Vatican expert floats names for Legion delegate

Vatican expert floats names for Legion delegate

Bishops Ricardo Ezzati Andrello and Giuseppe Versaldi.
Bishops Ricardo Ezzati Andrello and Giuseppe Versaldi.


On Monday, Italian journalist and Vatican expert Sandro Magister commented on the Vatican's future plans to respond to the outcome of the Apostolic Visitation of the Legionaries of Christ. He wrote that the new delegate to oversee the restructuring of the Legion might come from within the group of bishops who conducted the visitation.

Magister addressed one of the three decisions laid out in the May 1 statement from the Holy See, which was the result of two days of meetings between the apostolic visitors and Vatican officials.

In his most recent column, Magister further examined the question of who the Vatican delegate that will have "full powers over the Legion" might be.

Having previously stated that the only candidate seriously given consideration in the visitors' meetings was Cardinal Archbishop of Guadalajara Juan Sandoval Iñiguez, Magister noted that in the end the Mexican cardinal's nomination "didn't have a following." He noted a message from the Mexican Bishops' Conference from May 7 that presented the cardinal's willingness to take on the position despite the fact that he didn't consider himself to be the right candidate.

The "vaticanista" then examined the possibility presented by the cardinal in his statement that the delegate could come from among the bishops who completed the Apostolic Visitation.

Of these five, wrote Magister, the two with the greatest likelihood are Bishop of Concepcion Ricardo Ezzati Andrello and Bishop of Alexandria Giuseppe Versaldi. They are both close to Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, he observed, however, both may soon be named archbishops, a nomination that would have to wait if one of them was chosen, considering the time and energy that will be required for the Legion restructuring.

Bishop Ezzati Andrello is an Italian-born Salesian of Don Bosco, while Bishop Versaldi is a Canon Law expert, he added.

Magister did not venture any guesses as to the other two decisions that will be made by the Holy Father in the months ahead, including who might be nominated to carry out the Apostolic Visitation of the Legion's lay movement, Regnum Christi, and who will form the commission to study the congregation's constitutions.

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