We'll receive a $25,000 grant if others match it by Pentecost. $23,258 to go. Your gift will be doubled!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Vatican rumor: an American prelate in play?

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles - email) | Mar 01, 2010

Cardinal Roger Mahony celebrated his 74th birthday on Saturday, and at his suggestion the Los Angeles archdiocese has already begun praying for his successor: a coadjutor archbishop whose appointment is expected in the near future. It will be a very important appointment, so naturally the rumor mills in Rome are working overtime, churning out the names of possible leaders for the largest archdiocese in the US.

One professional Vatican-watcher, Paolo Rodari, reports that he is hearing the name of Archbishop James Harvey mentioned frequently. As Rodari points out, it is extremely unlikely that Archbishop Harvey would be chosen for Los Angeles--and that's what makes the rumor so interesting.

A priest of the Milwaukee archdiocese, Archbishop Harvey worked for years in the Vatican Secretariat of State. Then in 1998 he was chosen by Pope John Paul II to become prefect of the pontifical household: a post he holds to this day. While that position puts him inside the apostolic palace, with direct access to the Pope, Archbishop Harvey has been a Vatican functionary for the past few decades rather than a hands-on pastor. He has no experience running an American diocese, and it seems far-fetched that he would be thrust immediately into the biggest American diocese of them all.

So why is his name in circulation? Rodari offers two likely possibilities, which are not mutually exclusive. Maybe some Vatican officials--the ones dropping his name--think Archbishop Harvey deserves his own (arch)diocesan assignment. And/or maybe they think that after 13 years at his present job, he's due for a change. Remember the name.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Our Spring Challenge Grant
Progress toward our Spring Challenge Grant goal ($23,258 to go):
$25,400.00 $2,142.00
92% 8%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

There are no comments yet for this item.

Matching Campaign
Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org
Shop Amazon

Recent Catholic Commentary

To-do list for faithful Catholics 14 hours ago
Not Fully Human: Anthony Esolen’s compelling verdict on contemporary personal formation 14 hours ago
A silent scandal: Catholic schools promoting morally unacceptable vaccines April 24
A More Militant Church? April 24
How we'll know if the Vatican and the US hierarchy are serious about deposing negligent bishops April 24

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope challenges world leaders' silence on persecution of Christians CWN - April 6
Pope outlines plans for the extraordinary jubilee of mercy CWN - April 13
Vatican completes doctrinal assessment of Leadership Conference of Women Religious CWN - April 16
Pope accepts resignation of Bishop Finn CWN - April 21