This edition of CF NEWS (2259) posted at 12.47 pm, Sunday, December 2nd, 2018



Vatican watch

The End Game of Pope Francis   VIDEO    read more >>>
McCarrick deeply involved in pope's bidding?
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Why every Catholic needs Aristotle and Aquinas
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Müller interview : Bombshell or Dud?
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Cupich to organize clergy sex abuse summit
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Cardinal Burke: Pope Francis is ‘increasing the confusion’   read more >>>
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Humanae Vitae

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United Nations

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UN wants a one-world government in under 12 years
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China supplement

Cardinal Zen says he will resign if Pope appoints more Communist bishops   read more >>>
Chen : Vatican's deal a 'slap in the face'
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News from around the world

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UK Fr Aidan Nichols on Episcopal appointments
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UK Why Catholic bishops are terrified of investigations
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Vatican watch


The End Game of Pope Francis



[FP] 2259.1




















Globe N A C F

McCarrick's online footprint suggests that he was deeply involved in doing the Pope's bidding

MAIKE HICKSON reports for LifeSiteNews - In light of the recently published book by the unofficial papal spokesman Andrea Tornielli - who now claims against Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò that Pope Francis did not give McCarrick any 'official' tasks during his pontificate - it might be worthwhile to review briefly some of the evidence published online that points to McCarrick's influential role under Pope Francis' pontificate.

One 2015 article, for example, points out that McCarrick hand-delivered a letter from President Obama on behalf of the Pope. McCarrick also traveled to the Holy Land, Armenia, China, Iran, and other places on behalf of the Vatican under Pope Francis.

Cardinal McCarrick had been an important prelate for the Vatican when dealing with inter-religious matters or foreign affairs. As can be seen below, McCarrick played an important role in the establishment of relations between the U.S. and Cuba. Additionally, McCarrick helped in the Vatican's dealings with Iran and its talks with the U.S. on nuclear proliferation. For that purpose, McCarrick traveled to Iran. In 2015, the Vatican publicly endorsed President Barack Obama's nuclear non-proliferation deal with Iran. McCarrick, commenting on that deal, wrote an article for the Washington Post, in which he shows his own involvement in the matter, and includes Pope Francis' words to him and his collaborators. McCarrick wrote in July of 2015: 'Pope Francis himself let us know very clearly of his own tremendous concern for a peaceful and equitable resolution. In January 2015, we heard the Pontiff say, 'I expressed my hope that a definitive agreement may soon be reached between Iran and the P5+1 group.''

McCarrick had traveled in 2014 to Iran, as Bishop Richard Pates then related: 'he [Pates], the retired archbishop of Washington Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, and auxiliary Bishop Denis Madden of Baltimore met in Qom with several prominent Islamic clerics to 'promote understanding between the peoples of Iran and the United States.' Pope Francis didn't send an envoy of his own to Qom (and likely declined to, if his relations with the Argentinian authorities are any indication). But Pates said the get-together was in line with the new pontiff's view that 'dialogue is the key to discovering truth and avoiding misunderstanding.''

McCarrick continued after 2014 to be involved in that inter-religious dialogue with Muslims that had started in 2014 in Qom. In 2016, he signed an inter-religious declaration after a meeting in Rome which took place with direct reference to Pope Francis. The declaration starts with the words: 'We met in Rome this year, which Pope Francis designated a Year of Mercy, to continue our moral and religious dialogue that began in Qom in 2014.'

And in the matter of the Vatican/China deal - what Cardinal Zen said amounted to a betrayal of the Chinese people - McCarrick also seems to have had a hand in it. As Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò revealed in his own 25 August testimony, then-Cardinal McCarrick told him once in person that, after meeting Pope Francis, he was to go to Communist China.

As Catholic News Agency (CNA) said about McCarrick's different missions and travels to China: 'Following reports that the Holy See and the People's Republic of China could be about to sign an agreement on the appointment of bishops in the country, attention has turned to the role of Archbishop Theodore McCarrick in fostering Vatican-China relations over the last two decades.' CNA points out that McCarrick traveled repeatedly to China, and a least once as lately as 2016.

These facts stand in contrast to how Andrea Tornielli and his colleague, Gianni Valente, now try to depict the situation in their new, 288-page-long book on McCarrick and the Viganò report. As The Tablet says in a first presentation of the new book titled The Day of Judgment (Il Giorno del Giudizio): 'Tornielli and Valente point out that after being elected to the See of Peter, the Pope [Francis] gave McCarrick no official role, nor did he commission him to travel to China on his behalf, as implied by Viganò in his testimony. McCarrick was conducting his travels as a sole operator and often worked with charities and the US State Department.'

It can be seen here, Tornielli and Valente try to shy away from the fact that McCarrick did a lot of traveling on behalf of the Vatican under Pope Francis's leadership. One should not argue over the distinction between 'official' and 'unofficial' in relation to answering the question of whether or not McCarrick helped Pope Francis in achieving the pope's goals.

As a Religion News Service article from the year 2014 showed, McCarrick was widely involved in the Vatican's activities. The journalist David Gibson describes McCarrick's missions for Pope Francis when he says: 'McCarrick travels regularly to the Middle East, and was in the Holy Land for Francis' visit in May. 'The bad ones, they never die!' the pope teased McCarrick again when he saw him.' Gibson adds that 'sometimes McCarrick's travels abroad are at the behest of the Vatican, sometimes on behalf of Catholic Relief Services.' A third hint at the fact that Pope Francis did indeed rely on Cardinal McCarrick's services is given by the journalist when he says: 'But Francis, who has put the Vatican back on the geopolitical stage, knows that when he needs a savvy back channel operator he can turn to McCarrick, as he did for the Armenia trip. 'Why don't you ask McCarrick to go?' the cardinal [McCarrick himself] says of the Vatican's thinking. 'He's usually willing to do these crazy things.''

In 2014, Cardinal McCarrick went with Pope Francis on his trip to the Holy Land and gave the Boston Globe an interview explaining the mission of the Pope during his trip. As the journalist John Allen then wrote: 'The 83-year-old McCarrick, a former archbishop of Washington, D.C., was in the Gaza Strip last week to monitor the situation facing the small but symbolically important Catholic population, and then joined the papal trip in Jordan and in Jerusalem.'

In yet another source - a Catholic News Service (CNS) article from the year 2015 - it becomes clear that McCarrick played a crucial role in the setting up of relations between Cuba and the U.S. under President Obama, with Pope Francis playing a mediating role. As the article states, Pope Francis, celebrating his first Mass in Cuba, 'was flanked by three cardinals who, with him, have been credited with helping seal the deal between the United States and Cuba to move toward normalizing relations.' These three cardinals were the Cuban Cardinal Jaime Ortega Alamino of Havana, Cardinals Sean P. O'Malley of Boston and Theodore E. McCarrick, all of whom were concelebrants during the papal Mass in Cuba on 20 September 2015.

According to CNS, Peter Kornbluh and William H. Leogrande, who wrote the book, Back Channel to Cuba: The Hidden History of Negotiations Between Washington and Havana, say that 'the three [above-mentioned] cardinals played a role in getting messages to Pope Francis and from Pope Francis to Obama and Castro' and that it was Cardinal McCarrick who went to Cuba on behalf of the Pope to transmit an important letter: 'The pope had sent the letters [urging a reconciliation between Cuba and the U.S.] to Cardinal Ortega. Initially, he was unable to get Obama's letter to him, so Cardinal McCarrick went to Cuba to pick it up,' the authors are being quoted by the article. Of course, McCarrick was then also present in Cuba during the papal visit, and he concelebrated with Pope Francis during his Mass.

As the article also shows, it was McCarrick who was first contacted when the plan emerged to work more closely with Cuba: 'Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Illinois, one of a group of senators pressing the Obama administration to act, suggested the administration seek the help of Pope Francis, Kornbluh and Leogrande wrote. To get a message to the pope, in early March 2014 supporters met with Cardinal O'Malley and sent messages to Cardinals Ortega and McCarrick.'

Thus, one may ask Tornielli and his co-author: do these facts not show that Pope Francis, indeed, worked closely with Cardinal McCarrick and gave him many and different official missions?

The Italian historian Roberto de Mattei just a few days ago commented on this new book in defense of Pope Francis and pointed out that Tornielli does not refute Archbishop Viganò's claims that Pope Francis had been informed by him about McCarrick's sexual corruption and that there exists a homosexual lobby in the Church. De Mattei concludes, saying 'Tornielli therefore cannot refute Msgr. Viganò. His goal is to defend Pope Francis.'

In light of the facts presented in this article based on several published sources, one might well conclude that Tornielli did not succeed in that defense.

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Globe N A C F

Why every Catholic needs Aristotle and Aquinas

WHY has the Catholic Church degraded in the last 50-100 years. It's a malevolent rejection (and suppression) of Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas and Catholic 'virtue ethics.' We usually focus on liturgy and theology, but there has been a major crisis in natural law and virtue and it's killing us. Dr Taylor Marshall and Timothy Gordon describe the crisis, explain how to fix it and give practical steps on how we can win the war for our Church and civilization by getting back to the common sense philosophy of nature as found in Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas.



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Globe N A C F

Müller interview : Bombshell or Dud?

Cdl. MullerCHRISTOPHER A, FERRARA writes for Fatima Perspectives : .Life Site News has quite the scoop with its interview last week of Cardinal Gerhard Müller, ousted former head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF). Once again Life Site demonstrates its key role in documenting and legitimately opposing the current unprecedented crisis in the Church.

That said, however, a careful examination of the text of the interview reveals that its explosive content has been disarmed by one, in my view, fatal implicit concession.

First of all, Müller, speaking of ex-Cardinal McCarrick, rightly observes that the fact that 'McCarrick, together with his clan and a homosexual network, was able to wreak havoc in a mafia-like manner in the Church is connected with the underestimation of the moral depravity of homosexual acts among adults.' Taking direct aim at Pope Francis in light of the indictment levelled by Archbishop Viganò, Müller adds: 'And when there even has already been paid some hush money - and with it, the admission of his sexual crimes with young men - then every reasonable person asks how such a person can be a counselor of the Pope with regard to episcopal appointments.'

Moreover, Müller is right over the target when he exposes the sham of harping on the sexual abuse of 'minors' by clergy so as to hide the endemic corruption of homosexual activity between clergy and 'consenting adults.' He rejects the claim that 'the Congregation of Faith was merely responsible for the sexual abuse of minors, but not of adults - as if sexual offenses committed by a clergyman either with another clergyman or with a layperson would not also be a grave violation of the Faith and of the holiness of the Sacraments.' Before his summary removal by Francis with no explanation, he had 'stressed again and again that also homosexual conduct of clergymen can in no case be tolerated; and that the Church's sexual morality may not be relativized by the worldly acceptance of homosexuality.'

Müller scoffs at the argument that one must 'differentiate' between 'consensual sexual acts between adults and the abuse of minors, implying that a priest's homosexual relations with another adult is not a major problem.' Says he in reply to that claim:

'One can differentiate everything - and then even consider oneself to be a great intellectual - but not a grave sin which excludes a person from the Kingdom of God, at least not as the bishop who is duty-bound not to exhibit the taste of the time ['Zeitgeschmack'], but rather, to defend the truth of the Gospels. It seems the time has come 'when they will not endure sound doctrine; but, according to their own desires, they will heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears: And will indeed turn away their hearing from the truth, but will be turned unto fables' (2 Tim 4:3ff).'

And then there is this devastating admission about the current state of a Church in crisis:

'The origin of this whole crisis lies in a secularization of the Church and the reduction of the priest to the role of a functionary. It is finally atheism that has spread within the Church. According to this evil spirit, the Revelation concerning Faith and morals is being adapted to the world without God so that it does not interfere anymore with a life according to one's own lusts and needs. Only about 5% of the offenders are being assessed as pathologically pedophile, whereas the great mass of offenders have freely trampled upon the Sixth Commandment out of their own immorality and thus have defied, in a blaspheming way, the Holy Will of God.'

All good and praiseworthy, if too little too late from a prelate who should have said these things openly - all of them statements of the obvious truth - in his capacity as head of the CDF.

But then the bomb over the target is defused before its drops. Asked whether the Church should 'not more directly deal with the problem of the presence of homosexual priests,' Müller replied in a way that leaves untouched the very origin of the crisis he laments:

'In my view, there do not exist homosexual men or even priests. God has created the human being as man and woman. But there can be men and women with disordered passions. Sexual communion has its place exclusively in the marriage between a man and a woman. Outside, there is only fornication and abuse of sexuality, both either with persons of the opposite sex, or in the unnatural intensification of sin with persons of the same sex. Only he who has learned to control himself fulfills also the moral precondition for the reception of priestly ordination (see 1 Tim 3:1-7).'

Notice what Müller has done here: he has (a) conflated homosexuality and normal heterosexuality under the concept of 'disordered passions,' (b) reduced the concept of 'disordered passions' to merely any sort of sexual activity outside of marriage, and then (c) minimized fitness for the priesthood as being merely a matter of the candidate learning to 'control himself' no matter which way his passions incline.

Thus disappears from view the truth that the homosexual inclination in and of itself is an insuperable impediment to ordination because it is an 'intrinsically disordered' condition that radically affects the very masculinity of a man who, as a priest, must be configured to Christ, who is Man par excellence. As the Vatican's 1961 instruction on this matter provided:

'Advancement to religious vows and ordination should be barred to those who are afflicted with evil tendencies to homosexuality or pederasty, since for them the common life and the priestly ministry would constitute serious dangers.'

Müller therefore negates his own diagnosis of the homosexual priest crisis by implicitly conceding the continued ordination of those afflicted by 'evil tendencies to homosexuality or pederasty' - that is, an intrinsically disordered psycho-sexual condition - so long as they 'learn to control' their disorder. That this disorder is not in itself a sin, but rather an evil, meaning a deprivation of good in the person, is not the issue. The issue is the intrinsic unfitness of those afflicted by the disorder.

No one afflicted by any sort of grave personality disorder should be made a priest. Yet somehow an implicit exception is being made for the homosexual disorder. While condemning the symptoms of the disease in the clergy today, Müller declines to call for the total elimination of its cause: the ordination of men afflicted by the intrinsic disorder of the homosexual condition.

At this point, it seems, absolutely no one in the upper hierarchy is willing to state forthrightly that the homosexual inclination should be an absolute bar to priestly ordination. Quite the contrary, the hierarchical consensus now appears to be that it is no bar at all, so long as one 'controls' the disorder. Thus a continuation of the homosexual corruption of the priesthood is assured.

Consider this capitulation yet another sign of the epochal collapse of faith and discipline that must be at the heart of the integral Third Secret of Fatima.

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Globe N A C F

Francis appoints Cardinal Cupich to organize summit on clergy sex abuse

Cdl. CupichDIANE MONTAGNA reports from Rome for LifeSiteNews - Pope Francis has named Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago to a four-member organizing committee for next February's Vatican summit on clerical sexual abuse.

The appointment is raising concerns because Cardinal Cupich has notably dismissed Archbishop Viganò's testimony on the McCarrick abuse cover-up as a mere 'rabbit hole' distracting the Church, believes that homosexuality is not a significant contributing factor in the abuse of minors (despite statistics showing otherwise), and has defended the Vatican postponing U.S. bishops from voting on measures to prevent abuse cover-up.

According to a statement released by the Vatican on Friday, the organizing committee is composed of two cardinals and two experts in the field of sexual abuse. In addition to Cardinal Cupich, the Pope has also appointed as members of the organizing committee for the February 21-24 meeting: Cardinal Oswald Gracias of Bombay, India; Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta; and Jesuit Father Hans Zollner, President of the Centre for the Protection of Minors at the Pontifical Gregorian University.

Archbishop Scicluna is widely regarded as an abuse investigator on behalf of the Holy See. In 2002, the Maltese monsignor was appointed by Cardinal Josef Ratzinger, then head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) as the chief prosecutor in handling cases of sexual abuse of minors by clergy. In 2005, Ratzinger sent Scicluna to investigate allegations of sexual abuse by the founder of the Legionaries of Christ, Fr. Maciel Degollado, which ultimately led to his conviction and removal from public ministry.

