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Enda Kenny’s attack on the Vatican reflects ferocious public anger

Fr Lombardi’s response to the Cloyne scandal is legalistic: the Vatican still has serious questions to answer

By on Thursday, 21 July 2011

Enda Kenny: playing to the gallery (PA photo)

Enda Kenny: playing to the gallery (PA photo)

Never before has an Irish Prime Minister attacked the Vatican so virulently as Taoiseach Enda Kenny did yesterday, when he said: “The Cloyne report excavates the dysfunction, disconnection, elitism, the narcissism that dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day.

“The rape and torture of children were downplayed or ‘managed’ to uphold instead, the primacy of the institution, its power, standing and ‘reputation’. Far from listening to evidence of humiliation and betrayal with St Benedict’s ‘ear of the heart’… the Vatican’s reaction was to parse and analyse it with the gimlet eye of a canon lawyer.”

The Taoiseach was moving an all-party motion that “deplores the Vatican’s intervention which contributed to the undermining of the child protection frameworks and guidelines of the Irish state and the Irish bishops”.

As Ireland is a 90 per cent Catholic country, you might assume that there could be some political risk in so eviscerating the Holy See. Yet Kenny is in fact playing to gallery: his speech merely reflects the ferocious public anger at the Catholic Church.

In the wake of the publication of the Cloyne report last week, senior Irish politicians have called for the expulsion of the papal nuncio to Ireland. The Irish government, meanwhile, has promised to introduce laws requiring priests to break the seal of confession to report confessions of abuse to the civil authorities, with penalties of up to five years’ imprisonment for those who fail to do so.

In all this, some see signs of hysteria, such as the ever-contrary columnist Kevin Myers, who last week sardonically suggested: “As the next step in the current calm and rational debate on child protection, what about this: why don’t we kick a Catholic priest to death every day?” Although Mr Kenny’s speech was sympathetic to “the good priests” – now effectively in the role of “the good German” in the 1930s. Kenny said: “
This Roman clericalism must be devastating for good priests, some of them old, others struggling to keep their humanity – even their sanity – as they work so hard to be the keepers of the Church’s light and goodness within their parishes, communities – the human heart.”

Ireland has seen heartbreaking reports into child abuse before. So what makes the Cloyne report so different? Let the Taoiseach inform you:

“After the Ryan and Murphy Reports Ireland is, perhaps, unshockable when it comes to the abuse of children. But Cloyne has proved to be of a different order. Because for the first time in Ireland, a report into child sexual abuse exposes an attempt by the Holy See to frustrate an inquiry in a sovereign, democratic republic… as little as three years ago, not three decades ago.”

The charge against the Vatican is quite specific: it relates to the Cloyne report’s finding that the Vatican’s 1997 response to the Irish bishops’ proposed norms for dealing with child abuse cases was “entirely unhelpful”.

In early 1996 the Irish bishops had drawn up the “Framework Document” for dealing with child abuse cases. It required the mandatory reporting of suspected child abuse to the civil authorities in Ireland.

The Cloyne report cites a 1997 letter by the then nuncio to Ireland, Archbishop Luciano Storero, summarising the concerns of the Congregation for Clergy regarding the Framework Document. The letter said:, “In particular, the situation of ‘mandatory reporting’ gives rise to serious reservations of both a moral and a canonical nature,” and referred to the guidelines as “merely a study document”. The Cloyne report found that: “This effectively gave individual Irish bishops the freedom to ignore the procedures which they had agreed and gave comfort and support to those who … dissented from the stated official Irish Church policy.”

Bishop Magee of Cloyne was one such bishop. During his tenure, between 1996 to 2008, only six of 15 reportable complaints of abuse were in fact reported to police by the diocese.

It was this finding that caused the Taoiseach’s comments that “the law of the land should not be stopped by a collar or a crozier” and MP Charlie Flanagan’s call for the expulsion of the papal nuncio, on the basis that “The Vatican has broken the law in Ireland.”

However, did the Vatican’s 1997 letter really amount to a breach of Irish law?

The Irish state awaits a formal Vatican response, but Fr Federico Lombardi SJ, the director of the Holy See Press Office, has issued a statement which he emphasised was not “an official response from the Holy See”.

He argues that “there is absolutely nothing in the [1997] letter that is an invitation to disregard the laws of the country. During the same period, Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos, then prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, in a meeting with the Irish bishops stated: ‘The Church, especially through its pastors, should not in any way put an obstacle in the legitimate path of civil justice… while, at the same time, she should move forward with her own canonical procedures.’”

He notes that “the objection the letter referred to regarded the obligation to provide information to civil authorities (‘mandatory reporting’). It did not object to any civil law to that effect, because it did not exist in Ireland at that time…”

This is true: there was no such law at the time. Therefore the accusations that the Vatican’s 1997 letter broke the law in Ireland are probably false – leaving aside the morality or wisdom of the intervention.

Fr Lombardi continues:

“Therefore, the severity of certain criticisms of the Vatican are curious, as if the Holy See was guilty of not having given merit under canon law to norms which a state did not consider necessary to give value under civil law. In attributing grave responsibility to the Holy See for what happened in Ireland, such accusations seem to go far beyond what is suggested in the report itself (which uses a more balanced tone in the attribution of responsibility) and demonstrate little awareness of what the Holy See has actually done over the years to help effectively address the problem.”

Fr Lombardi’s somewhat legalistic defence of the Holy See’s 1997 intervention was met with short shrift from Justice Minister Alan Shatter, who on RTE radio yesterday called the comments “unfortunate and disingenuous”.

