Pope Francis, flanked by Vatican spokesperson Greg Burke, listens to a journalist's question Aug. 26, 2018, during a news conference aboard the flight to Rome at the end of his two-day visit to Ireland. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia, Pool)

Pope on McCarrick claims: 'I won't say a word about it'

ABOARD THE PAPAL PLANE (AP) — Pope Francis declined Sunday (Aug. 26) to confirm or deny claims by the Vatican's retired ambassador to the United States that Francis knew in 2013 about sexual misconduct allegations against the former archbishop of Washington, Theodore McCarrick, but rehabilitated him anyway.

Francis said the 11-page text by Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, which reads in part like a homophobic attack on Francis and his allies, "speaks for itself" and that he wouldn't comment on it.


RELATED: Letter: Vatican knew about disgraced archbishop’s behavior


Francis was asked by a U.S. reporter during an airborne news conference Sunday if Viganò's claims that the two discussed the McCarrick allegations in 2013 were true. Francis was also asked about Viganò's claims that McCarrick was already under sanction at the time but that Francis rehabilitated him.

Francis said he had read Viganò's document and trusted journalists to judge for themselves.

"It's an act of trust," he said. "I won't say a word about it."

The National Catholic Register and another conservative site, LifeSiteNews, published Viganò's text Sunday as the pope wrapped up a two-day visit to Ireland dominated by the clerical sex abuse scandal.

Viganò, 77, a conservative whose hard-line anti-gay views are well-known, urged the reformist pope to resign over what he called Francis' own culpability in covering up McCarrick's crimes.

Francis accepted McCarrick's resignation as cardinal last month, after a U.S. church investigation determined that an accusation he had sexually abused a minor was credible.

Since then, another man has come forward to say McCarrick began molesting him starting when he was 11, and several former seminarians have said McCarrick abused and harassed them when they were in seminary. The accusations have created a crisis of confidence in the U.S. and Vatican hierarchy, because it was apparently an open secret that McCarrick regularly invited seminarians to his New Jersey beach house, and into his bed.

Coupled with the devastating allegations of sex abuse and cover-up in a recent Pennsylvania grand jury report — which found that 300 priests had abused more than 1,000 children over 70 years in six dioceses — the scandal has led to calls for heads to roll and for a full Vatican investigation into who knew what and when about McCarrick.

Viganò apparently sought to answer some of those questions. His letter identifies by name the Vatican cardinals and U.S. archbishops who were informed about the McCarrick affair, an unthinkable expose for a Vatican diplomat to make. He said documents backing up his version of events are in Vatican archives.

The Vatican's ambassador to the U.S. from 2011 to 2016, Viganò said his two immediate predecessors "did not fail" to inform the Holy See about accusations against McCarrick, starting in 2000. Viganò said he himself sent at least two memos on McCarrick.

Viganò said Pope Benedict XVI eventually sanctioned McCarrick in 2009 or 2010 to a lifetime of penance and prayer, and to no longer celebrate Mass in public or travel.

Viganò said Francis asked him about McCarrick when they met on June 23, 2013, at the Vatican's Santa Marta hotel where the pope lives, three months after Francis was elected pope.

Viganò wrote that he told Francis: "Holy Father, I don't know if you know Cardinal McCarrick, but if you ask the Congregation of Bishops, there is a dossier this thick about him. He corrupted generations of seminarians and priests, and Pope Benedict ordered him to withdraw to a life of prayer and penance."

Soon thereafter, Viganò wrote, he was surprised to find that McCarrick had started traveling on missions on behalf of the church, including to China. McCarrick was also one of the Vatican's intermediaries in the U.S.-Cuba talks in 2014.

Viganò's claim that McCarrick had been ordered by Benedict to stay out of public ministry and retire to a lifetime of prayer is somewhat disputed, given that McCarrick enjoyed a fairly public retirement. But Viganò insisted the sanctions had been imposed, and said a former counselor in the embassy at the time was "prepared to testify" about the "stormy" meeting when McCarrick was informed of them.

Barry Coburn, McCarrick's civil attorney, said the allegations in the Viganò letter are "serious."

"Archbishop McCarrick, like any other person, has a right to due process. He looks forward to invoking that right at the appropriate time," he said in a statement.

The letter also contains a lengthy diatribe about homosexuals and liberals in the Catholic Church. It often reads like an ideological manifesto, naming all of Francis' known supporters in the U.S. hierarchy as being complicit in a cover-up of McCarrick's misdeeds.

"Now that the corruption has reached the very top of the church's hierarchy, my conscience dictates that I reveal those truths regarding the heart-breaking case of the archbishop emeritus of Washington," Viganò wrote.

Viganò, however, also has had his own problems with allegations of cover-up, and he and Francis had a major dust-up during Francis' 2015 visit to the U.S., which Viganò organized.

In that incident, a leading U.S. opponent of gay marriage, Kim Davis, was among those invited to meet with the pope at Viganò's Washington residence. Francis was so enraged that Davis' supporters had leaked word of the meeting that the Vatican subsequently insisted he only held one private audience while there: with one of his former students, a gay man and his partner.

The cover-up accusation, which Viganò denied, concerned allegations that he tried to quash an investigation into the former archbishop of St. Paul-Minneapolis, Minn., John Nienstedt, who was accused of misconduct with adult seminarians.

In 2016, the National Catholic Reporter said Viganò allegedly ordered the investigation wrapped up and a piece of evidence destroyed. The report cited a 2014 memo from a diocesan official that was unsealed after the conclusion of a criminal investigation into the archdiocese. No charges were filed.

In a statement provided Sunday to the AP about the Nienstedt case, Viganò said a Vatican investigation of the allegation found no wrongdoing on his part.

He said the allegation that he destroyed evidence was false and that his efforts to have the archdiocese correct the record have been met with silence.

Nienstedt was forced to resign in 2015 over complaints about his handling of sex abuse cases.

Viganò's name also made headlines during the 2012 "Vatileaks" scandal, when some of his letters were published. In them, he begged not to be transferred to the Vatican Embassy in Washington from the administration of the Vatican City State.

He claimed he was being punished for having exposed corruption in the Vatican. The letters showed a clash with Benedict's No. 2, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, who is also a target of Viganò's McCarrick missive.

The document's authenticity was confirmed to The Associated Press by an Italian journalist, Marco Tosatti, who said he was with Viganò when the archbishop wrote it Wednesday.

"He was very emotional and upset at the end the effort," Tosatti told AP, adding that Viganò left Tosatti's home afterward without saying where he was going.

Comments

  1. Since this is not the first time Vigano has tried to kneecap Pope Francis during a major event, one is left wondering about the timing of it all, if not the motive, especially since Vigano has had access to this information for a long time. Why now? Sounds to me like he’s kicking an enemy while he’s down, only this time he’s willing to take the whole Church down along with the Pope. Not the kind of behavior one typically expects from a “prince of the church.”