Last February, Pope Francis sent Archbishop Scicluna to Chile to investigate allegations that Bishop Juan Barros of Osorno had covered up sexual abuse by the country's most notorious pedophile priest. The investigation resulted in Pope Francis accepting Bishop Barros' resignation. Pope Francis recently appointed Scicluna as the adjunct secretary of the CDF, effectively making him the number two of the Vatican dicastery responsible for handling cases of sex abuse against minors committed by clergy.

Yet Scicluna also endorsed the liberal 'Maltese guidelines' that interpret Amoris Laetitia to allow Communion for unrepentant remarried divorcees.

Fr. Zollner, who serves as a member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors and who is described by sources as 'serious about the abuse crisis,' will be the contact person for the committee, the statement said.

In September, Pope Francis called for the February meeting of presidents from over 100 national bishops' conferences to discuss how to protect 'minors and vulnerable adults' from abuse.

The announcement of the unprecedented meeting came in the wake of a series of revelations of sexual abuse and cover-up in various parts of the world, including in Chile, Germany, the Netherlands, and the United States. It also follows reports of the Pope's own alleged involvement (as archbishop of Buenos Aires) in multiple cover-ups of predator priests in South America, including the high-profile case of Fr. Julio Grassi, a priest famous in Argentina for his work with the poor and orphaned children, who is currently serving a 15-year prison sentence for sexually abusing minors.

The February meeting is also being held in the wake of revelations that some bishops, most notably former U.S. Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, have either been involved in sexual abuse or its cover-up. The meeting is also taking place against the backdrop of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò's extraordinary 11-page testimony last August, alleging that he personally informed Pope Francis in 2013 about the McCarrick abuse and sanctions imposed on him by Pope Benedict. Despite this, he said, the Pope revived McCarrick's influence in the Church. In his testimony, Archbishop Viganò also claimed that Cardinal Cupich owes his red hat to Theodore McCarrick.

Pope Francis has not directly addressed Archbishop Viganò's claims, but last month the Vatican announced that a 'thorough study' would be conducted of all documentation contained in the Vatican archives in order to 'ascertain all the relevant facts' surrounding the case of Theodore McCarrick.

The Vatican announced on Friday that Pope Francis 'will be present' at the meeting, adding that those taking part in the meeting, in addition to presidents of the bishops' conferences, include theheads of the Oriental [Eastern Rite] Catholic Churches; 'superiors' of the Vatican's Secretariat of State; 'prefects' of various congregations and dicasteries (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Oriental Churches, Bishops, the Evangelization of Peoples, Clergy, Institutes of Consecrated Life and for Societies of Apostolic Life; and of the Dicastery for Laity, the Family and Life); and 'representatives' of the Union of Superiors General and of the International Union of Superiors General.

The Union of Superiors General (USG), a forum for the leaders of male religious orders to reflect on issues facing religious life, has elected Jesuit Superior General Fr. Arturo Sosa, S.J. as its president, all but guaranteeing his presence at February summit. In a February 2017 interview, Fr. Sosa said that 'no one had a recorder to take down [Jesus'] words' about the indissolubility of marriage, and that priority must be given to 'personal conscience' in deciding how the Lord's words are to be interpreted.

The organizing team will be helped in the preparatory work for the meeting by several members of the laity, including tow lay women who serve as under-secretaries for the dicastery of Laity, the Family and Life: Gabriella Gambino and Linda Ghisoni. Today's statement also noted that the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, headed by Cardinal Sean O'Malley, as well as 'victims of abuse' by members of the clergy, will have a key role in planning the February meeting.

In comments to the media today, Holy See Press Office Director Greg Burke said the meeting is 'unprecendented' and shows Pope Francis 'has made the protection of minors a fundamental priority for the Church.'

'This is about keeping children safe from harm worldwide,' he said. 'Pope Francis wants Church leaders to have a full understanding of the devastating impact that clerical sexual abuse has on victims.'

Burke added that the meeting 'is primarily one for bishops - and they have much of the responsibility for this grave problem,' but that 'lay men and women who are experts in the field of abuse will give their input, and can help address especially what needs to done to ensure transparency and accountability.'

In an interview last Friday, Fr. Zollner said the February summit will be 'very important for the Church' and that the organizing committee will be in charge of both 'logistics and content, according to the directions given by the Holy Father.' Zollber also repeatedly stressed the importance of the 'synodal dimension' of the meeting.

He said the committee will be 'sending a questionnaire to those invited to participate,' adding that 'it is important that there be a sharing of experiences, of the difficulties as well as of the possible solutions to address this terrible scandal.' The Pontifical Commission will play a significant role in the preparation of the meeting which will also reflect the Pope's emphasis on synodality and collegiality, he said.

The German Jesuit said this 'consultative' phase is essential, and that the the meeting should be 'as free and fruitful as possible.'

Zollner also said Pope Francis is 'convinced' that the 'sacrilege' of abuse is 'a problem that does not pertain to a single country, and certainly not only to western countries.' It is a problem, he said, that 'does not regard the Church only, but many different sectors: schools, sports, the family. It requires a firm and universal response, within specific contexts and cultures.'

Speaking to the Chicago Catholic earlier in November, Cardinal Cupich said he believed the meeting will be a 'watershed moment in the life of the Church' and that 'time and again' the Pope 'has shown his resolve to comprehensively address this scourge.'

The archbishop of Chicago, who, like the Holy Father, has frequently blamed the crisis primarily on 'clericalism,' said Francis is 'calling for radical reform in the life of the Church, for he understands that this crisis is about the abuse of power and a culture of protection and privilege, which have created a climate of secrecy, without accountability for misdeeds.'

'All of that has to end, not only in terms of how it risks the safety of children, but also how the abuse of power by certain leaders undermines the Gospel and injures the faith lives of the people the ordained have been sent to serve,' Cardinal Cupich said.

Yet a number of key observers wonder how effective the February meeting will be. In recent comments on the upcoming summit, U.S. Cardinal Raymond Burke told LifeSite:'The fact of the matter is that the Church has a disciple in place which she's had in place for centuries, for dealing with these kinds of crimes, these kinds of grievous sins. They didn't just come into being in our time.'

'What needs to be done is the Church's discipline with regard to ecclesiastical crimes and their just punishment has to be studied once again and made accessible and it has to be applied,' Cardinal Burke said. 'Now they come with all kinds of theories, that it's clericalism that's causes priests to abuse children … Whoever talks about the fact that these are grievous sins. This is lust and it cannot be, in the sacred ministry, and we need to root it out. And especially this has to be made clear that most of these sinful acts are homosexual acts.'

Speaking to LifeSite in October, Capuchin Fr. Thomas Weinandy, a former executive director of the USCCB's Secretariat for Doctrine who penned an open letter to Pope Francis last year, said he isn't sure what to think about the February meeting.

But Fr. Weinandy added: 'What I do know is that if the bishops focus on clericalism, you then know it's not going to amount to much. If they actually take up the major problem in the Church, that of active homosexuality among the clergy and bishops, then you know they're serious. But if they hide behind clericalism, you know they're not serious. If they're actually willing to take up the topic of homosexually active priests and bishops, you know they're serious.'


Why Cupich



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Globe N A C F

Cardinal Burke: Pope Francis is ‘increasing the confusion’

DIANE MONTAGNA report for LifeSiteNews — Pope Francis is “increasing the confusion” in the Church, and the College of Cardinals constitutes a de facto check against papal error, Cardinal Raymond Burke has said in a new interview.

Speaking to the Italian Catholic news agency La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana on Thursday, Cardinal Burke said last week’s alleged ‘interview’ on hell with Pope Francis, reported by his 94-year-old atheist friend, Eugenio Scalfari, “went beyond what is tolerable.”

Burke also called the Vatican’s response to the “scandalized reactions” from across the globe “highly inadequate,” because it failed to reassert the Church’s teaching on the immortality of the soul and the existence of hell. He said it also failed to state that Pope Francis repudiates the “erroneous and even heretical ideas” attributed to him.

“It has been a source of profound scandal not only for many Catholics but also for many people in the secular world who have respect for the Catholic Church and its teachings, even if they do not share them,” he said.

“This playing around with faith and doctrine, at the highest level of the Church, rightly leaves pastors and faithful scandalized,” he added.

Cardinal Burke said the situation is further aggravated by the silence of so many bishops and cardinals, some of whom “pretend there is nothing serious going on.”

Here below we publish a LifeSiteNews translation of the full interview with Cardinal Burke. It comes just two days before an April 7 conference in Rome under the title: “Catholic Church: Where are you heading?”


Your Eminence, you will be one of the main speakers at the conference in Rome on April 7, which in the name of Cardinal Caffarra will ask questions about the direction of the Church. The title of the conference indicates concern over the direction being taken in the Church. What are the reasons for this concern?

The confusion and division in the Church on the most fundamental and important issues — marriage and the family, the Sacraments and the right disposition to receive them, intrinsically evil acts, eternal life and the Last Things — are becoming increasingly widespread. And the Pope not only refuses to clarify things by proclaiming the constant doctrine and sound discipline of the Church — a responsibility inherent in his ministry as the Successor of St. Peter, but he is also increasing the confusion.

Are you referring to the increase in the number of private statements that are being reported by those who meet with him?

What happened with the last interview given to Eugenio Scalfari during Holy Week and published on Holy Thursday went beyond what is tolerable. That a well-known atheist claims to announce a revolution in the teaching of the Catholic Church, believing that he speaks on behalf of the Pope, denying the immortality of the human soul and the existence of Hell, has been a source of profound scandal not only for many Catholics but also for many people in the secular world who have respect for the Catholic Church and its teachings, even if they do not share them.

Moreover, Holy Thursday is one of the holiest days of the year, the day on which the Lord instituted the Most Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist and the Priesthood, so that He might always offer us the fruit of His redemptive Passion and Death for our eternal salvation. Furthermore, the Holy See’s response to the scandalized reactions from all over the world was highly inadequate. Instead of clearly reasserting the truth about the immortality of the human soul and Hell, the denial only states that some of the words quoted are not the Pope’s. It does not say that the erroneous and even heretical ideas expressed by these words are not shared by the Pope, and that the Pope repudiates these ideas as contrary to the Catholic Faith. This playing around with the faith and doctrine, at the highest level of the Church, rightly leaves pastors and faithful scandalized.

If things are so serious, and a source of embarrassment, it is astonishing that so many of the Church’s pastors remain silent.

Certainly, the situation is further aggravated by the silence of so many bishops and cardinals who share with the Roman Pontiff a sollicitude for the universal Church. Some simply stay silent. Others pretend that there is nothing serious going on. Still others spread fantasies of a new Church, of a Church that takes a totally different direction from the past, imagining for example a “new paradigm” for the Church, or a radical conversion in the Church’s pastoral praxis, making it completely new. Then there are those who are enthusiastic promoters of the so-called revolution in the Catholic Church. For the faithful who understand the gravity of the situation, the lack of doctrinal and disciplinary direction on the part of their pastors leaves them feeling lost. For the faithful who do not understand the gravity of the situation, this lack of direction leaves them in confusion, and eventually victims of errors that endanger their souls. Many people who were baptized in a Protestant ecclesial communion, but then entered into the full communion of the Catholic Church because their original ecclesial communities abandoned the Apostolic Faith, are suffering intensely at this situation — they perceive that the Catholic Church is going down the same road of abandoning the faith.

What you are describing is an apocalyptic situation…

This whole situation leads me to reflect more and more on the message of Our Lady of Fatima who warns us about the evil — even more serious than the very grave evils suffered because of the spread of atheistic communism — which is apostasy from the faith within the Church. Number 675 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches us that “before Christ’s second coming the Church must pass through a final trial that will shake the faith of many believers” and that “the persecution that accompanies her pilgrimage on earth will unveil the ‘mystery of iniquity’ in the form of a religious deception offering men an apparent solution to their problems at the price of apostasy from the truth.”

In such a situation the bishops and cardinals have the duty to proclaim true doctrine. At the same time, they must lead the faithful to make reparation for the offenses against Christ and the wounds inflicted on His Mystical Body, the Church, when faith and discipline are not rightly safeguarded and promoted by pastors. The great canonist of the thirteenth century, Henry of Segusio, also known as Hostiensis, facing the difficult question of how to correct a Roman Pontiff who acts in a way contrary to his office, states that the College of Cardinals constitutes a de facto check against papal error.

Without a doubt, the figure of Pope Francis is much discussed today. The discussion ranges from the uncritical exaltation of whatever he does to the ruthless criticism for every ambiguous gesture. But somehow the problem of how to relate to the Pope applies to every pontiff. And so some things need to be clarified. What does the Pope represent for the Church?

According to the constant teaching of the Church, the Pope, through the express will of Christ, is “the perpetual and visible principle and foundation of unity of both the bishops and of the faithful” (Dogmatic Constitution on the Church of the Second Vatican Council, Lumen Gentium, 23). It is the essential service of the Pope to safeguard and promote the deposit of faith, true doctrine and sound discipline consistent with the truths believed.

In the interview with Eugenio Scalfari quoted above, the Pope is referred to as “revolutionary.” But the Petrine Office has nothing, absolutely nothing, to do with revolution. On the contrary, it exists exclusively for the preservation and propagation of the immutable Catholic faith, which leads souls to conversion of heart and leads all humanity to the unity founded on the order inscribed by God in His creation and especially in the heart of man, the only earthly creature made in the image of God. It is the order that Christ restored through the Paschal Mystery that we are celebrating in these [Easter] days. The grace of the Redemption that emanates from His glorious pierced Heart in the Church, in the hearts of His members, gives the strength to live according to this order, that is, in communion with God and with one’s neighbor.

Surely the Pope is not an absolute sovereign, yet today he is widely seen as such. “If the Pope says so….” is the common way of cutting off any question or doubt about various statements. There is a sort of papolatry. How would you respond to this?

The notion of the plenitude of power of the Roman Pontiff has already been enunciated clearly by Pope St. Leo the Great. The Canonists of the Middle Ages contributed greatly to the deepening of the power inherent in the Petrine Office. Their contribution remains valid and important. The notion is very simple. The Pope, through the divine will, enjoys all the power necessary to safeguard and promote the true faith, true divine worship, and the sound discipline required.

This power belongs not to his person but to his office as Successor of St. Peter. In the past, for the most part, the popes did not make public their personal acts or their opinions precisely so as not to risk the faithful being confused about what the successor of St.Peter does and thinks. At present there is a risky and even harmful confusion between the person of the Pope and his office, that results in the obscuring of the Petrine Office and in a worldly and political idea of the service of the Roman Pontiff in the Church.

The Church exists for the salvation of souls. Any act of a Pope that undermines the salvific mission of Christ in the Church, whether it be a heretical act or a sinful act in itself, is simply void from the point of view of the Petrine Office. Therefore, even if it clearly causes very serious damage to souls, it does not command the obedience of pastors and faithful. We must always distinguish the body of the man who is the Roman Pontiff from the body of the Roman Pontiff, that is, from the man who exercises the office of St. Peter in the Church. Not to make this distinction means papolatry and ends up in the loss of faith in the Divinely Founded and Sustained Petrine Office.

What should a Catholic hold most dear in his relationship with the Pope?

A Catholic must always respect, in an absolute way, the Petrine Office as an essential part of the institution of the Church by Christ. When a Catholic no longer respects the office of the Pope, he is disposed either to schism or to an apostasy from the Faith. At the same time, Catholics must respect the man charged with the office, which means attention to his teaching and pastoral direction.

This respect also includes the duty to express the judgment of a rightly formed conscience to the Pope, when he deviates or seems to deviate from true doctrine and sound discipline, or to abandon the responsibilities inherent in his office. Through natural law, the Gospels, and the Church’s constant disciplinary tradition, the faithful are bound to express to their pastors their concern for the state of the Church. They have this duty, which is matched by the right to receive a response from their pastors.

