This edition of CF NEWS No.2252 posted at 1.24 pm on Sunday, September 30th, 2018. VATICAN WATCH Pope launches prayer campaign to protect Church from 'Great Accuser' : Pope Viganò releases new 'testimony' responding to Pope's silence on McCarrick cover-up : Pope blocked investigation of allegations against Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor : Pope refuses to respond to journalists' questions on abuse scandal : Henry Sire: 'Archbishop Viganò now living in fear of his life : Pope marries couple in unexpected Vatican ceremony : Did Cardinal Maradiaga just confirm Viganò's claims about Pope Francis : 'Please act like Peter', writes priest and sex-abuse victime who burned LGBT flag : Pro-life academy backs Viganò's 'heroic' testimony about Pope Francis : "What Viganò says is true in principle... but it's actually worse" HUMANAE VITAE The theologian who understood the true meaning of love UNITED NATIONS Secretary General pledges to promote LGBT 'rights' against worldwide 'bias' CHINA SUPPLEMENT Submission : The sellout : Chinese Catholics split over the deal : The disfigured Roman primacy by the successor of Peter : This is madness. Lord, when will it end? NEWS FROM AROUND THE WORLD ARGENTINA New storm over Francis : IRELAND Abortions will be free : MEXICO Jesuit university hosts pro-abortion event, touting 'freedom of conscience' : NETHERLANDS Bishop criticizes Pope for 'incomprehensible' silence on Viganò allegations : UK Guides shut down two groups over pro-transgender policy : Bishops promise independent review of safeguarding procedures : USA Cupich removes pastor for burning homosexual flag : Fr. Fessio : 'Stand up and answer' Viganò's allegations : INTERNATIONAL gloria.tv.news : Jihad headlines : The World Over with Raymond Arroyo : Michael Voris NEWMAN The Gift of the Holy Spirit as Connatural CORRESPONDENCE Good news from SPUC BOOK REVIEW The politically incorrect guide to Islam COMMENT FROM THE INTERNET Apocalyptic Pope : Archbishop Chaput: Thoughts on the Instrumentum Laboris : On Papal deposition: Some further thoughts, Cardinal Wuerl's tattered legacy, future in the balance : Why Conservatism is part of the problem, not part of the solution : Soviet style 'psych' tactics used against priests by bishops : The Big Ugly . . . and more . .



Vatican watch

Pope launches prayer campaign to protect Church from ‘Great Accuser   read more >>
Viganò releases new ‘testimony’ responding to Pope’s silence on McCarrick cover-up    read more >>
Pope blocked investigation of allegations against Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor    read more >>>
Pope refuses to respond to journalists' questions on abuse scandal    read more >>>
Henry Sire: 'Archbishop Viganò now living in fear of his life
   read more >>>
Pope marries couple in unexpected Vatican ceremony
   VIDEO    read more >>>
Did Cardinal Maradiaga just confirm Viganò's claims about Pope Francis    read more >>>
'Please act like Peter', writes priest and sex-abuse victime who burned LGBT flag
   read more >>>
Pro-life academy backs Viganò’s ‘heroic’ testimony about Pope Francis   read more >>>
“What Viganò says is true in principle... but it’s actually worse”   read more >>>

Humanae Vitae

The theologian who understood the true meaning of love    read more >>>

United Nations

Secretary General pledges to promote LGBT ‘rights’ against worldwide ‘bias’    read more >>>

China supplement

Submission    read more >>>
The ssellout
   read more >>>
Chinese Catholics split over the deal
   read more >>>
The disfigured Roman primacy by the successor of Peter    read more >>>
This is madness. Lord, when will it end? read more >>>

News from around the world

ARGENTINA New storm over Francis   read more >>>
IRELAND Abortions will be free
   read more >>>
MEXICO Jesuit university hosts pro-abortion event, touting ‘freedom of conscience’    read more >>>
Bishop criticizes Pope for ‘incomprehensible’ silence on Viganò allegations
   read more >>>
UK Guides shut down two groups over pro-transgender policy
   read more >>>
UK Bishops of England and Wales promise independent review of safeguarding rocedures    read more >>>
USA Cupich removes pastor for burning homosexual flag
   read more >>>
USA Fr. Fessio : 'Stand up and answer' Viganò's allegations
   read more >>>
INTERNATIONAL gloria.tv.news
   VIDEO    read more >>>
INTERNATIONAL Jihad headlines
   read more >>>
INTERNATIONAL The World Over with Raymond Arroyo
   VIDEO    read more >>>
   VIDEO    read more >>>


The Gift of the Holy Spirit as Connatural VIDEO    read more >>>


Good news from SPUC    read more >>>

Book review

The politically incorrect guide to Islam   read more >>>

Comment from the internet

Apocalyptic Pope    VIDEO    read more >>>
Archbishop Chaput: Thoughts on the Instrumentum Laboris
   read more >>>
On Papal deposition: Some further thoughts
   read more >>>
Cardinal Wuerl's tattered legacy, future in the balance
   read more >>>
Why Conservatism is part of the problem, not part of the solution
   read more >>>
Soviet style 'psych' tactics used against priests by bishops
   read more >>>
The Big Ugly   read more >>> 24a

Our Catholic Heritage

Site of the day : Walsingham      VIDEO    read more >>>
Salve Regina
   VIDEO    read more >>>


St. Jerome    read more >>>

By courtesy of LifeSiteNews




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Vatican watch


Pope Francis launches global prayer campaign to protect Church from ‘Great Accuser

POPE FRANCIS has invited Catholics worldwide to prat the Rosary every day during the month of October, asking Our Lady and St Michael to protect the Church from attacks from the Devil ('the Great Accuser') and to make her members more aware "of the errors and abuses commited in the present and in the past".

The Vaticanstatement, issued on the feat of St Michael the Archangel, seemed to be an indirect response to accusations of the former US Nuncio Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò that Pope Francis and several high-ranking prelates were complicit in covering up homosexual abuse by ex-Cardinal McCarrick.

The Pope's invitation has left many Catholics torn and bewildered - while welcoming welcoming the invitation to pray, many do not wish to participate in what looks very much like a prayer offensive mounted against Archbishop Viganò whose allegations many cardinals, bishops, priests and laity believe should be thoroughly investigated.

[CF News] 2252.SU1















Archbishop Viganò releases new ‘testimony’ responding to Pope’s silence on the McCarrick cover-up

Arcp. Viganò releases new ‘testimony’ responding to Pope’s silence on McCarrick cover-upiganoDIANE MONTAGNA reports for LifeSiteNews — Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò has issued a new extraordinary testimony, responding to Pope Francis’ refusal to answer the charge that he knew of Cardinal Theodore McCarrick’s sexual abuse, yet made McCarrick “one of his principal agents in governing the Church.”

In the four-page document (see below), the former Apostolic Nuncio to the United States also responds to the Pope’s recent homilies which seem to cast himself in the role of Christ and Viganò as the diabolical “Great Accuser.”

“Has Christ perhaps become invisible to his vicar? Perhaps is he being tempted to try to act as a substitute of our only Master and Lord?” Archbishop Viganò asks in the new statement, sent to LifeSiteNews today.

Given the symbolic date of September 29, the liturgical feast of St. Michael the Archangel, and bearing the Archbishop’s episcopal coat of arms and motto, Viganò:

• explains why he believes he had a duty to come forward despite his oath to keep the “pontifical secret,” adding that “the purpose of any secret, including the pontifical secret, is to protect the Church from her enemies, not to cover up and become complicit in crimes committed by some of her members”

• restates with vigor his central charge that “since at least June 23, 2013, the Pope knew from me how perverse and evil McCarrick was in his intentions and actions, and instead of taking the measures that every good pastor would have taken, the pope made McCarrick one of his principal agents in governing the Church, in regard to the United States, the Curia, and even China, as we are seeing these days with great concern and anxiety for that martyr Church”;

• points to the Pope’s initial response that he would “not say a word” but then notes that he contradicts himself, in comparing “his silence to that of Jesus in Nazareth and before Pilate,” and Viganò to “the great accuser, Satan, who sows scandal and division in the Church, though without ever uttering my name”;

• raises concern over revelations that Pope Francis played a role in covering up for or blocking investigations into other priests and prelates, including Fr. Julio Grassi, Fr. Mauro Inzoli, and Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor;

• and says it was Cardinal Marc Ouellet, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, who told him of Pope Benedict’s sanctions against McCarrick. Addressing the Cardinal, he writes: “You have at your complete disposal key documents incriminating McCarrick and many in the curia for their cover-ups. Your Eminence, I urge you to bear witness to the truth...”

“My decision to reveal those grave facts was for me the most painful and serious decision that I have ever made in my life,” Viganò writes. “I made it after long reflection and prayer, during months of profound suffering and anguish, during a crescendo of continual news of terrible events, with thousands of innocent victims destroyed and the vocations and lives of young priests and religious disturbed.”

“The silence of the pastors who could have provided a remedy and prevented new victims became increasingly indefensible, a devastating crime for the Church,” he writes. “Well aware of the enormous consequences that my testimony could have, because what I was about to reveal involved the successor of Peter himself, I nonetheless chose to speak in order to protect the Church, and I declare with a clear conscience before God that my testimony is true.”

In the statement, Archbishop Viganò also encourages the faithful to “never be despondent!” Exhorting them, he writes:

“Make your own the act of faith and complete confidence in Christ Jesus, our Savior, of Saint Paul in his second Letter to Timothy, Scio cui credidi, which I choose as my episcopal motto. This is a time of repentance, of conversion, of prayers, of grace, to prepare the Church, the bride of the Lamb, ready to fight and win with Mary the battle against the old dragon.”

Here below is the official English text of Archbishop Viganò’s new testimony. It can also be accessed here as a PDF.



Tit. Archbishop of Ulpiana
Apostolic Nuncio

Scio Cui credidi - (2 Tim 1:12)

Before starting my writing, I would first of all like to give thanks and glory to God the Father for every situation and trial that He has prepared and will prepare for me during my life. As a priest and bishop of the holy Church, spouse of Christ, I am called like every baptized person to bear witness to the truth. By the gift of the Spirit who sustains me with joy on the path that I am called to travel, I intend to do so until the end of my days. Our only Lord has addressed also to me the invitation, “Follow me!”, and I intend to follow him with the help of his grace until the end of my days.

“As long as I have life, I will sing to the Lord,
I will sing praise to my God while I have being.
May my song be pleasing to him;
For I rejoice in the Lord.”
(Psalm 103:33-34)


It has been a month since I offered my testimony, solely for the good of the Church, regarding what occurred at the audience with Pope Francis on June 23, 2013 and regarding certain matters I was given to know in the assignments entrusted to me at the Secretariat of State and in Washington, in relation to those who bear responsibility for covering up the crimes committed by the former archbishop of that capital.

My decision to reveal those grave facts was for me the most painful and serious decision that I have ever made in my life. I made it after long reflection and prayer, during months of profound suffering and anguish, during a crescendo of continual news of terrible events, with thousands of innocent victims destroyed and the vocations and lives of young priests and religious disturbed. The silence of the pastors who could have provided a remedy and prevented new victims became increasingly indefensible, a devastating crime for the Church. Well aware of the enormous consequences that my testimony could have, because what I was about to reveal involved the successor of Peter himself, I nonetheless chose to speak in order to protect the Church, and I declare with a clear conscience before God that my testimony is true. Christ died for the Church, and Peter, Servus servorum Dei, is the first one called to serve the spouse of Christ.

Certainly, some of the facts that I was to reveal were covered by the pontifical secret that I had promised to observe and that I had faithfully observed from the beginning of my service to the Holy See. But the purpose of any secret, including the pontifical secret, is to protect the Church from her enemies, not to cover up and become complicit in crimes committed by some of her members. I was a witness, not by my choice, of shocking facts and, as the Catechism of the Catholic Church states (par. 2491), the seal of secrecy is not binding when very grave harm can be avoided only by divulging the truth. Only the seal of confession could have justified my silence.

Neither the pope, nor any of the cardinals in Rome have denied the facts I asserted in my testimony. “Qui tacet consentit” surely applies here, for if they deny my testimony, they have only to say so, and provide documentation to support that denial. How can one avoid concluding that the reason they do not provide the documentation is that they know it confirms my testimony?

The center of my testimony was that since at least June 23, 2013, the pope knew from me how perverse and evil McCarrick was in his intentions and actions, and instead of taking the measures that every good pastor would have taken, the pope made McCarrick one of his principal agents in governing the Church, in regard to the United States, the Curia, and even China, as we are seeing these days with great concern and anxiety for that martyr Church.

Now, the pope’s reply to my testimony was: “I will not say a word!” But then, contradicting himself, he has compared his silence to that of Jesus in Nazareth and before Pilate, and compared me to the great accuser, Satan, who sows scandal and division in the Church — though without ever uttering my name. If he had said: “Viganò lied,” he would have challenged my credibility while trying to affirm his own. In so doing he would have intensified the demand of the people of God and the world for the documentation needed to determine who has told the truth. Instead, he put in place a subtle slander against me — slander being an offense he has often compared to the gravity of murder. Indeed, he did it repeatedly, in the context of the celebration of the most Holy Sacrament, the Eucharist, where he runs no risk of being challenged by journalists. When he did speak to journalists, he asked them to exercise their professional maturity and draw their own conclusions. But how can journalists discover and know the truth if those directly involved with a matter refuse to answer any questions or to release any documents? The pope’s unwillingness to respond to my charges and his deafness to the appeals by the faithful for accountability are hardly consistent with his calls for transparency and bridge building.

Moreover, the pope’s cover-up of McCarrick was clearly not an isolated mistake. Many more instances have recently been documented in the press, showing that Pope Francis has defended homosexual clergy who committed serious sexual abuses against minors or adults. These include his role in the case of Fr. Julio Grassi in Buenos Aires, his reinstatement of Fr. Mauro Inzoli after Pope Benedict had removed him from ministry (until he went to prison, at which point Pope Francis laicized him), and his halting of the investigation of sex abuse allegations against Cardinal Cormac Murphy O’Connor.

In the meantime, a delegation of the USCCB, headed by its president Cardinal DiNardo, went to Rome asking for a Vatican investigation into McCarrick. Cardinal DiNardo and the other prelates should tell the Church in America and in the world: did the pope refuse to carry out a Vatican investigation into McCarrick’s crimes and of those responsible for covering them up? The faithful deserve to know.

I would like to make a special appeal to Cardinal Ouellet, because as nuncio I always worked in great harmony with him, and I have always had great esteem and affection towards him. He will remember when, at the end of my mission in Washington, he received me at his apartment in Rome in the evening for a long conversation. At the beginning of Pope Francis’ pontificate, he had maintained his dignity, as he had shown with courage when he was Archbishop of Québec. Later, however, when his work as prefect of the Congregation for Bishops was being undermined because recommendations for episcopal appointments were being passed directly to Pope Francis by two homosexual “friends” of his dicastery, bypassing the Cardinal, he gave up. His long article in L’Osservatore Romano, in which he came out in favor of the more controversial aspects of Amoris Laetitia, represents his surrender. Your Eminence, before I left for Washington, you were the one who told me of Pope Benedict’s sanctions on McCarrick. You have at your complete disposal key documents incriminating McCarrick and many in the curia for their cover-ups. Your Eminence, I urge you to bear witness to the truth.


Finally, I wish to encourage you, dear faithful, my brothers and sisters in Christ: never be despondent! Make your own the act of faith and complete confidence in Christ Jesus, our Savior, of Saint Paul in his second Letter to Timothy, Scio cui credidi, which I choose as my episcopal motto. This is a time of repentance, of conversion, of prayers, of grace, to prepare the Church, the bride of the Lamb, ready to fight and win with Mary the battle against the old dragon.