  2. I’m less concerned about his motives than his accuracy. If what he says is true, then Francis has to go, period.
    The fact that all of the usual suspects who steadfastly support the liberal homosexual thugs in the Vatican are now having conniption fits suggests that there’s substance here, not merely mudslinging.
    Slobbering Francis nut-hugger Massimo Faggioli, who has never met an orthodox dogma he didn’t want thrown into the trash, is now quoting cannon law calling for Vigano to be censured, if you can believe that.
    They’re frantically trying to silence him, which leads me to think that what Vigano says has more than credible proof behind it.

  3. I’ll post this again:
    The Italian press, including papers generally favorable to Francis and others not so much, are suspicious of Viganò’s letter, treating it as the work of a resentful conspiracy theorist with more than one ax to grind. In La Repubblica this morning, Alberto Melloni, professor and an expert on things Roman, writes that “Qualcuno ha fatto di un pollo il Corvo. E nasconde un disegno: saldare i tradizionalisti con la destra religiosa.” (My translation: “Someone is making a crow out of a chicken (mountain out of a mole hill), and concealing his true motive: to forge an alliance between Traditionalists and the religious right.)
    His essay begins “Che un vecchio prelato, furibondo per non avere fatto carriera, covi risentimento verso il Papa è l’abc del cattolicesimo romano.” (That an elderly prelate, enraged at not having been promoted to higher positions, harbors resentment against a pope, these are the ABCs of Catholicism, Roman style.)

    Mariolina Lossa writes in today’s Corriere della Sera: “Viganò ha sempre avuto modalità di denuncia e di «politica» vaticana tutt’altro che «tradizionaliste». Non ci sono colpi segreti, mani che agiscono nell’ombra. Viganò è abituato, alla maniera americana, a diffondere sui mezzi di comunicazione di massa, le sue lettere e i suoi documenti accusatori, con nomi, date e circostanze di riferimento. Punta il dito contro arcivescovi e cardinali a suo dire corrotti ed ha anche partecipato ad incontri pubblici di ultrà cattolici contrari alle aperture di Papa Francesco. Lo fa apertamente, in nome di una «purificazione» della Chiesa ma sembrerebbe che la vera partita in gioco sia tuttavia quella di una sua ascesa all’interno delle gerarchie ecclesiastiche romane.” In brief, she’s treating Viganò as a bitter man because he’s not been promoted and Francis has taken other advice on important issues.

    I’d still like to see an investigation. Too many reports have been dismissed by people who thought they knew better.

  4. “Not the kind of behavior one typically expects from a “prince of the church”.

    I usually agree with you, but on this I don’t. I think this is exactly the kind of behavior one expects from the princes. The only difference is the dubia crowd are doing it in public. The timing of the Vigano letter was clearly very carefully planned, and it may well be that the dubia crowd also have a follow-up planned. Francis appears to be hunkering down, so the Burkites may smell blood.

  5. If you’re going to condemn Pope Francis for failing to act sooner on McCarrick based on information given to him by Vigano as soon as he became pope, then you should at least have the intellectual honesty to admit that Pope Benedict’s “censure” of McCarrick was wholly inadequate and question why Vigano didn’t stomp his feet nearly a decade ago in 2008-2009 when the allegations against McCarrick first came to light and similarly demand that Pope Benedict step down. Why did Benedict wait until 2013 to resign? But your mention of “liberal homosexual thugs” is a dead giveaway to the fact that you’re mostly interested in partisan warfare than really getting at the truth.

  6. As Ross Douthat tweeted yesterday, “Vigano ends up in a sweepingly anti-Francis place but there are a lot of names and stories in his letter before the current pope appears.”

    He also wrote this: “I’m also curious if the observers suggesting this is “the Catholic right’s Benghazi” believe that the Vigano letter’s account of several nuncios’ attempts to inform Rome of McCarrick’s crimes in the early 2000s should be taken seriously or dismissed with prejudice as well.”

  7. I believe by “Burkites”, unceasinglyclueless, you’re referencing orthodox Catholics who subscribe to the Catholic Faith.

    Everyone paying any attention knew a year go Francis had peaked and at his age the odds were against him and whatever he thought he was doing in conjunction with the Germans.

    Oh, their whatever-the-hell-it-is also seems to have peaked.

    We’ve seen this before, nothing new.

  8. There is no reasonable provision for ridding the church of Francis.

    Given his age his reign is self-correcting.

  9. There is plenty of reason to oppose Francis beyond the McCarrick issue.

    Yes, I believe the long lobbying to “normalize” homosexuality is grinding to a halt in the church, and partisan warfare has nothing to do with it.

  10. There is a long line of people waiting to kneecap Francis, including any number in the Society of Jesus.

  11. Anyone paying attention to the Italian Press needs to find another hobby.

  12. Curious. And curioser — the case of the vanishing sanctions against a Catholic cardinal:

    The archbishop [Cupich] writes that Benedict had banned the American cardinal from publicly celebrating Mass, from living in a seminary and from traveling to give lectures.

    There is no public record of such a sanction, and the cardinal continued to celebrate Mass. And in 2012, Cardinal McCarrick joined bishops in the Vatican to sing happy birthday to Benedict as they presented him with a fresh strawberry-and-kiwi custard cake.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/26/world/europe/pope-ireland-sexual-abuse-letter-vigano.html

    There is no public record of such a sanction. From the man we’ve long been told keeps and kept meticulous records about everyone and everything as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

    And though Benedict is said by the gay-bashing Vigano crowd to have “acted” in McCarrick’s case — and so Francis is wholly responsible for this cardinal appointed by Benedict’s predecessor Saint John Paul the Great— there McCarrick is at public Mass after Mass with Benedict present, or at Vatican fêtes with strawberry-and-kiwi custard cakes, Benedict beaming.

    This story of Benedict’s “actions” against McCarrick meets the smell test only for someone who believes QAnon is a reliable source for news.

  13. “There is no public record of such a sanction, and the cardinal continued to celebrate Mass.”

    Under Canon Law there would be no *public* record of such a sanction.

    Noting that is meaningless.

  14. It is ironic that Francis’ “I’m not going to talk about it” strategy is exactly the strategy that the bishops used for decades to hide the predatory priests.

  15. “meets the smell test”

    It may well turn out that neither Francis nor his accuser meet the smell test. That would not be unexpected for what goes on in the RC hierarchy.

  16. I don’t understand your position. As a non-catholic you have mentioned numerous times about investigating the church for its coverup of abuse. Now, that things are being uncovered; you discount them. Why?
    I’m even more curious about the atheists on the page who are flying to the holy fathers defense; for what purpose? Do they think there should be an investigation; or not?

  17. Yes, that may well be, always. I have not spared criticism of Francis for failing to deal with the abuse situation.

    To buy into Vigano’s claims, however, is to buy into an explicit gay-bashing scare meme that is deeply harmful to LGBTQ folks.

    I’m personally not willing to go that route, and hope that any Catholics who do so, while claiming that they care about LGBTQ human beings, will recognize they’re forfeiting their right to make those professions of caring by allying themselves with an ugly cabal of people using gay-bashing to score political points in intra-ecclesial battles.

  18. So you want an investigation…..
    But if anything leads to the Curia or the holy father; it’s vicious rumor and should be dismissed – correct?