And so is it possible to criticize the Pope? And under what conditions?

If the Pope does not fulfill his office for the good of all souls, it is not only possible but also necessary to criticize the Pope. This criticism ought to follow Christ’s teaching on fraternal correction in the Gospel (Mt 18:15-18). First, the lay faithful or pastor ought to express his criticism privately, which will allow the Pope to correct himself. But if the Pope refuses to correct a way of teaching or acting that is gravely lacking, the criticism ought to be made public, because it has to do with the common good in the Church and in the world. Some have criticized those who have publicly expressed criticism of the Pope, saying it is a manifestation of rebellion or disobedience, but to ask — with due respect for his office — for the correction of confusion or error is not an act of disobedience, but an act of obedience to Christ and thus to His Vicar on earth.

[Reprinted by LifeSiteNews with the kind permission of Riccardo Cascioli of La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana].

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Globe N A C F

Rockefeller and Basle Universities scientists : All humans descended from just two people

LEIGH MCMANUS reports for MailOnline -- All modern humans descended from a solitary pair who lived 100,000 to 200,000 years ago, scientists say.

Scientists surveyed the genetic 'bar codes' of five million animals - including humans - from 100,000 different species and deduced that we sprang from a single pair of adults after a catastrophic event almost wiped out the human race.

These bar codes, or snippets of DNA that reside outside the nuclei of living cells, suggest that it's not just people who came from a single pair of beings, but nine out of every 10 animal species, too.

Stoeckle and Thaler, the scientists who headed the study, concluded that ninety percent of all animal species alive today come from parents that all began giving birth at roughly the same time, less than 250 thousand years ago - throwing into doubt the patterns of human evolution.

'This conclusion is very surprising,' Thaler admitted, 'and I fought against it as hard as I could.'

The new report from experts at the Rockefeller University along with from the University of Basel published the extraordinary findings in Human Evolution.

The research was led by Senior Research Associate Mark Stoeckle and Research Associate David Thaler of the University of Basel, Switzerland.

They mined 'big data' insights from the world's fast-growing genetic databases and reviewed a large literature in evolutionary theory, including Darwin.

Dr Stoeckle said: 'At a time when humans place so much emphasis on individual and group differences, maybe we should spend more time on the ways in which we resemble one another and the rest of the animal kingdom.'

The conclusions throw up considerable mystery as to why the need for human life to start again was needed such a relatively short time ago, especially since the last known extinction we know of was during the time of the dinosaurs 65 million years ago.

This opens up the possibility of an inbuilt human evolutionary process wherein we break down and die out, leaving the need to start from scratch.

We're also surprisingly similar to not just every other human, but every other species.

'If a Martian landed on Earth and met a flock of pigeons and a crowd of humans, one would not seem more diverse than the other according to the basic measure of mitochondrial DNA,' said Jesse Ausubel, Director of the Program for the Human Environment at The Rockefeller University.

'Culture, life experience and other things can make people very different but in terms of basic biology, we're like the birds,' Dr Stoeckle added.

The 'mitochondrial DNA' examined in the research is that which mothers pass down from generation to generation and it showed the 'absence of human exceptionalism.'

'One might have thought that, due to their high population numbers and wide geographic distribution, humans might have led to greater genetic diversity than other animal species,' added Stoeckle.

'At least for mitochondrial DNA, humans turn out to be low to average in genetic diversity.'

The study has been misunderstood by some religious parties who thought it meant that we all came into being in some seminal Big Bang-typed event 100,000 ago, but this isn't what the findings actually suggest.

What Stoeckle and Thaler's findings point to is that our species has to revamp far more often than we thought, and we do so in unison with all animals.

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Globe N A C F

The right way for Catholics to resist Pope Francis’ ‘paradigm shift’

DIANE MONTAGNA writes from Rome for LifeSiteNews — The discontinuity of Pope Francis’ “disastrous” pontificate with the Church’s Tradition is the “ripe fruit” of Vatican II’s emphasis of praxis over doctrine, a noted Catholic historian has said.

In a Nov. 29 speech in Rome, Professor Roberto de Mattei also explained what he believes to be the right way for Catholics to resist Pope Francis’ “paradigm shift.”

De Mattei is an Italian historian and president of the Lepanto Foundation. He has taught at various universities and has served as vice-president of the National Research Council, Italy’s leading scientific institution.

The conference, titled “Pope Francis, five years after: continuity or rupture in the Church?,” was co-hosted by the Lepanto Foundation and Tradition, Family, and Property. It featured Msgr. Nicola Bux, the theologian consultor to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints whose recent interview with Aldo Maria Valli gained considerable attention, and José Antonio Ureta, author of Pope Francis’s “Paradigm Shift,” an analysis of the first five years of the current pontificate.

Need for balance

The Catholic historian began his talk by noting that “balance” is one of the most important virtues in the current crisis in the Church.

“Balance, along with patience, is the virtue of the strong,” he said. “Balance is prudent strength, or strong prudence. Those who say, ‘I prefer to deceive myself about the Pope rather than to be right about him’ manifest an imbalance,” he noted. “But there is also an imbalance in those who say: ‘Since the Pope deceives himself and deceives me, it means that he is not the Pope.’”

Prof. de Mattei said a balanced position rests on the “fundamental distinction” between the Church, which is “holy and immune from all error,” and the men of the Church, “who can sin and err.” If the shepherds of the Church teach error, he said, it is not only “lawful” to resist them, but even a “duty” when the common good is at stake (Gal. 2:11).

“But resistance is not always enough,” de Mattei argued. He said situations may arise when the laity must separate themselves from errant shepherds, and here balance is also needed.

“We are talking about a spiritual and moral separation, which does not question, on the juridical level, the legitimacy of those who govern the Church,” he explained, comparing it to that lawful parting of spouses who cease living together but without divorcing or saying their marriage is invalid.

“If the ecclesiastical authority were then to impose canonical sanctions against those who remain faithful to Tradition, it would provoke a formal division in the Church,” he explained. In such cases, “the responsibility for rupture” would fall to the authorities “who exercised their power illegitimately,” and not on those who, respecting canon law, only remained faithful to their baptism.

The Catholic historian also warned the laity not to rashly reject the validity of Pope Francis’ papacy should such sanctions be imposed. He said the correct response would be: “These sanctions are unjust and illegitimate, even if you are, until proven otherwise, the legitimate Pope.”

“Until proven otherwise” means that a pope can lose his pontificate for a variety of reasons, including heresy, but these reasons must be “incontrovertible,” he said.

Heresy or the invalidity of a papal election must be “manifest” and “widely known to the whole Church,” he explained, because the Church is a visible society and not an invisible sect. It is therefore not enough that the Pope “professes or publicly favors heresy; it must be perceived as such by Catholic public opinion,” he added.

De Mattei noted that bishops, but especially cardinals (as electors and counsellors to the Pope) must see the heresy or invalidity of an election, and see its consequences. “Until then,” he said, “a Pope must be considered legitimate.”

To date, none of the cardinal electors who participated in the 2013 conclave have publicly questioned the validity of Pope Francis’ papacy.

The bigger question

But Prof. de Mattei said the “bigger question” we need to look at is how we got here. “How did we arrive at having to imagine our own spiritual and moral separation “even from the Supreme Pastor, who at the moment is Jorge Mario Bergoglio?”

Looking back at recent history, he said the “leitmotif” of Benedict XVI’s pontificate was the “hermeutic of continuity,” i.e. the correct interpretation of the texts of Vatican II that is in accord with the Church’s constant tradition.

The Italian historian noted that, in two key addresses, delivered at the beginning and end of his pontificate, Pope Benedict “admits there is a link between the current crisis of faith and the Second Vatican Council, but he maintains that this crisis is due not to the Council itself, but to a bad hermeneutic, to an incorrect interpretation of its texts.”

Why, despite the efforts of John Paul II, Benedict XVI and like-minded bishops, did the hermeneutic of continuity not stop the process of the Church’s self-demolition?

“It didn’t succeed in stopping it, because one doesn’t stop a historical process with a debate over hermeneutics,” Prof. de Mattei insisted. The proponents of the hermeneutic of continuity “deluded themselves,” he said, into thinking they could “limit the discussion” to the interpretation of documents, while the proponents of a “hermeneutic of discontinuity” — or rupture with Tradition — “advanced on the field of praxis,” in keeping with “the spirit of Vatican II.”

This spirit, he said, affirmed the primacy of pastoral care, i.e. praxis, over doctrine.

“The essence of the Second Vatican Council was the triumph of pastoral care over doctrine, the transformation of pastoral care into a theology of practice, and the application of the philosophy of Marxist praxis to the life of the Church,” de Mattei argued.

“Pope Francis embodies the thesis opposing Ratzinger’s. He is not interested in theological debate, nor in the hermeneutical one. Pope Francis represents the playing out of Vatican II, and the triumph, in his person, of pastoral care over theology.”

The historian therefore concluded that “there is no rupture between the Second Vatican Council and Pope Francis but rather historical continuity. Pope Francis represents the ripe fruit of Vatican II.”

Prof. de Mattei said he believes that, while Pope Francis’ pontificate has represented a “paradigm shift,” the “true great turning point”of the last five years has been “the reaction this pontificate has provoked among Catholics around the world.”

“Pope Francis’ pontificate, precisely because it is disastrous, has highlighted the existence of a crisis in the Church that would otherwise have been ignored,” he said.

He said this reaction has been manifested through several important initiatives: the 2015 Supplica Filiale which collected 900,000 signatures of the faithful; the 2016 dubia on Chapter 8 of Amoris Laetitia, sent to Pope Francis by four cardinals; the 2017 filial correction, whose initial 40 signatures of clergy and scholars quickly grew to 250; and most recently, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò’s testimonies implicating several high-ranking prelates, and Pope Francis himself, in the Theodore McCarrick abuse cover-up.

“All of these initiatives have had immense repercussions, but the answer has only been silence. A silence that constitutes a dramatic confirmation of the truth of the accusations,” Prof. de Mattei said.

He added: “The ‘listening Church’ of Pope Francis listens to everyone except those who are entirely faithful to the Gospel and to the perennial magisterium of the Church,” he said. “Pope Francis uses the same fierce language towards his critics that Lenin used against his opponents.”

Wild and dumb dogs

The Italian historian said that one example of such Leninist language came in the Pope’s daily homily on September 3, 2018 when he called those who criticize him “a pack of wild dogs.”

De Mattei noted that two days later, on Sept. 5, 2018, the Italian author Marcello Veneziani responded in Il Tempo, saying:

'No, Your Holiness, a Pope cannot call his neighbors ‘wild dogs,’ and especially when it comes to Catholics, Christians, believers. Dogs is the derogatory term that Muslims use for infidels and Christians. The popes who preceded Francis called even the most ruthless terrorists ‘men of the Red Brigades,’ or men of ISIS. Never dogs. Descending to such spiteful levels is unworthy of a Holy Father'.

But “being named ‘dogs’ does not bother us,” de Mattei said. “In Holy Scripture, unfaithful shepherds are called “dumb dogs” who have stopped barking and fall asleep (Isaiah 56:10-11). We glory in being domini canes, dogs of the Lord, who bark in the night to break through the silence.”

“Today’s dumb shepherds threaten the dogs who bark,” he said. The Italian Vaticanist, Andrea Tornielli, tries to suggest that if Pope Francis is responsible for McCarrick, more responsible are his predecessors, Benedict XVI and John Paul II. But if this were to be proven, “we would not be afraid to admit it,” de Mattei said, “because first and foremost we are seeking the truth.”

The Catholic historian and president of the Lepanto Foundation continued:

'The Church does not fear the Truth, because the Church is the Truth. The Church is the Truth because she is divine and because she proclaims to the world the Truth of her Head and founder, Jesus Christ, who said of himself, “Ego sum via, veritas et vita” (Jn. 14:6). Therefore, we are not afraid to tell the truth about the deep doctrinal and moral crisis that the Church is experiencing today.

“Love for truth” moves us to say it’s hypocrisy to categorize the sexual abuse crisis only as pedophilia, while ignoring the “scourge of homosexuality” — which is both a “vice against nature” and a “power-structure within the Church,” de Mattei said. It is also hypocrisy to limit oneself to “denouncing moral scandals,” without dealing with their “doctrinal roots,” he added.

“The time for truth has come,” and the truth is that the pastoral project of Pope Francis and Vatican II has failed, he said.

“That Council heralded a great pastoral reform to purify the Church, and instead resulted in an historically unprecedented corruption of faith and morals, for it has reached the point of not only enthroning homosexuality among the highest ecclesiastical hierarchies, but also of allowing it to be publicly defended and theorized,” de Mattei argued.

“The final tally of the last five years of Pope Francis’s pontificate reveals the failure of a paradigm shift, which is the failure of a pastoral project.”

Now, he said, the watchwords have become “synodality” and “the peripheries.” In reality, he said, synodality is “the transfer of power from top to bottom: a Revolution that de-verticalizes the Church,” while the peripheries “represent a horizontal Revolution that decentralizes and de-territorializes the Church.”

Ironically, he added, the Vatican has denied the primacy of both, in preventing the American bishops from voting on measures to prevent abuse and coverup, at their November assembly in Baltimore.

Prof. de Mattei had special praise for Catholics in America, saying it is there that the “voice of fidelity to the law of the Gospel” is loudest.

He also encouraged the laity not to become disheartened amid the current crisis, noting that although Catholics seeking to be faithful may often be accused of pharisaism, of fixism, of legalism, the proponents of discontinuity “have not extinguished the flame of the Church’s Tradition.”

In fact, he said, “never before as in these last five years — at the center and in the peripheries, in seminaries and on blogs — does Tradition seem to be reviving in young and old, laymen and clergy, who every day rediscover the perennial truth of the faith and traditional rites of the Church and, with the help of God, are determined to defend them.”

Prof. de Mattei reminded the faithful that on approaching the feast of the Immaculate Conception, Catholics proclaim: Tota pulchra es Maria et macula originalis non est in te. Similarly, he said, the children of the Church, who is “wounded in her human element and disfigured by the errors and sins of the men who govern her,” are called to believe and proclaim: Tota pulchra es Ecclesia et nulla macula est in te.

The Catholic historian concluded: “The Church is all beautiful and there is in her no sin, no error. The Holy Roman Church — one, holy, catholic and apostolic — is our Mother who continues to nourish us with her Sacraments and protect us with the shield of her doctrine, as we, with God’s help, strive to defend her against all external and internal enemies that threaten her. The Immaculate Heart of Mary will triumph.”

[Read the full official English text of Professor de Mattei’s talk here].


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Humanae Vitae


The Gift of Human Sexuality

WHAT does it mean to say human sexuality a gift? How does this gift point to our dignity as persons? How does this gift commission us to share with others the message of our human dignity?

Defining gift as an 'unmerited golden opportunity' Dr. Donald Asci, Professor of Theology at Franciscan University of Steubenville, explores the relationship between our dignity as 'Imago Dei' and our sexuality in his talk entitled 'The Gift of Human Sexuality.' Dr. Asci's talk was the opening talk of the Gift of Human Sexuality Symposium at Franciscan University of Steubenville.


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United Nations


UN's Global Compact for Migration expands on hate speech to criminalise criticism of migration

ENF Press conference with Marcel de Graaff, Nicolas Bay, ENF Group Leaders, and Gerolf Annemans



The UK must not agree to UN's Global Compact for Migration. Sign this Parliamentary petition:


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Globe N A C F

The United Nations wants a one-world government in less than twelve years

E.JEFFREY LUDWIG writes for the American Thinker - In the 1960s, an informed but naïve undergraduate, I was walking across the campus of the University of Pennsylvania with the Chairman of the Chemistry Department, Prof. Charles C. Price. He told me that he was president of the United World Federalists, and asked if I knew what that organization was. When I said that I did not, he replied that they believed in a one-world government that would grow out of the United Nations. I was nonplussed as I had never heard anyone suggest that idea before. To me, the United Nations was a benevolent organization dedicated to pressuring the world community in the direction of peace, and to operating charitable programs to help the struggling, impoverished peoples of the world. I imagined the UN as a kind of United Way on a worldwide scale.