“Scio Cui credidi” (2 Tim 1:12)
In you, Jesus, my only Lord, I place all my trust.
“Diligentibus Deum omnia cooperantur in bonum” (Rom 8:28).

To commemorate my episcopal ordination on April 26, 1992, conferred on me by St. John Paul II, I chose this image taken from a mosaic of the Basilica of St. Mark in Venice. It represents the miracle of the calming of the storm. I was struck by the fact that in the boat of Peter, tossed by the water, the figure of Jesus is portrayed twice. Jesus is sound asleep in the bow, while Peter tries to wake him up: “Master, do you not care that we are about to die?” Meanwhile the apostles, terrified, look each in a different direction and do not realize that Jesus is standing behind them, blessing them and assuredly in command of the boat: “He awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, ‘Quiet! Be still,’ … then he said to them, ‘Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?’” (Mk 4:38-40).

The scene is very timely in portraying the tremendous storm the Church is passing through in this moment, but with a substantial difference: the successor of Peter not only fails to see the Lord in full control of the boat, it seems he does not even intend to awaken Jesus asleep in the bow.

Has Christ perhaps become invisible to his vicar? Perhaps is he being tempted to try to act as a substitute of our only Master and Lord?

The Lord is in full control of the boat!

May Christ, the Truth, always be the light on our way!

+ Carlo Maria Viganò

Titular Archbishop of Ulpiana
Apostolic Nuncio

September 29th, 2018
Feast of St. Michael, Archangel

















Pope Francis blocked investigation of allegations against Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor

PF & O'ConnorMAIKE HICKSON reports for LifeSiteNews - Pope Francis told Cardinal Gerhard Müller in 2013 to stop investigating abuse allegations against British Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, according to a highly-placed Vatican source who spoke to Marco Tossati. Murphy-O'Connor, as a member of the 'Sankt [St.] Gallen mafia,' played a pivotal role in getting Jorge Bergoglio elected Pope in 2013.

A source from England with inside knowledge of the case told LifeSiteNews that a woman alleges the cardinal had himself been involved in abusing her when she was 13 or 14 years old and that she was the reason for the investigation by the Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF).

Tosatti and LifeSiteNews have worked together on this joint story for some weeks now. We have shared our findings with each other.

Tosatti had previously revealed what he learned in September 2013 from a high-ranking Vatican source - 'an extremely good source, who was then in the government of the Curia,' and he adds that his source has 'learned [it] from those directly concerned.' - that Cardinal Müller, then Prefect of the CDF, was interrupted by the Pope while saying Mass at the Church of Santa Monica (next to the CDF building) for a small group of German students. But now Tosatti reveals that the reason for the interruption was to demand that an investigation into Cardinal O'Connor be halted.

As Tosatti puts it in an article for First Things last year: His secretary joined him at the altar: 'The pope wants to speak to you. Did you tell him I am celebrating Mass?' asked Müller. 'Yes,' said the secretary, 'but he says he does not mind-he wants to talk to you all the same.' The cardinal went to the sacristy. The pope, in a very bad mood, gave him some orders about a dossier concerning one of his friends, a cardinal.

This event took place in June of 2013, not long after Pope Francis had been elected Pope.

According to Tosatti's newly released report, that cardinal and friend of the pope was Cardinal Murphy O'Connor, former Archbishop of Westminster, England and President of the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales. As the Italian journalist explains: 'He was accused of abuse by a woman,' and that woman had insisted for years on her claims and 'had finally filed a complaint with the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.'

Tossati describes his source as a 'high-ranking exponent of the Curia.' He reports that the source 'was very amazed' at this event involving the Pope, both about the way in which the communication took place, and also about the message itself.

'He [the Pope] should have said: let me see the dossier, bring me the results. Do not order the investigator to act in a specific way a priori. These are things that leave us very perplexed,' said Tossati's source.

Tosatti says he 'asked for confirmation from the competent offices, without receiving an answer.' LifeSiteNews reached out to the office of Cardinal Müller, asking for a denial or a confirmation of the story, but the answer was only that there would be no comment made. That is to say, we received a non-denial. LifeSiteNews also reached out to the Vatican Press Office, asking for a confirmation or denial of the story. Should they respond, we will update the report.

Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor died on September 1, 2017, a year ago, without ever seeing a proper investigation of these charges.

After hearing this story as related by Marco Tosatti, LifeSiteNews reached out to a reliable source from England who is very well informed about exactly that same lady who had been accusing the English cardinal. According to this English source, the lady has never gone public with her charges. But she has been in contact with Church authorities for about 15 years now, without ever having received a thorough investigation of her claims. This lady is already an acknowledged abuse victim, having received a settlement from the Archdiocese. She had been abused, when she was 13 or 14 years of age, by Father Michael Hill.

The paedophile Father Hill was imprisoned for five years in 2002 for abusing three minor children between 10 and 14. He had previously been imprisoned, in 1997, also for abusing children. He is thought to have attacked about 30 boys between his ordination in 1960 and the late 1980s. As The Guardian put it at the time: 'His case is particularly notorious because the church's leader, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, gave him a post despite warnings that he had abused young boys.' Hill had been moved to different parishes, in spite of the ongoing complaints of parents. Finally he underwent therapy in the 1980s.

Murphy-O'Connor, then bishop of the Diocese of Arundel and Brighton, had appointed Hill in 1985 and made him chaplain at Gatwick Airport. Hill then was charged with abusing a teenager with learning difficulties who had missed a flight and was visiting the airport's chapel.

As later reports showed, Murphy-O'Connor had been warned by therapists that Hill would be abusive again. Murphy-O'Connor accepted that the diocese should pay compensation to those victims of Hill, but requested their silence on the matter of their abuse. Murphy-O'Connor had also been accused of trying to pay hush money to Father Hill - some £50,000 to buy his silence when he was released from prison. Murphy-O'Connor 'utterly' denied that claim. It was said that a junior bishop made the offer on his behalf during a visit to Hill's Belmarsh prison in London.

Another sign of the cardinal's indulgent leniency toward child abusers is the case of Father Tim Garrett. Fr. Garrett, then a priest in the Portsmouth diocese, was convicted, according to media reports, of taking indecent photographs of boys in the 1980s. Following the advice of a risk assessment showing that Garrett would not be dangerous, Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor allowed him to transfer to his own Diocese of Arundel and Brighton. He later regretted that permission, just as he apologized for his mishandling of the Hill case.

The lady who accused Murphy-O'Connor himself of abuse, claims that when Hill abused her in the late 1960s, there were several other priests present and involved. She claims that Murphy-O'Connor was among them. She, who then lived in what is now the Diocese of Arundel and Brighton, had entered in the early 2000s into an agreement with the Diocese and received £40,000 payment for the abuse of Father Hill.

Murphy-O'Connor had been the Bishop of Arundel and Brighton from 1977 until 2000, when he was appointed Archbishop of Westminster. He was also a member of the Sankt Gallen Group that tried to get Jorge Bergoglio elected, first in the 2005 conclave, and then again in 2013.

The story of the female victim of abuse is a story of delayed justice and denial of due process. Since she now lives in the Diocese of Portsmouth, she started to express her accusations to Church officials there. But sometime between 2009 and 2010, she also contacted the Archdiocese of Westminster with her allegations. Cardinal Vincent Nichols, who has been Archbishop of Westminster since 2009 - and thus the successor of Murphy-O'Connor - refused to investigate the matter.

When Murphy-O'Connor was asked, in 2010, by Pope Benedict XVI to be the head of the Apostolic Visitation to Ireland in order to examine the abuse crisis there, people in the Diocese of Portsmouth were concerned that the abuse allegations against Murphy-O'Connor would then come to light and destroy the credibility of the Apostolic Visitation.

In 2011, according to our English source, the Diocese of Portsmouth, together with the Diocese of Northampton, contacted the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, then under Cardinal William Levada, in order to request an investigation of the claims of that female victim by Rome and to protest Westminster's refusal to follow the national safeguarding protocols. It was then Charles Scicluna, today the Archbishop of Malta, who requested that all the files from England be sent to him in person. A person from the Diocese of Portsmouth flew to Rome and delivered the files to Scicluna. It is understood that he began an investigation. However, in 2012, Scicluna became the Auxiliary Bishop of Malta and was thus removed from the Murphy-O'Connor case at the CDF. It was then Monsignor Robert W. Oliver who, after the departure of Monsignor Scicluna, met in 2013 with one of the English bishops in Rome in order to discuss the matter.

During that time, the Archdiocese of Westminster was finally agreeing, for the first time, to meet with the female victim. One of the auxiliary bishops - now a diocesan bishop elsewhere in England - met with her together with the diocesan safeguarding head, but still did not agree to start an investigation, according to the source.

Those within the Catholic Church in England who support this victim's cause argue that, independently of whether this lady speaks the truth or not, the Church must follow her own rules as they are now set up. That means that the accused clergyman should first be withdrawn from the exercise of his office, and then an investigation should be started. Depending on the result of the investigation, when it is completed, the accused clergyman is to be either reinstated or punitively removed. The protocols make no distinction between the treatment for a priest or deacon and that for a bishop or a cardinal.

As our source in England relates, there have been repeated attempts, on the side of good bishops, to request a Church investigation into the case of this female victim. They insisted that the Church has to follow the standing rules. Yet, as our source says, Murphy-O'Connor has been treated 'as if he were above the law.'

Our source points out that, in his own career, Murphy-O'Connor always 'stood very lightly with regard to the Church's moral and doctrinal teaching.' In one interview, Murphy-O'Connor made it clear that he is not opposed to non-practicing homosexuals being in the priesthood. He then said: 'I think the Church must judge the people who are ordained on what kind of person they are, not on their sexuality. And I think that there will be men, probably a very small minority, who might have a homosexual orientation. Obviously, if they are practicing, this would exclude them [from ordination]. But I would not say that a person who has a homosexual tendency is necessarily debarred.'

He also rejected the claim of a connection between homosexuality and child abuse: 'All I would say is that it does seem to be established that the question of child abuse has nothing directly at all to do with homosexuality.'

John Smeaton, chief executive of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, the world's oldest pro-life group, and co-founder of Voice of the Family, told LifeSiteNews the following about Cardinal Murphy O'Connor: 'However deeply disturbing it is, it is very much for the good of the Church that evils which have been deliberately hidden by Church leaders are coming to light.' He gave as an example that the 'late Cardinal Murphy O'Connor is on record for seeking to cover up evil. In 2008 it was revealed that the Cardinal had approved an ethics code for St. John and St. Elizabeth's hospital which effectively accommodated referrals for abortion and other unethical procedures.'

Professor Luke Gormally, a former member of the hospital's ethics committee commented at the time: 'How can the Church in this country effectively defend the sanctity of life when its Chief Shepherd is prepared to approve a code which effectively accommodates referrals for abortion?'

John Smeaton concluded: 'Church officials at the very highest level, including the Holy Father, must learn the lesson of recent revelations which have so scandalized the faithful: The cover-up of evil has got to stop.'

Perhaps most importantly, Murphy-O'Connor is said to have helped Pope Francis to get elected. Austen Ivereigh, Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor's former assistant, said that days prior to the March 12 conclave in Rome, Murphy-O'Connor was tasked by the St. Gallen 'mafia' to inform Jorge Bergoglio of a plan to get him elected. As Ivereigh described in his 2014 book on Pope Francis, Murphy-O'Connor was also tasked with lobbying for Bergoglio among his North American counterparts as well as acting as a link to those from Commonwealth countries. So, when Bergoglio met the English cardinal after his election, he said, 'You're to blame!' As The Guardian puts it: 'A few months after his election, the former Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio was apparently lightheartedly to credit Murphy-O'Connor, when the two met at a papal audience. The pope pointed to his old friend and said, 'You're to blame!''

Murphy-O'Connor, it became clear, was an old friend of Bergoglio. As The Guardian's obituary states, Murphy-O'Connor called Pope Francis 'my man': 'And, of course, his [Murphy-O'Connor's] presence in Rome in 2013 [was in order] to witness the election of his friend as Pope Francis. He looked on in pleasure at the impact made by the Argentinian whom he liked, jokingly, to refer to as 'my man.''

So, based on the revelation from Marco Tossati's source in the Vatican, it would seem that Bergoglio, after his election, especially thanked Murphy-O'Connor by telling Cardinal Müller to halt the investigation against him. As of this date, the abused lady's complaints have never been thoroughly investigated, neither in England, nor in Rome. And with the help of Tosatti's own report, we now know some of the reasons why.

Similar to McCarrick, Murphy-O'Connor is known to have later speciously shown himself to the public as being a hardliner with regard to abuse cases. 'Roman Catholic bishops found to be flouting the new guidelines on child protection will be held to account, or expected to resign,' is the headline of a 2003 article quoting Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor. However, as with the McCarrick case in the U.S., the truth is now gaining upon the Church's hierarchy that has been evasively looking the other way.

In England, there is currently a government-commissioned independent investigation into all sex abuse cases in society, to include those in the Catholic Church. This investigation has the legal power to compel the production of evidence. For this investigation, a so-called 'Truth Project' has been set up, whereby victims of sexual abuse of minors may now come and relate their story.

Our source tells us this female victim may have contacted that same Truth Project, since several weeks ago, the investigators requested the Archdiocese of Westminster the release of all the files pertaining to allegations against Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor.

It would be important now that four dioceses release their files to the Truth Project concerning this woman's case: Arundel and Brighton; Westminster; Portsmouth, and Northampton (which submitted the case to the CDF, together with Portsmouth). Bishop John Arnold (now of Salford), who was at the time involved in refusing to investigate the case in Westminster, should also release his files.

Thus, as it seems, the Catholic Church is now sitting upon a ticking time bomb. And on top of that time bomb sits Pope Francis.

This report was consciously published on September 24, the Feast of Our Lady of Walsingham - Patroness of the Catholic Church in England - and on the day of the beginning of the English bishops' Ad Limina visit to Rome.

[John-Henry Westen contributed to this report. The report has been checked by our English source for accuracy].

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Pope Francis refuses to take reporters' questions on abuse crisis

LISA BOURNE reports for LifeSiteNews – Pope Francis refused to take questions from reporters on the papal plane Tuesday about the abuse crisis rocking the Church along with his papacy.

Reporters were told by papal spokesman Greg Burke that they must restrict their questions to the Pope’s trip.

After answering a few questions about his trip to the Baltic States from local journalists representing the nations visited, the pope who champions “dialogue” launched into a “40-minute monologue, effectively crowding out questions on the thorny issue of how he had dealt with the McCarrick case,” Breitbart’s Thomas Williams reports.

The pope put off a question from an Austrian reporter about a new report on sexual abuse and the Church’s handling of it in Germany – for which the journalist referenced the pope’s comments on sex abuse made on the trip during an ecumenical event in Tallinn, Estonia.

“About this, I’ll speak after [I speak about] the trip,” Pope Francis said. “I will respond, but first questions about the trip. This is the rule. But, it will be the first question after the trip.”

He did not, however, return to the question on the German report.

The Pope refused to take questions from English reporters.

“In fact, none of the English-speaking journalists were allowed to ask questions,” Vatican journalist Marco Tosatti reported, adding that these were the ones "who would have been most determined to ask for explanations on these burning issues” of the abuse crisis.

Rome Bureau Chief for the US Bishops’ Catholic News Service (CNS) Cindy Wooden gave further testament to this, tweeting that she was, “Shot down by #PopeFrancis.”

“He wanted questions only about the Baltics trip,” Wooden continued. “I said I had questions he left unanswered on the way back from Dublin. They were trip questions. Just not this trip. #FoiledAgain #Vigano.”