  19. Curioser and curiouser again: the case of the non-existent “sanctions” and “actions” taken by Pope Benedict vs. Cardinal McCarrick:

    He [McCarrick] regularly appeared as a speaker and celebrant at church functions and represented the church in prominent foreign diplomatic efforts in places such as China and Iran. A video from 2013 shows Benedict warmly greeting McCarrick in Rome, at the pope’s resignation (and the subsequent election of the new pope), where McCarrick gave round-the-clock television interviews and stayed at a seminary.

    It wasn’t immediately clear why a pope taking the dramatic step of suspending a cardinal from ministry, as Viganò said, wouldn’t monitor McCarrick in any way.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/former-vatican-ambassador-says-pope-benedict-and-pope-francis-knew-of-sexual-misconduct-allegations-against-mccarrick-for-years/2018/08/26/5ac6dcda-a7e0-11e8-ad6f-080770dcddc2_story.html

    In the QAnon world of LGBTQ-hating Catholics, of course, the very non-existence of Benedict’s actions means that he obviously took those actions.

    Just as the non-existence of a single word spoken by Jesus about homosexuality means he condemned and loathed homosexuals.

  20. Liberals, atheists and homosexuals tend to fawn over Francis.
    Any Pope who waves off sodomy and the Vatican’s Lavender League while condemning plastic straws and air conditioners is a Pope they’ll fight and kill for.

  21. Well, by saying ‘Francis has to go’, my thinking was that he’d be so humiliated by the revelations that he’d step down.
    In retrospect, I suppose that might be a tad naive.

  22. It is rather simple.

    The agenda is to make the Catholic Church look, act, taste, and smell like the Episcopal Church.

    Those with this program(me) advocate:

    – “normalizing” homosexual behavior

    – “normalizing” abortion

    – “normalizing” euthanasia

    – ordaining women

    – negating the hierarchical nature of the Church, usually by means of something along the lines of the Episcopal Church’s General Convention:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_Convention_of_the_Episcopal_Church_in_the_United_States_of_America

    This scandal endangers all of that as orthodox Catholics react, heterodox clergy come under suspicion, the heterodox nature of the offenders becomes obvious, and four or five decades of infiltration and propaganda are endangered.

    It is rather like being an East German or Cuban Communist when the Soviet Union collapsed.

    Expect to hear attempts to blame it all on the orthodox Catholics, terms like “manly men” and “manosphere”, and the usual blame shifting nonsense.

    The reason you’re encountering this here is that when the National “Catholic” Reporter Comments pond was drained, the pond scum had to go somewhere, and a portion of it landed at RNS and attempted to erect “National ‘Catholic’ Reporter Comments II”.

  23. Actually, you’re the one who’s saying that. I asked for an investigation.

  24. His track record prior to his election was much the same as McCarrick’s: a bureaucrat skilled at smiling and saying unctuous pleasant sounding things while earning the nickname “the Weasel” among the Jesuits in Argentina in his six years as Superior.

    There were a lot of knife wounds in Jesuits’ backs over those six years.

    This is not the man who is going to lay his cards on the table, say exactly what he means and what he is up to, or do anything that a normal person would interpret as being in charge.

    On the positive side the Holy Spirit protected the Church from his issuing anything which could pass for teaching.

  25. I figured as much.
    I said in a comment yesterday – they should all be universalists; then they can do whatever they want.

  26. But they love the bells, smells, and swell vestments.

  27. It is not ironic at all.

    It tells you exactly what he is, and what he was in Argentina.

  28. You said, “I’d still like to see an investigation”. Reread your post. Or am I misreading it?

  29. I agree that Francis is making a huge mistake by not commenting on this. He’ll have no choice but to comment before this is over with.

  30. Vigano doesn’t care about these things either. His deputy attacked people protesting clerical abuse outside the DC Nunciature in 2012.

  31. I have to disagree. At this point in time, the issue is not Vigano’s anti-gay foaming-at-the-mouth. The issue is the factuality of his specific accusations about Francis. Are they true or not true? Are some of them true, and how much weight do they carry? In the final analysis, when did Francis know (or at least should have known)? If the hierarchy is a cesspool no matter which way we turn, we have a right to know.

  32. I suppose that whether one can conclude the issue is not Vigano’s anti-gay foaming at the mouth depends a lot on whether one is the object of that foaming at the mouth or not.

    Or, if one is not the direct object, on solidarity with those being targeted and attacked by this behavior.

    As someone who is gay, I cannot dismiss this so cavalierly.

    Nor have I ever said anything but that we have a right to know what the hierarchy does — a dictum I apply to Francis as well as Benedict as well as to John Paul II, who made McCarrick a cardinal.

  33. Hi, Linda – What would you like to know? It’s a blog by a man who says he’s Viganò’s brother, and their differences. I don’t have any way of verifying it. – Monica.

  34. No, he clearly doesn’t care about victims of clerical sexual abuse, or about finding a solution to that horrendous problem. His claim to care about dealing with what he maintains is a “homosexual network” in the church is belied by his attempt to shut down the Nienstedt investigation.

    What he and his cabal obviously care about is scoring points against Francis, and stopping in its tracks what they perceive as reform set into motion by Francis — though about that reform, I’m more than a little skeptical myself.

  35. La Stampa offers the following analysis by Andrea Tornielli, who is about as much an insider as you’ll find:

    Beyond the details of a text that evidently fits into the personal ecclesial battles of a prelate who has never digested his departure from the Vatican by decision of Benedict XVI, and the instrumental use that is made of it in the battle waged by the anti-Francis fringe and its penetrations into the Church, international politics and the media, there remain some facts to be clarified.

    The first concerns the appointment of McCarrick to Washington and above all his subsequent inclusion in the College of Cardinals. In 2000 Pope John Paul II was certainly not at the end of his days (he died five years later), and to make him pass as tired, sick and unable to make decisions seems rather improper. It must be assumed that Cardinal Sodano concealed decisive information from the Pontiff. News that came from the apostolic nuncio to Washington, who also had direct access to the Pope. Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re – who according to Viganò, as a new Prefect of the Congregation of Bishops wrote down his opposition to McCarrick’s nomination – was a person close to the Pope and close to the powerful secretary of Pope Wojtyla, Monsignor Stanislaw Dziwisz. Why did no one tell the Pontiff of the accusations against the candidate for archbishopric of Washington and why no one blocked his subsequent nomination as cardinal?

    The second fact concerns the period 2006-2013. Viganò assures us that there are secret sanctions against McCarrick by Pope Benedict XVI and attacks McCarrick’s successor in Washington, Donald Wuerl, for pretending he did not know. These sanctions obliged the cardinal harasser of seminarians and and young adult priests to retire from the public to a life of prayer and penance, without appearing or celebrating in public. Why did McCarrick not obey these sanctions and continue to do what he did before as a retired cardinal, celebrating masses and giving lectures? Why did no one ask for respect for the papal orders and why did no one warn the Pope of this grave disobedience? And again, why did Pope Ratzinger choose to keep these sanctions secret – if we assume that every statement made by Viganò is true – without ever making them public?