How would Prof. Price's vision of a new world government emerge? Although there was a socialistic thread in its founding document, the United Nations was formed based on a vision of human rights presented in the 'Universal Declaration of Human Rights' (UDHR) which placed the concept of rights at the forefront for the progress of the world body. And rights are the mainstay for uplifting human freedom and the dignity of the individual. The UDHR document followed many amazing documents that presented rights as the central concept of the post-feudal world: the English Declaration (or Bill) of Rights of 1689, the U.S. Declaration of Independence with its important and forceful assertion of inalienable natural rights, the powerful U.S. Bill of Rights enacted in 1791, and the French Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen (1789).

The word 'rights' appears in almost every sentence of the 1869-word UN document. The document is literally obsessed with rights, and one must assume they are likewise obsessed with the rights successes as manifested in the United Kingdom, the U.S., and France. However, there are some deviations from the rights usage we are all familiar with. In Article 3, Instead of the inalienable rights of 'life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness' found in our Declaration of Independence, the UN declares everyone's right to 'life, liberty and security of person.' Are they implying that security will bring happiness? Or are they implying that happiness is too ephemeral a value, and too Western? Perhaps more mundane survival goals are needed by most of the world.

We see a reprise of items from our Bill of Rights such as condemnation of cruel and unusual punishment (Article 5), due process (Articles 6,7,8,9, 10, 11, 14, 17), illegal search and seizure (Article 12), and freedom of speech and assembly (Articles 19,20). But there are new rights introduced which, as early as 1945, were pointing the way towards intervention by the UN in the daily lives of people throughout the world. Throughout the document, they assert the right to food, clothing, medical care, social services, unemployment and disability benefits, child care, and free education, plus the right to 'full development of the personality,' (imagine, the UN says I have the right to be me) and the 'right freely to participate in the cultural life of the community… and to enjoy the arts' (we each have the right to enjoy a painting or a movie). However, they do not state the right to appear on the 'Tonight Show' or 'Saturday Night Live', so there were limits to their largesse.

In 2015, seventy years after their original rights-based document, the UN took a giant step towards the global government that was only hinted at in their first organizing document. They issued a document entitled 'Transforming Our World: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.' This document has 91 numbered sections of the UN's program for world government. The UDHR is only referenced once in the entire document in Article 19. Unlike the original 'mother document' that was under 1900 words, this document is 14,883 words. The 91 items are addressing issues under the five headings of People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace, and Partnership. Additionally, the document provides 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to improve life on the planet.

What is meant by the term 'sustainable?' The most often quoted definition comes from the UN World Commission on Environment and Development: 'sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.' The earlier ideas and ideals of rights, freedom, equality, and justice are subsumed under meeting of needs and an explicit environmentalism which emphasizes preventing the depletion of scarce planetary resources. Of course, the takeoff is the Marxist axiom that society should be organized around the idea of 'from each according to his ability to each according to his needs.' Thus, Marxism is implicit in sustainability, but is nuanced by its alliance with seemingly scientific adjustments and goals related to environmentalism. A technical jargon is welded to Marxist intentionality to produce a sense of fittingness and modern progress.

The entire 'Transforming Our World' document is cast in a stream of consciousness of pious platitudes for a utopian future. It is an outsize utopian dream. Five of the 17 items pertain to the environment. There are goals for the cities, for women, for the poor, and even for life under the water. Absolutely no sphere of human activity is exempt from control by the UN. The key word of course is no longer 'rights' except the oblique reference in Article 19. In fact, this writer did not see the word rights even once in this document even though that word appeared in practically every sentence of the original UN document.

The one-worlders of the 1950s and early 1960s are now in the UN driver's seat, and they have made their move. The overlay of Marxist talk about 'meeting needs' has moved to center stage. The UN has assigned itself a time frame for moving forward in its plan for planetary hegemony.

This projected transformation detailing (yet without details) a new world order of environmental responsibility and a significant reduction of poverty and hunger never speaks to the practical dimension of vast manipulations of people by cynical leaders and ignorant bureaucrats who hold their positions through terrorism and bribery. They never discuss incompetence and corruption, twin brothers in the family of venality. The document portrays a sincere world where all those in power want to help humanity despite the daily evidence of the selfishness, corruption, murderous intents, devilish manipulations, thefts, personal immoralities, hatreds, and utter depravity of many governmental leaders in every country in the world, and among the leaders of business as well. Is not the Agenda for Sustainable Development itself one of those devilish manipulations?

The sustainability ideal is not wedded to a Christian worldview; instead, individual liberty is submerged in a scientifically determined collectivist mindset with final decisions in the hands of the devilish, all-knowing Big Brothers. The relevance of the individual is downplayed. It is being put forward by a UN that is no longer pro-western, a much larger body than existed in 1945. Will you accept it, or is it time, more than ever before, to begin rethinking our membership in that unsustainable body?

[Published byLifeSiteNews with permission from the American Thinker]

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China supplement


Cardinal Zen says that he will resign if Pope appoints more Patriotic Catholic Association bishop

Cdl. Zen THE EPONYMOUS FLOWER reports - Emeritus Archbishop of Hong Kong: "I can not fight the Pope. But if he legitimizes the six bishops [of the Catholic Patriotic Association], I will retire to praying in a monastery. “ And I will not talk to journalists anymore. I will remain silent.” Cardinal Joseph Zen, Archbishop Emeritus of Hong Kong and longtime critic of Pope Francis' China policy, announced this again. The cardinal said in an interview with the Catholic French portal La Croix that he had recently handed the Pope a seven-page letter between the Vatican and the Communist government of China about the provisional agreement of secret content. Zen had traveled to Rome specifically because he had not trusted in the reliability of the followers of Francis. This is what Maike Hickson reported on "LifeSiteNews".

He explained to La Croix that he considered this provisional agreement to be destructive to the faithful Catholic underground Church of China.

After the secret agreement, Pope Francis recognized eight bishops loyal to the government, who had originally been ordained Catholic bishops without the consent of the Vatican.

The American-German ecclesiastical journalist Maike Hickson criticized that German-language media would "spread the wrong message" that Cardinal Zen withdrew into a monastery and pointed out that Zen has made only a conditional announcement.

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Globe N A C F

Chen Guangcheng : Vatican's deal with China is a 'slap in the face' to millions of Catholics

ChenDOUG MAINWARING reports for LifeSiteNews - In a recently published rebuke to the Vatican for its recent agreement with China's Communist Party, heroic world-famous blind Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng explained why the Holy See should not cede the selection of bishops in China to the Communist Party (CCP). Chen, in his article titled 'A Pact with a Thief, a Deal with the Devil: The Vatican's Pending Agreement with China,' said he was shocked and dismayed in seeing the Vatican/China agreement take shape.

'I have known and worked with countless individuals in China who have been persecuted for their beliefs,' wrote Chen at Public Discourse. 'It has thus been with intense shock and dismay that I have watched the Vatican's rapprochement with China take shape.'

Chinese Cardinal Joseph Zen said in a recent interview that the agreement 'indirectly' amounts to the Vatican 'helping the government to annihilate the underground Church that Beijing was not able to crush.'

If anybody has a right to speak out on the current Vatican/China controversy, it's Chen.

Blind from a young age, Chen Guangcheng gained international prominence more than a decade ago for bravely suing the government over its brutal 'one-child policy,' which has resulted in forced abortions, estimated to be in the hundreds of millions. Chen was imprisoned by China's communist government for his activism. In 2012 he escaped house arrest and fled to the U.S. Embassy in Beijing. He and his family were later allowed to leave for the United States where he is now a distinguished visiting fellow at the Institute for Policy Research and Catholic Studies at the Catholic University of America and a senior fellow at the Witherspoon Institute.

'I was born and raised in China under the communist despotism. I personally experienced the brutal torture and persecution that the atheists of the Communist Party committed against dissidents,' explained Chen earlier this year. 'They have no fear of God or any moral bottom line; they have committed innumerable murders with a total disregard for human life for the sole purpose of maintaining their reign.'

'Slap in the face'

Chen suggests that the Vatican has entered into an uneven deal with the CCP, giving up too much authority--most notably regarding the selection of bishops--in order to re-establish diplomatic relations with the communist state.

'The fact that the Vatican sees these terms as an acceptable basis for reconciliation with a brutal dictatorial regime is a slap in the face to millions of Catholics and other faithful religious people in China who have suffered real persecution under the CCP,' wrote Chen. 'In fact, it is an affront to reasonable and freedom-loving people everywhere. As a self-described atheist regime, the CCP simply cannot claim authority over religious affairs, such as the choice of bishops. And its offering recognition of the pope is as paltry a concession as admitting the sky is blue.'

The problem is that the goals of religion--any religion--are at odds with those of the CCP. 'Religion asks for trust in a higher power-higher still than the Communist Party can claim-and faith in ideas that are beyond the reach of the regime's clutches.'

'Over the past decade, the CCP has been aggressively attacking underground Catholic and Protestant house churches, first going after banned religious symbols and dismantling crosses,' recounted Chen. 'The CCP has been arresting priests, threatening congregants, and searching churches and places of worship. Many have disappeared and been tortured while under the regime's control, refusing to relinquish their beliefs to a degraded, intolerant political party, and proving the power of their faith.'

Under increasing CCP influence in Christian churches, including the state-approved Catholic Church, 'Congregants are required to sing communist songs and raise the national flag.'

'The CCP is even preparing its own edition of the Bible, titled 'The Chinese Christian Bible,'' added the outspoken activist, explaining that the CCP seeks to 'force its socialist, secular values into the text while presenting a fiction of religious tolerance to the outside.'

'Another shameful episode whose stain the Catholic Church will be unable to cleanse'

Chen continued: 'Clearly, the agreement is a blatantly political move designed only to serve the CCP's interests. Not only does the action of the CCP selecting Catholic bishops represent a major decline for the Vatican, but it is the equivalent of bowing before evil, of selling God to the devil. Does the Vatican not know that the Communist Party controls everything in China? The Vatican ended relations with China in 1951 after the Communist Party had taken over power because the Party wanted to lead everything, including the spiritual realm. Now, after sixty-seven years, the Vatican is throwing away its values and accepting the leadership of the CCP. This will become yet another shameful episode whose stain the Catholic Church will be unable to cleanse.

I am sure that the active members of underground churches in China who have persevered against crippling persecution for so long can only feel betrayed. They must certainly feel that the Vatican is growing further from God and closer to the superficial human world of vice-closer to a Communist Party that is responsible for the deaths of over four hundred million unborn children and hundreds of millions of Chinese people. Can this actually represent the will of the heavens?

Chen's concluding words were, '[T]he Vatican's deal with China can only bring shame on its name.'

Chen's indictment of the Vatican/China deal demands serious consideration by the Holy See.

'Every single line in this @PublicDiscourse article by the courageous Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng needs to be read by anyone in the Holy See involved in the Vatican's agreement with China,' tweeted the Acton Institute's Samuel Gregg. 'Every. Darn. Single. Line.'

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News from around the world


China Researcher claims to have created world's first genetically modified baby

CALVIN FREIBURGER reports fot LifeSiteNews - A Chinese researcher says he's the first person to successfully 'edit' the genes of babies before birth in a practice the United States bans as dangerous and unethical.

Leading a team at Shenzhen's Southern University of Science and Technology, He Jiankui claims to have altered the embryos of seven couples during fertility treatments, the Associated Press reports, one of which gave birth to twin baby girls this month. The purpose of the experiment was to eliminate a gene (CCR5) in hopes of making the children resistant to diseases such as HIV, smallpox, and cholera.



The scientist announced the alleged feat in an interview with the AP and to organizers of a gene editing conference in Hong Kong. He refused to identify the parents or their location, and no scientific journal has independently verified his claims. An American scientist, Michael Deem of Rice University, also worked on the project.

'I feel a strong responsibility that it's not just to make a first, but also make it an example,' He told the AP. 'Society will decide what to do next' with the technology's ethical ramifications.

The MIT Technology Review explains that Chinese researchers first modified embryos' genes in a lab dish in 2015 using the gene-editing tool CRISPR-cas9, but He's experiments would mark the first case of a successful birth from such experiments, if true.

'Data submitted as part of the trial listing shows that genetic tests have been carried out on fetuses as late as 24 weeks, or six months,' the Review notes. 'It's not known if those pregnancies were terminated, carried to term, or are ongoing.'

The CRISPR tool is a recently developed tool for adding necessary genes or disabling harmful ones to treat diseases in adults, though the U.S. only allows it to be used in lab research. 'I think this is justifiable,' Harvard geneticist George Church said, calling HIV 'a major and growing public health threat.'

But He's alleged work traverses uncharted waters that are troubling to many ethicists. Using the new tool on sperm, eggs, or embryos means descendants will also inherit the changes. Some see the whole concept of gene editing as a moral slippery slope that could lead to designer babies and even a new form of eugenics.

'This is far too premature,' said Dr. Eric Topol of California's Scripps Research Translational Institute said it was 'far too premature' to be 'dealing with the operating instructions of a human being.' Gene editing expert Kiran Musunuru of the University of Pennsylvania called it an 'unconscionable' experiment and 'not morally or ethically defensible.'

Fyodor Urnov, associate director of Seattle's Altius Institute for Biomedical Sciences, expressed 'regret and concern over the fact that gene editing-a powerful and useful technique-was put to use in a setting where it was unnecessary,' He called it a 'hard-to-explain foray into human germ-line genetic engineering that may overshadow in the mind of the public a decade of progress in gene editing of adults and children to treat existing disease.'

There are also questions as to whether He's team properly informed participants of the experiment's nature, risks, and benefits. The AP says consent forms described it as an 'AIDS vaccine development' program. He claims to have fully explained the experiment, and offered insurance coverage to any child conceived via the trials. Neither He nor Deem had prior experience with human clinical trials, however.

'We have not yet enacted any meaningful regulations or laws to guide the technology down safe and ethical paths, and away from those that could prove profoundly destructive both scientifically and culturally,' the Discovery Institute's Wesley Smith warned Monday at National Review. 'It is possible that scientists are creating genetically altered embryos, implanting them for gestation, and then aborting them to see how things worked out. Is everyone okay with that?'

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Globe N A C F

France Conservative order of nuns on verge of destruction following Vatican interventions

MATTHEW CULLINAN HOFFMAN reports for LifeSiteNews.com - Almost all of the members of a conservative order of nuns that serve the elderly in French nursing homes have announced that they have asked to be released from their vows following attempts by the Vatican to force them to alter their way of life and to 'modernize' their order.

According to their lay supporters, the sisters have been accused of engaging in 'too much prayer' and concerns have been expressed that they wear the guimpe, a traditional form of religious head covering used by nuns that is no longer in vogue among the Church's liberal elite. The sisters say that they are accused of a 'deviant authoritarianism,' of being 'too classical' in their thinking, and of being guilty of an 'immobilism' in their devotion to their institute's charism.

A total of 34 of the 39 members of the the Little Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Redeemer say they want to quit the order after a Vatican dicastery removed their superior general and attempted to impose three 'commissioners' on them who were hostile towards their more traditional practices.

The three commissioners are led by a religious sister and theology professor with a short haircut who does not wear a habit, one who defends Amoris Laetitia and whom the sisters have said does not understand their religious charism.

The sisters say that their protests against the choice of commissioners and their request that they receive someone else more suited to their charism have fallen on deaf ears, leading them to the conclusion that they could no longer carry out their vocation within their institute.

'After having acquired the moral certainty throughout this year that the reception of the apostolic commissioner within our Institute would cause serious and certain harm, both regarding the understanding of the charisma bequeathed by God to Mother Mary of the Cross, our Foundress, and the way of living it, after many times proposing solutions of appeasement without any answer ever having been given to us, after consulting with authorized and competent persons, after having prayed much and always with the desire to remain daughters of the Church, wanting to remain faithful and obedient to the truth, it seemed to us that we had no choice but to renounce our vows,' the sisters wrote in a public statement issued on November 7 (PDF here).