After the pope’s response to the Austrian journalist, there was discussion on whether to take further questions on the trip, according to Catholic News Agency’s (CNA) unofficial transcript of the in-flight press conference.

CNA’s editor’s note says, “Pope Francis insists that the trip receive more attention.”

“People expect information about this trip,” Francis then stated. “After, other questions.”

When Burke announced that questions from the trip had concluded, instead of opening the briefing up to other questions, the Pope took the floor and stated, “I would like to tell you some things on some points of the trip that I have experienced with a special strength.”

Francis’ lengthy speech essentially canceled out further questions on the Church’s sexual abuse scandal.

Journalists from Italy and the U.S. were especially ready “to return to issues dodged by the pope in the last such press conference,” Williams wrote, when Francis had been asked precisely when he’d learned of McCarrick’s history of homosexual abuse.

“They also intended to ask why the pope had not yet launched a full-scale investigation into the McCarrick case,” said Williams, “which the U.S. bishops’ conference had explicitly requested.”

Tosatti reported similarly about the press conference, his piece translated by a reader and a portion republished by Rod Dreher at The American Conservative:

It was an “armored” press conference held by the Pope [on Tuesday, September 26] on the flight which took him back to Rome after his trip to the Baltic Republics. The Pope – who according to several correspondents on the plane appeared nervous and in difficulty – did not wish to respond to any questions which were not on the topic of the journey he had just finished. Meaning there were no questions allowed on the McCarrick case, on the testimony of Archbishop Viganò, or on the case of Cardinal Murphy O’Connor.

The pope has refused to answer allegations in a testimony released August 25 from former papal nuncio Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò saying the Pope and several senior prelates covered up McCarrick’s alleged sexual abuse of seminarians and priests.

When first asked about it August 26 on the papal plane on his return from Ireland and the World Meeting of Families, the Pope said, “Read the statement carefully yourselves and make your own judgment. I am not going to say a word about this.”

In the last month during his Mass homilies, Pope Francis has aligned people who criticize or accuse bishops in the sex abuse scandal with Satan. Several times he has cryptically alluded to such individuals as the Great Accuser, another scriptural reference for the devil.

While talking about the Baltic trip during the presser on the papal plane Tuesday, the Pope referenced Viganò, though not by name, saying that he had the support of the world’s bishops in the matter.

“When there was that famous communiqué of an ex-Apostolic Nuncio, the episcopates of the world wrote me, saying clearly that they felt close, that they were praying for me,” said Francis.

Close to 40 bishops or cardinals in the U.S. and beyond have expressed some form of support for Viganò, his character and/or his testimony and the need for it to be thoroughly investigated. Others have called for an investigation as well. A LifeSiteNews petition of lay support for Viganò had more than 16,000 signatures at press time.

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops announced plans last week to proceed in investigating McCarrick and the associated cover-up and also to augment policy dealing with bishops who either abuse or cover for abusers.

The announcement followed the apparent rejection by Pope Francis of the U.S. Bishops’ request for an apostolic visitation to the U.S. to address the McCarrick allegations and the role bishops have played in the wider abuse scandal.


Pope says he received a ‘sign from God’ through Chinese bishops after Viganò testimony

. DIANE MONTAGNA reports for LifeSiteNews — Pope Francis has claimed to have received a “sign from God,” in response to Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò’s extraordinary testimony implicating him and several high-ranking prelates in covering up the Theodore McCarrick abuse.

In concluding remarks during a Q&A with journalists, on his return from the Baltic States last evening, the Pope said the divine “sign” came from two Chinese bishops — from the underground and patriotic churches — just before the Vatican signed a provisional agreement with the People’s Republic of China on the appointment of bishops.

The Pope was asked by a Spanish journalist if he would provide additional information about the content of the Vatican’s provisional agreement with China (the text of the agreement has not been released), and how he responds to Cardinal Zen’s accusation that he is “selling out” the Church to the Communist government in Beijing.

Pope Francis replied by describing the process by which the agreement was reached, and then praised several of the key negotiators for the Vatican, including Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, whom he lauded for his devotion to detail.

As to accusations of “selling out” the underground Church in China, Pope Francis offered this reply: “I think of the resistance, of the Catholics who have suffered: it’s true, they will suffer. There is always suffering in an agreement. But they have great faith and they write, they send messages, affirming that what the Holy See, what Peter says, is what Jesus says: that is, the ‘martyr’ faith of these people today continues on. They are great.”

Taking full responsibility for signing the agreement, the Pope said it was not “an improvisation” but “a journey.”

He then wrapped up his remarks with a curious reference to the extraordinary 11-page testimony of former U.S. Nuncio, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò. Seeming to sweep the bombshell testimony under the rug, and treating it more as an historical event than a current issue, he said:

“And then, a simple anecdote and a historical fact, two things before ending. When there was that famous statement by a former Apostolic Nuncio [a reference to the testimony of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò], the episcopates of the world wrote to me saying that they felt close, that they were praying for me. The Chinese faithful wrote, and the signature on the letter was that of the bishop — so to speak — of the traditional Catholic Church and the bishop of the patriotic Church: together, both of them, and the faithful of both [Churches]. For me, this was a sign from God.”



While the bishops of Canada and New Zealand have come out in support of Pope Francis, dozens of bishops and cardinals from the U.S. and abroad have shown support for Archbishop Viganò, and have attested to his character and integrity.

Some prelates, including Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, have even called for an investigation into the allegations contained in the Viganò dossier. DiNardo’s proposed investigation, however, appears to have been put on hold after his recent meeting with Pope Francis.

It is also unclear, from the Pope’s words, exactly what the divine “sign” denotes. Were the joint signatures of the two Chinese bishops a sign that he did the right thing in signing the accord with China?

Whatever the case, Pope Francis managed in these few words to cast the Viganò testimony as over and done with, and to convey that he [the Pope] is the innocent victim of an isolated accuser but is supported by the world’s bishops.

His comments on the Viganò testimony come one month after he was asked, during an inflight press conference on his return from Ireland, exactly when he learned of McCarrick’s history of homosexual abuse.

The Pope responded by telling journalists that he’s “not going to say a word” about the McCarrick cover-up.

Since then, however, in what have come to be known as his “Great Accuser” homily series, Pope Francis has compared Archbishop Viganò — and concerned lay faithful who question bishops — to Satan, saying the cries for justice and accountability come from a diabolical spirit. He has reportedly also compared himself to Jesus, the Good Shepherd who “chooses silence when the ‘Great Accuser’ accuses him ‘through so many people.’”

Italian and American journalists had reportedly been “poised” during last evening’s press conference to “return to issues dodged by the Pope” on previous occasions. They also reportedly intended to ask the Pope why he had not yet launched “a full-scale investigation into the McCarrick case, which the U.S. bishops’ conference had explicitly requested.”

Read the Pope’s full remarks in context:

Antonio Pelayo (Spanish agency “Vida Nueva”): Holy Father, three days ago an Agreement was signed between the Holy See and the Government of the People’s Republic of China. Can you give us any additional information about this, about its content? Because some Chinese Catholics, in particular Cardinal Zen, are accusing you of having “sold out” the Church to the Communist government in Beijing, after so many years of suffering. How do you respond to this accusation?

Pope Francis: This process has been going on for years, a dialogue between the Vatican Commission and the Chinese Commission, to sort out the appointment of bishops. The Vatican team has worked very much. I would like to mention a few names: Msgr. Celli, who patiently went, talked, came back... years, years! Then, Msgr. Rota Graziosi, a humble 72-year-old curia official who wanted to be a parish priest but remained in the Curia to help in this process. And then, the Secretary of State, Cardinal Parolin, who is a very devout man, but has a special devotion to the lens: he studies all the documents — periods, comma, and accents... And this gives me very great confidence. And this team, with these qualities, has moved forward. You all know that when a peace agreement or negotiation is made, both sides lose something, that’s the rule. Both sides. And they move forward. This is how the process went: two steps forward, one back, two steps forward, one back...; then months went by without speaking to each other, and then... These are the times of God, that resemble Chinese time: slowly... This is wisdom, the wisdom of the Chinese. The situations of the bishops who were in difficulty were studied case by case, and at the end the dossiers arrived on my desk and I was responsible for the signature, in the case of the bishops. As to the Agreement, the drafts passed by my desk, there was talk, I gave my ideas, the others discussed and they went forward.

I think of the resistance, of the Catholics who have suffered: it’s true, they will suffer. There is always suffering in an agreement. But they have great faith and write, they send messages, affirming that what the Holy See, what Peter says, is what Jesus says: that is, the “martyr” faith of these people today continues on. They are great. And I signed the Agreement, the Plenipotentiary Letters to sign that Agreement. I am responsible. The others, who I have appointed, have worked for more than ten years. It’s not an improvisation: it’s a journey, a real journey.

And then, a simple anecdote and a historical fact, two things before ending. When there was that famous statement by a former Apostolic Nuncio [a reference to the testimony of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò], the episcopates of the world wrote to me saying that they felt close, that they were praying for me. The Chinese faithful wrote, and the signature on the letter was that of the bishop — so to speak — of the traditional Catholic Church and the bishop of the patriotic Church: together, both of them, and the faithful of both [Churches]. For me, this was a sign from God.

And the second thing: we forget that in Latin America — thanks be to God this has passed! — we forget that for 350 years the kings of Portugal and Spain were the ones who appointed bishops. And the Pope only gave jurisdiction. We forget the case of the Austro-Hungarian Empire: Maria Theresa got tired of signing the appointments of bishops, and gave jurisdiction to the Vatican. Other eras, thank God, that are not repeated! But the present case is not for the appointment: it is a dialogue on possible candidates. The thing is done in dialogue. But the nomination is from Rome; the nomination is by the Pope, this is clear. And let us pray for the sufferings of some who don’t understand or who have many years of clandestinity behind them.

I thank you all very much! They tell us that dinner is ready and the flight is not long. Thank you very much! Thank you very much for your word. And pray for me.

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Henry Sire: 'Archbishop Viganò is now living in fear of his life, quite literally.'

FR. JOHN ZUHLSDORF blogs : 'From the Twitter feed of the author of The Dictator Pope.

1) IMPORTANT NEWS: my sources confirm that Archbishop Viganò is now living in fear of his life, quite literally. As everyone knows, Archbishop Viganò went into hiding after his explosive revelations. But he is not just trying to avoid canonical reprisals…

2) He has confided to his friends that he now has good reason to be in fear of his life. We need to reflect on what this implies. If, six years ago, Dan Brown had published a novel telling the present story just as it is, he would have been ridiculed as presenting…

3) … a grotesquely sensationalist picture of the Catholic Church. This is the measure of what Pope Francis has achieved in just five-and-a-half years. He has taken the Church back to the age of the Borgias, with all the disembellishments of the twenty-first century.

4) And things are only going to get worse.

CLARIFICATION: With respect to my earlier tweet, I can indeed confirm, based on impeccable inside sources, that Abp. Viganò is not only in hiding, but that he fears for his life. However, I am not privy to the reasons for his anxiety about his safety.

Henry Sire

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Couple in civil union claims Pope Francis married them in unexpected Vatican ceremony

JEANNE SMITS reports for LifeSiteNews - Pope Francis has done it again. During a private audience at Santa Marta in Rome, which preceded the general audience in St. Peter's Square last Wednesday, the Pope blessed a civilly married couple in a whirlwind ceremony including a general absolution for all those present. We all remember the (not so) spontaneous in-flight wedding of two crewmembers in the airplane flying Pope Francis over Chile last January. This time, the Uruguayan couple involved appears really to have been taken by surprise, and there is a complete video of the one and a half-minute event to prove it.


Noelia Franco@noelia_franco Y un día... el Papa que habla tu idioma te casa en privado ante los ojos de tus hijas. Sin palabras, quince minutos de audiencia privada con @Pontifex_es en Santa Martha donde cumplió nuestro sueño de casarnos x iglesia y bendecir nuestro matrimonio. #ADiosLoQueEsDeDios 12:42 PM - Sep 19, 2018 390 113 people are talking about this

Noelia Franco and Omar Caballero were united in a civil marriage 24 years ago. Five daughters, two sons-in-law and one granddaughter later, they were hoping not so much to regularize this irregular situation as to obtain Pope Francis' blessing.

This story commences with what they feel was the miraculous healing of their youngest daughter, Sara, 4 years old, who was in intensive care with respiratory distress. One of Noelia's friends in Montevideo, Uruguay had brought back holy water from Rome, blessed by Pope Francis. The distraught mother poured a few drops of it on her daughter's forehead: Sara, she says, immediately took a turn for the better and was soon out of intensive care.

The news spread (Noelia started her career at 17 as a journalist and for the last 12 years, she's been running a public relations company with her husband Omar). In April 2017, she decided to bring her little daughter to Rome in order to thank Pope Francis during a public audience. She also took holy water blessed by the Pope back to Montevideo. She started handing it out to friends in need - and obtained, so she says, a number of miracles, thanks to the Francis-blessed water.

At this point, the Franco-Caballeros decided they needed to go to Rome to tell the Pope about what was happening, to thank him and to ask for his blessing. Last July, Noelia Franco sent an email to Monsignor Fabian Pedacchio, Pope Francis' private secretary who was before that, according to Henry Sire's Dictator Pope, Cardinal Bergoglio's eyes and ears in Rome. She asked for an invitation to the Pope's public audience on September 19th, adding a letter to Pope Francis himself that has been published by the Uruguayan press.

Its most important excerpts read as follows:

'Blessings kept coming, up to the point where all the people to whom I had given holy water I had brought back from the Vatican received a miracle: a journalist friend got pregnant (it was one of the last possibilities she had), the daughter of another journalist who had a congenital illness was healed, another journalist friend won her battle against cancer and today she is pregnant.

'We would like to thank you for all these blessings received from the moment you made us return to our faith in the church, and we want you to bless our marriage.

'This year, we celebrated the 24th year of our marriage, my husband and I. When we got married we had no money for wedding rings and even less for a party or for the white dress. We always had the idea that we would have to get married in church, but being able to see you with our family would be the greatest blessing that we could receive.

'In all, there will be four adults, two teenagers and two children.

'We don't want to ask too much, we're just asking you for 30 seconds to say thank you; we shall be on a trip to Rome from the 13th to the 20th of September, we would like yourself and your team to accept to have this meeting with our family on the day that will fit you best, or during the Wednesday audience on September 19.

'May God bless you, Francis.'

The response came quickly, and it was a surprise: the Pope himself had fixed a meeting at the Casa Santa Marta on September 19th, three-quarters of an hour before the general audience.

The meeting itself lasted a quarter of an hour. That is a great deal more than the '30 seconds' the family had asked for, Noelia and Omar hoping only for a quick blessing, but even so it is still difficult to speak of a fully fledged marriage ceremony. The father, the mother, three of their daughters, two sons-in-law and one granddaughter had a relaxed talk with the Pope. Family pictures were shown, photos were taken, they talked and joked. Pope Francis gave them his advice on having a lasting wedding.

'With you, bread and onions', he said. It's a Spanish expression that harks back to ancient Egypt when bread and onions were staple food for the poor who couldn't afford much else. It means staying together even during the hard times.

The whole group sat around a low table in armchairs and they were still all sitting there when the Pope decided it was time for a collective absolution. He spoke about some of the sins they could have committed, and of the 'hitches that there had certainly been in their marriage'. He added that this was also the time to thank God for His grace that had 'kept this family so united' and also for 'so many fruits' it had given: 'It is truly a great grace.' The grace of the sacramental union? Hardly… Then he blessed them all, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, saying that he absolved them 'of all their sins'.

