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Cupich Appointment: Bergoglio placed his pawn. What's his next move?

By Jeremy Dannebohm

“I do not recognize as bishop—I would not count among Christ’s clergy—a man who has been promoted to a chief post by polluted hands, to the destruction of the faith.”

-- St. Basil the Great

This morning again I woke up to bad news. Like last time, I didn’t have an opportunity to enjoy a few fingers of scotch and a cigar before digesting the latest “Francis effect” on the Church. Frankly, this one came as no surprise: Pope Francis named Cardinal Blasé Cupich as a member of the Congregation for Divine Worship. Has this roller coaster ride made you sick yet?

Well, hang on tight, it's far from over.

For Traditional Catholics, the message is clear. On Sunday, Bergoglio announced that he was elevating Archbishop Roche, who chairs the Congregation for Divine Worship, to the College of Cardinals. Roughly 72 hours later, Cupich becomes a member of Team Roche.

As noted in the article by Catholic News Agency, Cupich is a very vocal supporter of the motu proprio aimed at essentially suppressing Latin Mass and sacred tradition. Thus, he is the quintessential individual to serve on the Congregation for Divine Worship, which has been assigned the implementation of Traditionis custodes.

In December 2021, Cupich issued a policy for the Archdiocese of Chicago that suppressed the celebration of the Traditional Latin Mass. I suspect that some of you may recall another story from December 2021, that came out of the Archdiocese of Chicago. As Shannon Mullen described it, “a freewheeling Christmas Eve Mass that featured jazz musicians, choreographed dances around the altar, and theatrical lighting effects.”

Yes, as Cardinal Cupich was imposing severe restrictions on sacred tradition, Father Michael Phleger, a notorious priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago was “celebrating” a Christmas “mass” that made Jesus Christ Superstar look like sound theology.

A few months later, Father Terrence Keehan of the Archdiocese of Chicago, offered a “guitar blessing” over the faithful at the conclusion of mass.

"Loving God, rock with us as we roll with you. Affirm us, so that we may affirm others. Sing your song in us, that we may sing it with others,” Keehan said as he blessed the faithful with the sign of the cross using the guitar.

His Archbishop, namely Cardinal Blase Cupich, didn’t say a word.

Thus, Cupich’s appointment to the Congregation for Divine Worship begs the question, “How exactly does Pope Francis define ‘Divine Worship?’”

Bergoglio has made it clear that he is of the opinion that the Traditional Latin Mass has virtually no place as a form of “worship” in the Church. With the appointments of Blase Cupich, Mario Grech, Kevin Farrell, and Luis Tagle to the Congregation of Divine Worship, the pope is setting the stage for what he considers “worship” in a “listening Church.”

Are we to expect a Church that resembles a World Youth Day or LifeTeen Mass a la John Paul II? Some of the recent choices to be elevated to the ranks of bishop suggest that very well may be the case.

It has been said that Pope Francis is in poor health and that his time is very limited. Perhaps this gives us some insight into the whirlwind of announcements that have given our jaws a seemingly permanent place on the floor.

If the death of the pontiff is indeed on the horizon, one thing is clear: the chessboard is being set for Bergoglio’s next big play: the conclave.

The last thing Pope Francis and his lackies want is for his successor to be another Benedict XVI. Thus, the pope is working overtime to ensure that the right men are in the right positions for a conclave that will appease the globalists and freemasons.

Assuming he lives long enough to provide us with more shock and awe, if Bergoglio were to place any more chess pieces (pawns) in his United States chessboard, I suspect that it would look something like this:

Granted, there are many far more qualified sources than me who have noted that it’s only a matter of time until Pope Francis assigns Cardinal Cupich to a posh office job at the Vatican. While some commentators have speculated that Cardinal-elect Robert McElroy will become the next Archbishop of Washington DC, I disagree. I think he will replace Cupich in Chicago. He’s the perfect individual to fill Cupich’s shoes.

So, then what about Washington DC?

We know that Jorge Bergoglio is a socialist. He especially doesn’t like the idea of a Church governed by a bunch of white men -- the same men who put him where he is now. That said, Cardinal Wilton Gregory is approaching 75 years of age. I predict that he will be replaced by Archbishop Nelson Perez of Philadelphia. Francis will subsequently announce that he intends to elevate Perez to the College of Cardinals. Perez is an LGBTQ sympathizer, a company man through and through. Having appointed the first African American Cardinal to the Archdiocese of Washington DC, it only makes sense (if you can make sense of Bergoglio) that the next person to hold that seat will be Hispanic.

Another Francis loyalist, Cardinal Sean O’Malley is set to retire in Boston.