'We are therefore 34 out of 39 Sisters who are members of the Institute, who have asked to be relieved of our vows by the Dicastery for Religious,' the sisters add. 'We do not make this sacrifice lightly: we desire to remain in full communion with the Church, but we cannot indicate more clearly, nor more painfully, our impossibility, in conscience, to obey what is imposed.'

The Little Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Redeemer trace their origins back to 1939 when an organization of women was founded by Mere Marie de la Croix ('Mother Mary of the Cross'), according to the lay organization that defends their cause. It began as an association of the faithful and was given the status of an Institute of Consecrated Life in 1989 by the then-bishop of Laval, Louis-Marie Billé.

According to the French Catholic website Riposte Catholique, the Institute currently includes four communities located in the dioceses of Laval and Toulouse, where they supervise four nursing homes for the elderly in the French departments of Haute-Garonne and Mayenne. They also provide catechesis and training in the spiritual life to Catholic families, and open their convents to parish and spiritual retreat groups. Their service to the Catholic faithful, however, will soon come to an end if no resolution to the conflict can be found.

The Little Sisters' travails began in 2016, when the Bishop of Laval, Thierry Scherrer, attempted to separate one of the nursing homes of the sisters from the association that administers them, despite concerns that such a reorganization would cost millions of euros and would endanger the financial viability of the home. The sisters opposed the idea, as did the nursing home's board of directors, who rejected Scherrer's proposal.

In apparent retaliation, Bishop Scherrer ordered a canonical visit of the sisters, sending two representatives to investigate them in late 2016. The result was a highly negative report, made public in June 2017, that asserted the existence of 'problems of governance' in the order, a claim vigorously disputed by the sisters, who have issued strong expressions of satisfaction with their superiors. The sisters have called the report a 'caricature' of their order, produced as a 'pre-judgment' against them.

Both the sisters and Bishop Scherrer then asked the Holy See to resolve the dispute. The Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life responded in September 2017 by removing the superior general of the Institute, Mère Marie de Saint Michel, as well as their mistress of novices, and sending them away from the mother house.

The Congregation then appointed three 'commissioners' to oversee the sisters, who refused to accept them on the grounds that they were unsuited to their charism, and asked that other, more suitable commissioners be appointed. When this was refused, the sisters appealed to the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, the highest court in the Catholic Church. The sisters say that in August the Tribunal ruled against them without allowing their canon lawyer to present his arguments, which the sisters denounced as unjust.

Meet the new boss: habitless Sr. Geneviève Médevielle, a defender of Amoris Laetitia

The Vatican is attempting to impose on the order Sr. Geneviève Médevielle, the principal among the three commissioners. Médevielle is a religious sister who dresses in lay clothing and wears a short haircut without a head covering. She is a professor of ethics at the Catholic Institute of Paris and the author of the recently-published book 'Migrants, Francis, and us.' Médevielle writes in defense of Amoris Laetitia against 'conservatives and traditionalists' who criticize it.

Marcel Mignot, president of the Association of Support for the Little Sisters of Mary, told the French publication La Croix, 'The Little Sisters are reproached for praying too much, and they also want them to change their habit. They want to modernize them and make them evolve by taking them away from their roots.'

Médevielle denies the claim that she wants to transform the Institute, responding to La Croix, 'I want to respect them, not to transform them! If there are changes, they absolutely will not concern their charism.'

However, according to the sisters' Association of Support, 'the commissioners have likewise announced the general outline of their project of reforming the congregation. The Little Sisters, have, in effect, clearly seen the evolutions that await them, towards a supposed modernity, made of progressive trivialization if they allow Sr. Medevielle take the reins of their institute, with the support of the Dicastery.'

'The latter has stated, following a meeting, 'We won't touch your charism at all, but rather your way of living it.' That says it all!' the sisters' lay supporters add.

'The goal that is sought is not to establish the truth and to allow the Little Sisters to continue their mission for the benefit of all, with respect for their charism,' the sisters' supporters write. 'The only goal of Rome is to complete the project of Bishop Scherrer: to gain control over the Institute to make it evolve in accordance with his views, whether it be in defiance of the truth, whether it be in defiance of the rights of the defense, whether it be by recourse to lying. It is, at least, unworthy of the values promoted by the Holy Father whenever he speaks publicly.'

In the meantime, the commissioners insisted that they would conduct a visitation, despite the appeal, and threatened to remove the sisters from the Institute if they refused to allow them entrance. They dismissed the fact that the sisters were in the process of appealing the commissioners' appointments, claiming that it did not provide them any legal relief from the obligation to obey. The sisters then relented and allowed the visitation, which seemed to confirm their worst fears.

'Intimidation, threats, and manipulation'

According to the sisters' Association of Support, the three commissioners sought to meet with each sister individually to pit the sisters against one another, suggesting that if they cooperated they could have positions of importance in the new reorganized Institute.

'The visits have been carried out under duress, in the form of an individual interview with the Little Sisters, who were alone facing two commissioners...the latter, based on the profile of the sisters, would try to reassure some, while seeking to lure others with 'good positions' within the future organization of the congregation...As if the principal objection of this operation were to open a breach within the unity of the Little Sisters, in the hope of dividing them, while there prevails a beautiful communion among them.'

'The methods used, a mix of intimidation, threats, and manipulation, feel like moral harassment to many sisters,' they add.

Following the visitation by the commissioners, a new report was issued on the state of the Institute in June of this year. According to the sisters' Association of Support, the second report recognized that 'many important elements in the first report of the canonical visit of 2016, on the basis of which the sanctions would be imposed, did not reflect reality.'

'They admit that the sisters constitute dynamic communities and that the spirit that reigns is positive. They only highlight some rather banal criticisms, which don't compare to the complaints made in the initial report,' the sisters' supporters write.

Despite being vindicated in the second report, however, the sisters have been told that the sanctions placed on them by the dicastery will not be lifted. 'The Little Sisters are stupefied!' writes the Association of Support. 'They do not cease to express their indignation in the face of this fallacious report, demanding that justice be done for them, that all of the baseless and degrading sanctions be lifted.'

The sisters complain that while the accusation against their superiors of being too heavy handed is contradicted by the testimony of the sisters themselves, the Vatican itself has been extremely authoritarian in the way it has treated the sisters.

'Even though the superiors would be accused of a 'deviant authoritarianism,' as the first report says, here is obedience suddenly brandished as a duty without appeal, without the concern of a right conscience having a say in it, without ever having been explained to us the least objective foundation of all these Roman measures,' the sisters write in their most recent public statement. 'So would there be two weights, two standards in this affair?'

In addition, the nuns write that one of their houses in southern France has been targeted by the Archbishop of Toulouse, Robert Le Gall, who has prohibited them from attending their more traditional form of Mass in their community chapel. This appears to be the same house that has refused to participate in Le Gall's Mass at the local nursing home, presumably because of differences over liturgical practice. The house is located in Castelnau-d'Estrétefonds, to the north of Toulouse, in Haute-Garonne, and is led by Sr. Marie-Liesse Laplace.

Finally, in September, the Cardinal Prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, João Braz de Aviz, sent an ultimatum to the sisters, requiring them to accept Sr. Geneviève Médevielle as their authority 'without reserve' or face dismissal from the Institute. The vast majority have asked to be released from their vows, rather than submit to Médevielle. No announcements have yet been made regarding the response of the Holy See.

The sisters passed through a similar trial in the 1970s, when officials of the Holy See attempted to force them to join other institutes. The sisters resisted and expressed their preference for losing their status as religious rather than entering another institute, according to the Association of Support. However, their congregation survived the ordeal.

The sisters have stated publicly that they wish to see the public alerted to their situation, and to come to their aid in resisting what they regard as a grave injustice against their institute and its charism of aiding the suffering at the end of life. Contact information for those interested in supporting and defending the Little Sisters can be found at the bottom of this article.

The apparent persecution of the Little Sisters has garnered much media attention in France, and has been covered on television as well as in print media. The mayor of Saint-Aignan-sur-Roe, where the mother house of the sisters is located, is publicly supporting the sisters.

'I have trouble understanding this power struggle,' Mayor Loïc Pène told the newspaper Haut Anjou. 'The Sisters have my full support because I know what they represent for the town. They are well integrated and it is of local interest that they remain present. I am well aware of everything they bring. All they do besides, they do well. I only hope for a happy ending to this conflict and that the nursing home does not end up being weakened.'

A representative of the Diocese of Laval told the same newspaper that the sisters have caused their own suffering by resisting the authority of Rome. She also claimed that the reform measures the commissioners are seeking to impose were already in the works years earlier.

'The situation is difficult, it is true, so much so that it is now in the hands of Rome. But from the beginning we have been involved in adjustments and recommendations and not at all in conflict or grievances,' said diocesan spokeswoman Véronique Larat. 'The adjustments, by the way, had already been proposed by Bishops Billé and Maillard, the predecessors of Bishop Scherrer. He simply took a position in continuity with them.'

'The Sisters are very troubled by this situation due to [their] disobedience, [and] many people are suffering,' Larat added. 'We are still calling for reconciliation and for them to allow the pontifical commissioner appointed by Rome to join them.'

Commenting on the impending destruction of the order, Risposte Catholique wrote in September: 'Everywhere these nuns are very much loved by the clergy and the people. What will become of the forty or so nuns who will no longer be? What are we going to do with their retirement homes, the elderly they welcome, the staff who are employed there? We thus see bloodless dioceses amputate their last living forces, in a sort of self-annihilation of moribund churches.'

The destruction of the Little Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Redeemer follows a pattern similar to the Vatican-induced collapse of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate (FFI), an order of Franciscans that followed a more traditional pattern of community life and that made free use of the traditional Latin Mass in accordance with the rites prevailing in 1962. Although the friars were within their legal rights to use the traditional form of the Mass in accordance with the papal motu proprio Summorum pontificum, their order came under attack for such practices by Bishop Braz de Aviz and others who frowned upon them. Among them, it seems, is Pope Francis himself.

Just as in the case of the Little Sisters, Braz de Aviz brought about the removal of the superiors of the FFI from their positions, and even the founder, Fr. Stefano Maria Manelli, was sent into house arrest at the age of 81. Five years later, he remains under house arrest. Other superiors were sent to remote houses of the order.

Likewise, a commissioner was placed over the order, Fr. Stephano Volpi, who seemed implacably hostile to the order's charism and its works in general. Under his leadership, the FFI's seminary was completely shut down, as was its book publishing service. A majority of the brothers left and were incardinated in other dioceses, and at least 15 cloisters of the order reportedly have closed their doors. The Traditional Latin Mass was only permitted by special permission from the commissioner.

Moreover, just as in the case of the Little Sisters, the members of the FFI never were given any specific reason for the imposition of the commissioner, except vague hints that they were too 'traditional' for the tastes of the Vatican authorities, including, presumably, Pope Francis, who has refused to accept appeals from the order's members. Within a few years, a thriving and beloved institute of Franciscans had become a shell of its former self.

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Globe N A C F

Germany Vatican-approved Jesuit rector: "I still want to see homosexual couples blessed and women ordained"

Fr WucherpfennigMAIKE HICKSON reports fot LifeSiteNews– Father Ansgar Wucherpfennig, S.J. has recently been re-instated by the Vatican as the rector of the Jesuit graduate school in Frankfurt, Germany, in spite of his statements in favor of blessings for homosexual partners and female ordination.

As he now says in a new interview: “I did not recant anything.” Wucherpfennig also adds that it was Jesuit Superior General Father Arturo Sosa who handled his case and now even asks him to publish essays on these two controversial topics.
LifeSiteNews has reported that the Vatican – after an initial demurral to give a Nihil obstat (“nothing stands in the way”) to his re-election as the rector of the Jesuit school – has now accepted Wucherpfennig's simple statement that, while teaching Catholic doctrine, he will always present the statements of the Magisterium, but at the same time he will continue to question certain aspects of it.

Now, in a new interview, Father Wucherpfennig responds to this recent Vatican decision and makes it clear that he has not withdrawn any of his controversial statements in favor of the blessing of homosexual couples, as well as female ordination.

“No, I did not recant,” he said.

The priest explains that he only dealt, through his own German superior, with Father Arturo Sosa, the head of the Jesuits, and not with the Vatican. He adds that it was Sosa who gave him the mission to write about these controversial topics: “The General Superior, Father Sosa, however, has given me the task to make further research about these two topics [homosexuality and female ordination] and to further develop, with a creative loyalty, the Church's views.”

Wucherpfennig makes it clear that he told Father Sosa that he “as a Christian and academic” has the “hope that the teaching with regard to these two points will change and will widen.”

He also shows himself content with the current resolution of the conflict, saying that all of the involved parties “were able to save face.” “Both sides made conciliatory steps.”

When asked whether he already has plans about his future essays on these topics, Father Wucherpfennig responds, saying: “This is still too early. I anyway wanted to continue to work on these topics.” In light of the recent German clerical sex abuse study, he adds, “one has to discuss things openly, without taboos.” It is now time for such research, the priest explains. He has already received several requests concerning the question of how to interpret the Bible – especially the letters of St. Paul – concerning the topic of homosexuality.

Concerning female ordination, Wucherpfennig points out that “Pope Francis himself has already touched upon the matter of a 'female diaconate.'” In the German priest's eyes, the New Testament “allows for a larger variety of tasks and a greater range of kerygmatic and pastoral tasks for men and women” than what is currently believed. “Whether I will then write an article or whether there will be a book, I do not yet know,” he concludes.

Father Wucherpfennig says that there are still some resistances in parts of the Vatican, but then specifically praises Pope Francis and says that, under his pontificate, “there was a new opening up of the Church's debates.” He thus welcomes the decision in his own case, saying that it reflects the direction wanted by the Pope: this Vatican decision “goes into the direction that the Pope obviously prefers: that the Church moves forward.”

Pointing to other cases that are still pending in the Vatican with regard to other theologians possibly to be censored for their heterodox positions, Wucherpfennig explains that, in his case, it was not about suspending his teaching license, but, rather, only about his being the rector of the Jesuit St. Georgen Graduate School in Frankfurt. Commenting on the outcome after the tense recent weeks, Wucherpfennig says: “All is well that ends well.”

Katholisch.de – the news website of the German bishops – published a commentary on the Wucherpfennig dispute, in which the author, Pia Dyckmans, comes to a similar conclusion. For her, the positive outcome of the dispute shows that “the atmosphere in the Church seems to me to be changing very slowly, after all.” She welcomes the new “culture of debate” which permits the exploration of topics such as “homosexuality, celibacy, and the role of the woman.” She supportively refers to the German Bishop Franz-Josef Overbeck of Essen who only this week has claimed that “the Church's sexual morality has to change!”

For Dyckmans, the Wucherpfennig case has become now a “Point of no Return.”

It is in this light that it is worthwhile to mention Father Wucherpfennig's own proposal to drop an oath for priests which had been introduced under John Paul II and which bound the priests not only to the extraordinary Magisterium, but also to the “so-called ordinary Magisterium, that is to say all writings, encyclicals, instructions of the Congregations.” “If the Vatican were to rescind it [that oath], I would speak about the change of culture,” Wucherpfennig explains in his new interview.

Cardinal Gerhard Müller, the former Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, recently commented in a LifeSiteNews interview concerning the Wucherpfennig dispute. He says about Father Wucherpfennig's own controversial positions concerning homosexuality and female ordination and his being permitted to remain the rector: “This is an example of how the authority of the Roman Church undermines itself and how the clear expert knowledge of the Congregation for the Faith is being pushed aside."

"If this priest calls the blessing of homosexual relationships the result of a further development of doctrine, for which he continues to work, it is nothing but the presence of atheism in Christianity. He does not theoretically deny the existence of God, but, rather, he denies Him as the source of morality by presenting that which is before God a sin as a blessing,” he said.