    The third fact. When this year there was news of a concrete denunciation of abuse of a minor by McCarrick – a fact dating back to when he was a priest in New York – Pope Francis forced him to live withdrawn and took away his cardinal status. The very first real and radical sanction against the former archbishop, which has no precedent in the more recent history of the Church. Until 2018, the date of the formal opening of the canonical investigation against McCarrick, the allegations concerned homosexual relations with adults. Then the question remains as to why Monsignor Viganò has not published this information until today if he was so convinced that it was something of the utmost importance for the Church. And why as apostolic nuncio to the United States he did not put them down in writing, inviting the new Pope to take action against McCarrick, to ensure that Benedict’s secret sanctions were finally applied, something that had evidently not happened before.

  36. Thanks, that’s all I needed. Someone forwarded it to me but the English translation was poor.

  37. “As someone who is gay, I cannot dismiss this so cavalierly.”

    So the fact that I am not gay means that I dismiss gay-bashing cavalierly? Means that my support for full gay rights is not credible, not pure enough? I guess I should call up Kim Davis and see if she wants to meet for lunch.

  38. Whoever wrote that for Junno Arocho Esteves has not bothered to consult his copy of the Code of Canon Law, or purposely planting smoke, and a stringer for Catholic New Service would not know enough to do it on his own.

    The only sanctions which are normally made public are excommunications.

    Others are kept “secret”.

  39. C’mon Mr. Always, you know the house rules around here.

    You gotta do 200% unquestioned loyalty to Mr. Gay Goliath eight days a week, 25 hours a day, on every single issue that come down the pike, OR ELSE you ain’t no gay rights supporter at all, you traitorous Trump-loving Republican homophobe!!

  40. I did not say you were not gay. I know nothing about your sexual orientation.

    I made a simple point: people who are part of a community being directly attacked, used as pawns in ugly political games, are harmed by and feel the pain of those attacks.

    And when any groups around us are being treated that way, we have an obligation to listen to them, support them, defend them — a point made far better by Pastor Niemöller.

    If you’re comfortable finding yourself allied with someone like Rev. Lee, then you’re not the person I had assumed you are from your postings here.

  41. According to our resident apologist/bigots, that would mean Pope Benedict was the head of “The big gay conspiracy”. Very interesting.

  42. Spuddie, bingo!

    Well, Benedict and Saint John Paul the Great, who made McCarrick a cardinal after the Vatican was informed about McCarrick’s activities.

    Facts is curious things, as Mr. Dooley liked to say. Pretend they aren’t there, and you’ll stumble over them every time.

  43. We know you are not interested in that. You have an easy scapegoat to blame so you wouldn’t have to consider endemic corrupt behavior by the church.

  44. dude, don’t cry to me that the needle is pointing in a direction you don’t like.
    You hate the church; just not the homosexual part.
    You want to look into the corruption and cover up; just not those related to homosexual and pedophilia.
    You want to stay at 50,000 feet to name the church guilty; but are afraid of what will turn up when the sheets are pulled back and have to confront those that committed these acts.
    You seem more interested in the progressive church than you do the helpless victims.

  45. You are looking to misdirect blame and capitalize on this scandal to go after a hated group as a scapegoat.

    You are not interested in the real bad actors here. Your “big gay conspiracy” to cover up abuse doesn’t exist. It’s just the church doing what it always does. Act as if it is a law unto itself. Untouchable by legal, ethical and moral responsibility.

    You are simply doing what you always do. Support immoral repugnant positions out of petty spite for its own sake.

  46. He didn’t publish it because this is about the power struggles for god’s vicarage on earth.

    One might hope that someone starts looking into Vigano.

  47. So what are we talking about then? What issues do we care about? What should be investigated?
    Who are the bad actors?

  48. All this political posturing in the RCC is just inside baseball stuff. Whatever the facts are about who knew what and when…I can’t see how anybody who says they are a Catholic, but only shows up at Mass once a month at best — will ever want to have anything to do with the RCC in the future.

    The true believing Catholic die-hards…fine, let them “fire” the Pope (bring Benedict out of retirement maybe?) and rebuild the Church, start learning Latin again, ban the gays, keep the ladies out of any positions of authority…and sell indulgences if they really need some money to fund this medieval monstrosity.

    As for the rest of us…we will continue to roll our eyes…keep our kids as far away from Catholic clergy, schools and churches as possible…and hope to see the day when an institution like the RCC is only known for the classic Cathedrals and Art — for the tourists to gawk at.

  49. “the liberal homosexual thugs”
    Yes, let’s not just call them thugs. Let’s call them liberals and homosexuals.

  50. Andrea Tornielli is as much an insider as any journalist in the notoriously inaccurate partisan Italian media.

    “It must be assumed that Cardinal Sodano concealed decisive information from the Pontiff.” only if you wish to support a particular version of who is good, bad, and innocent bystanders. Assumptions are always a bad premise.

    “The second fact ….” – where was the first fact? All we had was an assumption. And then more assumptions and guesses.

    “The third fact ….” – if this turns out to be a fact, it will the FIRST fact. It does, in fact, provide a fact which was already well known, followed by a question:

    “Then the question remains as to why Monsignor Viganò has not published this information until today if he was so convinced that it was something of the utmost importance for the Church.”

    The answer would appear to be that Monsignor Viganò understands who he reports to in a hierarchical church.

  51. You were out anyway, so your opinion is worth …..?

  52. Who is the “us” in “Let’s”?

    You and the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence?

  53. I always love it when atheists lecture Catholics on their own church.

    Sheer chutzpah.

  54. Most of my life as a Catholic, the donations of money and time — the wasted time praying…gives me every right to an opinion about the RCC.

  55. And your status as a ill-founded ill-informed naysayer gives me every right to point out your complete lack of credibility.

  56. My CYO Catholic youth leadership award and St John Neumann charity Redemportist certificate — say otherwise.

  57. Those were the days … pre-drugs, pre-hedonism.

  58. Perhaps you are afraid to dig past the gay meme. What is it about a completely homosocial environment that it produces so much male on male sex? Perhaps prisons and naval ships and boys boarding schools could shed some light on this phenomenon, but at it’s core, this is about abuse of power. Roman Catholicism has an entire theology and sacramental system based in giving the ordained male absolute power over heaven and hell, salvation or damnation. Very few people have written about the spiritual damage the abuse scandal has done to thousands of victims and the People of God in general. It’s much easier to concentrate on the systemic/institutional level than deal with the underlying theology supporting the priesthood. Maybe it’s time we did.

  59. “normalizing homosexuality.”

    To quote Dorothy Parker, “heterosexuality isn’t normal, it’s just common.”

  60. Stop lynching gay and trans people, Your Blackness.

    You’d think that black people would’ve figured out by now that lynching is wrong.

  61. Biology says otherwise.

    But you’ve parked where you can buy Ms. Parker, or Mao Zedong for that matter.

  62. Not drugs…Irish whiskey for me! And lots of Catholics at my swinger’s club…so what’s the problem?

  63. Nothing, if you don’t mind my pointing out your lack of bona fides.

  64. Benedict could have been the head of the ‘big closeted gay conspiracy’ which seems to be very adept at attacking gays to deflect any question about their own orientation.

  65. I’m more interested in Vigano’s accusations about Sodano and Bertone. I would like to know if Vigano can back up his claims or if he’s just using the two of them to give JPII and Benedict cover.

