Monday, February 09, 2009

Darío Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos

First, that's a pretty cool name. The only cardinal's name I can think of that's even better is Rafael Cardinal Merry del Val.

I've had a special place in my heart for Cardinal Castrillón, who's head of the Ecclesia Dei commission, ever since he said that the Pope wants the traditional Latin Mass in every parish and it should be offered even if only three or four, or none, request it, so that people can learn it, because "everyone, including younger generations, would benefit from the riches of the extraordinary rite." So Summorum Pontificum wasn't just a magnanimous gesture for hopelessly nostalgic schismatic malconents-- good to know since I love the TLM too. :)

Now not everyone's as interested in all that as I am, but check this out. Cardinal Castrillón comes from Columbia, where he used to be bishop of Pereira. At that time there was a drug lord in Columbia named Pablo Escobar, who was responsible for the deaths of hundreds of people and had amassed a fortune ranked by Forbes as the seventh greatest in the world. Yesterday I learned this from Time Magazine concerning Cardinal Castrillón:

He has gone deep into Colombian jungles to mediate between leftist guerrillas and right-wing death squads, and once showed up at the house of cocaine king Pablo Escobar disguised as a milkman. Revealing himself, Castrillón Hoyos implored Escobar to confess his sins, which, presumably at some considerable length, the vicious gangster did.

Can you believe it? A bishop dressed himself up as a milkman and somehow snuck into a drug lord's abode and convinced him that he'd better go to confession? How cool is that? He's gangsta! Makes you wonder what your bishop has done lately, eh? I should print out his picture and put it up on my wall!

Unfortunately it looks like the confession didn't do Escobar, or the people he was terrorizing, much long-term good: he failed to reform his life and died in a shootout with police, probably by killing himself when he saw he was cornered. Still, Cardinal Castrillón must have figured it was worth a try.

(H/T OTR.)

I hope you all had a fine Septuagesima Sunday! (Septuagesima=Seventy; it's roughly seventy days before Easter and three weeks before Ash Wednesday. In the old calendar those three weeks are a kind of pre-Lent, to get ready.) An interesting effect of this time is that I'm feeling more appreciation for things I might be giving up. :) I read on some blog (can't remember where) that you should figure out whatever's impairing your communion with Christ, and that should be the thing you fast from. Sounds like great advice. I also need to read the Pope's letter for Lent this year; I've heard it's about fasting and it's good, so I will recklessly link to it without having vetted it.


Joe of St. Thérèse said...

Cardinal Castrillón is awesome

Meg said...

Excellent advice regarding fasting!

Cardinal Castrillon is amazing! What courage and mercy he conveyed.
He'll be canonized one day.

Father Schnippel said...

My personal favorite cardinal?

Cardinal Sin of Manilla, Phillipines.

Rachel Gray said...

Meg, I think you hit on something. A bishop who upholds the Faith in a forthright way is showing not just courage, but mercy. Bishops who won't defend and preach the more counter-cultural aspects of Catholicism don't *love* their flocks enough. (It's the counter-cultural aspects we most need to hear!)

Father, I forgot about Cardinal Sin! I wonder which one it was? (I wonder how many times he heard that joke?)