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Pope reins in Franciscans.

ASSISI, ITALY -- Pope Benedict XVI has rescinded autonomy granted the Franciscans of Assisi by Pope Paul VI in 1969, reports The Boston Globe. The monks of Assisi will now have to clear their activities through the local bishop; larger events will need the approval of the Italian bishops' conference and an as-yet-unnamed papal overseer.

The move was seen as a response to the at-times boisterous anti-globalization and peace demonstrations and the interreligious prayer services held there. Then-Cardinal Ratzinger opposed the latter on theological grounds, though Pope John Paul II participated in them.

"It's about time," said the recently retired bishop of Assisi, Sergio Goretti. "Sometimes I only found out what the monks were doing when I read about it in the newspapers."

Father Vincenzo Coli, custodian of the monastery, was measured in his response: "This is done, I believe, in a spirit of collegiality. In theory, there is no problem. In practice, we will see."
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Publication:U.S. Catholic
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Feb 1, 2006
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