Archbishop Pozzo returns to Ecclesia Dei commission: a signal of new moves on SSPX?
August 05, 2013
Archbishop Guido Pozzo has been appointed by Pope Francis to be the secretary of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, which is charged with pastoral outreach to traditionalist Catholics.
The appointment is unusual insofar as Archbishop Pozzo had held the same office—as secretary of the Ecclesia Dei commission—from 2009 to 2012. Last year he was named Apostolic Almoner, and raised to the status of an archbishop.
In his earlier work for the Ecclesia Dei commissions, then-Msgr. Pozzo had been heavily involved in the discussions aimed at reconciliation of the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX). He was promoted to his new assignment after those talks apparently hit an impasse. His return to the Ecclesia Dei commission has prompted speculation that the Vatican’s talks with the SSPX are being quietly revived.
The Ecclesia Dei commission was established by Pope John Paul II in 1988 to provide for the pastoral needs of Catholics who left the SSPX to preserve full communion with the Holy See. In 2009, Pope Benedict XVI put the commission under the aegis of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Archbishop Gerhard Müller, the prefect of that congregation, is the de facto president of the commission. Archbishop Augustine Di Noia is the vice-president. Thus the return of Archbishop Pozzo as secretary leaves the Ecclesia Dei commission with two archbishops on the staff, again suggesting that Pope Francis is strengthening the office in anticipation of some important future move.
Archbishop Pozzo will be replaced as Apostolic Almoner by Msgr. Konrad Krajewski, a Polish priest who has been working in the office of papal liturgical ceremonies. The Apostolic Almoner handles the personal charities of the Holy Father.