A couple of interesting things:
Primo: Cardinal Kasper is saying he never said anything about the African bishops or church and never talked to Zenit.
On Twitter, Austen Ivereigh (whom you should be following, if you’re not) offers a fast, “unofficial” and “working translation” picked up from a Spanish translation of the German so…as he notes, “…open to amendment in the circuli menores.”:
“I am appalled. I have never spoken this way about Africans and I never would. I assure you that in these days and weeks . . . nobody from Zenit has introduced themselves to me and no one has asked for an interview. Nobody from Zenit has had an interview from me.”
Secondo: Zenit has apparently pulled the interview. It’s still listed in the headlines, but not available.
What’s going on? Your guess is as good as mine. Kasper says he never spoke to Zenit and sounds very confused by this. Pentin will hopefully respond?
Stay tuned. I may yet owe Cardinal Kasper an apology, and if so I will be most happy to write “he didn’t say it” because I hated thinking he had.
Meanwhile, John Thavis notes:
UPDATE: The Vatican announced today that the pope has named an African, Cardinal Wilfrid Napier, who had distanced himself from much of the midterm relatio, to the preparation commission of the final document. Also named was an Australian, Archbishop Denis Hart of Melbourne.
A result of the Pentin piece brouhaha? Coincidental timing of an announcement? I don’t know. I think whatever the case, it’s very good news.
Keep checking back; will post more as things shake out. Comments are remaining closed b/c people misbehaved badly over the course of last night. Keep that up and I’ll start punishing you with Mathematics, like Leah Libresco does.