Vatican to Cuba’s aging bishops: No retirement for you!

From our Bureau of Church-State Relations in Socialist Totalitarian Latrine American Hellholes

Roman Catholic Canon Law stipulates that bishops should retire at age 75, but, apparently, this doesn’t apply to Cuban bishops, many of whom have reached or passed the required retirement age. And this infraction of Canon Law is due to the fact that Papa Che and his staff can’t seem to find suitable replacements.

What is going on? What determines “suitable” replacements? Experts speculate that this paralysis at the Vatican is most probably caused by the fact that there are no priests with ‘acceptable profiles’ for Castro, Inc. Another reason cited is the issue of political prisoners, which has caused friction between the current bishops and the dictatorship.

So, in a very real way, the shadow of collaborationist bishop Jaime Ortega — a darling of Castro, Inc. — still hovers over the Catholic Church in Cuba. In the minds of the island’s rulers, he remains the “perfect” sort of bishop. In addition, one must not ignore another shadow, that of Karl Marx, which hovers over Papa Che.

Loosely translated from Diario de Cuba

Next January 31, Dionisio García Ibáñez, archbishop of Santiago de Cuba, turns 79 years old, four more than the stipulated for the retirement of Catholic prelates. His exact health situation is unknown, but most of his homilies are delivered sitting down. Nobody talks about the possible successor in the primate archdiocese of Cuba. Although for reasons of age and rank there are a few who could aspire, the dominoes remain stuck.

It is not the only bogged down case. Monsignor Álvaro Beyra Luarca, bishop of Bayamo-Manzanillo, is 78 years old and has been waiting to be replaced for three years. The most recent cases are Cardinal Juan García Rodríguez, archbishop of Havana, and Juan de Dios Hernández, bishop of Pinar del Río. Both, with 75 birthdays, have already asked Pope Francis to resign, as mandated by canon 401 of the Code of Canon Law. Added to this is the Diocese of Ciego de Ávila, which has remained vacant since 2022.

At full speed, other Cuban prelates are approaching the end of their administrative life. They are Emilio Aranguren, bishop of Holguín; Wilfredo Pino Estévez, archbishop of Camagüey, and Domingo Oropesa Lorente, bishop of Cienfuegos. They all carry 73 years behind them.

According to widespread opinion, there is no single cause for the paralysis of episcopal appointments in Cuba.

“In the meeting with Miguel Díaz-Canel, in April 2023, the bishops presented a memorandum on the situation in Cuba. Since then, nothing has moved. The panorama is worse, and there is no answer regarding political prisoners, such as asked by the Vatican,” explains a source deeply knowledgeable about Catholic life on the Island.

This would be a compelling reason not to move, for now, while waiting for reactions from the Havana regime.

“The characteristics of the candidates also influence a lot,” admits the source in statements to DIARIO DE CUBA. In his opinion, the “acceptable profile” for the regime is “someone who does not rub, at all, with the status quo of the dictatorship.”

There are “valuable priests,” several analysts agree, but their critical positions seem to invalidate them for the position, as happened in the past with Father José Conrado Rodríguez.

“They have the necessary characteristics—pastoral, emotional and intellectual—but they are not seen well by the Government, which expects spiritualist, pietist bishops who follow the line—still in force—of Cardinal Jaime Ortega,” adds the source.
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