Catholic Culture Liturgical Living
Catholic Culture Liturgical Living

bridge building

By Diogenes ( articles ) | Nov 23, 2006

At high-level meetings of key leaders that take place under intense media scrutiny, the heads of the respective bodies often conduct a decorous and largely anodyne discussion in full view of the public, while the actual deals are cut in a back room, out of the glare of the news cams, between trusted lieutenants. In the case of the Archbishop of Canterbury's visit to Rome, Dr. Williams and Pope Benedict observed the customary courtesies, while Cardinals Tarcisio Bertone and Giovanni Battista Re met with C of E Bishops John Flack and Peter Carnley upstairs at Tre Aranci. OTR has obtained a partial transcript of the conversation:

FLACK: We haven't heard much in the way of concrete ecumenical effort, have we? I'll go three diamonds. See if they'll send us up some ice.

BERTONE: Here's the offer. In exchange for Akinola, you get Sklba, Clark, Lynch, the Sisters of Loreto, and a second-round draft pick. Three no trump.

FLACK: I don't need Clark. I need muscle up front, someone who can pull down some offensive 'bounds.


BERTONE: Freshen that up for you, Archbishop? OK, we can throw in Hubbard and ... and ... Bathersby of Brisbane.

FLACK: Hey, isn't Hubbard playing for our side already?

RE: That's the way we see it. But we're the ones paying his salary. Six spades.

FLACK: Pass. I see your point. Now we really like the looks of your man Milingo.

BERTONE: On waivers since September 24th. You gotta talk to his agent direct. No ice for me, thanks.

FLACK: I can live with the swaps, but how about sweetening the financial side a little?

BERTONE: Fair enough. Tell you what, make it Akinola and Orombi, and we toss you the Milwaukee Cathedral and Georgetown Law School. Seven spades.


Granted, the all-important political background is missing, but even from this fragmentary glimpse we can see that no theological effort was spared in what the Archbishop of Canterbury called "discerning a way forward." Flack (West) led the ten of hearts.

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  • Posted by: - Aug. 22, 2010 7:13 PM ET USA

    It might be helpful to note that, as featured in Drudge, the Empire State Building has, since refusing to honor Mother Teresa, been infested with bedbugs. What does that tell us about the hygiene practices of the members of the groups listed above?

  • Posted by: - Aug. 20, 2010 11:52 PM ET USA

    What would these people say if I told them that they do not represent me, a Catholic, now, nor have they ever? I actually take serious offense that they'd think I want to be like them. Perhaps I'd be a tad more sympathetic to their ideas if they'd at least acknowledged virtue in mine? If anyone's taking a vote, I'll take Mr. Donohue's attitude over their's any day. I hate being presented as a modern, intolerant fool....

  • Posted by: Defender - Aug. 20, 2010 7:51 PM ET USA

    And they lit up the building for communist China, etc, but not for Mother Teresa...