another piece of the puzzle? [updated]

By Phil Lawler ( bio - articles - email ) | May 23, 2007

If I were in the business of watching Vatican developments (which I am), and...

If I were particularly interested in developments regarding the liturgy (which I am), then...

I'd certainly be interested to hear about another pending appointment for someone who took a special interest in the liturgical tradition, and whose views on that topic had earned the Pope's praise.

And if that new appointment was to the Pontifical Council for Cultural Patrimony, I'd be especially interested, because only a few weeks have passed since the appointment of Abbot Michael John Zielinski, OSB, another man with a strong interest in traditional liturgy, to the same pontifical council. I'd be showing a newfound interest in that pontifical council-- which, ordinarily, is not exactly the most newsworthy office in Rome.

Which I am.


Update: Since apparently the news is out (see the comment by Romanita below), I guess I can be less cryptic.

The appointment of Father Uwe Michael Lang, following so soon after that of Abbot Zielinski, intrigues me. Is something going on with this pontifical council? Is it part of some larger plan? Will these two men soon be given other responsibilities? I have no inside information. But I can't help noticing that if you were putting together a Vatican bureau to supervise implementation of the motu proprio, these are the sort of men you'd appoint.

Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at CatholicCulture.org. See full bio.

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  • Posted by: Sir William - Mar. 15, 2010 7:00 PM ET USA

    Our pastor announces his schedule for Confession and his availability for Confession by schedule, and during Advent and Lent the schedule is immediately following every Mass (he has permission from our bishop to celebrate 5 Masses a weekend) He preaches on Confession often. Ordinary mix of English speaking white collar and blue collar families. Bare bones (but correctly celebrated) Novis Ordo Mass, unbelievably lousy music. There are lines for Confession just about every time he is in the box.

  • Posted by: FredC - Mar. 13, 2010 9:55 AM ET USA

    I have seen that the more hours that Confession is offered, the more people come to Confession, not just because of its convenience but because they see that the priest considers the Sacrament important.

  • Posted by: ladybird - Mar. 12, 2010 6:38 PM ET USA

    Our parish has also been energized by a vibrant immigrant community; Vietnamese, Eastern Europeans, Africans, Filipinos, all contribute to swollen Masses and, yes, lines outside the confessionals (yes, two). Just like the old days, you can even select your confessor and wait on his line; or just pick the shortest (or longest) line. And those lines exist all seasons, not just Lent. The best part, the old-timers and their young 'uns are returning to the Sacrament. Thank God!

  • Posted by: fenton1015153 - Mar. 11, 2010 2:15 PM ET USA

    Bishops always want the attendance at Mass counted. The amount of money donated counted. The number of Baptisms are counted. The number of marriages are counted. I wonder why the number of confessions are never counted or reported? It appears to me that you count what you want to increase and don't count that which is not important. How sad that many of our Church's leadership are such a bunch of bumpkins.

  • Posted by: New Sister - Mar. 10, 2010 10:38 PM ET USA

    By Poland (and Lithuania) being under Soviet domination they were spared liberalism and strengthened in their faith. I notice in Poland and Lithuania both that Confession lines are long - at every Mass, every day, all year long. They do not lack for vocations and form lovely priests. I am given to understand that Lithuania may ordain ~as many priests each year as France! We must pray for these Central European countries to keep their Catholic Faith & not follow "Old Europe" into the pit!

  • Posted by: - Mar. 10, 2010 10:09 PM ET USA

    I never tire of Barb Nicolosi's immortal phrase: "Cowardice masquerading as charity."

  • Posted by: - Mar. 10, 2010 7:29 PM ET USA

    I live close to a parish that has a split between its American and Polish parishioners and during Lent and Advent there are long confessional lines for the Polish speaking priests (all young) and almost no one for the English only pastor now in his fifties. Are Poles greater sinners or more honest?