Child-protective services is a better analogy than a grandfather, who does not have any real ability to tell a father to back off in his chosen course of action against a son. (Just look at actual families. How many grandpas do you know who can interfere with real moral and legal weight into how a parent can discipline his child?)

Of course, the problem here is the temptation to get sucked into a Hahn-ite determination to overlay everything in the Church -- and in God himself -- with "family" and "covenant" templates. The analogy to a family and the theology of the covenant are helpful tools, but they are not cookie cutters through which everything in Christian life must be pressed.


#16

[quote="Tabby, post:15, topic:289551"]
Of course, the problem here is the temptation to get sucked into a Hahn-ite determination to overlay everything in the Church -- and in God himself -- with "family" and "covenant" templates. The analogy to a family and the theology of the covenant are helpful tools, but they are not cookie cutters through which everything in Christian life must be pressed.

[/quote]

Family is not an analogy. It is a reality. It is not Hahnite, it is scriptural. I was referring to Christianity as taught by St. Paul, St. John, St. James and St. Peter. Scott Hahn never crossed my mind. What we must avoid is thinking like the world does in terms of legalism and rights. That is what St. Paul warned against. Stick with CPS if it suits you and I will stick with the family, not as an analogy, but a reality.

In the end the law of love must override the law of liberty (St. Paul), which is why I do not see canon law in the same spirit as civil law.


#17

An aside…

Both of the bishops involved in the Corapi and Pavone cases (that’d be Bp. Mulvey and Bp. Zurek, respectively) were both pastors at one point in time at my hometown church: St. Thomas Aquinas in College Station.

I thought that was interesting.


#18

And College Station is in the Diocese of Austin…something that must annoy Aggies.

Sorry. Couldn’t avoid the irony.


#19

I’m just glad things got worked out.

It has struck me for years as odd that there is a need for a “Priests for Life.” Not that it isn’t a good organization, that’s not the point. My point is, all priests should be vigorously defending life, without ceasing, without dissenting or dissembling. See what I mean?


#20

What did the Vatican really decide in Father Pavone's case?

catholicculture.org/commentary/otn.cfm?id=923


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