  66. If Pope Francis knew about sexual abuse of any kind and did nothing, then he must resign.

    At this point, the Catholic Church is known mostly for raping children. Francis resignation should be the first of many.

  67. ‘Round these parts it is not known mostly for raping children.

  68. I see your point.
    By acknowledging them as liberals and homosexuals, the ‘thug’ reference was just redundant, wasn’t it?

  69. Biology says that homosexuality has been observed in over 1500 species in the Animal Kingdom.

  70. The effort to get an endorsement for homosexual physical congress in the Catholic Church appears to be running aground.

    But do keep on trying to change the topic – I see today alone you’ve found two more people to blame that you had never mentioned in the past.

  71. Indeed, although more species which suffer from cancer has been observed.

    Cancer must be normal.

  72. Read the news. Over a thousand victims in Pennsylvania alone.

  73. Since 1940.

    In the same area for the same period the estimate in the public schools tops 4,000.

    But, no grand jury, no media coverage.

  74. The RCC, a religion as with all religions, that has run out of excuses for its conduct and flawed history and theology. And one more time in an effort to bring to an end the need for this website and discussion group:

    The Great Kibosh –

    Putting the kibosh on all religion in less than ten seconds: Priceless !!!

    • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Abraham i.e. the foundations of Judaism, Christianity and Islam are non-existent.

    • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Moses i.e the pillars of Judaism, Christianity and Islam have no strength of purpose.

    • There was no Gabriel i.e. Islam fails as a religion. Christianity partially fails.

    • There was no Easter i.e. Christianity completely fails as a religion.

    • There was no Moroni i.e. Mormonism is nothing more than a business cult.

    • Sacred/revered cows, monkey gods, castes, reincarnations and therefore Hinduism fails as a religion.

    • Fat Buddhas here, skinny Buddhas there, reincarnated/reborn Buddhas everywhere makes for a no on Buddhism.

    • A constant cycle of reincarnation until enlightenment is reached and belief that various beings (angels?, tinkerbells? etc) exist that we, as mortals, cannot comprehend makes for a no on Sikhism.

    Added details available upon written request.

    A quick search will put the kibosh on any other groups calling themselves a religion.

    e.g. Taoism

    “The origins of Taoism are unclear. Traditionally, Lao-tzu who lived in the sixth century is regarded as its founder. Its early philosophic foundations and its later beliefs and rituals are two completely different ways of life. Today (1982) Taoism claims 31,286,000 followers.

    Legend says that Lao-tzu was immaculately conceived by a shooting star; carried in his mother’s womb for eighty-two years; and born a full grown wise old man. “

  75. Yeah, only one child rape per month, for 80 straight years. In one state!

    No problem with pedophilia at all with Catholic priests.

  76. Francis is the first pope in my life time that has truly fought for the poor. He will always be my Pope because of his convictions. I am heart broken that the bishops who wish him gone are modern examples of the Pharisees Jesus preached about. The idea that Vigano has the audacity to tell this Pope Francis to resign smacks of hypocrisy. Francis’ comment on being silent meant he would not dignify Vigano’s rediculous claim.

  77. You’re blocked.

    I have only a limited capacity for anti-Catholic nitwits, and my dance card is already full.

  78. You don’t get out much do you? You should be able to put two and two together, ie the incredible number of homosexual priests and the refusal of the dioceses to refuse homosexual ordinations along with the abuses to see that there is a culture of homosexual predation within the clergy. The nuncio’s letter makes far more sense than the idea that “there is nothing to see here.”

  79. Since your theology is way off, your comment is ridiculous.

  80. Odd that RNS does not consider this their top news story. Compare: https://www.theamericanconservative.com/dreher/catholic-cold-war-turns-civil-war/ and the associated graphic.

    The National Catholic Reporter and National Catholic Register are clearly at war on an issue that touches the highest levels of the Vatican: http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/former-u.s.-nunciature-official-vigano-said-the-truth https://www.ncronline.org/news/accountability/distinctly-catholic/vigano-letter-exposes-putsch-against-pope-francis
    Conservative Catholic sources such as Life Site News, Rorate Caeli and Church Militant are all making unprecedented statements and demands. And this is not the top story?

    From Deutsche Welle: (https://www.dw.com/de/kommentar-die-moralisch-bankrotte-papstkirche/a-45238477) “Wir erleben den größten Schicksalsmoment der Kirche seit der Reformation.” Translation: “We are experiencing the greatest fateful moment of the Church since the Reformation And this is not the top news story at RNS?

  81. Fascinating since Benghazi gave us the email scandal which revealed the corruption in the FBI/CIA and later FISA abuse.

  82. Eh – I don’t know if I could agree with that. He has attacked that system which has lifted the most people out of poverty, he has bought into the unproven claims regarding CO2 in the atmosphere thus making energy more scarce and expensive, which impacts the poor more than anyone else. I would suggest most of the platitudes he makes regarding the poor have little to do with helping them and more to do with soundbites. I am not aware of any specific comment or action he has taken regarding the plight of the poor that was of any real significance..

    And lest I get blamed for being anti-Francis, I have much less to say about his theology, and find some of it refreshing and some of it not, but I assume that would be the case for any Pope.

  83. You imagine that linking to the entire text of the regulations of canon law proves your point, “Bob”?

    You’re more self-deluded than I had previously thought.

    Do some manly man work and drag a particular text out of that big cache of documents and prove your point.

    Or stop lying.

  84. The National Catholic Reporter is out of the closet and has been for a long time.

  85. No – it is making headlines because it is a non-favored group. Other religious groups have similar issues, the schools are terrible because the kids are there longer, giving predator teachers more opportunity.

    The RCC has the failing experiences of bureaucracy and power. Long have they let down their advocates. And they always will.

  86. No one said “there’s nothing to see here.” Neither in English nor in Italian.

  87. Yeah, their bureaucracy doesn’t work. They have only been around 2000 years more than the NRA.

  88. Actually it did.

    Among the things it made clear is that you like scooping your gossip up in shovels, not by doing the hard work of actually doing a bit of research and confirming anything.

    And yet .. and yet … you have had not problem going on and on about those “secret files”, which is exactly what we are talking about, and now feign complete ignorance.

    This may help you:

    http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG1104/JY.HTM

    This lists all the items in secret archives at the diocesan level. The Pontiff himself is not bound by these canons, of which he is both author and judge, but the Holy See follows essentially the very same procedures.

    The most relevant Canons are:

    Can. 489 §1. In the diocesan curia there is also to be a secret archive, or at least in the common archive there is to be a safe or cabinet, completely closed and locked, which cannot be removed; in it documents to be kept secret are to be protected most securely.

    §2. Each year documents of criminal cases in matters of morals, in which the accused parties have died or ten years have elapsed from the condemnatory sentence, are to be destroyed. A brief summary of what occurred along with the text of the definitive sentence is to be retained.

    Can. 490 §1. Only the bishop is to have the key to the secret archive.

    §2. When a see is vacant, the secret archive or safe is not to be opened except in a case of true necessity by the diocesan administrator himself.

