I was reading the decree establishing the Personal Ordinariate of Walsingham, and I noted that while the Prefect of the CDF signed his name “William Cardinal Levada,” the Secretary signed his name “+ Luis F. Ladaria, S.I.” Can someone explain why Archbishop Ladaira used the + and Cardinal Levada didn’t?
I seem to remember a post on WDTPRS about this a while ago, but I can’t find it because Google (inexplicably) doesn’t recognize characters like + or @ in searches. (If anyone knows of a search engine that does, please let me knowthat as well!)
A more recent post wdtprs.com/blog/2010/12/wdtprs-nobis-quoque-peccatoribus%E2%80%9D-and-joe-bagofdoughnuts-bp-of-black-duck on WDTPRS suggests that bishops use the + because in the early days of the Church, some bishops signed themselves in humility as a sinner, or tapeinós in Greek. The + is derrived from the tau, the first letter of tapeinós. Very interesting, but that does not explain why some bishops use it and some don’t.