Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Get to Know Your Papabile: Luis Tagle

"The whole church, for me??"

Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle (Filipino, 55). Currently the archbishop of Manila. If elected, he'd be the youngest pope in centuries -- 3 years younger than John Paul was when he was elected in 1978.

Cardinal Tagle did his doctorate at the Catholic University of America in Washington, under Joseph Komonchak. His dissertation praised episcopal collegiality at the Second Vatican Council.

During the 2012 Synod on the New Evangelization in Rome he called for a more humble church that put more effort into listening to its flock. Cardinal Tagle has also warned his fellow bishops from Asia that they must not dismiss the sexual abuse crisis as a Western phenomenon.

Cardinal Tagle, whose nickname is "Chito", has been described as having "a theologian's mind, a musician's soul and a pastor's heart." Also, as "young, unassuming, and without airs," a bishop "who more than understands contemporary ideas." An excellent communicator, with an eye toward the needs of the poorest. In the Imus diocese, he was known for taking a bus to work every day, saying it kept him connected to the people. He has a Facebook account and a YouTube channel.

A story reported in NCR: "Not long after Tagle arrived in Imus, a small chapel located in a run-down neighborhood was waiting for a priest to say Mass at around 4 a.m. for a group mostly made up of day laborers. Eventually, a youngish cleric showed up on a cheap bicycle, wearing simple clothes and ready to start the Mass. An astonished member of the congregation realized it was the new bishop and apologized that they hadn't prepared a better welcome. Tagle said it was no problem; he got word late the night before that the priest was sick and decided to say the Mass himself."
Quotes from Cardinal Tagle:
"The Church must discover the power of silence. Confronted with the sorrows, doubts and uncertainties of people, she cannot pretend to give easy solutions."

"The seemingly indifferent and aimless societies of our time are earnestly looking for God. The Church’s humility, respectfulness and silence might reveal more clearly the face of God in Jesus. The world takes delight in a simple witness to Jesus – meek and humble of heart…"
As a kid, his pastor gets moved away.  He goes to see where the pastor has been assigned. “I saw the poverty of the place, and I remember thinking, 'Why would you want this? What would you get out of it?’ I wondered how this young priest could, in a way, ‘waste his life’ serving God in this poor place.... That was a religious experience for me, even if I did not know it then.” 

“When, in spite of our good intentions and efforts there are still multitudes of hungry people we cannot feed, homeless people we cannot shelter, battered women and children we cannot protect, cases of corruption and injustice that we cannot remedy, the long night of the disciples in the middle of the sea continues in us.” The experience makes the church “grow in compassion toward our neighbors whose lives seem to be a never-ending dark night.”

What His Papacy Might Look Like: Charismatic like John Paul II. Bold. Calling the Church to the needs of the poorest. Perhaps disorganized (he's got little experience with the Curia).  

If He is not Elected, he could: Be a successful spokesperson for any product ever. (That smile could melt butter.)

In the movie, he'd be played by:

Heroes' Masi Oka
(Yes, he's too young and not Filipino.  
But he's 3000% wit and enthusiasm. Get on board.)

Why The Cardinals Might Want Him: Young. Inspiring. Visionary. Progressive. 
Why They Might Not: Young. Inspiring. Visionary. Progressive. 
Possible Papal Name: John Paul III (Charismatic. Energetic. Young. Come on, it fits like a glove.)