The Anchoress, aka Elizabeth Scalia has a great post on the Cardinal Kasper/Edward Pentin controversy. Read it all. All the background is there.
Kasper is a theologian and a churchman of great intellectual repute. He should know better — and better than anyone — that shooting the messenger is no way to defend one’s own meaning and thinking.
If whether Kasper knew Pentin also wrote for Zenit was ever relevant to the issue, that relevance has been supplanted by a need for Kasper to demonstrate his priesthood. Before him is a pastoral, teachable moment: this is an opportunity for him to demonstrate the very Christian virtue of extending a charitable response to Pentin — who identified himself, stood among a group of journalists and reported what he heard — while also making his remarks clear for the rest of the interested church.
Something along these lines would work:
“Edward Pentin has a fine reputation as a journalist, but I am disturbed that my words — and their intent and meaning, which rested upon ideas of subsidiarity — were not best chosen, coming as they did at the end of a long day. Our brother bishops from Africa have been a source of profound inspiration for all of us and their contribution to the synod has been sorely needed and prayefully heeded. That said, the issues with which they wrangle cannot be solved at this synod, and will certainly continue to be prayerfully and faithfully pondered, as we enter into a year of contemplative reasoning.”
Or something like that.
Come on, your Eminence, if a chucklehead like me can imagine what a moment of grace might look like, you surely can, too. Sie können dies tun!