Collective or general absolutions in the Catholic Church are normally strictly reserved for emergency situations, such as an impending disaster or the moments before a battle when a military chaplain has no time to hear individual confessions. Much abuse has been recorded during the decades following Vatican II, with priests organizing penitential celebrations with collective absolution and no individual confessing of sins. The Congregation of the Doctrine of the faith published pastoral norms as early as 1972 which make all this clear. Among others, when circumstances allow, penitents should at least say an act of contrition, and when grave sins are involved, survivors should confess them individually within a year.

The video of the Pope's general absolution does not show any of this. Perhaps because that part was not filmed - but it does not seem likely. It all sounds more like a friendly conversation where a sacramental absolution suddenly appears out of the blue. This raises the question: is living together as man and wife in a civil, non-sacramental marriage on the part of Catholics still a mortal sin, or not? Pope Francis appears to point to an answer which is a departure from Catholic teaching and tradition when he opined in June 2016: 'I've seen a lot of fidelity in these cohabitations, and I am sure that this is a real marriage, they have the grace of a real marriage because of their fidelity.'

Seconds later, Pope Francis asked the couple to hold hands, posing the question: 'Do you want to stay together?' The video then shows Noelia turning to Omar: 'Are you sure?', she said. 'Of course', he replied. The Pope then looked inquiringly at Noelia, who said: 'Yeees…' He blessed them again without words, before asking God to 'keep them always together' and to give them 'the grace of having many grandchildren'. And that was it.

Noelia, visibly surprised and moved, observed: 'There we are, we're married.'

The same day, she would post the video on twitter with these words: 'Then one day… the Pope who speaks your language marries you in private under the eyes of your children. I have no words, 15 minutes of private audience with @Pontifex_es at Saint-Marta where our dream of marrying in church and having our marriage blessed.'

According to the Uruguayan daily El Pais, Noelia Franco told their reporter she was 'in tears' during the ceremony. She recounted more details.

'Then Francis entered. He greets us, we start making jokes and telling anecdotes. He asked us whether we wanted to stay together and whether we wanted to get married and that after the Vatican would send the certificates. Our sons-in-law acted as witnesses and we got married,' she said.

The Uruguayan news-site Telenoche says Noelia Franco is a Catholic. It is not clear whether Omar Caballero is also a Catholic (that is the whole point of having engaged couples produce their baptism certificates before obtaining a church wedding, and doing other sorts of paperwork to check identities, make sure there was no previous sacramental marriage and so forth), nor does anyone seem to know or even care whether their five daughters were baptized.

The question is not whether Caballero and Franco are sincere in their desire for marriage and their commitment to remain faithful to each other as long as they both live (although that question was not put to them). The critical issue is the banalization of the sacrament of penance and of that of marriage, which here appears to be devalued to the point of being an on the spot blessing that simply completes a lasting civil union.

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Did Cardinal Maradiaga just confirm Viganò’s claims about Pope Francis?

LifeSiteNews Editor’s note: The article below by Prof. Claudio Pierantoni, professor of Medieval Philosophy in the Philosophy Faculty of the University of Chile (Santiago), was originally published in Italian by Corrispondenza Romana. It has been translated here into English by Diane Montagna, Rome correspondent for LifeSiteNews.

Cdl. MaradiagaAMONG the variety of statements that have followed since the “bomb” of Archbishop Viganò’s testimony exploded last month, we wish to report a statement made by Cardinal Rodriguez Maradiaga, in an interview on September 12, 2018.

The interview begins by recalling that Rodríguez Maradiaga is a “friend and close collaborator of the Pope,” and that the Viganò dossier “converts him into the protector of the abuser, Cardinal McCarrick.”

The first question of the interview is: “The Viganò dossier accuses the Pope of covering up Cardinal McCarrick’s homosexual relations with seminarians and ends by asking Francis to resign. What do you think about this?”

Rodríguez Maradiaga replies: “To make something of a private order into an atomic bomb that explodes worldwide, and whose shards harm the faith of many people, does not seem proper to me. I think that a matter of an administrative nature should be dealt with using more serene and objective criteria, not with a negative attack of very bitter expressions. I believe that the Bishop Viganò whom I have known is not the same person who writes and says such things.”

In reflecting just a little on these few lines, one finds a great deal of more important information than appears at first glance. First of all, there is an implicit but very clear admission of the truth of the facts stated by Viganò. Any dispassionate reader who has read Viganò’s document can hardly doubt what it says: on the one hand, because of the privileged position he held as Nuncio; and on the other, because of the number of high-ranking witnesses, both in the Roman Curia and in the American episcopate, who are directly named by him as accomplices, and who could easily deny it if what he said were false.

The main party concerned, i.e. the Pope, then eloquently confirmed by his perfect silence that Viganò is telling the truth about him. (We will leave for another occasion any comments on the Pope’s self-celebration of his own silence in a homily on the Gospel of Luke).

We have also not received any substantial denial from Benedict XVI regarding the sanctions he imposed on McCarrick, except for the clarification that they were “private” sanctions rather than “canonical” in the true sense of the word (otherwise they would have been public).

But the fact is that there were sanctions; that McCarrick, with the complicity of American bishops and Curial prelates, didn’t respect them much; and that they were then mysteriously completely set aside under Francis. The response of Rodríguez Maradiaga now provides further and definitive confirmation that these were facts well known to the Pope and to his “circle of friends,” of which he [Maradiaga] is a prominent member.

But even more instructive is the way in which Rodríguez Maradiaga describes McCarrick’s conduct with these two expressions: “something of a private order,” and “an administrative matter.”

According to the Honduran Cardinal (a prominent member of the C9 and one of the leaders, we recall, of Francis’ much anticipated program of reform), McCarrick’s behavior, which includes soliciting and sodomizing entire generations of seminarians through the continued and notorious abuse of his power as Bishop and Cardinal of the Catholic Church, as well as the continuing sacrilegious celebration of Holy Mass, would be “something of a private order,” and “an administrative matter.”

Without a doubt, this is enough to leave one a bit perplexed. Behavior that has traumatized dozens of young men, destroyed vocations, scandalized thousands of faithful to the point of becoming an “open secret,” yet was protected by the highest levels of the Roman Curia and by the Pope himself, is, for the ineffable Central American Cardinal, “something of a private order,” and “an administrative matter.”

Here it would not even be necessary to disturb moral theology (it seems that Rodríguez Maradiaga is a scholar in this discipline) to explain to the Cardinal that any serious sin, even the most secret, is certainly never, for the Church, a purely “private” matter, and even less so a mere “administrative matter,” but is always an infection that spreads and contaminates the whole ecclesial body.

But there is no need to recall this since, in the Cardinal’s speech, every reference to something called “sin” is completely absent: it is simply “something private.”

Yet giving the most charitable interpretation possible to Rodríguez Maradiaga’s incredible words, we might also concede that, if it were a matter of a specific and limited affair (let’s suppose, for example, a secret relationship with a single seminarian), it could have been corrected in a severe and decisive yet discreet manner, without needing to inform the whole Catholic world and indeed the entire world about it.

Unfortunately, however, our Cardinal forgets all too easily that the Viganò memorandum stems precisely from the Nuncio’s painful observation over several decades — from his privileged vantage point — of the continuous growth and branching out of these abuses. Having continually hoped and trusted that someone in the hierarchy would react, that finally sanctions would be enforced and the course be corrected, he [Viganò] had to finally admit the obvious, that if someone with true knowledge of the facts does not speak out publicly, nothing will ever change.

And the situation reached its climax once the Nuncio was certain, from his meetings with Pope Francis, that not only was Bergoglio aware of McCarrick’s evil deeds, but that he had in fact lifted all the sanctions and even turned him into one of his advisers in the nomination of American bishops. And this was all happening against the backdrop of the Pope himself not only accepting but encouraging and promoting the pro-gay agenda within the Church, from the Synods on the family to the recent meeting in Ireland.

And here we come to the next point we wish to stress. When Cardinal Maradiaga reduces sodomy (and the abuse of power for this purpose), to a mere “private affair” and “administrative matter,” he is clearly revealing to us what his own moral standard is on the subject.

How many steps on the scale of moral depravity must a man of the Church have already descended, to reduce sexual corruption, through abuse of power, of generations of seminarians, to a “private matter” to be resolved “administratively”? Certainly he knows that, on paper, canonical laws still exist which prohibit certain behaviors, and that these, in addition to being grave sins, are also, according to these laws, true and proper crimes.

But his words indicate that these norms ought to be considered, if not a dead letter, then certainly a mere “administrative matter” that “should be dealt with using more serene and objective criteria.” As we see, the picture presented by Viganò — which is horribly disgusting for any Catholic who has kept a minimum of modesty and the sensus fidei — is not at all denied by our Honduran Cardinal. For him it is only an “administrative” matter that ought to be evaluated with “serene and objective” criteria (after all, in the small confines of his native Honduras, scandals — both sexual and financial — which he “serenely evaluated” and adequately covered up, are part and parcel of ordinary administration).

Viganò therefore errs in wanting to describe this situation “with a negative attack of very bitter expressions.” The Nuncio errs in being bitter about such trifles; this clearly happens to him because he is behind the times. He is to blame for “being conservative.” This supreme insult has been the refrain of all those who, unable to deny the facts, have sought to defend the Pope by minimizing the situation. For the champions of the new mercy, to be conservative is, in fact, the most rigorously unforgivable sin.

The former Nuncio is no longer “the Viganò I once knew,” says Rodríguez Maradiaga. In other words, he is not the proper diplomat who (obviously for the duties of his office) kept silent about what he saw — someone, it seems, whom the Cardinal thought should approve of and smile at everything.

Yet, while demonstrating by these words the truly striking hardening of his own moral sense, Cardinal Rodríguez Maradiaga — consummate politician that he is — is well aware that he could never afford to make such an evaluation were he not protected under the safe umbrella of his Boss, who implicitly but unequivocally promoted himself from being the simple Vicar of Christ to the absolute Leader of the Church.

This brings us to the final point we wish to underscore: namely, the fact that in his testimony Viganò describes the cover-up of these crimes as a “conspiracy of silence, not so dissimilar from the one that prevails in the mafia.”

In fact, this cover-up has an important point in common with the mafia’s conspiracy of silence: it does not conceal crimes simply out of fear that they will be discovered. Instead, it covers them up because, in reality, it obeys a different system of values, one that does not correspond to the law in force in the community in which it operates (in this case, the Catholic Church).

In other words, the gay lobby covers up these crimes because it justifies them in the name of a different morality, which a certain elite of illuminati who are in power substitute for Scripture and the Tradition of the Church. And this, without any doubt, is the most serious and literally diabolical form of clerical abuse.

Now, it should be noted that this — i.e., that it is the Pope himself who is trampling on Scripture and Catholic Tradition — is no longer being said by the usual traditionalists, nor by the usual ultra-conservatives (the so-called “rigorists” who are so anathematized), nor even by the much more numerous moderate conservatives who have gradually become disillusioned with him.

This is now openly being said by his own collaborators, as is evident from the recent words of one of them: “Pope Francis breaks Catholic traditions whenever he wants, because he is ‘free from disorderly attachments.’ Our Church has indeed entered a new phase: with the advent of this first Jesuit Pope, it is openly ruled by an individual rather than by the authority of Scripture alone or Scripture and Tradition.” (Quoted in Zenit, which then removed – but did not deny – the incredible statement).

These are the words of Fr. Thomas Rosica. They were published on July 31, 2018, in a meditation for the feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola in which the author wanted to illustrate “the Ignatian qualities of the Petrine ministry of Pope Francis.” Published less than one month before the Viganò dossier, they quite unintentionally provided an excellent advance commentary on the memorandum of the former Nuncio, by perfectly bringing to light both the doctrinal atmosphere of this pontificate and the utterances of other “friends” of the circle of enlightened ones.

These words certainly speak for themselves and need no commentary. On their own, they are enough to make us see starkly — as if momentarily pulling back the thin curtain of rhetorical and media mystification – the true and sinister nature of this pontificate. However, even amid such a desolate landscape, we hope and believe that the courage of one man and his testimony will be a turning point that cannot be forgotten and, with God’s help, will begin to breach the wall of corruption and the conspiracy of silence.
















‘Pope Francis, please act like Peter,’ writes priest and sexabuse victim who burned LGBT flag

MATTHEW CULLINAN HOFFMAN reports for LifeSiteNews.com – A priest and clerical sex abuse victim who recently burned his parish’s “gay pride” rainbow flag and was expelled from his parish by Cardinal Blase Cupich has written a letter to Pope Francis asking him to intervene to “end the control of the Church here” by “Judases” who are members of the “gay mafia” and “homosexual cabals running chancelleries.”

Writing to Pope Francis “as a priest and as a pastor, but also as the victim of child sexual abuse,” Fr. Paul John Kalchik, the former pastor of Resurrection Parish in Chicago, asked the pontiff to “act as Peter and intervene and end the control of the Church here in America by Judases: men who put on a pretense of being a disciple but, like Judas, betray Christ at every opportunity they get.”

Kalchik also explains his own victimization as a target of sexual abuse by a Catholic priest at the age of 19, and his later encounter as a priest with Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, whom he described as “overly friendly” towards him. He encourages the pope to “act like Peter” and resign if he removed penalties placed on McCarrick by Pope Benedict.

“Pope Francis, please act like Peter. If you are guilty of removing sanctions placed upon McCarrick by Pope Benedict, step down. This would be the holy and noble thing to do,” writes Kalchik.

The letter was written by Fr. Kalchik on or before September 6, the date it was initially published on the Church Militant website, which was 16 days before Kalchik was removed from his position by Cardinal Cupich for participating in the burning and exorcism of a “gay pride” rainbow flag. The flag, which had a cross superimposed on it, had been used at the parish when it was established years earlier to serve homosexuals under the administration of Cardinal Joseph Bernadin.

As LifeSiteNews has previously reported, Fr. Kalchik says that as a result of his announced plans to burn the homosexualist flag of his parish, he was repeatedly threatened by two priests acting as agents of Cardinal Cupich: Fr. Dennis Lyle and Fr. Jeremy Thomas. The two reportedly first called Kalchik and then appeared in person at the parish last Friday, where witnesses say the two used “crude and threatening language that upset the staff members present very much,” insisting that Kalchik be sent to St. Luke Institute for his “psychiatric issues.”

Fr. Kalchik left the parish the following day, after an auxiliary bishop arrived and informed him he had to leave or the police would be called. He is currently living at an undisclosed location, in hiding from Cardinal Cupich.

Regarding his own victimization at the age of 19 by a Catholic priest, Fr. Kalchik writes that following the abuse, he was “a changed man, haunted both in my dreams as well as when awake.” Moreover, he met many other priests and seminarians who were abused by the same priest, some of whom eventually committed suicide.

“Even now, all these years later, I suffer from flashbacks of what transpired and the pain and anger come back, even though the principals of my abuse are now all long since dead,” he continues. “These past three weeks of August have been exceptionally hard for me, with all the perverse revelations in the media, day by day.”

“As Kipling wrote so many years ago: ‘A thing is not settled until it is settled well.’ And in August of 2018, nothing has been settled well with respect to predator gay priests and bishops, as well as homosexual cabals running chancelleries.”

Regarding his abuser, whom he names as Fr. Lawrence Cozzi, Kalchik writes that he was made rector of the Scalabrinian Seminary in Chicago. “Thirty-odd years later, I would meet up with many other scarred men whom he abused at the minor seminary. For the record, some of these abused young men went on to take their own lives, so today, I write this to you on their behalf.”

