So this is how they’ll ease him out. According to the Irish Times, a coadjutor bishop may be appointed to administer the archdiocese of Armagh with the expectation of succession. Fr Brady himself was similarly appointed coadjutor to Cahal Daly in 1995 and succeeded him automatically the following year.
The questions crowd in. Can they wait that long this time? And in the meantime, will he continue to function as president of the Irish bishop’s conference? This is the more significant role to the wider public. Will he will remain to officiate at the Eucharistic Congress? The Church faces a pretty agonising dilemma of its own making. Either way publicity and hence the pressure on Cardinal Brady, his fellow bishops who have been deafeningly silent this week and the Vatican itself is bound to increase.
As the Vatican moves exceeding slow, the odds are bound to be on his remaining for the time being and allowing the many who still respect him to orchestrate a departure with dignity, rather than allowing him to be hounded from office by media and political clamour (as they’d see it). Incidentally the Irish Times also carries an interesting comparison with the case of the Bostonian Cardinal Laws.
Former BBC journalist and manager in Belfast, Manchester and London, Editor Spolight; Political Editor BBC NI; Current Affairs Commissioning editor BBC Radio 4; Editor Political and Parliamentary Programmes, BBC Westminster; former London Editor Belfast Telegraph. Hon Senior Research Fellow, The Constitution Unit, Univ Coll. London