For this play in the game, the Holy Father could elevate somebody from the lowest ranks to make some sort of “raising up the lowest of them” spectacle. Bishop Robert Barron would be the first person that comes to mind. Lately, however, he’s been dealing with some very dirty “closets” over at his Word on Fire empire. Such controversy might cause Francis some hesitation to appoint him to Boston. Then again, the pope elevated Robert McElroy and his entire career has been one scandal right after another.

Surely, Bergoglio wouldn’t continue his latest shock and awe offense by sucker punching all of us with an appointment such as Father James Martin?

He wouldn’t! Would he?

Should he to want another LGBTQ pretty boy to receive a promotion, he could simply elevate Bishop John Stowe of Lexington, Kentucky. Though I doubt that even Francis is so ignorant that he would put a homosexual sympathize in an Archdiocese known for clergy abuse.

When it comes to the Bergoglio its never safe to speculate on his next move.

As perhaps the most obtuse pontiff in history, he has hat tricks honed to an art. That being said, there are a handful of US prelates I think are worth watching as more seats come available at the Bergoglian table.

Keep your eyes on Archbishop Paul Etienne of Seattle, Washington. He previously served as the archbishop of Anchorage, Alaska, and as bishop of Cheyenne, Wyoming. He is definitely working his way up in the ranks, probably because he echoes the Francis credo. Etienne said he would vote against the now infamous document on the Eucharist. Like O’Malley, Etienne opted not to reside in the bishop’s mansion, desiring a more “simple life” like Jesus. With concern to the Eucharistic document, Etienne believes his opinion on the matter is also very Christ-like.

"Jesus came into the world to save, not to condemn," said Etienne, who added that the document was "enmeshed in a way … that makes it very difficult for us to keep the Eucharist as it's, I think, intended by the Lord himself."

Another wannabe rising star lurking in the shadows is Bishop Mark Seitz of El Paso, Texas. In an article for the notoriously liberal America Magazine, Seitz wrote that some Catholics "in pursuit of 'single-issue' strategies to end abortion" had "scandalously turned a blind eye to real breakdowns in solidarity and dehumanizing policies" such as crackdowns on worker rights and voting rights, racism, and the exploitation of migrants and the environment.

Speaking of which, last week, similar sentiments were expressed by Archbishop Michael Jackels, of Dubuque, Iowa. Jackels had a short term as bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Wichita before being appointed to his current assignment. His latest pastoral letter may be indication that he desires a higher position on the team.

It reads in part:

Some people want to repair the scandal of pro-choice Catholic politicians by refusing them the Eucharist. But that’s a misguided response for at least two reasons:

As Jesus said, it’s the sick people who need a doctor, not the healthy, and he gave us the Eucharist as a healing remedy; don’t deny the people who need the medicine.

Also, to be consistent, to repair the scandal of Catholics being indifferent or opposed to all those other life issues, they would have to be denied Holy Communion as well.

Better, I think, to put the Eucharist in the hands of such Catholics in hopes that one day soon they would put their hands to work on behalf of life, in defense of all life.

In the words of Dana Carvey's Saturday Night Live character, the Church Lady, "Well, isn't that just precious?"

I don’t pretend to be an expert on Church politics, I'm not even consider a "D-list" Catholic commentator, but if Francis suddenly has the urge to hand out a few more red hats to the boys in the U S of A, the aforementioned pawns certainly have made it clear that they are eagerly waiting in the wings to be placed in the game.

Whether or not the remaining pieces of the chessboard are placed by Bergoglio remains to be seen. But the game is hardly over.

As I’ve noted before, there are a total of 117 cardinal electors in the College of Cardinals, 67 of whom were created by Pope Francis in previous consistories. One of the electors will have reached the age of 80 before the next consistory on August 27th. Thus, on that date, there will be 116 electors from previous consistories, plus the 16 new electors, bringing the total number of electors to 132.

Pope Francis will have created 83 of the 132 electors.

It seems the crisis in the Church is escalating. Unfortunately, by all of the indications playing out in recent days, the work of the infiltrators is nearing its completion. If that’s the case, we are living in Marian times. Indeed, the messages of Our Lady at Fatima, Akita, and La Salette are coming to fruition. Keep in mind, too, that while the United States bishops are promoting "Eucharistic Revival," the Mother of Our Lord very specifically demanded "Eucharistic Reparation." It's been my experience that the bishops loathe that term. Some have even told me it's "combative."

You're damn right it is.

The only thing left that will save the Church is Her Immaculate Heart.

In the end, we know it will triumph.

Nevertheless, we find ourselves asking our Lord time and again:

“How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and revenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?” (Revelation 6:10)