The full text of Fr. Kalchik’s letter is reproduced below:

His Holiness: Francis I
Domus Sanctae Marthae
Vatican City 00120
August 28, 201

Your Holiness:

I write this letter as a priest and as a pastor, but also as the victim of child sexual abuse. In this letter, I make an appeal to you to act as Peter and intervene and end the control of the Church here in America by Judases: men who put on a pretense of being a disciple but, like Judas, betray Christ at every opportunity they get.

Let me explain my request. When I was a young boy of 11, I was sexually abused by a neighbor, a man who, instead of driving me home, drove me in his car to a garage, and once in the garage in a locked, car abused me. As this age, I did not really know about sex, let alone predatory homosexuals. After the man finished his abuse of me, I was finally able to break free from his control and get out of his locked car, his locked garage, locked yard and I found my way home in the night. Once in the house, I stripped off my torn and bloody clothes and scalded myself in the bath. The water could not be hot enough to wash the stink of that man off of me.

That night, I bundled up all my bloody clothes and hid them in the neighbor's garbage can; I did not want anyone to know what had happened to me. In the weeks after the abuse, the same man tried to trick me again into his car. He would wait outside my school, and once I spotted him, I would go back into school and out of another door to make my way home. I never let this man near me again. Time passed and, eventually, this man moved on to easier targets. I learned my lesson, and to this day I will never get into a car with anyone I don't know. Even as an adult, I've traveled the world, but never by taxi. Never again in my life will I get into any vehicle with a stranger.

Children are resilient, and I was blessed with good parents and a good pastor in my home parish. My pastor over time was able to explain to me what had happened, and why what happened to me was not my fault.

"It's not your fault," he said. "You're a good-looking boy with bright blue eyes, tall for your age and this man found you an easy target. Your parents taught you to be trusting and kind, but not all people are to be trusted!"

Time passed and, at 17 years of age, I wrote to St. John the Baptist Province of Franciscans and, in the fall of 1979, began studies to become a Franciscan priest. All went well with the Franciscans, and the Jesuit priests from whom I took my instruction at the University of Detroit were exceptional and holy men. I took two years of ancient Greek from Fr. Ed Miller and also studied the gospels in their original languages from him, and to this day, I have never met another man as smart and as holy as he.

In the aftermath of a priest sexually abusing me at 19, Fr. Miller would prove to be my savior. His words of encouragement and his prayers would keep me from killing myself in the aftermath of sexual abuse. But, I am jumping the gun here, so I will backtrack.

As a young Franciscan, we were encouraged by the friars to have an apostolate. To accomplish this, I began working between courses at a large nursing home in Detroit, the Bertha Fisher Home for the Aged, run by the Little Sisters of the Poor. I found that working as an orderly suited me well, so back in Chicago on summer break, and following my mother's recommendation, I applied to work in a large Catholic nursing home in the Chicago suburbs: Villa Scalabrini.

At Scalabrini, I was hired on the spot, literally. That summer, my father let me use his fancy sports car, and after parking it amongst the shabby old vehicles in the Scalabrini lot, a middle-aged, very fat priest approached me and asked me what I was doing with such a fancy car in his parking lot

I told him the truth: "My mother sent me over here to inquire about working here at Scalabrini over the summer. I am a seminarian with the Franciscans and already have experience working as an orderly. My father takes the bus to work, this is his new car."

The old priest responded, "My name is Father Larry Cozzi and I am the administrator of this facility. I am certain you will do well. Come back tomorrow morning at seven and report in to Mrs. Becker, she is the nursing coordinator."

I could not live with what gay predators had done to me — not once, but twice. And that was that; applying for a job at Scalabrini was just that simple, that is if you were a tall young man with bright blue eyes. And things went well for the first part of the summer of 1982. Father Cozzi would take me off of the nursing wing from time to time; "Take a break with me, Paul, the lunch served in my dining room is so much better than the staff cafeteria."

And as my own pastor, Fr. Corbo, was a frequent dinner guest at our family home, I took no note of how odd all this was, to my detriment. Things went well up until August in 1982 when Fr. Cozzi announced that he really needed me to work the night shift: "Paul, it's impossible to get good people to work this overnight shift. You're just the man for the job."

As a mature adult now, at 56, I still fault myself for what would play out in the middle of the night a week or two after this shift change. That night, Fr. Cozzi lured me away from the patient floors of the facility to the basement wing, beyond the kitchen "to have some nice dinner, as compared to your bag lunch from home." After I went into his dining room, he came in after me and bolted the door, turned out the lights and began to abuse me.

I froze and as he worked me over. I tried to shut out what was happening in my mind, all the trauma of the abuse 10 years prior flooding back, blindsided a second time and hating myself all the more for not seeing it coming. While the abuse played out, I clung to the bookshelves, along a wall in the room, trying to disappear into them, I wanted the Earth to swallow me and remove me from the spot.

Enough said: After the abuse ended, I walked out of the facility never to return and made my way to my home parish Holy Rosary on Western Avenue in Chicago and waited for my pastor to finish the morning Mass. After Mass was over, I asked the pastor, Fr. Alfred Corbo, to hear my confession and he heard it. I told him everything that transpired. I wanted to die. I felt so dirty and I could not cope with what had taken place, I just sat in a chair in his office, and cried.

While I sat in the parish office, opposite Fr. Corbo's desk, I watched him go to work, making phone calls, trying to help me, the broken young man before him, as best he could. Father Corbo called Scalabrini and confronted Fr. Cozzi for what he did to me. Father Corbo called and talked to someone in Cdl. Cody's chancery and reported what had happened to me. And as the good priest and pastor that he was, he did his best to reassure me that I could go on with my plan to be ordained a Franciscan priest — to go on with it all.

And I took what Father Corbo said to heart, and for a couple of years, I jumped through the formation hoops with becoming a Franciscan priest, but I still wanted to die. I just wanted to exit out. I could not live with what gay predators had done to me — not once, but twice. During this period of time, I was diagnosed with chronic major depression with suicidal ideations. And even more tragic than this psychological diagnosis was a shattered faith.

In the abuse's aftermath, I did not know what I believed, nor who to believe, nor who could be trusted. "How could a good God put such monstrous men in this world?"

My solace during this period of time was the Book of Job. In the aftermath of abuse, I was like Job, I had nothing left. My youth, my innocence, my virginity, all had been stolen from me by monstrous predatory gay men: one lay and one a priest. On Dec. 12, 1985, I left the Franciscan order never to seek to take vows again. It was not because I did not love St. Francis, nor wish to follow his example, but because I was a broken man. "Once the tree was felled, no storm could right it."

But, God is good and gracious! Immediately after leaving the Franciscans, on Christmas Eve of 1985, I applied for a job to replace a special ed teacher going on maternity leave. I was hired on the spot and in the new year of 1986 started an 11-year career of providing services, teaching, housing and such, for the developmentally disabled in Chicago.

I found that I thrived working with these little ones, and over time, became a successful administrator of many facilities serving them. In January of 1995, I was the director and administrator for 28 facilities for the developmentally disabled in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. I had a multi-million-dollar budget for the group homes I ran and hundreds of support staff to manage. And in the midst of all of this, I heard God calling me back to my first vocation, which was to be a priest. In the fall of 1995, at age 35, I returned to the seminary. My ordination as a priest for the archdiocese of Chicago was in the spring of 1999.

In the aftermath of the abuse, I was a changed man, haunted both in my dreams as well as when awake. Even now, all these years later, I suffer from flashbacks of what transpired and the pain and anger come back, even though the principals of my abuse are now all long since dead. These past three weeks of August have been exceptionally hard for me, with all the perverse revelations in the media, day by day. As Kipling wrote so many years ago: "A thing is not settled until it is settled well." And in August of 2018, nothing has been settled well with respect to predator gay priests and bishops, as well as homosexual cabals running chancelleries.

In my case, Cdl. Cody died a year after Fr. Cozzi abused me. My pastor's calls to his chancellery went nowhere. And Fr. Cozzi would die from complications owing from diabetes in 1999. Both these men, Cdl. Cody and Fr. Lawrence Cozzi, would be given lavish funerals by the Church and buried in Catholic cemeteries, and yet both men were monsters, Judases of sorts. Cody died leaving a legacy in Chicago for his St. Louis, Missouri mistress.

During the last year of Cdl. Cody's life, he was busy covering up his sins by selling artwork from the seminary and other valuables of the archdiocese of Chicago. Insiders, priests, would speak about protecting the archbishop's residence from the "Widow Cody" and her hot fingers. In 1983, Chicago buried a prince of the Church, a man who let an abuser like Fr. Cozzi abuse me and who knows how many young men go unchallenged, uninvestigated. That was Cdl. Cody, archbishop of Chicago.

Let's talk a moment about Fr. Lawrence Cozzi specifically. Before being assigned an administrator at Villa Scalabrini, Cozzi was rector of the Scalabrinian Seminary located in a suburb of Chicago. Thirty-odd years later, I would meet up with many other scarred men whom he abused at the minor seminary. For the record, some of these abused young men went on to take their own lives, so today, I write this to you on their behalf.

Pope Francis, please act like Peter. If you are guilty of removing sanctions placed upon McCarrick by Pope Benedict, step down. This would be the holy and noble thing to do. Their deaths did not need to happen, they did not die from some incurable disease, they died at their own hands as a result of their trauma at the hands of Fr. Cozzi. I met these other Cozzi victims in a support group for those sexually abused by priests, that was set up here in Chicago in the fall of 2008.

Remarkably, in this group, I met a man, exactly my same age, a nephew of Fr. Cozzi. Father Cozzi abused him the same year he abused me and at the same place, Villa Scalabrini — how awful is all of this and how demonic. Chicago was once known for being a bastion of the Catholic Church in the New World, but now it has a legacy for some of the world's worst sex predators.

The purpose of this pointed letter is to say: It's got to stop! All of it! Bishops and cardinals that participate in abuse or cover it up need to be defrocked and removed from ministry altogether. What happened to all the sanctions and protocols of Church law to deal with this kind of sordid behavior that it could go for half a century?

When Cdl. Bernardin died in 1996, I was a seminarian at Mundelein. Seminary officials requested those of us with cars to pick up bishops flying in for his funeral — just my curse! I ended up chauffeuring two archbishops, Quinn from San Francisco and McCarrick from Newark, New Jersey.

Both men where gracious for the trip downtown and back, but McCarrick was overly friendly, and after I carried his bags into the hotel, was overly generous with a tip. But at 36, I had learned my lesson. I thanked McCarrick for his tip and bid him have a nice time in Chicago. I kept in mind the old English adage: "A stranger ought to act like a stranger." At 36, I had learned to steer clear of all strangers, even those dressed up like a bishop.

As events are playing out in the news this past week, I have become certain that a couple of things have to fundamentally change if the Church is to move beyond this crisis of leadership. The people of God have to have input as to what priests are ordained bishops, and additionally what bishops are elevated to cardinals. For the entirety of my 19 years here as a priest, there has been a small click of individuals who run the archdiocese of Chicago including its major seminary. To all other priests: keep out. I am a case in point.

When ordained, I had experience and a work history as a very successful social services director as I previously detail, yet the "Boys" that run downtown have totally, flat out, ignored me. My leadership experience would make me a good dean, a good agency head, but no offer of any sort has come my way. And this is despite the fact that in pastoring my current parish for the past 11 years, it is debt free and has one of the highest status animarum rates of any in our area. This is evidence that the insiders running the show are not doing a very good job. They seem to only trust each other; why else would there be priests with two or more extra duties assigned to them?

Another recent development that needs mention: The three priests slated to be elevated to the rank of bishop this coming month are all from the very same ordination class as former Fr. Daniel McCormack, Chicago's very worst, most notorious gay predator priest. I met Fr. McCormack once in 1995 right after he was ordained, and that very day I reported to seminary officials how off Fr. McCormack was!

At this point in time, it is all a matter of public record, Fr. McCormack was convicted and sent to jail. My question today is how could these three men live with a man like McCormack for four years, day in and day out, and not know or at least be suspicious of his character? Are they not already compromised if they knew or suspected what he was and did not say a thing? To say the least, I have serious reservations about these three classmates of McCormack all being raised to the episcopacy here in Chicago.

What the Church needs right now is a moratorium upon anyone being raised to the level of the episcopacy, for a least a year. And after a year of purification is completed by all the faithful, including all priests and bishops left active, then new bishops can be considered. We cannot go on as if nothing has happened and nothing is seriously wrong. That will not exorcise the Church of the demon of predatory gay sex abusers, and a gay mafia running through its ranks. They will try to wait until the storm dies down, and come back, bringing more friends.

Pope Francis, please act like Peter. If you are guilty of removing sanctions placed upon McCarrick by Pope Benedict, step down. This would be the holy and noble thing to do.

[LSN] 2252.3b

















Pro-life academy backs Viganò’s ‘heroic’ testimony about Pope Francis

LISA BOURNE reports for LifeSiteNews – The academy of pro-life and pro-family experts founded after Pope Francis dismantled the Pontifical Academy for Life has come out with a strong statement supporting Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò.

The John Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family warns that remaining silent about sexually abusive prelates is a “great crime” and an “evil silence.” The statement is signed by the Academy’s president, Prof. Josef Seifert.

Not only is silence in the face of clerical abuse a crime, the Academy said, it allows abusers to remain in power when they should be in prison.

The statement comes roughly one month after Viganò’s bombshell testimony implicating Francis and other senior Churchmen in covering up Archbishop Theodore McCarrick’s reported serial sexual abuse of seminarians and priests. It comes a day after Viganò responded to Francis’ official “silence” in answer to the allegations.

“We wish to express our profound support for the courage, true charity and faithfulness to Peter, and of the clarity and heroic deed of Archbishop Viganò’s revelation of such very sad facts in the service of truth,” the statement reads. “As Archbishop Viganò stated in his second message, published and dated Sept. 29, 2018, the feast of St. Michael the Archangel, any secret short of the confessional secret, but including the Pontifical secret, ceases to impose the obligation to silence as soon as such silence would bring great harm to the Church.”

“The silence some voices demand from Archbishop Viganò is the silence of the bad pastors who flee and deliver their flock to the wolves, instead of resisting them and driving them away through their shouting,” the statement adds.

Viganò, former apostolic nuncio to the United States, has been in hiding since his testimony’s August 25 release.

Francis has refused to address the charges, first stating he would “not say a word” about them. Instead in his daily Mass homilies he has made repeated denunciations of the “Great Accuser,” while promoting silence as a Christ-like response.

Viganò addressed Francis’ response and more in a subsequent testimony published Thursday noting that while the pope had stated he would not speak of the allegations, neither he, nor any of the cardinals in Rome have denied the particulars Viganò had asserted in the initial testimony.

Keeping silent about such crimes is itself a crime, the JAHLF said in its statement, and it is not the silence of Christ before Pilate.

“No doubt, having kept silent and keeping silence about crimes committed by former Cardinals, bishops, or priests, crimes that continue to do great harm to the Church and to many souls, crimes which to pass over in silence prevent measures being taken to protect young seminarians, priests, and laypersons from further harm is itself a great crime,” the Academy stated.

“It is not the Holy Silence of Jesus in front of Pilate (after he had addressed to Pilate many weighty words),” the JAHLF said, “but is an evil silence, a silent pact with the devil.”

“It is a silence that delivers innocent victims to be abused through new crimes,” the Academy continued, “it is a silence that allows priests, bishops, and Cardinals to perform pastoral functions, and functions in the governance of the Church, while they deserve to go to prison and to do penance for their sins, after having been deprived of any functions of deacons, priests, or bishops, as Canon Law prescribes.”

“Viganò’s revelation of such very sad facts in the service of truth” was an example of “clarity” and a “heroic deed,” the JAHLF said.

