From the Tablet's blog, by Catherine Pepinster, editor in chief:
When the staff of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity were told on Tuesday that Cardinal Walter Kasper – their boss of 10 years, who retired just a few weeks ago – would not be joining the papal visit to Britain, they took it as a major blow. This was a man who had good relations with the Church of England, particularly with Rowan Williams, and who had been asked to join the papal entourage to provide both continuity and act as a translator for the meeting between Dr Williams and his own successor, Archbishop Kurt Koch, who speaks very little English. Koch and Williams are due to have a breakfast meeting as well as formal talks at Lambeth Palace during the visit.
The disappointment at Kasper's no-show reflected the view that he, more than most in Rome, had expertise when it comes to dealing with Anglican relations and had an understanding of Britain. At that stage, the Christian Unity team believed Kasper was out because of a dose of gout. But just the day before, an interview with Kasper had appeared in the German magazine, Focus, which suggested that he was not quite so simpatico to Britain as his colleagues might have believed. Speculation has grown ever since that he was taken off the visit as a result of his gaffe-strewn remarks.
Read the rest here.