    §3. Documents are not to be removed from the secret archive or safe.

    The notion that, except for good reason, the Holy See launders its soiled garments in public is a fantasy.

    These Canons describe the process by which these types of proceedings enter the secret archives:

    Can. 1717 §1. Whenever an ordinary has knowledge, which at least seems true, of a delict, he is carefully to inquire personally or through another suitable person about the facts, circumstances, and imputability, unless such an inquiry seems entirely superfluous.

    §2. Care must be taken so that the good name of anyone is not endangered from this investigation.

    §3. The person who conducts the investigation has the same powers and obligations as an auditor in the process; the same person cannot act as a judge in the matter if a judicial process is initiated later.

    Can. 1718 §1. When it seems that sufficient evidence has been collected, the ordinary is to decide:

    1/ whether a process to inflict or declare a penalty can be initiated;

    2/ whether, attentive to Can. 1341, this is expedient;

    3/ whether a judicial process must be used or, unless the law forbids it, whether the matter must proceed by way of extrajudicial decree.

    §2. The ordinary is to revoke or change the decree mentioned in §1 whenever new evidence indicates to him that another decision is necessary.

    §3. In issuing the decrees mentioned in §§1 and 2, the ordinary is to hear two judges or other experts of the law if he considers it prudent.

    §4. Before he makes a decision according to the norm of §1 and in order to avoid useless trials, the ordinary is to examine carefully whether it is expedient for him or the investigator, with the consent of the parties, to resolve equitably the question of damages.

    Can. 1719 The acts of the investigation, the decrees of the ordinary which initiated and concluded the investigation, and everything which preceded the investigation are to be kept in the secret archive of the curia if they are not necessary for the penal process.

    And so on.

    Vile gossip and allegations by wire service hacks are just that, nothing more.

    Now, if you think know more, back it up with something other than wire service drivel from America, James Martin’s favorite media resource.

  89. Austsin Ruse is recommending that Trump withdraw our ambassador to the UN until the pope responds (under the same oath that Vigano made) to these charges.

    American citizens were harmed..and there must be justice.

    Brilliant.

  90. He “fought” for the poor to curry naive people, mostly of a liberal persuasion.

    In the same way that over these last few years he would make a noisy display of some Catholic act of piety…visiting an image of Our Lady before / after a trip, etc…in order to hold on to the old ladies in the pew, clutching their rosaries.

  91. “Why did McCarrick not obey these sanctions and continue to do what he did before as a retired cardinal, celebrating masses and giving lectures? ”

    Why didn’t McCarrick obey the Church’s teaching against active homosexuality and why didn’t he obey his own SWORN vows that he at one time prostrated himself on the floor of some, now, soiled Church’s marble floor?

  92. Although as an assessment of your post it was actually spot on.

  93. All of these Vigano haters…

    Now think this about this.

    It’s a fact that Wuerl’s spokesman confirmed recently that Wuerl cancelled a McCarrick’s visit to seminarians at Vigano’s request.

    So how can the Vigano haters (you, you, and that fellow with the gotee and soft pudgy belly over there) maintain that Vigano is lying by saying that Wuerl knew about McCarrick? Of course he knew.

  94. “What is it about a completely homosocial environment that it produces so much male on male sex?”

    “Roman Catholicism has an entire theology and sacramental system based in giving the ordained male absolute power over heaven and hell, salvation or damnation.”

    Ah, the psychological take from sparsely populated Montana.

    Everyone has power over heaven and hell, salvation and damnation.

    It’s each person’s choice.

  95. The National Catholic Reporter is at war with more than the National Catholic Register.

    It is at war with Catholicism.

  96. You left out the public schools, which in every country are THE biggest source of predation.

  97. “He will always be my Pope because of his convictions.”

    He hasn’t even been indicted.

  98. Or not.

    Vile gossip versus facts.

    This is not Bilgrimage.

  99. For a good dose of the latest vile gossip, you already frequent the correct forum, and this isn’t it.

  100. LOL, not happy to see me here I guess. Oh well, we all must bear our crosses.

  101. Colleen, I could not care less where you post.

    In fact I love the opportunity to barbecue your psycho-babble.

  102. For “vile gossip”, we know the best place to go is wherever you are, ‘Bob’.

  103. Hi kag. Can you expand on that please? Thanks.

  104. Exactly so.
    Viganò’s Letter is mostly “gossip”.
    As – by his own account – was the nature of his alleged conversation with Pope Francis in 2013.

  105. Not really ironic, no. Why should the Pope have to ‘talk about’ such a preposterous, impertinent and obviously self-serving Letter?
    Why give oxygen to Viganò’s self-serving muck-raking?
    Truth of the matter is that Francis is the only Pope who has publicly acted against McCarrick.

  106. You do realize that they don’t care, for this information or facts in general, right?

    Facts bind them.

    Gossip makes them religious butterflies.

  107. Since she referenced her Italian, in case you were following it, this was the exchange:

    monicadeangelis: Non twitto io. 🙂

    translation: I do not tweet. 🙂

    Elagabalus: Neanche io.

    translation: Me neither.

    monicadeangelis: Non troppo male, Elagabalo!

    Accurate translation: Not too bad, Elagabalus!

    Tomorrow: distinct direct and indirect object pronouns.

  108. I am happy to see the RNS has finally put a related Catholic story up as their top story rather than the story about Senator John McCain’s faith. He was an important and admired senator, to be sure, but the intra-Catholic war is a bigger religion story.

  109. To the UN? The Traddie Cabal is stupid. What the heck does the UN have to do with this.

  110. Sorry ‘Bob’. That is not the truth. You like to ‘barbecue’ me because you never rebut what I say. You just attack me personally. Nothing changes, it’s always the same.

  111. The ‘supporting documents’,which you mention, refer to some accusations against Viganò. Not to the accusations that Viganò is making against the Pope and others.
    So not relevant, ThomasA. Just a hateful reflex, to use your own delightfully self-revealing phrase.

  112. Speaking of attacking personally

    https://disqus.com/home/discussion/religionnews/former_vatican_envoy_pens_jaccuse_letter_in_mccarrick_case/#comment-4063870514

    “Maybe, but ‘I’ can always tell a Burke fan because they can’t see that they are supporting Cardinals and Popes in the Church who aren’t dealing very well with their own sexuality”

    and

    https://disqus.com/home/discussion/bilgrimage/bilgrimage_james_alison_on_homosexuality_among_the_clergy_the_anatrella_and_mccarrick_stories_and_th/#comment-4025740332

    “My reading of JPII: he was a ruthless dictator in how he ruled the church. I find Colm Toíbín’s depiction of him as the man with the implacable, stubborn chin who willed there to be no change, because he wanted to admit no possibility of change, right on target. …..”

    If you folks there had no personal attacks, there would be nothing posted.

  113. Well, total quiet.

    I must say I was surprised to read a citation from America given:

    https://disqus.com/home/discussion/bilgrimage/bilgrimage_refusal_of_catholic_hierarchy_to_get_abuse_situation_parallels_refusal_to_get_lgbtq_peopl/#comment-4057751801

    “Truth be told, I no longer follow National Catholic Reporter, America, or Commonweal. Each in its own way made me know my voice was not really welcome in online disccussions hosted at these three sites,. and each in its own way communicates loudly and clearly that heterosexuality is normative for Catholicism, and those who are not heterosexual will be tolerated, at best, as an aberration from the norm.”

