So Who Will Replace Cardinal Levada?

I remember two years ago when lots of people were speculating that Cardinal George Pell was going to be named Prefect for the Congregation of Bishops and, at the last minute, Cardinal Marc Ouellet was named instead.

We are now awaiting some more important changes in the Roman Curia.

Cardinal William Levada is set to retire as Prefect of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith and various names are being bandied about.  Cardinal  Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone is also past retirement age and some pundits have wondered whether he might be replaced some time soon.

So, let's have a little fun and do some speculating.  Who do you think is going to get CDF?

If the Holy Father does name a new Secretary of State, who do you think it will be?  Who would be best in that role?

Who would be your ideal head of CDF be?


Author: Deborah Gyapong

Deborah Gyapong is a member of the Sodality of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary ( in Ottawa, a former parish of the Anglican Catholic Church of Canada (Traditional Anglican Communion) whose members were received individually and corporately into the Roman Catholic Church on April 15, 2012 by Ottawa Archbishop Terrence Prendergast at St. Patrick’s Basilica. Under the provisions of the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum coetibus, the community will celebrate an approved Anglican Use liturgy and hopes to soon join with other sodalities across Canada to form the Canadian Deanery of the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter under Msgr. Jeffrey Steenson, Ordinary. As we wait for our priest(s) to be ordained as Catholic priests, God willing, Archbishop Prendergast will provide priests to celebrate our Sunday Eucharist according to the Anglican Use. Deborah is a journalist who covers religion and politics in Canada’s national capital, writing primarily for Roman Catholic newspapers since 2004. Her novel The Defilers, published in 2006, was not a best seller, alas. She spent 17 years at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in news and current affairs, including 12 years as a television producer.

18 thoughts on “So Who Will Replace Cardinal Levada?”

  1. Most Likely: Gerhard Ludwig Müller, Bishop of Regensburg (and a Good Thing)

    "Ideal:" Archbishop Joseph Augustine DiNoia, OP, until today Secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship (and a Very Good Thing)

    1. Cardinal Müller would be a total disaster. He is an archliberal. I have a prayer mantra: A.B.M. It can mean automatic banking machine but it can also mean Anyone but Müller.


  2. Of course, Cardinal Levada's predecessor served in that office for more than 23 years (vs 7 years for Levada) and finally left the post at roughly age 78 (Levada turned 76 earlier this month).

    So Levada may have a few years left.

    (Oh yeah, his predecessor is now Pope Benedict XVI)

    1. I have champagne on ice waiting for Levada's retirement. If Müller replaces him, however, I'll just pour it down the sink.

      Burke would do for C.D.F. but it won't happen, I guess.


  3. Ideal-more like fantasy-Cardinal Ranjith. He is 64 I believe I saw. You did ask for ideal. As for who you will get. I am not that Vatican insider guy telling the press every speculation. And I am not a butler. I have no idea.

  4. I notice that there is movement among liberals that makes me worried about what will happen to the Ordinariates and the negotiations with the SSPX…

  5. I think the suggestion of Cardinal Burke is a great one for CDF and I would prefer the whole Secretariat of state be dissolved and the Church steered clear of politics and got rid of diplomat careerists.

  6. Personally I hope the Holy Father recalls the US Nuncio, Archbishop Viganò, to the Vatican and makes him Secretary of State. Cardinal Bertone had removed him from his job as deputy governor Vatican City State's administration, because he was too efficient in cutting out corruption and reversing the budget deficit! The Church needs a new broom like him!

    1. With the move of putting someone like Arthur Roche as Secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments, I quake with fear.

      I hope the Holy Father knows what he's doing, and hopefully, bishop Roche doesn't mess with the Ordinariates or do something like suppress traditionalist groups already in communion with Rome!

      I would be livid at such a scenario. I'll probably end up joining with the Russian Orthodox or something.