The Academy was formed last year in follow-up to Pope Francis’ dismantling of the Pontifical Academy for Life in favor of abortion supporters and a new mandate diluted with immigration and the environment.

Read the JAHLF statement in support of Archbishop Viganò in PDF form here.

[LSN] 2252.3d


















“What Viganò says is true in principle... but it’s actually worse”

ACCORDING to a report by kath.net - “What Viganò says is true in principle, voices from the Vatican say behind the scenes, but it's actually worse." This is what Benjamin Leven writes in a recent, comprehensive article on the abuse crisis in the Catholic Church in the liberal monthly "Herder Korrespondenz". According to Leven, one still feels bound to the "papal mystery". The number of dissatisfied and cold employees in the Curia is great. If someone from this group decided to "unpack", there would not be any stone left in the Vatican on the other.

Leven calls 2018 the “Annus Horribilis" in the history of the Franciscan Pontificate, the trip to Chile was the "worst of his pontificate," in which the planned for Mass services which were sparsely filled. The Rome correspondent of the journal published by the publishing house Herder in Freiburg recalled that Francis had been warned by the curia that Chilean bishops were involved in abuse cover-ups, but he did not believe this information.

The journal's Rome correspondent also described it as "noteworthy" that a few days ago the Pope's Cardinal Council assured Francis of solidarity, but at the same time have made it known that he was "aware that in the current debate, the Holy See will need to formulate necessary clarifications.” Leven made it clear that only Francis himself could release the McCarrick documents - which according to Viganò are documented in the Washington Nunciature and the State Secretariat - as well as the dossier of the Congregation of Bishops, to clarify whether there are sanctions against the US Cardinal under Benedict XVI. which Francis put aside.

It is not unusual, according to Leven, that sanctions imposed on high-ranking clerics would not be made public. This was also the case with the founder of the Legionaries of Christ, Marcial Maciel. The Rome correspondent also does not think it is outlandish that Pope Francis turned a blind eye to certain people and ignored warnings. There are some examples of this, such as abusive offenders - including Church leaders - who have covered up, and influential priests with a propensity to double lives and sexual debauchery.

The Rome correspondent finds this reminiscent in this context to the Belgian Cardinal Godfried Danneels, whose fellow bishop had spent years sexually abusing his nephew. Danneels had tried in 2010 to dissuade the nephew to make the deeds public. Later, the victim gave a recording of the conversation to the media. Despite hints from the Curia, Danneels was then personally appointed by Francis to the family synods 2014 and 2015.

Another example is Luigi Capozzi, the secretary of Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio, the former head of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts. In his apartment in the Congregation of the Faith, a gay drug party was caught by the Vatican gendarmerie in 2017. According to Leven, Capozzi received this flat through direct intervention by Coccopalmerio with the Pope. Capozzi was, according to the Herder even intended for an episcopal post. But Coccopalmerio has even more problematic things to answer for. Thus, Francis, because of the intercession under Benedict XVI.,, who decreed the dismissal of a well-known Italian priest from the clerical state, had mitigated this again. Only after a judgment of the priest by an Italian court, was Francis’ countermeasure reversed.

Leven also brings interesting details about the three employees of the Congregation of the Faith who have been dismissed by Francis. Two of them had worked in the disciplinary department of the Congregation, which has dealt with the cases of abusive priests. Francis has never given a reason for the dismissal, Cardinal Müller has criticized these dismissals several times. These jobs have not been filled up to the present day, although Mueller even asked for these posts to be increased.

For the Herder, therefore, "an ambivalent picture" of Francis arises in the abuse context. He faced the problem, met regularly with victims of abuse and was also able to intervene. At the same time he looks, according to the newspaper in individual cases away and show "advice resistant.” Leven also recalls the Franco-German television documentary, which claimed that Francis, as Archbishop of Buenos Aires, was trying to influence the judiciary to protect a pedophile priest.

At the end of his contribution, Leven states that the topic will be instrumentalized by an ecclesiastical political orientation, but from both sides. The conservative side sees the cause of abuse above all "in the moral and doctrinal laxity after the Council.” In addition, according to kath.net there would be a connection with homosexuality. The liberal side, on the other hand, sees power structures, celibacy and the exclusion of women from ordination as responsible for the cases of abuse. [Women are moral agents too, and just as capable of abusing their power and falling into sin and corruption]

[kath.net] 2252.3c
















Humanae Vitae

D von Hildebrand


The theologian who understood the true meaning of love

Dietrich von Hildebrand wrote a passionate defence of Humanae Vitae

FRANCIS PHILLIPS blogs for the Catholic Herald : '2018 happens to be the 50th anniversary of the publication of Pope Paul VI's papal encyclical Humanae Vitae on 29 July 1968. This significant milestone has been somewhat disregarded because of more pressing news in the Church this year. Yet its importance remains. Indeed, some theologians have linked the widespread rebellion against the Church's ban on artificial contraception in Humanae Vitae to all the later troubles the Church has subsequently endured.

As a way of properly commemorating the 50th anniversary, the Hildebrand Project has reissued a slim book of barely 100 pages, written by the theologian Dietrich von Hildebrand in 1968, only a few months after the publication of the encyclical itself. Titled The Encyclical Humanae Vitae: A Sign of Contradiction, and with a new foreword by Catholic scholar Professor Tracey Rowland, it is a highly courageous book to have brought out in the aftermath of Pope Paul's own reaffirmation of the Church's constant teaching, but a very necessary one.

Unlike the numerous dissident voices of the time, Hildebrand provides a wise, robust and eloquent defence of Humanae Vitae which has only grown more meaningful and relevant with the years. At its heart is a beautiful, indeed romantic (in its true sense) description of the meaning of married love. Unlike Pope Paul's somewhat formal, stilted language, which was mistakenly read simply as 'Thou shalt not…' von Hildebrand spends most of the book arguing not about the distinction between the words 'natural' and 'artificial', but on the meaning of the Old Testament Song of Songs which he believes should be read literally before being interpreted symbolically.

That is, the profundity and goodness of conjugal love - or 'spousal love' as he terms it - created by God for the purpose of marriage, is of such great importance that any attempt to interfere with it artificially would be a 'desecration', a 'sacrilegious' affront to the sacrament of marriage. Dismissing Freud's reductive emphasis on 'sex', Hildebrand reminds men and women of their 'noble' vocation, the 'deep reverence' they should have for the privilege of sexual fulfilment and why impurity or lust is so clearly 'a mysterious betrayal of our spiritual nature.'

Defining spousal love as 'the longing for the attainment of the sublime union in the mutual interpenetration of souls in love', the author, echoing the language of the Song of Songs, emphasises that the beauty of the beloved 'awakens awe in us', called as we are to be 'transformed by Christ'. Only after this paean to married love in the first section of his book, 'Sex, love and marriage', does Hildebrand go on to explain why procreation is 'entrusted' to spousal love and is a 'superabundant' feature of it rather than merely an 'instrumental finality' of it.

There is much more to this slim book, such as the Christian idea of sacrifice and taking up one's cross - 'among these crosses are the sacrifices that a Christian marriage can impose on us' - and a rigorous rebuttal of the so-called 'competence' of 'experts' in the area of faith and morals, so evident in the arguments against Humanae Vitae that followed in its wake.

Fifty years ago Hildebrand's words would have been drowned out by the cacophony of dissident voices; today, with so much widespread unhappiness and confusion in relationships, perhaps the time has come to reflect on what this great champion of true romantic love has to say.

[CH] 2252.4

















United Nations


UN logo


Secretary General pledges to promote LGBT ‘rights’ against worldwide ‘bias’

THE SECRETARY GENERAL of the United Nations called Tuesday for the international body to “redouble” its efforts to support the “LGBTI community” around the world.

“The United Nations stands up for the rights of the LGBTI community,” Antonio Guterres said in a message to a ministerial meeting of the UN’s LGBTI Core Group. “Many of its members are imprisoned, abused and even killed simply for who they are or whom they love.”

He praised recent developments such as the Supreme Court of India ruling earlier this month that the nation’s 150-year-old sodomy ban was unconstitutional, which pro-homosexual activists hoped would promote a broader trend in the region.

“But so long as people face criminalization, bias and violence based on their sexual orientation, gender identity or sex characteristics,” he added, “we must redouble our efforts to end these violations.”

Guterres concluded his message with a promise “that the United Nations will never give up the fight until everyone can live free and equal in dignity and rights.”

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet also called on the UN to “defend and protect” homosexuals and gender-confused people from “every” kind of “discrimination,” according to the pro-LGBT PinkNews.

The meeting was timed to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Article 16 of the document affirms that the “family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State,” though in recent years the UN has omitted the phrase from agreements, and has been reluctant to define “family.”

“It’s great, as we’ve been waiting to get something longer and more substantial than just a response to a couple of questions that he’s had before,” Maria Sjödin, deputy executive director of the pro-LGBT group OutRight Action International, toldReuters in praise of Guterres’ speech. “It’s really important not to backslide and to ensure that the human rights of LGBTI people continue to be a priority for the U.N. and the secretary general.”

The secretary general’s remarks placing undefined “bias” on the same plane as literal violence against homosexuals align with conservatives’ objection that pro-LGBT activists use LGBT “rights” as a pretext for goals such as redefining marriage and silencing any disagreement with homosexuality or recognition of differences between the natural family and same-sex unions.

The UN has a long record of promoting the LGBT agenda in ways that go far beyond human rights, such as calling for elementary school children to be taught “non-judgmental and accurate information on sexual orientation and gender identity/expression”; promoting social acceptance of homosexuality and legal recognition of perceived “gender identity”; imposing same-sex “marriage” on countries; and prohibiting treatment for unwanted sexual attraction.
“Freedom of expression and expression of religion” are “not absolute” rights, UN Independent Expert on sexual orientation and gender identity Vitit Muntarbhorn said last year, and can be curtailed if doing so is deemed necessary.

[LSN] 2252.UN1
















China supplement


Submission. The Phantom accord between the Holy See and China

Sandro MagisterSANDRO MAGISTER blogs from Rome : 'All that is known at the official level about the accord signed in Beijing on, September 22, by the Holy See and China is that 'it concerns the appointment of bishops,' is 'provisory' and 'provides for periodic evaluations of its implementation.'

Not one more word about its contents.

The accord was signed for the Holy See by the undersecretary for relations with states, Antoine Camilleri, and for China by the deputy foreign minister, Wang Chao.

Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican secretary of state, then added in a statement that for the Holy See the accord 'has a pastoral objective' and responds to the need for pastors 'who are recognized by the successor of Peter and by the legitimate civil authorities of their country.'

What is not said is that the Chinese authorities will still be first in line in the selection of future pastors, with only a feeble right of veto granted to the pope on any candidates who may not be to his liking.

In this sense, the accord can rightly be defined as 'historic,' because it marks a sensational about-face in the journey that the Catholic Church has made over centuries of history to free itself from submission to political powers, particularly in the 'investiture' of its pastors.

And to begin with, Pope Francis has put the accord into practice from the day it was signed, exonerating from excommunication seven 'official' bishops installed by the regime and until now never recognized by the Holy See, a couple of them with lovers and children.

Or better, not seven but eight, because Francis has released from excommunication another bishop 'who passed away on January 4, 2017, and before dying had expressed the desire to be reconciled with the apostolic see.'

Moreover, one of these pardoned bishops, Guo Jincai, who is also secretary of the pseudo episcopal conference subjugated to the regime, has been assigned the new diocese of Chengde, instituted 'motu proprio' in 2010 by the Chinese authorities and also recognised by the Holy See.

[L'Espresso] 2252.5















The China sellout: Giving Communists power over the Apostolic Succession

CHRISTOPHER A. FERRARA writes for Fatima Perspectives : 'In the future, no rights and privileges of election, nomination, presentation, or designation of bishops are granted to civil authorities.' So provides the law of the Church as codified in the 1983 Code of Canon Law, can. 377, § 5.

Under the 'secret' agreement the Vatican has just signed with the Chinese Communist regime in Beijing, of whose looming pendency this column has been warning since Francis became Pope, Francis has tossed that canon to the winds (along with Canon 915, concerning the impossibility of Holy Communion for those persisting in manifest grave sin, including the divorced and 'remarried').

Most ironically, however, Francis has also discarded the teaching of the Second Vatican Council on the same subject in its decree Christus Dominus (1965) 20:

'Since the apostolic office of bishops was instituted by Christ the Lord and pursues a spiritual and supernatural purpose, this sacred ecumenical synod declares that the right of nominating and appointing bishops belongs properly, peculiarly, and per se exclusively to the competent ecclesiastical authority. Therefore, for the purpose of duly protecting the freedom of the Church and of promoting more conveniently and efficiently the welfare of the faithful, this holy council desires that in future no more rights or privileges of election, nomination, presentation, or designation for the office of bishop be granted to civil authorities….'

But it should be obvious at this point in what has to be one of the most disruptive and divisive pontificates in Church history, Francis could not care less what canon law or Vatican II or any other source says to the contrary of whatever it is he would like to do in the process of realizing his 'dream' of 'transforming everything, so that the Church's customs, ways of doing things, times and schedules, language and structures can be suitably channeled for the evangelization of today's world rather than for her self-preservation.'

Granted, even today certain countries retain residual rights of consultation with the Vatican respecting the papal nomination of bishops. But no country has the right to nominate bishops, thus determining who a successor of the apostles will be subject only to a papal veto. Even in Vietnam, 'reunified' under its communist regime in 1975, the Vatican went no further by way of compromise - and this was awful enough - than to agree in 1996 that 'the Holy See proposes a set of three bishops to the Hanoi government, and Hanoi makes its choice.'

Under this 'secret' agreement with Beijing, however, Francis has given the power of nomination itself to communists in Beijing, allowing a pack of atheist dictators to designate their preferred successor of the Apostles whom the Pope can only veto, but not too many times before Beijing simply has him consecrated a bishop anyway. And how many papal vetoes are too many? We don't know, because the agreement is secret.

Into the bargain, Francis has agreed to recognize the legitimacy of the Catholic Patriotic Association (CPA), the pseudo-church invented by the Beijing regime, and to recognize as legitimate seven of its illicitly consecrated schismatic bishops. Two of the seven are 'alleged to have girlfriends and fathered children.' No problem!

And what did the Vatican receive in return for this sellout? Only Beijing's meaningless 'recognition' that the Pope is the head of the Catholic Church. In common parlance: whoop-dee-doo.

Finally, immediately after the secret accord was secretly signed, the CPA declared that it will 'carry forward the principle of independence and the concept of the sinicization of religion while remaining on the path that leads to socialist society.'

A socialist society? In Quadragesimo Anno, the monumental social encyclical published on the fortieth anniversary of Leo XIII's own social teaching landmark, Rerum Novarum, Pope Pius XI condemned the very notion of a 'socialist society':

'If Socialism, like all errors, contains some truth (which, moreover, the Supreme Pontiffs have never denied), it is based nevertheless on a theory of human society peculiar to itself and irreconcilable with true Christianity. Religious socialism, Christian socialism, are contradictory terms; no one can be at the same time a good Catholic and a true socialist.'

The betrayal of the persecuted Catholics of the true Church in China is total and complete. And after the betrayal was accomplished, Vatican Secretary of State Pietro Parolin had the supreme audacity to declare that 'today, for the first time all the Bishops in China are in communion with the Bishop of Rome, with the Successor of Peter.' The communists in bishops' garb may be in communion with Francis on a human level, for whatever that is worth, but they are hardly in communion with eternal Rome. Their unholy see is located in Beijing and their first allegiance is to the Party, not the Pope. Hence the obscene spectacle of the Chinese pseudo-church proclaiming its commitment, not to Christ, His Church and His Vicar, but to socialism and the 'siniciziation of religion,' meaning its corruption into a form acceptable to the communist overlords of Beijing.