  114. LMAO. This is precious. Just who was it that wrote this personal attack on Pope Francis:

    “His track record prior to his election was much the same as McCarrick’s: a bureaucrat skilled at smiling and saying unctuous pleasant sounding things while earning the nickname “the Weasel” among the Jesuits in Argentina in his six years as Superior.

    There were a lot of knife wounds in Jesuits’ backs over those six years.

    This is not the man who is going to lay his cards on the table, say exactly what he means and what he is up to, or do anything that a normal person would interpret as being in charge.”

    That would be Bob Arnzen on this very thread.

  115. And you keep leaving out the part about most of that teacher abuse is heterosexual.

  116. I keep waiting for one of the Vigano believers to demand EPBenedict issue a statement verifying his order on McCarrick. It would seem to me that would be step one in verifying Vigano’s many accusations.

  117. I would expect no other comment from the heterophobics at Bilgrimage.

  118. Hasn’t Emeritus Pope Benedict already said that he ‘can’t remember the details’?
    Whatever the truth about Benedict’s sanctions, McCarrick seems to have continued as before – even when visiting Rome and the Vatican.
    Tornielli has added these details, today:-
    “On 16 January 2012, he [McCarrick] participated together with other US bishops in an audience with Benedict XVI in the Vatican and his name among the participants was indicated in the bulletin of the Holy See’s Press Office. On 16 April 2012, he met Benedict again at the audience of the Papal Foundation and celebrated the Pontiff’s birthday together with all those present. He traveled and returned to Rome in February 2013 to bid farewell to the Pope who had resigned and shook his hand with a smile (all immortalized by the cameras of Vatican TV)”.
    http://www.lastampa.it/2018/08/28/vaticaninsider/facts-and-omissions-of-vigans-testimony-against-francis-ojjiYm4VJw2e1ELhURticP/pagina.html

  119. Correction. The only counter arguments the left has provided to Vigano’s accusations are character assassinations, which the supporting documents dispel.

    Wuerl comes out yesterday with yet another lawyerly statement that he received “no documents” on McCarrick from Vigano, not that he received no information!

  120. Does it PRODUCE it? Or encourage and condone it?
    I would think if you are going to be a priest, one would know better to keep your hands to yourself. If not, then leave and go play elsewhere.
    No, these are unholy men who desired the flesh more than they desired to serve God and the faithful.
    You can put all the lipstick on you want, but it is still unholy, deviant behavior.

  121. Not so.
    You were the one trying to divert attention to Viganò’s unconvincing attempt to re-explain his own history.
    But let’s forget Viganò, and look at what he wrote about Pope Francis, as Pope Francis has suggested that we do.
    Every detailed scrutiny of Viganò’s Letter reveals errors, implausibilities and curious omissions, at every turn.
    Here’s one such scrutiny, from today:-
    http://www.lastampa.it/2018/08/28/vaticaninsider/facts-and-omissions-of-vigans-testimony-against-francis-ojjiYm4VJw2e1ELhURticP/pagina.html

  122. Oh..it convinced DiNardo.

    It may not be sitting well with some US cardinals, particularly and most the named ones!

    As consoling as it might be to “forget Vigano”, let’s not. Let’s investigate the claims/dates/names.

    The restrictions were placed sometime between 2012 and 2013. The little fuzzy picture at the head of the article, compels nothing.

    It’s for the emoters.

  123. Georg denied that Benedict gave any confirmation to NC Register this morning and they are already dismissing them. Benedict could give a public statement and they’d dismiss it as a hostage video.

  124. It is lifesite news. They have about the same credibility as the National Enquirer or Breitbart.

  125. or NCR, or James Martin, or Rosica, or Wuerl, McCarrick and friends.

  126. NCR was reporting about sexual abuse in the Church in the 1980s.

  127. My “let’s forget Viganò” was not for ‘consolation’. It means: Forget him as a person, but let’s focus instead on what he wrote.
    That’s what you’d prefer, isn’t it?
    Turning now to your statement:- “The restrictions were placed sometime between 2012 and 2013.”
    Evidence please.

  128. Sureley we should be able to expect more from the pope than Hillary tactics.

  129. My fault…should have been US….corrected now. Sorry.

  130. If it was doing a good job why didn’t it pick up on McCarrick, Spellman, and other liberal Cardinals?

  131. Mabye Benedict bowed out, knowing the liberal forces would elected a friend..and then Benedict could watch this whole sordid gay mess get hung around the new pope’s neck.

    Self-cleaning oven.

    Benedict has great vision….see this 1969 radio statement.

    “The future of the Church can and will issue from those whose roots are deep and who live from the pure fullness of their faith. It will not issue from those who accommodate themselves merely to the passing moment or from those who merely criticize others and assume that they themselves are infallible measuring rods; nor will it issue from those who take the easier road, who sidestep the passion of faith . . . The future of the Church, once again as always, will be shaped by saints, by men, that is, whose minds probe deeper than the slogans of the day, who see more than others see, because their lives embrace a wider reality . . . By this daily passion, which alone reveals to a man how many ways he is enslaved by his own ego, by this daily passion and by it alone, a man’s eyes are slowly opened. He sees only to the extent that he has lived and suffered. If today we are scarcely able any longer to become aware of God, that is because we find it so easy to evade ourselves—to flee from the depths of our being by means of the narcotic of some pleasure or other. Thus our own interior depths remain closed to us. If it is true that a man can see only with his heart, then how blind we are! We have no need of a Church that celebrates the cult of action in political prayers. It is utterly superfluous. It will destroy itself. What will remain is the Church of Jesus Christ, the Church that believes in the God who has become man and promises us life beyond death. Let us go a step farther. From the crisis of today the Church of tomorrow will emerge—a Church that has lost much. She will become small and will have to start afresh more or less from the beginning . . . But when the trial of this sifting is past, a great power will flow from a more spiritualized and simplified Church. Men in a totally planned world will find themselves unspeakably lonely. Then, they will discover the little flock of believers as something wholly new. They will discover it as a hope that is meant for them, an answer for which they have always been searching in secret.”

  132. It isn’t a great loss for anyone if Gingrich’s third wife is unemployed again, including the Vatican.

  133. First, Spellman was a liberal? In what world was this? Second, rumor and innuendo isn’t reporting.

  134. Spellman was an infamous liberal and a homosexual. He started all this mess.

  135. It is here. I am quoting from Viganò’s Letter, which I had assumed you had read:-
    “I do not know when Pope Benedict took these measures against McCarrick, whether in 2009 or 2010, because in the meantime I had been transferred to the Governorate of Vatican City State, just as I do not know who was responsible for this incredible delay.”
    Now, where is the evidence for YOUR statement?:- “The restrictions were placed sometime between 2012 and 2013.”

  136. Spellman wasn’t a liberal although he was probably a closeted gay. Spellman supported McCarthy and was a big cheerleader for the Vietnam War among other things. Being gay doesn’t make one a liberal. Also, Spellman has never been accused of harassment or abuse toward minors, which is another big difference.