Cardinal Müller adds: the fact that “the recipient of the Sacrament of Holy Orders has to be of the male sex is not the result of cultural circumstances or of positive, but changeable, Church legislation, but, rather, it is founded in the nature of this Sacrament and its divine institution.”


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Globe N A C F

Honduras News site publishes more details of Bishop Pineda’s alleged misconduct

In an editorial, ‘ConfidencialHN’ says the “children of Honduras are worth as much as those of Chile, Pennsylvania or Ireland,” and asks for a “thorough investigation” of clerical sex abuse in the country.

Bp. PinedaEDWARD PENTIN reports for the National Catholic Register -- “It’s confirmation of all the filth,” a Honduran source told the Register last week.

He was referring to a Nov. 8 article on ConfidencialHN.com, a trusted Honduran news site, which, by drawing on the account of a key witness and other documentation, not only corroborates many of the allegations against disgraced auxiliary bishop of Tegucigalpa, Juan Jose Pineda Fasquelle, but also gives more details on the case.

In July, Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Bishop Pineda, who had been accused of sexually abusing seminarians, two testimonies of which were obtained by the Register earlier this year. He was also accused of having a string of homosexual lovers, and financial misconduct in the archdiocese.

Bishop Pineda, 57, has been close to Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga, the archbishop of Tegucigalpa who is also the coordinator of the C9 Group of Cardinals charged with Church and curial reform. In the spring, the bishop was placed in charge of the archdiocese while the cardinal was on medical leave.

Prior to Bishop Pineda’s resignation, the allegations of moral and financial corruption had led to an apostolic visit in May 2017 at the Pope’s request, but the findings have never been made public, nor has any sanction against the bishop been publicized, or word of any act of reparation by the bishop.

The financial misconduct allegations center around the alleged embezzlement of $1.3 million from the Honduran government earmarked for charitable projects but which “completely disappeared,” according to sources.

Drawing on a key testimony that formed part of the Vatican inquiry, the Spanish-language ConfidencialHN reports new information, including how, in order to secure the government grant, Bishop Pineda visited various parishes, asking priests to give him details of purported projects the funds could supposedly go to. Some priests complied, others did not. None of the projects were executed. The article also alleges that a mediating body, alleged to launder government money, was also used for the purpose of acquiring the funds.

The article’s author, David Ellner Romero, explains how one of Bishop Pineda’s alleged lovers, Erick Cravioto Fajardo, a Mexican layman whom the auxiliary bishop dressed up as a priest to secure a tax exemption on a Toyota Yaris car he bought for him, drew up a “well written” document to secure the grant.

It was “so well written,” Ellner says, that Cardinal Maradiaga signed off on it, “ignoring the true purpose of his assistant” and of the “criminal organization created to loot these state funds.”

Cardinal Was ‘Cheated’

Ellner also reports how the Church never properly audited the funds, but instead they were “handled personally by Bishop Pineda.” The cardinal “had nothing to do but to sign the document,” Ellner reports, adding that the witness said: “He [the cardinal] was played, cheated and he signed.”

The ConfidencialHN article corroborates other allegations: that Bishop Pineda used the money “to pay for sexual favors, maintain a network of lovers, for whom he bought several real estate properties, cars, motorcycles, trips abroad with a paid lover, among others.” These are then listed in some detail, as are the alleged homosexual practices.

Noting the vast disparity between the auxiliary bishop’s actions and his homilies, Ellner says the “protected witness” testified to homosexual relationships between Bishop Pineda, Cravioto and others. These sexual acts were practiced in a “covert manner,” but always with windows left “open to curiosity and suspicion,” and allegedly they often took place in Villa Iris, the cardinal’s residence.

The Register reported in March that, for years, Cravioto lived in a spacious room adjacent to the cardinal’s quarters at the residence. Bishop Pineda also lived at the property.

The article recounts how Bishop Pineda “used to tour through different municipalities” of the archdiocese, always requesting “two rooms” although the party comprised three people. “He always stayed in a single room with his assistant, Oscarito,” the witness said.

But more serious was the witness’ allegation that Bishop Pineda used to bring altar boys, who were also seminarians at the time, to help him celebrate Mass at a place called Valle de Angeles.

“In the house there was only a room with a bed and a sofa, and he [Bishop Pineda] was left with two kids,” the witness alleged in the testimony he provided to the Vatican inquiry. “And the strange thing was that the next day we were going to have breakfast and the sofa was fixed [unused]. This means that he had slept with the two of them in bed.”

Ellner then returns to Cravioto and explains how after they split up, they allegedly took up with other lovers — Bishop Pineda with Oscarito, and Cravioto with someone called Denis who was awarded a full-time scholarship at the Catholic University of Honduras.

Cravioto and Denis reportedly then broke up after a fight, which Bishop Pineda had to intervene to stop, and Cravioto then met another lover called Darwin who also reportedly has a full-time scholarship at the university.

Ellner, who contends that it was the $1.3-million grant that was the catalyst for bringing to light all the alleged misconduct, reports that threats followed when Bishop Pineda became overwhelmed by complaints, especially from seminarians at Our Lady of Suyapa seminary.

He reports that Bishop Pineda allegedly scrawled the names, in red on a mirror in the “large halls of Villa Iris,” of half a dozen priests and laymen who he believed had betrayed him, an action which the witness said denoted “his state of madness.”


In a Nov. 16 editorial, ConfidencialHN highlights other alleged abuse cases in Honduras. It singles out that of Father German Flores, accused of raping several young girls, but also says “there are other names” which, for the sake of “professionalism,” they choose not to mention. None of these cases, it says, “has been referred to the civil and judicial authorities.”

The editorial alleges that Bishop Pineda moved Father Flores to another parish, then tried to silence the situation, but issued no “precautionary or penitential measures against the offender or any action that reflected reparation and healing of the victims.”

“The recidivism of the abuser was remedied with transfers,” the editorial states. “There was never a gesture of action that spoke of empathy or Christian sympathy with the victims.”

It goes on to say that the “last straw” was when the sister of Maryorie Almendares, one of Father Flores’ alleged victims, went to the Church authorities to file a complaint. Their bishop, Bishop José Canales Motino of the Diocese of Danli, then allegedly “obstructed the canonical process” and kept Father Flores hidden in a Tegucigalpa parish. To this day, according to the editorial, only Bishop Canales knows Father Flores’ current whereabouts, and continues to provide for him.

ConfidencialHN says the case shows “erroneous and deficient handling” by Bishop Canales, and the editorial quotes Pope Francis’ words on clerical sex abuse in Philadelphia in 2015: “I promise that those responsible will be held to account.”

“The children of Honduras are worth as much as those of Chile, Pennsylvania or Ireland,” the editorial continues, referring to recent cases of clerical sex abuse there, adding that such crimes are offenses “mixed with contempt for the poor.”

“The fact is that the cases of Honduras are not known in the Vatican and nobody speaks of repairing the damage, of comforting the victims, or of penalizing or canonically sanctioning the evildoers or their accessories, the bishops.

“A thorough investigation would soon give a clue about such crimes in the Church of Honduras,” the editorial concludes.




















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United Kingdom Theresa May comes out against pro-abortion bill

K. V. TURLEY reports for LifeSiteNews - British Prime Minister Theresa May has insisted she does not support a private members bill currently making its way through the Westminster Parliament that would decriminalise abortion in the United Kingdom, including Northern Ireland.

The British 1967 Abortion Act legalized abortion only within certain narrowly defined circumstances, and abortion outside these limits remains a criminal act. The 1967 Abortion Act permitting abortion in certain circumstances was never extended to Northern Ireland. This latest legislative move aims to decriminalize abortion across the UK.

In a letter to one of her parliamentary constituents, made public by the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC), the UK's Prime Minister said she did not support the repeal of the relevant sections of the Offenses Against the Person Act of 1861 because it 'does not solve the issue of abortion in Northern Ireland, as without any new provision it offers no safeguards for women, and would impact on England and Wales, as well as Northern Ireland'.

May went on to add that if the 1861 act was repealed there would be no upper time limit on how far into pregnancy a woman could have an abortion. She repeated the current government position by saying that it is up to Ulster's politicians to deal locally with the issue of abortion provision in Northern Ireland given that it is a devolved matter.

The private members' bill has been brought forward by Labour Member of Parliament Diana Johnson, and has the backing of Amnesty International. The Bill will receive its second reading in the United Kingdom Parliament this week. The Bill aims to repeal Ss.58 and 59 of the Offenses Against the Person Act of 1861 under which abortion remains a criminal offence.

In regard to Johnson's Bill, it is felt by many commentators that it has little chance of proceeding into law. This is because the government has made it clear that any change in the law on abortion in Northern Ireland is a devolved matter for the local assembly. That assembly is currently not sitting due to ongoing disagreements between its two main political parties, namely, the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) and Sinn Fein.

The Prime Minister's intervention comes just days after more than sixty female celebrities, including actors Emma Thompson, Kate Beckinsale and Claire Foy, wrote to May asking her to back the Johnson Bill. This is part of a strategy involving high-profile figures from beyond the world of politics and outside Northern Ireland all urging a change in the law there in regard to abortion. Similar tactics were employed by the 'Yes' campaign during the Republic's referendum.

Prime Minister May latest comments have little to do with her views on abortion. She has always stressed her support for abortion provision. After the landslide result in favor of legalizing abortion in the Irish Republic, she tweeted: 'The Irish referendum was an impressive show of democracy which delivered a clear and unambiguous result. I congratulate the Irish people on their decision and all of

Together4Yes on their successful campaign.'

Instead, her comments on the Johnson Bill are dictated by the fact that after the 2017 British General Election, May's Conservative Government has no overall majority in the House of Commons. She needs the support of the ten DUP MPs to ensure that her administration in London does not collapse. The DUP is pro-life and does not want Northern Ireland's current laws on abortion changed. Given her continued Brexit woes, May cannot afford to alienate the DUP further thus her public distancing from the Johnson Bill and all it would mean for Northern Ireland.

Nevertheless, and for some time now, Ulster's abortion laws remain under attack from pro-abortionist groups in Britain. The pressure to scrap existing laws has intensified since the Irish Republic's referendum on abortion in May. At their celebrations following the vote to allow abortion, Sinn Fein, one of the main proponents of liberal abortion in the Irish Republic, held aloft banners stating: 'The North is next'. Sinn Fein has made abortion reform a central tenet of their policy agenda in Northern Ireland where they are the second biggest party in terms of electoral support.

In addition, outside Northern Ireland, British pro-abortion groups and their parliamentary allies continue to agitate to change the laws that govern abortion in Northern Ireland. Central to their campaign to achieve this is the removal of the criminal law that underpins current British abortion legislation-Ss.58 and 59 of the Offenses Against the Person Act of 1861 - via the Johnson Bill. By removing these sections, abortion would be decriminalized not just in Northern Ireland but also throughout the rest of the United Kingdom.

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United Kingdom Father Aidan Nichols on Episcopal appointments

FR. JOHN HUNWICKE blogs: 'In August 2017, the finest theologian of the Anglophone world gave a lecture which was partially published in the Catholic Herald. The fact that the full text was not subsequently available gives rise to an inevitable suspicion that Father was pressurised.

That in itself would, if true, be disgraceful enough; a very considerable scandal. The best we humble ordinary folk can do about this is ... for me to remind you by reprinting extracts from the lecture as published in the Herald, and for you to give what publicity you can to what he said.

Today, I would like simply to point out that, more than a year before Cardinal Mueller's disturbing recent words about the sort of questionable individuals, theological illiterates signed up to Bergoglianism, who are being appointed to senior positions in the hierarchy; and before His Excellency Archbishop Vigano's revelations about the same subject, Fr Aidan had spoken with great clarity. His antennae must be very sensitive!

'[The pope's] programme would not have got as far as it has were it not the case that theological liberals, generally of the closet variety, have in the fairly recent past been appointed to high positions both in the world episcopate and in the ranks of the Roman Curia.'

'Of the closet variety' is an entertainingly old-fashioned phrase!

It was a few months before Dr Nichols' lecture that, on 19 November 2016, Cupich and Tobin were made cardinals.

The testimony this year of Archbishop Vigano asserted that the appointments of Cupich to Chicago (November 18 2014) and of Tobin to Newark (November 7 2016) 'were orchestrated by McCarrick, Maradiaga, and Wuerl ... their names were not among those presented by the Nunciature for Chicago and Newark'.

It would be a good thing if, henceforth, the terna of names submitted by Nuncios to the Holy See for a vacant bishopric were to be published.

God's people should not have to wait for a Vigano (God bless him) to come along before they can know what is being proposed for their own Particular Church. They should not be deprived of the liberty to form their own minds both about the proposed three names, and ... if this occurs ... why all three have been set aside so that the job can be given to another.

They should be treated as Grown Ups.

This is what, in the Anglo-Saxon cultural world, is often known as ACCOUNTABILITY.

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United Kingdrom New CAFOD chief's "appalling record on matters relating to Catholic teaching"

DOROTHY CUMMINGS McLEAN reports for LifeSiteNews -- The executive director of Britain's leading pro-life organization is unsure of the newest addition to the Catholic Church in England and Wales' foreign aid organization, citing concerns about her past partnership with pro-abortion organizations.

Christine Allen has been named the new director of the Catholic Bishops Conference of England and Wales' own Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD). At present the director of policy and public affairs for the UK's Christian Aid, in the past Allen headed another Catholic charity, known as Progressio, for eleven years.

John Smeaton of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) finds the Allen's appointment to the CAFOD post problematic.

'This is a surprising appointment to say the least,' he told LifeSiteNews via email. 'Progressio has a simply appalling record on matters relating to the Catholic Church and Catholic teaching.'

Smeaton said that during Allen's leadership two of Progressio's partner-organizations supported the 'See Change' campaign to strip the Holy See, the government of the Catholic Church, of its permanent status at the United Nations.

'See Change' is run by the pro-abortion, fraudulently named 'Catholics for Choice.' The organization is not recognized by any diocese as a legitimate Catholic group.

'One of the two Progressio partners supporting Sea Change, COMUS, (Colectiva Mujer y Salud or Woman and Health Collective) in the Dominican Republic, was described by Progressio as 'a non-profit-making organisation which has been working since 1984 to defend the sexual and reproductive rights of Dominican women in rural and urban areas,'' Smeaton said.

COMUS lobbied its country's legislature to decriminalize abortion and protested the government's decision to declare March 25, the feast of the Annunciation, as the Day of the Unborn Child.

The other problematic partner supporting 'See Change' was Nicaragua's Fundacion Puntos de Encuentro, or Meeting Points Foundation, which itself partners with the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute. Progressio described the Foundation as 'a platform from which to take on and debate different themes...among others, it deals with the themes of health and sexual and reproductive rights.' The Foundation accordingly campaigned against the closing of an abortion-allowing loophole in Nicaraguan law.

Allen herself has criticized Catholic Church for its teaching against the use of condoms. As director of Progressio, she wrote in the UK's socialist Chartist magazine that the Church's messages about respect and fidelity are overlooked because of 'its apparent intransigence that seems obsessed with the condom.' She hoped the Church would make an exception to the rule to prevent the spread of HIV.

Nevertheless, CAFOD is supportive of its new director, who will begin her tenure as director next spring. The organization acknowledged in its press release that Allen began her career in the charity sector as 'a field worker with the Justice and Peace Commission in the Archdiocese of Liverpool in 1987 and as CAFOD's Campaigns coordinator in 1989.'

Bishop John Arnold, the Chairman of Cafod's Board of Trustees, took issue with an article in Britain's Catholic Herald that suggested the Board was 'forced to defend' the choice of Allen as the new director.

In a letter to the Herald, he wrote, 'I would like to correct the impression given by Dan Hitchens that Cafod's Board of Trustees were 'forced to defend' the appointment of Cafod's new director, Christine Allen. Quite the opposite. Cafod's Trustees fully endorse her appointment, which has been greeted with joy by Cafod staff and supporters. We are delighted to welcome Christine back to Cafod.'