As Stephen Mosher observes, this despicable agreement 'will benefit the Chinese Party-State, which will use it to assert its control over the Underground Church in China. It will tell the faithful that the Pope himself has recognized the Communist-run Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association, and that each and every one of China's 12 million Catholics must worship only in its churches. It will intensify its attack on the Underground Church, using the borrowed authority of the Vatican itself as an ideological assault weapon.'

Hong Kong's Cardinal Joseph Zen, who did everything in his power to prevent this travesty, warned that the then still-pending agreement would be a ''complete surrender' that amounts to the Pope and high-ranking Vatican officials 'giving the flock into the mouths of wolves.'' May God help the persecuted Catholics of China, fed to the wolves by their own shepherd.

[FP] 2252.6
















Chinese Catholics split over Sino-Vatican deal

UCA NEWS reports : 'Chinese Catholics have given a mixed reception to the Sino-Vatican provisional agreement on the appointment of bishops that has seen Pope Francis recognise seven Chinese bishops ordained without his mandate.

Fr John from the underground community of Mindong Diocese in Fujian province said there is now no reason to refuse to concelebrate Mass with the illicit bishops recognised by the pope, otherwise 'there is not any obedience. We cannot be irrational.' He stressed, however, that 'being obedient does not necessarily mean agreeing.' He said the underground community can no longer exist and only the open church is recognised but he pledged that he will never join the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association (CCPA). 'I will go home when I become too aggrieved being a priest,' Father John added.

Francis from an open community in Hebei province told ucanews.com that he does not agree with the signing of the agreement between China and the Vatican. 'China is now suppressing religions severely. [The regime] does not only remove crosses but is controlling strictly the dissemination of religious information on the internet. There is no freedom of speech,' he said. 'I will not attend Mass celebrated by priests who agree with the agreement and will continue to boycott those seven illicit bishops. If the entire church on the mainland becomes degraded, I will only stay at home to pray.' He said that he can only keep his own faith and cannot be assimilated like pro-government members of the public. He stressed that 'when the church is assimilated by the devil, then that will be the time that we act according to our own conscience.'

Mary from an open community of Jiangxi Diocese said she was very concerned about the agreement. She could not accept the clause that bishops will be nominated by the government and lead the church. 'I cannot accept the submission of the church to the regime. I think the pope is wrong this time.' Regarding the seven illicit bishops recognised by the pope, she said 'it touches the principles of the church. When there is a priest having a mistress here, I will not go to church then. I can still follow Jesus at home.'

Pietro Pan from an underground community in Shangdong province said the pope sharing his authority of nominating bishops with a government is indeed handing over the church to the government. 'The church then fails to be one and most holy,' he said. He admits that he could not understand why the pope is recognising the illicit bishops. 'Would it imply that the decisions the church made earlier were wrong? There are some among them who have mistresses and children. Can they still be bishops? It is incredible. What is going through in the church that makes it capricious? Is this still the church of Jesus?' he asked. He stressed that he refuses resolutely to participate in activities related to the illicit bishops as well as sacraments celebrated by their priests.

Paul of an underground community in Shijiazhuang in Hebei province denounced the agreement, saying that this is obviously a selling out of the church. The church is submitting to an atheist regime. 'The pope recognised the seven illicit bishops,' he protested, adding that 'when people having wives and children can be bishops, so can I?!'

Joseph Zhou from the underground community of Nanyang in Henan province believes that the agreement allows both parties to take a step forward. Yet he remains cautious and pessimistic regarding the future. He hopes that authorities will now release arrested bishops and priests and allow them to carry out their pastoral ministries.

Responding to the fear that underground communities will be eradicated, Fr Paul from an open community in Guangdong said the church in China has almost reached the lowest level in faith matters, including marriage and family problems and behaviour of the clergy. He has been longing for an agreement so that 'the Holy See can deliver faith and pastoral messages more directly to the China Church, especially on how to manage priests.' As the new bishops will require the appointment of the pope, he explained, it is hoped that the quality of the pastors will be raised, which will contribute to the standardisation and normalization of the China Church.

Paul Wang, a CCPA member from Baotou in Inner Mongolia, said he obeyed the pope. 'This is the result that everyone has been awaiting for a long time. This is the fruit of the Holy Spirit. It is hard to come by.' Although the church is still suppressed, he believes that will end soon. 'I believe President Xi Jinping is a good secretary-general [of the Communist Party],' he said. Speaking about the demolition of crosses, he said that it mainly takes place in Protestant churches and is not much related to the Catholic Church. 'The pope is great and intelligent. He is chosen by God. He cannot be wrong as he represents God,' Wang said.

Paul Xiao from the open community of Cangzhou Diocese in Hebei province said he will observe how the church is affected. 'The suppression is not really suppression of the church. It is only a sign that the state has started formally to execute the laws and regulations,' he said, adding that he will still participate in church activities. 'I believe that the decision the pope made is not wrong. The government will not persecute us either. The government is constantly revising the law that makes things more standardized.'

Maria Zhang, a CCPA member from Taiyuen of Shanxi province, welcomes the pope's decision. She believes that 'the pope is the wisest.' She claimed that she did not feel she was being suppressed, 'at least not in my place here.' She thinks that it is those churches causing problems that lead to the discontented government demolishing crosses.

[ICN] 2252.7


















The disfigured Roman primacy by the successor of Peter

R de MatteiROBERTO de MATTEI writes for Rorate Caeli / Correspondenza Romana : 'The impressive rapidity with which events are unfolding one after the other in the Church makes one think that this is due not only to the dynamics of historical acceleration, but a deliberate choice by the agents of chaos to increase disorientation and paralyze the forces that are seeking to resist the rush of the tide.

On September 22, The Holy See and the People’s Republic of China, in a joint statement, disclosed they had signed a “provisional” agreement on the procedure for appointing Chinese Catholic bishops. The text however has not been released and the content is unknown. The emeritus Bishop of Hong Kong, Cardinal Joseph Zen, provided Asia News with the following statement:

“The long-awaited press release from the Holy See is a masterpiece of creativity in saying nothing in many words. It says that the agreement is provisional, without saying how long it will be valid; it says that it provides periodic reviews without saying when the first deadline will be. After all, any agreement can be considered provisional since one of the two parties can always ask for a change or even the cancellation of the agreement. But the important thing is that if nobody asks to change or cancel the agreement, this, even if provisional, remains in place. The word "provisional" says nothing. "The agreement is about the appointment of bishops". The Holy See has said that many times for a long time. So, what is the result of all this work? What is the answer to our long wait? Nothing is said! Is it secret? The whole statement boils down to "There was the signing of an agreement between the Holy See and the People's Republic of China on the appointment of Bishops". All the rest are meaningless words. So, what is the message the Holy See intends to send to the faithful in China with this statement? "Have faith in us, accept what we have decided"(?) And what will the government say to Catholics in China? "Obey us, the Holy See already agrees with us"(?) Are we to accept and obey without knowing what must be accepted, to what one must obey?”

The substance of the agreement should be this: the candidates for the episcopate are chosen by the official Chinese Church, which is controlled by the Patriotic Association, a direct emanation of the Communist Party. The Chinese offices will propose to the Holy See a candidate agreeable to the Communist Party. But what will happen if the Pope is perhaps not in agreement? In Asia News of September 24th, Father Bernardo Cervellera, comments on this hypothesis with the following: “Until now there was talk of the Pope’s power of provisional veto, that is, he had to give the reasons for his refusal within three months, but if the government judged the papal reasons inconsistent, he would have continued with the appointment and ordination of his candidate. Not having the text of the agreement, we don’t know whether this clause has been kept, whether indeed the Pope will have the last word on the appointments and the ordinations, or whether his authority will be recognized solely in a formal way.”

In the event that the veto was provisional and the Chinese government had the last say, we would fall into grave error, condemned by the Church. Pius VII, for instance, repudiated the Concordat of Fontainebleau stipulated with Napoleon on January 25th 1813, precisely because it foresaw, that, if within six months the papal ratification hadn’t been reached, the French Empire’s candidate would have been confirmed by the Episcopal authority. But even in the event that the veto was permanent, the role of the Pope was, anyway, reduced to that of a mere notary. He would be restricted to ratifying the appointment and if he wanted to avoid the iron-fist of the political authorities with whom he had spasmodically sought an agreement, the “veto” would represent an exception, certainly not the rule. In any case, we find ourselves faced with a repetition of Paul VI’s Ostpolitik, which caused a great deal of harm to Catholics of Eastern European countries.

There is unfortunately a close consistency between the ruinous agreement with China and the Apostolic Constitution, Episcopalis communio, on the structure of the Synod of Bishops, signed by Pope Francis on September 15th and published on the 18th. With this document, explains Stefania Falasca in Avvenire on September 18, “the practice of ‘synodality’ is rendered normatively stable as a form of the Church’s journey and with it, the principle that regulates the phases of this process: listening, the People of God, the College of Bishops, the Bishop of Rome: each listening to the other and all of them listening to the Holy Spirit.”

In which way is this process of charismatic listening concluded? Articles 17 and 18 of the Apostolic Constitution explain it. The conclusions of the Assembly are gathered into a final Document, which, after being approved by a special commission, “is offered to the Roman Pontiff, who decides on its publication. If expressly approved by the Roman Pontiff, the final Document participates in the ordinary Magisterium of the Successor of Peter (art 18, § 2). If then the Roman Pontiff grants deliberative power to the Synod Assembly, according to the norms of Canon Law 343, the final Document participates in the ordinary Magisterium of the Successor of Peter once he has ratified and promulgated it. In this case the final Document is published with the Roman Pontiff’s signature along with those of the Members (18, § 3)”.

The synodal Document, in any case, “participates in the ordinary Magisterium of the Successor of Peter”. The magisterial significance of the documents like Amoris laetitia and the conclusions of the upcoming youth and Pan-Amazon synods, are confirmed. But what is the role of Peter in the elaboration of synod documents? It is, as in the case of the appointment of Chinese bishops, as a mere notary, whose signature is necessary for the implementing of the act, without him as author of the contents of this act.

The Church is preparing to become a Republic, not a presidential, one but a parliamentary one, wherein the Head of State has a mere role as guarantor of the political parties and the representative of national unity, renouncing the mission of absolute monarch and supreme legislator as the Roman Pontiff. To accomplish this “democratic” project, the Successor of Peter uses, however, dictatorial power, which has nothing whatsoever to do with the tradition of governing the Church.

During a press conference for the presentation of the papal document, Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, Secretary General of the Synod of Bishops, affirmed that: “Pope Francis’s Apostolic Constitution Episcopalis communio marks a true and proper ‘re-foundation’ of the synodal organism” and that “in a synodal Church, even the exercise of the Petrine Primacy will be able to receive greater light. The Pope is not, alone, above the Church; but is a Baptized among the Baptized within Her; and within the College of Bishops as Bishop among the Bishops - at the same time – Successor of the Apostle Peter - leading the Church of Rome which presides with love over all the other Churches”. (Vatican Insider, September 18, 2018).

May orthodox theologians evaluate the gravity of these statements that claim ‘to re-found’ and ‘reform’ the munus Petrinum. Never as at this present moment has the Roman Primacy been so denied and disfigured, particularly at a time when a wave of filth seems to be submerging the Bride of Christ. Those who truly love the Papacy would have the duty to shout this from the roof-tops. Yet it seems the silent treatment doesn’t only pertain to Pope Francis. Even the bishops and cardinals who lead the Church, confronted with the scandals and errors that are battering Her, seem to be repeating: “I will not say a single word about this.”


















This is madness Lord, when will it end?

CHRISTOPHER A. FERRARA writes for Fatima Perspectives : 'On the return flight from his useless papal voyage to Lithuania, Francis was pressed during the inevitable airborne press conference to answer the accusation that he had (as his questioner put it) “‘sold out’ the Church to the Communist government in Beijing, after so many years of suffering.”

In reply, Francis continued the Vatican’s concealment of the specific terms of the secret agreement with Beijing, under which (the Vatican has not denied this) a communist regime will nominate bishops for its pseudo-church, the Catholic Patriotic Association (CPA). Worse, he admitted that the Catholics of the Underground Church will suffer under the accord:

“You all know that when a peace agreement or negotiation is made, both sides lose something, that’s the rule. Both sides. And they move forward. This is how the process went: two steps forward, one back, two steps forward, one back….These are the times of God, that resemble Chinese time: slowly… This is wisdom, the wisdom of the Chinese. … I think of the resistance, of the Catholics who have suffered: it’s true, they will suffer. There is always suffering in an agreement.”

Incredibly enough, Francis likens the settlement of a civil dispute, in which both sides give up something to reach agreement, to his deal with Communist overlords in which he gave up the Pope’s divine right to nominate bishops. And this sellout of spiritual goods he supports by reference to the “wisdom of the Chinese” — the Communist Chinese who will now have the warrant they need, handed to them by the Pope himself, finally to extinguish the Underground Church. And thus, as Francis himself admits of “the resistance,” “they will suffer” because “that’s the rule.”

The rule? What “rule” requires Catholics to suffer under the tyranny of godless dictators?

Still worse, Francis had the supreme audacity to declare that a Chinese communist bishop’s expression of support for him following the damning accusations of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, which he refuses to address, is a “sign from God” that his sellout of the Underground Church is God’s will:

“When there was that famous statement by a former Apostolic Nuncio, the episcopates of the world wrote to me saying that they felt close, that they were praying for me. The Chinese faithful wrote, and the signature on the letter was that of the bishop — so to speak — of the traditional Catholic Church and the bishop of the patriotic Church: together, both of them, and the faithful of both [Churches]. For me, this was a sign from God.”

Quite simply, when a Pope cites a Communist bishop in defense of his refusal to address his alleged role in rehabilitating and promoting to prominence a monster who sexually preyed on boys and young men, we are witness to madness in high places in the Church.

Only God can deliver the Church from this madness, but He has made it clear that in our time He will do so only through the intercession of the Mother of God. We can only hope and pray that the inevitable divine intervention will come soon.

Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us!

[FP] 2252.
















News from around the world


Argentina New storm over Pope Francis

Der SpiegelSANDRO MAGISTER blogs from Rome : 'More than on the Baltic countries that Francis has visited in recent days, the attention of the media has inexorably focused on what he will say at the end of the journey, on the plane back to Rome, when he will again be interviewed on the scandal of ex-cardinal Theodore McCarrick.

Since the sensational allegations of former United States nuncio Carlo Maria Viganò, who has accused Francis of having covered up that scandal in spite of being aware of it, more than a month has gone by. Without Francis having given the slightest response to the accusations.

Meanwhile, however, another storm is gathering over the pope. And it comes from his native land, Argentina, as well as from neighboring Chile.

Chile's plight is known. Jorge Mario Bergoglio publicly maintained right to the end the innocence of bishops and cardinals of that country accused of having committed or covered up a large number of instances of sexual abuse. For a long time he dismissed as 'calumnies' the accusations of the victims. And he was still doing this during his visit to Chile, in January of this year. Only to then give in under the weight of the evidence, calling all 34 Chilean bishops to Rome and obtaining from them a statement of their willingness to resign.

After this reversal, Francis in fact set in motion the resignation of seven bishops.

But he has left in place, on the council of nine cardinals who assist him in the governance of the universal Church, Cardinal Francisco Javier Errázuriz Ossa, the former archbishop of Santiago, suggesting only that in the future he will resign for reasons of age.

