18 June 2009

Hey, brother, would you like to be a bishop?

This just in from the Union of Superiors General (USG)...

"Two persons posing as Cardinals (Ruini / Bertone) from the Vatican approached our members in three different countries. The phone and email contacts were made 'sub secreto pontificio', each time denying the person permission to speak with the Superior General. Vague references were often made to urgent meetings with Pope Benedict, just hours earlier.

"Ostensibly, the 'cardinal's' request was made for one member to consider an appointment as a bishop in his own country. He in turn was referred to another senior member in another country, who had been asked by the 'cardinal' to urge him to accept the nomination. Overtures to build a formation fund as compensation to the province were offered by the 'Vatican Official'

"In a later phone conversation, requests were made for bank account information. Eventually the nominee for bishop was asked to come to Singapore to meet with the 'cardinal' in person, and incidentally bring along a large sum of money.

"The phony 'Cardinals' had enough ecclesiastical information and jargon to sound initially credible to the persons called. When, however, bank accounts and money were mentioned, suspicions arose.

"Thankfully no transfer of money took place. However, in retrospect these extortionists are rather bold and well-informed. They may currently be trying something similar with other groups.

"I advise Superiors General to post alerts to members of their staff and provincials to be on watch for similar fraud and extortion schemes to may be going on."

Forewarned is forearmed! Apologies to all those who bought non-refundable tickets to Singapore for not bringing this to your attention sooner!


dyanna said...

Mi piace il tuo blog.I l 'attesa per il nuovo post.

Lee Strong said...

Dang. And I always wanted to be a bishop or a cardinal.

Guess I'll just have to settle for being a Secular Franciscan. I can afford those dues.

Brother Charles said...

I shall treat all offers of episcopal character with extreme caution, spurious or otherwise. Great story!

Anonymous said...

Ahh, one question... hypothetically... what if "a friend" received one of these phone calls and he did provide account info and some funds... can he get a refund on the red episcopal socks he ordered from Gamarelli's?

Paul A. Zalonski said...

one can only wonder about the person taking seriously such an offer...what a laugh ....providing YOUR bank account????

perhaps the cardinal-callers should try the PNAC.

JAB said...

Harumph! I'm trying to run a serious blog here, and all I get are snarky comments!

Br. Andrew: you can return them if you still have the receipt. Which would be a miracle because if they gave you a receipt they would have to pay the sales tax. Another option is Ebay. I hear there is great demand for red socks there.

Anonymous said...

What’s the lollipop about?