SPUC's Smeaton told LifeSiteNews that his pro-life group will be keeping an eye on the bishops' charity.

'SPUC will be watching the direction of CAFOD under its Christine Allen's directorship closely,' he wrote.

'I pray that there has been a sea-change, pun intended, in her capacity to make good judgements in accordance with Catholic teaching on the common good and that that's why she has been given this important job.'

When asked by the Catholic Herald if her opinions were 'compatible with leading a Catholic agency,' and whether she thought abortion was always wrong, Allen replied that she understood the expectations of her in the new role and that her 'commitment to Catholic teaching is undimmed.'

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United Kingdom Why Catholic bishops are terrified of investigations

J ShawDR. JOSEPH SHAW writes for LifeSiteNews - The Pennsylvania Grand Jury report into clerical sex abuse in the Catholic Church and the Australian Royal Commission on child sex-abuse have an English equivalent in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, which is currently taking evidence from witnesses, in public hearings.

Bishops and religious superiors publicly humiliated by these bodies have, of course, brought it upon themselves. Certainly, the degree of humiliation in each case does not necessarily correspond exactly with the degree of guilt, but the ones in the dock tend to make an admission of failure the keynote of their opening statements.

Despite all this, it is difficult to discern any real change of direction in episcopal policies and attitudes. The cases which remain hidden, and above all the clerics with credible allegations hanging over them still in active ministry, poison dioceses and religious communities. It is easy, though painful, to imagine the effect on the morale of seminarians and priests aware of the allegations against former Cardinal McCarrick, to see him honored and invited around the country year after year. But while the secular power is dragging information out of bishops about one case after another, bishops still seem to have no appetite to review old cases, to ensure that widely-suspected abusers are not still swanning around the diocese.

This is not to say that anyone in the Church should be regarded as guilty until proven innocent, and indeed there are far too many cases of priests thrown under the bus by their bishops because it seemed the easy way out.

In fact, the tendency to condemn priests when allegations become public, and to protect priests when allegations are made only in private, are two sides of the same coin. In both cases, what bishops have wanted to avoid is an investigation.

This fact is reinforced when we read about the times when there have been internal investigations, ordered by the Holy See, into American seminaries and into American religious sisters: these are discussed at length in Michael Rose's Goodbye Good Men and Anne Carey's Sisters in Crisis. Initial high hopes were dashed when one investigation after another were turned into white-washes. The senior bishops and officials involved did not have the will to rock the boat: or, as they put it to disappointed whistle-blowers, to conduct a 'witch-hunt'.

Why not? Not because these investigators, and bishops declining to investigate, thought that nothing bad was happening. No, it was precisely because they had a fair idea of how bad things are, that they did not want a real investigation. They were frightened of opening a can of worms.

In some cases, decision-makers were personally involved in wrongdoing. In other cases, it is sometimes suggested, they were being black-mailed, explicitly or implicitly. I would suggest, however, that this is another motive, which would apply even to those who had little to fear personally: simply that a real house-cleaning exercise would implicate so many people, in such seriously bad things, RERRthat the overall effect on the Church's standing, and even its ability to function, would be catastrophic.

Even a serious investigation into one specific case would have a tendency to spread the blame to an unacceptably large number of people. Other allegations in the file would have to be noted; the people who turned a blind eye to it, and the people who put in a good word for the abuser, would be revealed; and if a few more cases were investigated in this way, the pattern of cover-up would begin to emerge. Start pulling on one thread in the network of mutually-supporting abusers and complicit superiors, and the whole fabric of the diocese or community would begin to unravel.

Today's bishops are not responsible for the beginnings of this problem: they are responsible for allowing it to continue, and to strike deeper and deeper roots into the Church. They have known since they were bishops, from the files and from the victims, what they probably knew from hearsay before, that many dioceses are powder-kegs of wrongdoing. They don't want anyone to light a match.

They are in a situation in which things are so bad that they cannot do anything to make things better. That, at least, is how things may seem to them. In reality, as secular prosecutors are beginning to point out to them, they had various moral and legal duties, to protect children, to report crimes, and to administer property belonging to the Church for proper charitable purposes, which they repeatedly failed to fulfil. Their fear of the bad consequences of doing the right thing is no justification or defense either legally or morally.

And now that light is creeping into this abyss of evil, as was bound to happen eventually, all the bad consequences they hoped avoid will now happen anyway, all the worse for the delay, and the continuing reluctance of bishops to do the right thing.

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United States Police raid office of US bishops’ president for evidence of abuse cover-up

DOUG MAINWARING reports for LifeSiteNews – More than 50 members of law enforcement agencies descended on the offices of Cardinal DiNardo, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, in the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston chancery searching for “secret archives” related to clergy sexual abuse.

According to multiple media reports, the team entering the building consisted of members of the Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office, Texas Rangers, and Conroe Police officers.

The District Attorney’s Office indicated that were looking for documents in connection to the criminal case of Fr. Manuel LaRosa-Lopez who was recently charged with 4 counts of indecency with a child.

“A man and a woman claimed they were abused as teenagers by LaRosa-Lopez between 1998 and 2001 at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church,” according to the KHOU report.

“Both people accuse Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, who oversees the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, of not doing enough to stop La Rosa-Lopez,” continued the report. “One of them said DiNardo promised her that the priest would be removed from any contact with children, only to later discover that LaRosa-Lopez remained in active ministry at another parish, St. John the Fisher in Richmond.”

Tyler Dunman of the Montgomery County D.A.'s office said, “We will take any document o[r] piece of information related Father Manuel La Rosa Lopez or involving any other criminal activity," according to Fox10Phoenix.com.

The Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston issued the following statement following the raid:

'This morning, the District Attorney of Montgomery County executed a search warrant for records and information related to an ongoing investigation. The Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston continues to cooperate, as we have since the outset, with this process. In fact, consistent with Cardinal DiNardo’s pledge of full cooperation, the information being sought was already being compiled. The reporting of a “secret archives” is merely a Church term pertaining to confidential documents kept in a secure manner for the protection of the privacy of individuals — not unlike medical records. Pending additional information or developments, the Archdiocese will have no further comment on this ongoing investigation'.

Just two days before the Wednesday morning raid, Cardinal DiNardo authored a an op-Ed for the Houston Chronicle, titled, “Clergy abuse will be handled with transparency,” in which he said:

'[R]egarding Father Manuel La Rosa-Lopez, we met with his male accuser in August 2018 to hear about his complaint which dates back to the late 1990s. After our meeting, Father La Rosa-Lopez was removed from ministry. The law requires that child abuse allegations are reported to either Child Protective Services or law enforcement. While we reported this allegation to CPS, we have reviewed our procedures and in the future we will contact both law enforcement and CPS simultaneously. We continue to cooperate fully with this investigation'.

As other media outlets have reported, two of our other priests remain in ministry who have each been accused of sexually abusing a minor in the 1970s and 1980s. Both priests denied the allegations, and each accusation was reviewed by the Archdiocesan lay review board comprised of individuals with backgrounds in law enforcement and mental health, who after reviewing the facts, recommended that both priests be allowed to continue in ministry. These are the only accusations made against either priest who have each served more than 40 years in the Archdiocese.

This Archdiocese takes every allegation of wrongdoing brought to our attention seriously, and is fully cooperating — and will cooperate — with any and all investigations related to the clergy abuse of minors. In that sense, the Church of today is different than the Church of the 1970s and 1980s. We recognize the only way to resolve the abuse crisis and restore trust with the faithful is to address any and all accusations of abuse squarely and transparently. While the Church as a whole has made important strides especially since 2002 in addressing this evil, we still have important work to do. We can, and will, do better.

Earlier this month as the USCCB’s Annual Fall Assembly kicked off in Baltimore, DiNardo shocked the gathered prelates as he informed them of a last-minute directive from the Vatican telling the U.S. bishops to hold off on voting on two measures aimed at addressing the sexual abuse crisis in the U.S. Church.

DiNardo had promised in August that the Conference would address the abuse scandal.

In September, DiNardo led a small team of U.S. prelates to Rome to meet with Pope Francis, hoping that the Pope would agree to an apostolic visitation aimed at investigating the Archbishop McCarrick abuse allegations, but their efforts were rebuffed.

Cardinal DiNardo has served as president of the USCCB since November 2016.

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United States New documentary shows individual, societal threat of pornography

THE NATIONAL CATHOLIC REGISTER reports -- The non-profit group Fight the New Drug has released a three-part documentary to raise greater awareness of the damage caused by pornography.

The docuseries, Brain, Heart, World, was released Nov. 12. Each episode is about 30 minutes long and explores a different realm in which pornography causes harm.

Currently in a soft release, the film is expected to be promoted more starting early next year.

Clay Olsen, president and co-founder of Fight the New Drug, expressed hope that the film would be able to influence a wider audience than the reach of seminars and presentations.

'We started Fight the New Drug 10 years ago, and the intention has always been to bring education and awareness to the younger generation, to help them make more educated decisions on the topic, knowing that this was an issue that was impacting a generation like no other generation in human history,' he told CNA.

'We believe that this [movie] format will be able to reach individuals more quickly and in the medium in which they are more accustomed to learning.'

Olsen said the documentary looks at three major areas in which pornography causes harm: the mind, human relationships and society.

'[Episode] one focuses on the brain, educates individuals on the potential harmful impact of pornography to individuals and neurologically. Episode two is on the heart and impact to relationships, connections and love. [The last episode,] the world, explores the larger societal impact of pornography and what we can do to combat it collectively.'

He said the movie has been viewed by family members at home, students at universities, parishioners at churches, and members of other organizations. The initial feedback from viewers of different religions, political parties, ages and cultures has been 'phenomenal,' he said.

So far, various themes from the film have resonated with viewers. Some people, he said, were surprised by the last episode, which showed the dark reality of pornography's role in human trafficking. Many people do not realize the extent of pornography's grip on the modern culture, he explained.

'It really has more to do with where they are at in their life and their interests and maybe personal experiences that have made them more curious about a particular topic. That's really what we were hoping for: that each episode would be able to connect with different people for different reasons.'

Olsen said the movie - and the organization as a whole - is less about fighting against something and more about fighting to build something. He said the necessary reaction to pornography needs to be a collective push for a healthier life.

'We must engage, we must step in and help raise the collective awareness of our communities and our culture, so we can create a groundswell of momentum toward more healthy living, healthy relationships and healthy society,' he said.

'Rather than fighting against pornography, Fight the New Drug and this documentary is far more about fighting for real love, real connection and real relationships.'

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United States A' Strong protest' may move Pope Francis to deal with the abuse crisis

DOUG MAINWARING reports for LifeSiteNews -- A prominent priest of the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C., has criticized Pope Francis' decision to suppress any vote or action on the abuse scandals by the U.S. bishops.

In his Nov. 16 blog piece titled The Pope Owns This, published by The National Catholic Register, Msgr. Charles Pope writes about the concerns of many of his fellow priests and lay people regarding the annual fall assembly of the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops (USCCB) which concluded last week in Baltimore.

'There is an almost complete tone-deafness in Rome; there seems to be bewilderment as to why these American 'conservatives' are so worked up,' wrote Msgr. Pope.

'Even worse, it appears that there is intentional resistance, obfuscation, and outright refusal to grant the legitimate requests of God's faithful for a full and prompt investigation. These requests by the faithful are intended to ensure that tolerance of sin, violations of chastity, and clerical malfeasance will end,' he added.

'To most Catholics, the Pope's actions and seeming resistance place the ownership of the scandal squarely in his court; he has increasingly become the face of the scandal,' continued Msgr. Pope.

Instead of responding in good faith to members of the Church in the United States who have asked for greater transparency from Rome regarding former Cardinal McCarrick's predatory behavior, Msgr. Pope points out that Pope Francis has 'referred to those who have asked for answers and investigations as 'a pack of wild dogs, scandal-mongers,' and 'those in league with the Great Accuser.''

'This is no way to treat God's faithful; it makes him seem more of a besieged and angry potentate than a shepherd who 'has the smell of the sheep,'' added the Monsignor.

After drawing parallels between Pope Francis' past 'stubbornness, dismissiveness, and unkindness' in his treatment of clergy sex abuse survivors, in Chile, Msgr. Pope states: 'Americans, both clergy and lay, may well have to learn that it could take strong protest to move this pope to reconsider his seemingly dismissive stance regarding our concerns.'

'My point here is not to recount every detail but rather to point out that Pope Francis, who was himself tasked by the last conclave with rooting out abuse and corruption, has tended to surround himself with men who are at the very heart of the scandals rocking the Church throughout the world,' asserted Msgr. Pope.

'His credibility as a reformer who will root out scandal and insist upon accountability is nearly nonexistent; the scandal in the United States has landed firmly on his desk as a result of his own behavior. He has said to American Catholics and to our bishops, in effect, 'Let me and the Holy See handle this.''

'I cannot say strongly enough how uncomfortable it makes me to be detailing all this. Every faithful Catholic-and certainly every priest-has an instinct to support the Pope and our bishops, but this worldwide scandal has forced many of us to speak out,' wrote Msgr. Pope.

For the few bishops who did speak out clearly at the recent USCCB meeting, Msgr. Pope prays they will direct clear and forceful appeals to Rome and to the Holy Father.

'Bishops are not acolytes of the Pope and their dioceses are not mere franchises of the Diocese of Rome,' continued the Monsignor. 'I pray that they will raise their rightful voices as shepherds seeking to protect their flock. May they have the courage to insist, not just request, actions that they deem necessary for the protection of God's faithful and for a restoration of credibility.'

Beyond praying for the bishops, Msgr. Pope advised laity who have had a bishop speak out strongly regarding Rome's handling of the scandal to 'encourage and support him.' If he has remained silent, 'challenge him with love. Find your own voice, too. It may feel awkward to speak forcefully and with concern toward the Holy Father, but it seems that this will be necessary.'

Msgr. Pope said that by Pope Francis' actions he 'has become the face of this crisis, indicating that he wants to be the one to handle it. Our focus, prayers, and insistence must now be directed toward him.'

'Practically speaking, I would advise you to write to the Papal Nuncio in Washington D.C., Archbishop Christophe Pierre,' wrote Msgr. Pope. 'Keep your letter brief, but be clear in stating your concerns and in insisting on the actions that the Holy See must take to begin restoring credibility; ask the good archbishop to forward your concerns to the Holy Father.'

'There are some in Rome and even among our own bishops and priests in the U.S. who still see this crisis as a mere tempest in a teapot, largely stirred up by 'right-wing' bloggers and Catholics who simply 'don't like' Pope Francis,' noted Msgr. Pope. I know of no one from any sector of the Church who is not heartbroken about this, while also angry and insistent upon reform. This is not a storm created in the 'blogosphere.''

Monsignor Pope concludes by cautioning priests and bishops to not demonize the faithful who have expressed dismay over the clergy sex scandal and its handling.

'[T]hey have been too good to us for us to write them off as some fringe element. They are good Catholics and are looking to us for clear teaching, for some return of the love and loyalty they have shown us through the most difficult decades of the cultural and sexual revolutions. They have been exceedingly patient with us. This is no time to be dismissive; this is a time to listen and work together with God's good people for reform and a new springtime of faith in the Church and in the world. Somebody say, 'Amen!'

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United States The letter dismissed by Bishop Robert McElroy. . .

REMNANT EDITOR Michael Matt's writes -- The following Open Letter to Bishop Robert McElroy of San Diego is not an easy read. Some of the viler details have been deleted; others have been retained so as to leave no doubt in the reader's mind as to the truly demonic nature of the Church of Accompaniment.

The author of this Open Letter, Aquinas Walter Richard Sipe, died in August of this year. He was a former Benedictine priest and an expert on the clergy sexual abuse crisis. His was yet another voice crying in the wilderness. Only now, months after his death in the wake of the McCarrick tsunami, is it becoming horrifically clear just how right he was and how heinous is the crime of those who ignored his dire warnings.

