San Francisco Archbishop tipped for Pope's old job

Chair of the US Bishops' doctrine committee Archbishop William Levada is rumoured to be the favoured candidate to be named prefect of Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

The Oregonian reports that Archbishop Levada worked with then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger on the 1994 Catechism of the Catholic Church.

Levada's successor as Archbishop of Portland, Oregon, confirmed to the paper that "it's a quiet rumour that [he has] hear". Levada met privately with the pope on Tuesday, according to reports.

The rumour has not yet been widely reported.

Catholic News Service says Archbishop Levada was one of the first residential bishops to be granted an audience with Pope Benedict XVI.

"He was genuinely smiling and I think he is radiant, that is the best way to describe him," Archbishop Levada told Catholic News Service. "I hope it is the grace of the Holy Spirit in him and with him."

Archbishop Levada had served on the staff of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith from 1976 to 1982; in 1981 Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the future Pope Benedict, was named prefect of the congregation.

Even though Archbishop Levada left the congregation, he continued working with then-Cardinal Ratzinger, particularly on the Catechism.

Former Portland Archbishop may be appointed as high Vatican official (Associated Press/OregonLive.com 4/5/05)
San Francisco archbishop says pope is 'radiant,' 'genuinely smiling' (Catholic News Service 3/5/05)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Archdiocese of San Francisco | Archbishop William J. Levada
Archbishop William Joseph Levada (catholic-hierarchy.org)

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5 May 2005