Baverstock writes: 'Reacting within days to the statements, speaking through a spokesman in Newsweek Argentina, then Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio declared his 'unhappiness' with the statements made at the University of Regensburg in Germany, and encouraged many of his subordinates with the Church to do the same" (my emphasis).
Cardinal Bergoglio, in immediate defense of rioting Moslems, not merely undermined Pope Benedict, but encouraged other churchmen to do likewise.
That surely was the moment when the most liberal faction of Cardinals and other churchmen - such as the 'St. Gallen mafia' - decided that Bergoglio was probably their man.
There are a number of things I think we should take away from this article and the aftermath for the Church. One is that while Pope Francis is heavy handed and intolerant of anything that fails to ape his whims, he made himself a leader in undermining the Papacy of Benedict XVI.
A key characteristic of rebels against Christendom from Luther, Calvin, and Cranmer down to our day is that when they are not holding major power, they speak and act to disrupt things, usually while presenting themselves as persecuted truth tellers who simply want to be heard. When they acquire major power, they are revealed to be nastily authoritarian, even murderous, in their iconoclasm.
Another thing we should see from this story is that Bergoglio's rise began with his opposing a scholarly Pope who was quoting a Byzantine Emperor who has seen Turks slaughtering his people in increasing numbers, forcing the survivors to convert. Bergoglio in so doing not merely excused the rioting Moslems - whose violence more than proved the Emperor's assertions about Islam to be valid; Bergoglio effectively declared that the Church's role was to oppose anyone to say or write anything that would lead to Moslem rioting, for that is the only way to have dialogue with Moslems.
A Pope who so thinks will not tend his flock first and foremost. He will be much more interested in pleasing Moslems than in telling truths about Islam and its advances into new lands. Such a Pope will not want the Church to try to convert Moslems using reason and facts, because that would offend them and cause them to riot. Such a Pope likely will blame at least Western Catholics for Moslems blowing up churches and slaughtering churchmen and Christians generally.
The most ominous part of the affair of Cardinal Bergoglio coming to the defense of rioting Moslems, and to the perpetually ineffective ecumenism birthed by Vatican II, is the subject of Pope Benedict's lecture: reason and lack thereof in religion. In historic Apostolic Christianity, the Triune God is recognized as the Father of reason, which means the Church and all its members and societies formed by them are to act reasonably in all things. The Triune God fathered reason and interacts with creation reasonably. Islam, on the other hand, posits Allah who is transcendent to creation, who is above and beyond reason and the morality assigned to mankind. And that necessarily leads to Islam being a religion of both sanctioned dissembling and violent outbursts, as well as forced conversions.
The large scale rioting, in many different places, by Moslems against Pope Benedict presenting such thoughts - in an academic lecture, no less - proved the point, save to Liberals, whose primary instinct is to defend, excuse, exonerate, and promote virtually all non-Western, non-Christian religions and peoples. In attacking Pope Benedict, and encouraging other Catholics to do likewise, Cardinal Bergoglio was allying with anti-reason and the violent fits tossed by those who are, at least in their own hearts and minds, beyond reason.
It then should be no wonder that Bergoglio become Pope would sweep aside reason, and anything else in his way, as he careens toward some vision of nirvana that can be produced on earth by rushing headlong into the spirit of Vatican II.
Here is for me the most sobering thought to emerge from this article: if Pope Benedict XVI had canned Bergoglio, and followed that with actions against the 'St. Gallen mafia,' we would not have suffered the epic misrule of Pope Francis and probably would be under rule still of Benedict XVI, whose slow work to repair the Church would have continued.
Mercy for those who do not deserve mercy almost always backfires in the real world. Mercy for the Peronist Cardinal who rallied people to oppose Pope Benedict XVI, and who then boycotted the synod called by Benedict, allowed Bergoglio to retrench and get full backing to replace Benedict.
Pope Benedict XVI was too nice, much too nice, not just for his own good, but for the good of the Church, and thus for the world. Benedict was simple (meaning harmless or guileless: sincere) as a dove, but he was not wise as a serpent.
And for that, we all suffer.