Over the course of several decades, he'd conducted an ethnographic study of the sexual behavior of priests pretending to be celibate. In 1990, he released a report claiming that more than half of the priests studied were involved in current or past sexual relationships. And this man was in a position to know of what he spoke, having taught at major Catholic seminaries and even served as a consultant and expert witness in numerous criminal cases involving the sexual abuse of minors by Catholic priests.

When confronted with new evidence of the length and breadth of the sexual abuse crisis, many critics of the traditional Catholic Church blame celibacy and the non-married state of the clergy—as though every priest is just one lonely evening away from deciding to go on a sexual rampage and start raping little kids. (Could there be any greater insult to single people everywhere?)

These same critics will not accept that for a couple of millennium, well-formed and faithful Catholic priests were quite capable of controling their own passions and even taking vows of lifelong chastity. For these shortsighted critics, incredibly, if modern priests were allowed to marry they’d somehow stop raping the little boys overnight, and the beastly preying on young men would cease to be a problem.

Well, these critics may be interested to know that Sipe’s study shows that celibacy is not now the problem nor was it ever. For a thousand years, priests kept their vows and the children of their parishes were not only perfectly safe but beautifully protected by beloved and faithful pastors. There’s something about the modern Church, the modern Mass, the modern seminary which has transformed the modern priesthood into a "gay profession" and that -- not celibacy -- is the problem.

Sipe discovered that only about half of American priests are practicing celibacy anyway, and that the seminaries themselves are hotbeds of experimentation with homosexuality. He proved this, and he named names. But his findings were dismissed and covered up, even though one of his most serious charges was leveled against one Theodore “Uncle Ted” McCarrick.

In 2008, Sipe even attempted to bring the crisis he’d unearthed to the attention of the Pope. He published an Open Letter to Pope Benedict XVI, sounding the alarm that the homosexual crisis in the priesthood in the United States was systemic and out of control. He cited several examples of heinous culprits hailing from the Archdiocese of Washington, for example, St. John's Abbey in Collegeville, Minnesota, and most notably St. Mary's Pontifical Seminary in Baltimore (home to then-Bishop Theodore McCarrick):

“I know the names of at least four priests who have had sexual encounters with Cardinal McCarrick. I have documents and letters that record the firsthand testimony and eyewitness accounts of McCarrick, then archbishop of Newark, New Jersey actually having sex with a priest, and at other times subjecting a priest to unwanted sexual advances."

Again, no action was taken, just as no action would be taken on the Viganò allegations ten years later, nor will any action be taken at February's bishops' meeting with Pope Francis in Rome next year.

See the pattern? Cover-up after cover-up, followed by shooting messenger after messenger.

Celibacy is not the problem although, ironically enough, a lack of celibacy certainly is. And it is our contention that this inability of modern priests to live up to their committment to celibacy was brought on by the Revolution of Vatican II, the effeminate New Mass and the emasculated New Priesthood-- the wretched effects and consequences of decades of unchecked doctrinal revolution in the Church.

Active homosexual priests and bishops lost the faith long before they began abusing each other and terrorizing young men. Celibacy, quite obviously, was the last thing on their mind.

Poor Brother Sipe was right, but nobody listened to him. Even now, Cardinal Blase Cupich--who recently conferred the ‘Spirit of Francis Award’ on Cardinal McCarrick for outstanding service to the Church--was appointed by Francis to help head up the February meeting in Rome to address the sexual abuse crisis prompted by--wait for it--the immoral life of the same predator, Cardinal McCarrick:

Again, you can’t make it up! The sheep are in the gullets of the wolves, and the shepherds obviously don't give a damn.

All we can do is pray and continue to speak out. God the Supreme Judge of us all will have to take it from here.

Michael J. Matt


A.W.Richard Sipe
2825 Ridgegate Row
La Jolla, CA 92037

July 28, 2016

Bishop McElroy:

I received your note postmarked July 19.


It was clear to me during our last meeting in your office, although cordial, that you had no interest in any further personal contact. It was only after that I sent you a letter copied to my contacts in DC and Rome.

The new Nuncio, Archbishop Pierre, told my colleague he is interested in the care of and reaction to victims of clergy assault: and I am assured that the Papal Commission for the Prevention of Abuse is also dedicated to this aspect of the crisis.

I will as I was asked, put my observations in the form of a report. Your office made it clear that you have no time in your schedule either now or “in the foreseeable future” to have the meeting that they suggested.

Bishop, I have been at the study and research of the problem of clergy abuse since 1960. In 1986 I wrote to Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk, president of the USCCB at the time, with my preliminary conclusions. His response was negligible, although he passed the substance onto the USCCB office who gave my figures to a NEWSWEEK reporter.

In 1990 before my study A Secret World; Sexuality and the Search for Celibacy was published I agreed to meet with the entire staff at their DC offices.

Institutional resistance is understandable, if surprising to me. So much of my work has been validated and in many quarters now taken for granted.

The number of priests and bishops having sex with minors was not the primary or central focus of the study. But my calculation of 6% (six percent) clergy abusers as a base line has held up very well. [the most recent validation is between 6 ½ and 9% in the U.S. Some dioceses have registered 23%. Some religious houses have recorded 25%.] Sexual violation within the RC clergy is systemic. I say that on the basis of observation and scientific conclusion. And I say that with empathy and concern.

Now that aspect of the sexual crisis is well known around the world. The crisis behind the scandal will be the next phase of reality with which to come to terms: Namely: the broad range and frequency of sexual behaviors registered in the clerical system. “At any one time no more than 50% of priests are practicing celibacy.”

That was the hypothesis and thrust of A Secret World (1990) and repeated in Celibacy in Crisis (2003)

In May 1993 at the Vatican International Conference on Celibacy in Rome Cardinal Jose Sanchez then Chairman of the Dicastery on Clergy fielded questions about my study and conclusions and a similar sociological statistical report by Fr. Victor Kotze of South Africa. Father Kotze concluded that in any three-year period only 45% of priests were practicing celibacy.

When asked directly by reporter Mark Dowd, and a reporter recording for the BBC TV what the Cardinal thought of those studies he said, “I have no reason to doubt the accuracy of those figures”.


During the first National Survivors Conference in Chicago, October 1992, I addressed the group with these words: “The crisis we are facing today— sexual abuse of minors by Catholic clergy—is the tip of an iceberg. And if we follow it to its foundations it will lead to the highest corridors of the Vatican.”

Sooner or later it will become broadly obvious that there is a systemic connection between the sexual activity by, among and between clerics in positions of authority and control, and the abuse of children. When men in authority—cardinals, bishops, rectors, abbots, confessors, professors—are having or have had an unacknowledged-secret-active-sexlife under the guise of celibacy an atmosphere of tolerance of behaviors within the system is made operative.

Many of the sexual patterns are set up during seminary years or in early years after ordination when sexual experimentation is initiated or sustained. The 2009 Vatican Report (in English) on American seminaries invented a new term—transitional homosexuality. I believe this is due to the awareness of the frequent activity in the homosocial structure of seminary and religious life.

I was on the staff of three major seminaries, one Pontifical, from 1967 to 1984. I served as a consultant for seminaries from 1966 to 1996. That gave me a broad contact with several other seminaries, their Rectors and staffs.

I was aware, from information shared by their partners, that a number of rectors (at least three) and also some staff members, were having periodic sex with students.

At one seminary fully one-fourth of the professors had ongoing sexual contacts with men or women in more or less consensual arrangements.

It is credibly established that thirty percent (30%) of U.S. bishops have a homosexual orientation. This is not a condemnation nor an allegation of malfeasance. The list of homosexual Popes and saints is long and illustrious. [Remnant Editor's Note: Verification of this claim would be difficult, if not impossible, to establish. Certainly, in the case of saints -- if there's any truth to it -- it would have been non-practicing homosexuals who'd overcome the (non-sinful) inclination and thus would never have made it known to others. So how does Sipe know this? I'd say he does not. He's speculating. In the case of popes, perhaps he's referring to Pope Paul VI who was certainly rumored to be homosexual. And there are others in history rumored to be. Making this contention, however, to our mind, should have proven beyond any shadow of doubt that Sipe was certainly not some "homophobic" rad trad with an axe to grind, thus making it all the more egregious that his findings were ignored, covered up, and dismissed by the Modernist prelates Sipe attempted to warn. MJM]

A serious conflict arises when bishops who have had or are having sexually active lives with men or women defend their behavior with denial, cover up, and public pronouncements against those same behaviors in others.

Their own behavior threatens scandal of exposure when they try to curtail or discipline other clerics about their behavior even when it is criminal as in the case with rape and abuse of minors, rape, or power plays against the vulnerable. (Archbishops Harry Flynn, Eugene Marino, Robert Sanchez, Manuel Moreno, Francis Green, etc.)


I will record instances that demonstrate the systemic dynamic that forms and fosters sexual violations among the clerical culture. All of this information is culled from records (civil or church). In addition, I have 50 years’ participation or contact with the clerical culture of the RCC.

I have reviewed several hundred thousands of pages of records of clerical sexual activity and been involved as a consultant or expert witness in 250 civil legal actions against clergy offenders.

None of the following information is secret. It is reviewed here in an effort to demonstrate how the sexual system works in the clerical culture.

John Neinstedt (1947—) I reviewed the 138-page report of the Ramsey County MN Attorney’s report on the sexual activity of Neinstedt.

I have interviewed priests from the Detroit Archdiocese who had personal contact there with Neinstedt and had first-hand knowledge of his presence at gay bars. The affidavits in the report speak for themselves.

Bishop Thomas Lyons (1923-88) priest of Baltimore and auxiliary bishop of Washington, D.C. I have personally interviewed adult men who claim that they were sexually abused by Lyons when he was a priest in Baltimore and a monsignor and pastor in D.C.

One of them was on probation for abusing minor members of his own family. He claimed that Lyons abused him from the time he was seven to seventeen years old. Also Lyons himself said that this happened to him (by a priest) when he was growing up and that “it was natural.”

One important element in this behavior is the three generational pattern of sexual abuse of minors involved: Priest abuser of child who becomes a priest and child abuser. Behavior is justified as natural. This is a pattern seen often and termed the genealogy of clerical sexual abuse.

Bishop Raymond J. Boland (1932-2014) was a priest and pastor also in Washington, D.C., until 1988 when he was appointed bishop of Birmingham AL, and subsequently, in1993 bishop of Kansas City-St. Joseph.

I was involved for several years in advocating for several victims that Boland violated when he was a pastor. The accounts of the victims are among the most horrendous from the point of view that exemplifies how deeply sex even with minors is integrated within the clerical culture.

Cardinal James Hickey and bishop William Lori fought with particular fury the allegations that ended in the suspension of several priests and a financial settlement with some victims.

The victim quoted here from his report to the Archdiocese refused the settlement offered by the Archdiocese. The whole process from 1994 to 2004 spanned the reigns of Hickey, Mc Carrick and Wuerl.

Fr. Frank Swift (+1974) and Fr. Aldo PetrinI (+late 1980s) were named as abusers.

Msgr. James Lavin was named as an abuser of several minor victims and was finally removed from the ministry by Cardinal McCarrick in 2002.

These D.C. priests formed a coterie of sexually active clerics from the seminary to connections with officials in Vatican offices.

Some of the victims were assaulted together. Two victims refused financial settlements. Others were constricted by confidentiality clauses.

This tangle of clerical sexual abusers demonstrates the operation that infests the systemic operation of sexual activity from top to bottom. Many more facts about this group are on record.

Following are quotes from the reports in files submitted to the offices of the D.C. Archbishops and their lawyers:

A 10-year-old boy at Mount Calvary Catholic Church in Forestville, MD in 1967 was sodomized by Fr. Raymond J. Boland and then-deacon James Lavin.

The boy asked Boland why they were doing this and he responded, “God makes special boys and girls for pleasure, and you are certainly one of them.” ...

They said they were going to make him a “big boy” and show him how much God loved him. And breathlessly told him that it was, “the ultimate sign of love when a man ‘came’ with a special boy; that gave him, “the seed of life”.

Lavin said, “when I was 12 years old, I would be taken on retreats where spiritual bonding between older men and younger boys took place.”

They assured him the pain would go away, gave warnings to keep secret and delivered threats of dire consequences if he told anyone. (He did tell his mother who slapped him and told him never to talk that way about a priest or nun.)

He made a first suicide attempt with aspirin.

Three weeks after the assault by Boland, this boy contacted a priest in his home parish—Fr. Perkinson. (who was ultimately a patient at St. Luke’s Institute Suitland, MD.)

When he told the priest his name, Fr. Perkinson said, “Oh, you’re the special little boy Fr. Boland told me about.” He said he had been in the military and “sex between two guys was normal”.

The priest then proceeded to [sexually molest the boy. (Too graphic to reproduce here.) MJM]

[This victim spent several years in the major seminary where he experienced and recorded the sexual connections between seminary, parish priests, chancery and Rome. The string of abusers was reported to Cardinal Hickey. Some were retired or left the area.]

While this assault was in progress, the pastor opened the door, simply looked and closed it. (This behavior by other priests is reported in other instances— e.g., Gaboury, litigated in Fall River, MA; in a case litigated in D.C. the pastor seeing the boy bound and being sodomized simply said, “you will have to repair that wall”. (The victim had punched a hole in the wall while bound and thrashing around.)

Boland’s victim made a second suicidal attempt and was treated in a hospital.

This is by no means the most horrendous of the records I have reviewed, but its elements of seduction, assault, sexualizing spirituality, and selfjustification under a “celibate” mantle and cover up are paradigmatic of a system of behaviors in the Catholic clerical culture.

The record of one priest abuser relates how he anointed the foreheads of his boy victims with his semen.

Another priest who was having sex with a 13-yer-old of girl touched her genitals with what he said was a consecrated host to show her “how much God loves you”.

The credibility of the documents is unquestionable and recorded in church and legal documents. The reporter in Boland’s case is a respected professor.

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick has been reported by numerous seminarians and priests (accused of having made sexual advances and activity). A settlement with one priest was effected by Stephen Rubino, Esq.

In that record, the operation of McCarrick in sexual activity with three priests is described. Correspondence from “Uncle Ted” as he asked to be called, is included. One of the principals is now a lawyer who left the priesthood. Two men remain in the priesthood, but refuse to speak publicly, despite the fact that the settlement document is open. One priest was told by the chancery office, “if you speak with the press we will crush you”.

Priests or seminarians who speak up about a sexually active superior are threatened with the loss of everything—employment, status, etc. Those who report are greeted with disbelief or even derision if they know but were not personally involved. If they were a partner in the sexual activity and “come out” they become a pariah and labeled a traitor.

I have interviewed twelve seminarians and priests who attest to propositions, harassment, or sex with McCarrick, who has stated, “I do not like to sleep alone”.

One priest incardinated in McCarrick’s Archdiocese of Newark was taken to bed for sex and was told, “this is how priests do it in the U.S.”. None so far has found the ability to speak openly at the risk of reputation and retaliation.

The system protects its impenetrability with intimidation, secrecy and threat. Clergy and laity are complicit.

Abbot John Eidenschink, O.S.B. (1914-2004) I knew John Eidenschink from the time I was a student in Prep school (1946) until the time of his death. He served as a theology professor, confessor for six years, superior, and traveling companion in Europe (summer 1956), and principal speaker at my first mass in 1959. I served with him as an assistant master of ceremonies.

It was only in 1970 that monks and former monks came forward to tell me about how Fr. John, under the guise of offering instructions how to make them more comfortable with their body, and that during spiritual guidance, had them stretch out nude on his bed while he touched them; he penetrated some.

At least two of these men sought legal advice and received substantial financial settlements from the abbey. At least five men reported this behavior. Others who remained in the monastery did not publicize their encounters.

I have heard this manner and mode of relationship described in other religious houses and seminaries.

Like many other members of dioceses and religious communities I was blind to these and other sexual activities among the group. This is not an excuse. Lack of vigilance, adequate sexual education