  7. Ideal – well, Card. Ranjith, Bf. A. Schneider, or some clergy of the FSSP that then would be consecrated a bishop and then getting Cardinal…(or bishop Fellay of course).

    But I fear it will be Bf. Müller of Regensburg – and Invictas Veritas: No, that would NOT be a good thing!!
    He, like the other so called "conservatives" or "neocons" or semi-conservatives or quarter-conservatives… is "semi" or "three-quaters" liberal of course. He hates the Old Mass, he hates the SSPX and he is not clear (or more: tends clearly to heresy) in his teachings re the Most Blessed Sacrament and re other articles of faith. It would be like appointing a pyromaniac as the head of the fire-fighters, if you allow an analogy. It´s bad enough that he works for the CDF yet – as Card. Schönborn does.

    Cf. also the debate and comments on RORATE CAELI about the possible appointments and about this two men in particular!

    And f.e., an other "(semi-)consevative" bishop in Germany – Woelki of Berlin – has now questioned the praxis of the Church re remarried divorced and also homosexuals in the famous German weekly "Die Zeit". He suggested we would need a more "open" attitude towards this groups of persons, not only seeing the bad things but focusing more on the positive (f.e. he mentioned the "responibility and fidelity and care of each other" in "homosexual relationships") and that the Chruch might re-think Her praxis re divorced and perhaps adopt the "eastern orthodox" praxis of tolerating a remarriage in some circumstances…..


    That are our "conservative" bishops – oh, no, not only bishops, he is Cardinal. Perhaps he will also work for the CDF one day – if Card. Schönborn can, then also he.

  8. Like many here, I would put Cardinal Burke as my first choice for CDF, although I suspect and fear it will be Bishop Mueller.

  9. While I join others here in having much respect for Cardinal Burke, I wonder whether his background in canon law is what is best for CDF. Would a theologian be better? Not just any theologian. A Fr. Aidan Nichols type of theologian. What about him for CDF?

    I'd love to see Archbishop Di Noia heading up CDF. I know little about Muller except what's been in the news and I'm a little leery of his association with liberation theology. But there may be many nuances in his position that I am not aware of so I will not jump to conclusions.

    I had wondered whether Cardinal Wuerl might be having the stars aligned in his favor for a curial position because of his appointment as relator general of the Synod on the New Evangelization. Cardinal Marc Ouellet's appointment as Prefect of the Congregation for Bishops came after he was relator general of the Synod on the Word, so that kind of job is a chance for someone to shine before other cardinals and bishops.

    I have heard Ouellet's name mentioned as a possibility for CDF, though of course he is at the top of the papabile list now, too. He would be great at CDF and make a holy, wonderful pope, though I would not wish the job on him. But he's terrific where he is right now for the Church.

    Will there be a curial role for Cardinal Pell, who almost got the job Ouellet had, if the gossip 2 years ago is to be believed, that he already had an apartment lined up etc.

    I'd like to see Cardinal Pell running something in the curia!


    1. Yes, I saw the debate with Richard Dawkins and I thought Cardinal Pell let the atheists and secularists set the tone of the conversation. And the Adam and Eve bit was most disappointing. But I still like him.

  10. I would not rule out Msgr Fernando Ocariz, vicar general of Opus Dei and if I am not mistaken, member of CDF, as well as one of the Vatican's commissioners for the SSPX talks. His OR article on the obedience due VII, while subject to some argument no doubt, seemed like an indicator of someone's trust in him to put forth the hard line Vatican position. He is widely reputed to have been the draftsman for Dominus Iesus, as well.

    Counter-indications would include: not even a bishop, and also that he is currently thought to be next in line for Opus Dei Prelate if a replacement for Don Javier Echevarria is needed any time soon.

    1. Opus Dei is solidly anti-traditional. We need someone who can shake things up a bit. How about Tissier de Mallerais?

      We want to avoid Opus Dei. It's like a toothache. We want to avoid to avoid as well the heretics in the charismatic movement. Down with conservatism: long live traditionalism!



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