He has left in place, as archbishop of Santiago, the other cardinal, Ricardo Ezzati Andrello, in spite of the fact that the Chilean prosecutor has summoned him to testify on the concealment of abuse.

He has left in place as military ordinary and president of the episcopal conference Santiago Silva Retamales, in spite of the fact that he too is one of the seven Chilean bishops who have been called to testify so far. With the risk, as the most famous of the victims, Juan Carlos Cruz, has said, that 'in February he may already be in prison,' during the very days when Pope Francis will assemble in Rome the presidents of all the episcopal conferences of the world, to discuss how these scandals should be addressed.

Illuminating on the latest developments of the Chilean criminal investigation are these two articles by Inés San Martín on 'Crux,' the leading portal in the United States for information on the Catholic Church:

> As Pope ponders Chile, criminal prosecutors charge full steam ahead

> Chilean hero expelled from priesthood over sex abuse charges

In Argentina, compared with Chile, the storm is only beginning. But in recent months the accusations of sexual abuse have undergone an authentic surge. The Associated Press has calculated that today there are at least 66 priests, friars, and nuns who have been accused of abuse. And there is one case among these that has now inflicted a direct hit on Bergoglio.

The case in question concerns Julio Grassi, a priest of the diocese of Moron, famous for providing shelter for street children in various places in Argentina.

In 2009, Grassi was sentenced to 15 years in prison for the sexual abuse of minors.

But he continued to proclaim himself innocent, and made appeals. With the full support of the Argentine bishops, they too convinced of his innocence.

At the time, the Argentine episcopal conference was headed by Cardinal Bergoglio, archbishop of Buenos Aires. And in 2010, the episcopal conference commissioned an attorney and criminologist, Marcelo Sancinetti, to make a counter-investigation of the case.

The result was a 2000-page report in four volumes. In it, the accusations against Grassi are dismantled one by one, and the main accuser, named Gabriel, is discredited.

Now these volumes have come into the possession of the Associated Press, which released news of this in the middle of this month of September. At the end of the fourth and last volume, it says that it was above all Bergoglio who commissioned the counter-investigation. That Bergoglio about whom Grassi himself said, when the first trial against him was underway, that 'he never let go of my hand.'

The spokesman of the Argentine episcopal conference now says that the report was intended to provide the bishops with 'more information in view of the canonical procedure' concerning the priest.

But Gabriel's attorney, Juan Pablo Gallego, says instead that the report ended up on the desks of several Argentine judges who were supposed to issue appeal verdicts.

These judges, however, on March 21, 2017 definitively confirmed the original sentence, sentencing Grassi to 15 years in prison, which he is serving in the prison of Campana in the province of Buenos Aires.

Grassi is still a priest and says Mass, albeit with a ban on exercising the ministry in public. His canonical case is pending at the Vatican congregation for the doctrine of the faith.

Gabriel, his victim and accuser, says that he and his attorney wrote a letter to Bergoglio two months after his election as pope, and had it delivered to the Vatican nunciature in Buenos Aires on May 18, 2013.

In the letter, he lamented the 'denigration' of which he saw himself the victim in the report commissioned by the bishops, confided his sufferings, and asked to be received in audience by the pope, of whom he asked 'help in reclaiming the faith.'

He never received a reply.

For details on the Grassi case and on other Argentine scandals, see these two articles from the Associated Press:

> Pope's role in study of Argentine sex abuse case draws fire

> Clerical sex abuse disclosures skyrocket in pope's Argentina

In the illustration above, the latest issue of the German magazine 'Der Spiegel,' with the cover title 'Do not bear false witness' and with an extensive article largely dedicated to the sexual scandals that have emerged in the Argentine Church.

[L'Espresso] 2252.8
















Ireland Abortions will now be free, paid for by taxpayers, says Health Minister

THE SOCIETY FOR THE PROTECTION OF UNBORN CHILDREN (SPUC) reports : 'Just 24 hours after Ireland's constitutional protection of the unborn ended with President Michael D Higgins' signing into law of the referendum result, Health Minister Simon Harris announced that abortion will be provided free on the health service, at the expense of the tax-payer.

'Yes, it is my intention that the services will be free,' Mr Harris confirmed. 'I've said from the start that I don't want cost to be a barrier, because if cost is a barrier you get into a situation where one of two things happen, you get abortion clinics to develop or you can see people having to continue to travel.

'I want this [abortion services] to be provided as part of our healthcare system, our public healthcare system and part of our primary healthcare system.'

According to The Times, funds for the new abortion service will be included in this year's budget.

Unlike in the UK, under Ireland's two-tier healthcare system, nearly 70 per cent of the population have to pay fees for healthcare services. A trip to accident and emergency costs €100, a stay in hospital €80, and a GP visit €45-75. Abortion, which will be available on demand up to 12 weeks without reference needed to the woman's health, will be provided free of charge.

It is estimated that the NHS in England and Wales spends £146 million a year on abortion.

The announcement is provoking anger given that health services in Ireland are already said to be stretched. For example, the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation announced today that they are holding a protest tomorrow to highlight unsafe staffing levels and overcrowding; the organisation's general secretary spoke of a 'near-permanent crisis in Irish hospitals.'

Wendy Grace writes in the Irish Independent: 'So for a life-ending, elective, non medically necessary procedure, cost 'won't be a barrier' but when it comes to 25 children who suffer with Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) and a life-saving drug they need, well, this time, cost is a barrier. I imagine most people would rather their taxes be spent on saving the lives of sick children or making sure cancer patients don't have to spend €75 every time they need chemotherapy, than on free abortions.'

[SPUC] 2252.9

















Mexico Jesuit university in hosts pro-abortion event, touting ‘freedom of conscience’

DOROTHY CUMMINGS McLEAN reports for LifeSiteNews — A Jesuit university in Mexico hosted a pro-abortion event despite pro-life protests and a temporary cancellation.

On September 26, the ITESO (Western Institute for Technology of Education) - Jesuit University of Guadalajara hosted three pro-abortion speakers. Although the event had been advertised as a “dialogue,” no pro-lifers were invited to speak. The event was called “Dialogue on the Right to Decide.”

“That makes it actually a purely pro-abortion act of proselytism,” Guadalajara resident Martín Alonso López told LifeSiteNews via email.

The pro-abortion speakers were Guadalupe Ramos, an activist from CLADEM (Comité de América Latina y El Caribe para la Defensa de los Derechos de la Mujer), an organization that promotes abortion as a “woman’s right”; Karen Luna, an activist from GIRE (Grupo de Información en Reproducción Elegida), one of Mexico’s biggest feminist organizations; and María de la Luz Estrada, from Católicas por el Derecho a Decidir (“Catholics for Choice”).



López said that the event was organized by some students of international affairs and public administration and that the Rector of the University, a Jesuit priest named José Morales Orozco, granted permission.

A tweet from the university shows the rector on stage with the abortion activists, and quotes him as saying, "There is no greater respect than respect for freedom of conscience." “No hay mayor respeto que el respeto a la libertad de conciencias”: José Morales Orozco, SJ",

Following pro-life protests, an announcement was made on September 25 that that the event was cancelled. Pro-abortion activists blamed López.

“I don't consider myself responsible for [the cancellation], but apparently the supporters of the event do consider me responsible,” the young professional told LifeSiteNews.

“What I did was to post a series of tweets expressing my concerns about the Jesuits allowing that event on their campus,” López continued. “I mentioned Cardinal Robles, the Archbishop of Guadalajara, and other pro-life activists. Soon after that, many people started to talk about the event on Twitter and Facebook and to ask the university to cancel the event.”

López says that pro-abortion students and faculty protested the decision and announced that the event would be relocated to a public park. Meanwhile, the university’s reasons for cancelling the event were deeply insulting to the faithful Christians who protested.

“They said that due to all the discussion related to the event, they could not warrant the safety of the [audience],” López said. “They wrote an official letter in which the pro-lifers were ... depicted as a hate group.”

“I'm concerned about this: their decision was influenced by hypothetical violence from pro-lifers rather than by the opposition of abortion and the Catholic doctrine,” he added.

However, the event went ahead as planned, the university having been pressured by students, the young man said.

“The students said that if the university didn't allow the event on campus, they were going to have it on the street anyway, and that the [Rector, José Morales Orozco, SJ] was going to be responsible if something bad happened to them.

Fr. Orozco gave the opening speech at the pro-abortion event. “He said he took the wrong decision when cancelling the event, but he was glad [that] they could finally have that dialogue, and again he spoke about hate groups,” López recalled.

“He also made a demonstration of his open mind by saying that the university is open to dialogue, and that one should respect another's freedom of conscience,” the young man continued, “which actually meant that the morality of abortion depends on each one's personal views and not on the objective fact that it ends the life on an innocent human being.”

López said that the abortion advocates avoided discussing the biological realities of unborn human life.

“They preferred a Marxist speech and sentimentality,” he stated.

This is not the first time the Jesuit university has encouraged abortion advocacy. ITESO’s “Magis” journal recently published an article arguing for abortion from a Marxist perspective.

“Many students [at ITESO] are anything except devoted Catholics,” López said. “Some of them said on Twitter that the university doesn’t have any issues with having a pro-abortion event, since ‘it is not a Catholic university, it is a Jesuit university’, as if Jesuits weren’t Catholics.”

To make your concerns respectfully known to the Jesuit University of Guadalajara:

Rector: Dr. José Morales Orozco, SJ.
Tel: (33) 36693434. Extensions 3530 and 3538.

Secretary: Dr. Juan Jorge Hermosillo Villalobos
Telephone (33)36693538 Extension 3538

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Netherlands Bishop criticizes Pope Francis for ‘incomprehensible’ silence on Viganò allegations

Bp.MutsaertsDOROTHY CUMMINGS McCLEAN reports for LifeSiteNews : 'Dutch bishop says that the Pope’s silence in response to a Vatican whistleblower’s allegation that he knowingly covered-up for and promoted a sexually abusive prelate is “incomprehensible.”

Bishop Robert Mutsaerts, auxiliary bishop of ’s-Hertogenbosch (Den Bosch) in the Netherlands, was chosen by the Dutch Bishops’ Conference to attend the October Synod, but he decided not to attend because of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò’s allegations.

“[Viganò’s statement] has everything to do with it,” he told LifeSiteNews. “In fact, it was the immediate cause. We’re talking about a serious man and about serious accusations. But from various quarters, all of a sudden it’s Viganò who is being attacked.”

Mutsaerts said that it doesn’t matter to him if the former papal nuncio’s motives are “pure or not.”

“...The real issue is about what he’s saying,” the bishop asserted. “Is it true, or is it not true? That is what it is all about, and the only way to find out is to investigate.”

Mutsaert cannot understand why Pope Francis has not responded to the allegations in Viganò’s testimony.

“...the Pope is remaining silent: that's incomprehensible, truly incomprehensible,” he said.

The Pope has now directly referenced Viganò’s allegations twice, and indirectly a handful of times. On his August 26 flight from Ireland to Rome he told reporters that he was “not going to say a word about this.” During his return flight from the Baltic States today he referred to “that famous statement by a former Apostolic Nuncio,” saying that the bishops “of the world wrote to me saying that they felt close, that they were praying for me.”

During his homilies, the Pope has preached on the theme of the “Great Accuser” a number of times, saying that Satan is the one “attacking the bishops of the Catholic Church to create scandal.”

Mutsaert said that under the circumstances of this crisis he feels that the agenda of the Youth Synod has no credibility.

“[As for] carrying on with the agenda… If there's one thing we cannot do, it is that,” Mutsaert said. “We're going to talk about young people, for heaven's sake, as if there was nothing wrong, and as if there was nothing that had come between the Church and the young.”

In his testimony, Archbishop Viganò stated that he had himself told Pope Francis in 2013 that there was a thick dossier on then-Cardinal McCarrick because “he corrupted generations of seminarians and priests and Pope Benedict ordered him to withdraw to a life of prayer and penance.”

At that time, the then-papal nuncio to the United States did not know that McCarrick was an old friend of the new pope. Viganò was aghast that Pope Francis made McCarrick “his trusted counsellor” along with Cardinal Rodriguez Maradiaga who, Viganò alleges, has also covered up for clerical sexual abuse and other misconduct. Viganò said that Pope Francis should set the example for other bishops and resign.


















United Kingdom Girls Guides shut down two groups after leaders question pro-transgender policy

CALVIN FRIEBURGER reports for LifeSiteNews - Parents in the United Kingdom don't have a right to know if their daughters will be sharing facilities with male children, according to Girlguiding UK (GGUK), nor can guide leaders question the policy.

GGUK is a Scouting-like organization that teaches girls ages 5-18 a variety of life skills through various group activities. Its current guidelines call for 'includ[ing] all young members - including trans people - in activities and residentials' and striving to make gender-confused children feel 'comfortable and supported.'

In particular, the website states that 'trans' people do 'not have to disclose to you if they are trans,' that it's illegal to tell others that a legal adult is 'trans' without their permission, that it's 'still good practice not to tell other people' about a minor's 'perceived' gender 'unless they have given you permission to do so,' and that 'It is not a requirement - or best practice - to tell parents that a trans person will be attending a residential event.'

Former GGUK Chief Executive Julie Bentley said last year that members would be 'allowed to use the facilities of the gender they self-identify as,' such as showers, tents, and restrooms.

The policy alarmed more than 900 current and former guide leaders, children's advocates, feminists, and other concerned individuals who signed an open letter in April arguing that 'trans inclusion, whilst laudable, must not sacrifice the privacy, safety or inclusion of female members.'

'Male children who identify as girls can share sleeping, changing and washing facilities with females,' the letter reads. 'It is estimated that 65,000 cases of child sexual abuse are committed by other children each year. Most perpetrators are male, most victims are female. Segregating by sex, regardless of gender identity, is safeguarding common sense.'

The statement also asserted that 'biological sex matters,' but if Girlguiding was based instead on an 'inner sense of being a girl,' the result would be reducing 'girlhood itself' to 'feeling, looking or behaving 'like a girl', which reinforces the very stereotypes that GGUK's own research shows are harmful.'

GGUK has now expelled two of the signatories and closed down their units, as well as initiated disciplinary action against five others, The Sun reports.

'I was expelled on Friday for questioning how the trans policy conflicts with established safeguarding protocols, principles of informed consent and respecting girls' boundaries, and for objecting to leaders being encouraged to manage gender non conforming girls out of their units (whether the girl wants to leave or not),' Helen Watts, who led an Ealing unit for fifteen years, announced on social media.

'Following an independent investigation, two individuals were found to have breached our Volunteer Code of Conduct by indicating they are not willing to follow Girlguiding's Equality and Diversity Policy; as well as breach our Social Media Policy,' the group said in a statement. It insisted the decision was based 'not on their personal views,' and said the punished individuals have fourteen days to file an appeal.

[*] @Girlguiding Following the recent press coverage, here is our statement about the recent membership withdrawals. 4:41 PM - Sep 24, 2018 687 369 people are talking about this Twitter Ads info and privacy.

'I am very upset and I am also really angry. We had some serious concerns about a policy that ignored basic safeguarding principles,' Watts told the Sunday Times. 'The policy puts all leaders in a really difficult position. It contradicts other inclusion policies - for certain faith communities for instance - and it completely contradicts existing policies around informed parental consent.'

The other expelled leader, who has not been publicly identified, said the transgender policy 'conflicted with the safety of girls in my care.' Both have threatened legal action against Girlguiding if they are not reinstated.

Bentley, the former head of the Planned Parenthood-affiliated Family Planning Association of the UK, led GGUK from November 2012 to the end of June 2018. In 2013, the group removed references to God and country from its oath, instead having girls pledge to 'be true to myself and develop my beliefs,' and serve the 'community.'

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