    (Of course, Spellman isn’t the only famous American bishop of that era who was probably gay.)

  137. I can’t imagine the closet….I’d be slower to minimize him than you are. In those days…

  138. Good thank you. Sorry.

    So it’s clear that he/Mccarrick got used to pushing the envelope on his penance….which means more Cardinals likely knew.

  139. Not just ‘more Cardinals’, but the then-Pope Benedict XVI himself – with whom McCarrick consorted several times (in audiences and other events in Rome) during 2012 and 2013, as journalists have been explaining in the last couple of days.
    All this casts doubt on Viganò’s claim that Pope Francis in 2013 (and onwards) removed the sanctions that Benedict had imposed on McCarrick.

  140. Things were done with more discretion for many years. Bishops provided feedback in private ways.

    Francis himself broke the model, by calling out this or that group, in some cases rudely, shockingly.

    Now the Bishops have followed his lead.

    Things were very different prior to Francis.

    Someone pointed out that the clerics listened closely to what the psychologists of the day said about homosexuality, and took their advice…treatment, sequester, etc..

    But pyschs have different opinions today.

    I reject liberals today clubbing the clerics (about events 20-70 years in the past) with today’s psychologists’ opinions.

  141. Maybe you are just full of crap, looking to avoid recriminations of the church for the arrogant disregard for laws and people they have shown in many scandals through the years. So you make up garbage about a gay cabal pulling the strings. As opposed to the more plausible and honest reaction of how they always treated such issues.

    It’s one thing to make up right excuses for bad behavior, it’s quite another to engage in bigoted reviling to do it.

    Keep it up, it’s not like I can consider the Catholic Church and its supporters even less of moral authorities.

  142. You’re drifting far away from what we’re discussing here – namely, whether Viganò’s accusations against Francis (and others) are valid or not?
    Each day (and each hour) seems to bring further weakening of Viganò’s credibility.
    This was another attempt to topple the Pope. It has failed.

    As for doings things with ‘discretion’ and ‘privately’: This has been a big part of why the Bishops now find themselves in their current position.
    Luke chapter 8 verse 17 – For nothing is hidden but it will be made clear, nothing secret but it will be made known and brought to light.

  143. Good point.

    That Francis didn’t deny, but instead didn’t say one word but tell the press to do its job is telling.

    He’s never one to not make a comment, ever.

    That he continued to draw this coterie closer to him…relying McCarrick for advice about which bishop to make cardinal also says something.

    He may or may not have to resign.

    But his agenda is over. He may have put in enough Cardinals to get another Francis II elected.

    But the damage has been done. It’s irreparable.

    The only power left is dictatorial, no longer [seemingly to the naive] cuddly collegiality.

  144. It’s the present pope who everyone is interested in, and whether he can stay.

    It’s been 5 years.

    Francis, the liberals’ new broom, didn’t clean.

    He’s done.

    He may still have dictatorial power, but his cuddly collegial “Papa Francisco” power is now gone.

  145. It’s all about trying to pretend he is to blame for about a century of acting badly. I know, better to attack a Pope then own up to the Church’s fault or immoral and criminal behavior. Whatever excuses you can make in defense of hate. Whatevs.

  146. ===

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    WHAT TO DO
    DONNA
    ISRAEL STOLE ALL FROM ME THEY THOUGHT 5 MILLION JEWS IN
    ISRAEL CAN OVERPOWER 300 MILLION ARABS IN MIDDLE EAST AND ALL CORRUPTED ARAB
    LAWS ONLY GOVERNMENT WITH 7 BILLION PEOPLE AGAINST THE JEWS AND ISRAEL. 2010 I
    CAME IN TOLD SAW JERUSALEM ONLINE WEBSITE THE ARABS WERE KILLING JEWS AND ALL
    GOVERNMENTS ON THE ARAB GOVERNMENTS SIDE LET THEM AND JEWS JOINED THEM IN THE
    SAME REPORTING.
    I WENT AGAINST WASHINGTON UNITED NATIONS EUROPEAN POLITICIANS
    SAUDI ARABIA ALL ARAB NATIONS WHO ALL LINED UP FOR YEARS TRAVELING TO ISRAEL TO
    STOP DEVELOPING ISRAEL A ONE JEWISH STATE WHILE ALL PROMOTING IN THE NEWS NOT TO
    HAPPEN. ONE COUNTRY ISRAEL NOBODY WANTED TO GIVE TO THE JEWS EVEN THE JEWS DID
    ALL WRONG TO SUCCEED I INSTRUCTED THEM I AM THE MESSIAH CONNECTED DIRECTLY
    COMMUNICATE WITH GOD AND SATAN SINCE 2008

  147. I believe you’re looking for First Things.

  148. I don’t understand your final point. Do you want a future Pope to be dictatorial? Or is it that you don’t like the way this Pope is being, as you see it, dictatorial?

  149. Thanks for you usual noninsightful assessment.

    It was everything we expect from you and less.

  150. No, sorry, I wasn’t clear.

    I’m saying that of the many sources of power that a leader has…charisma, communications ability, good selection of talent to take care of various positions in an organization, clarity of mission, intellectual force, personal example, and dictatorial force (“I’m pope, I don’t have to give you a reason for firing your two assistants”…as Pope Francis did a year or two ago to Cardinal Muller), Pope Francis is down to the last means of power: dictatorial.

  151. Thank you.
    You think that, by refusing to defend himself from a bishop who accuses him of crimes and who says he must resign, Francis is exercising ‘dictatorial’ power?
    Hardly.
    Francis asked the journalists (and, through them, al of us) to decide for ourselves – that is, to find and to consider the evidence which is out there.
    He wants us to think for ourselves.
    So – rather than taking all power to himself, Francis is spreading it to everyone who is interested in the truth.

  152. The “psychologists of the day” were frauds — most of them Church apologists who were actually complicit in coverups — considering that psychologists then and now were mandated to report child sex abuse to civil authorities.

  153. You posed the wrong objective…It’s not defending himself that in question…it’s the desire and duty to bring out the truth….if the archbishop is wrong, the Pope OWES him and us the fuller truth.

    You’re thinking politically.

    The pope should be striving much higher.

  154. well all of them really are. They do their best, but today they’re worse because they’ve rejected the notion of the will, of the soul, of sin, etc.

  155. No one is obligated in this world to share your narcissistic, fundamentalist beliefs.

  156. In your world there are no obligations…but that’s why you’re not happy.

  157. Francis’s refusal to comment is, indeed, helping to “bring out the truth”.
    For it has forced others to reflect, and to speak their minds; to tell us what they know or what they believe.
    In this way, the realities (i.e., the truth) of the US Church are being exposed to people in the US, and to the world.
    We all know by now – as Francis did at once, of course – that “the archbishop is wrong”. On so many points, his “testimony” has already been discredited.
    ‘Thinking politically’? The politics have come from the right-wing of the US Church, and from their very politically minded financial backers (such as Busch). The whole point of the Viganò Letter is politics. He and they couldn’t care less about the abuse issue.

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