Mr Shatter said: “The Cloyne report is very clear in saying that there could be no doubt that the letter that the papal nuncio sent in 1997 greatly strengthened the position of these in Cloyne who didn’t approve of the Church’s Framework Document for the protection of children.”

He also said that the letter made it very clear that the papal nuncio and the Congregation of the Clergy regarded the Framework Document was “a mere study. It cautioned against mandatory reporting. It essentially laid down a marker that where there was an allegation of child sexual abuse, if in compliance with the framework document, a member of the clergy in Ireland reported the matter directly to the civil authorities it clearly indicated that that could be contrary to both moral and canonical law”.

It is perhaps significant that, unlike some of his colleagues, Shatter – himself a formidable lawyer – stopped short of saying that the papal nuncio’s 1997 letter actually broke Irish law.

Even if there is some technical merit in Fr Lombardi’s defensive statement, does it not in itself reflect the “gimlet eye of a canon lawyer”, in Mr Kenny’s memorable phrase?

For the truly substantial questions remain unanswered: did the papal nuncio’s 1997 letter reflect an attitude of greater concern for clergy than for abused children? Did some in the Vatican intentionally hamper those bishops who wanted the truth to be aired?

The motion before the Dáil yesterday asked: did the Vatican’s intervention “contribute to the undermining of the child protection frameworks and guidelines of the Irish state and the Irish bishops”?

The motion was carried.

  • ms catholic state

    Well….what an insinuation…a malevolent sinister evil insinutation.  Well if national security have nothing better to do….then they can watch my antics all they like.  I suppose you would like a type of gulag opened up in the UK too would you….especially for Catholics.  What is it with atheists and police states?!….they seem to go together like strawberries and cream.

  • ms catholic state

    More malevolent insinuations.  Actually…..I like to think the world will be a safer place….with me in it.  It’s the plans of the new sun kings ie the secularists that the world should be worried about.  Learn from history…recent 20th century history please..

  • Michel Roi

    Thanks Father! 

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

    Well, they say the first thing to go when  madness takes hold is the sense of humour. 

    I see another blogger below thinks I should refrain from eating fresh cream meringues until the problem of world hunger is solved, but I  would have expected more common  sense, if not better theology, from an alleged Catholic priest.

    For the record, I cannot remember the last time I ate a fresh cream meringue. Not that it makes a blind bit of difference.  When was the last time you had a whisky or other alcoholic drink?  Or a cigarette? Or a biscuit?  No little luxuries at  all, not even after dinner dessert?  No sugar in your tea/coffee?

    What the heck do you do for Lent?  (Joke).

    Ridiculous as is your comment about “soapbox” Catholics and cakes, two things are much more seriously concerning. 

    Firstly, that you don’t, apparently, realize the basic duty placed upon us by the Sacrament of Confirmation to BE “soapbox” Catholics – to speak out in defence of Catholic faith and morals and to challenge the diabolical disorientation (to quote Sr Lucia of Fatima) all around us in the Church and the world. That’s first.

    Secondly, it is extremely worrying that any Catholic priest does not wish to see  Christ at the head of every  nation on  earth, His teaching, in its totality, applied to laws and general governance.  To say that  the Catholic states have  “failed” is to fail yourself to understand that the so-called Catholic legislators in those countries have turned out to be no such thing. There are plenty of apostates dressed up  as Catholics these days – priests and bishops included. Fully  believing Catholic politicians placing Christ at the centre of their every policy and making Him “Head of State” is precisely how God has ordained things should be in the secular order. Or are you to be counted among those whose knowledge of Catholic Social Teaching is restricted to the nearest Catholic Aid charity box?

    Thanks for the biblical references but forgive me if I don’t reciprocate.  I think it is much more important that you go out and buy to read the first joke book you come across.  You’ve had a  sense of humour by-pass somewhere along the line and you need to address that before too long.

     

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

    That’s right – only God knows. So don’t you go upsetting yourself. 

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

     Talk about pots and kettles!  Your post in response to sm catholic state (who speaks eminent sense and sound theology at  every  turn) is nasty in the extreme and lacks academic objectivity.

    Round and round in circles, does ignorance go. Who said that?  Me. Why?  Because so many numpties just cannot grasp the fact that it wasn’t Catholicism that has damaged Ireland but the LACK of Catholicism, since no fully believing and committed Catholic, priest, bishop, religious or layperson, would ever engage in any criminal activity. That’s why. Only because they flouted the teaching of the Church, are we here today talking about child abuse and the clowns who run the Irish parliament in the same breath as we talk about the apostate priests and bishops who failed to live up to the Gospel and, later, failed to apply Canon Law which has ALWAYS contained penalties for bad priests. 

    But be honest. You  don’t hate the Catholic Church  because of the child abuse (note there are more Protestant ministers convicted to these crimes than Catholic priests). You hate the Catholic Church for the very reason Christ foretold it would be hated:  “As the world hates Me, so it  will hate you…”

    You hate  the truths of faith and morals which Christ has revealed and that the Church guards and proclaims, notwithstanding the sins of its members.  That’s what you hate.  Face up to it.  The Church, however, will be here until the end of time.  Live with it.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

    Got it in one, mscatholic state.  Something very wrong indeed.  

  • Mark Castilano

    It is now very clear that you, EditorCT, Ratbag and David Ayalon are in effect all the same person playing all sides against the other for purposes of self stimulation and entertainment. Someone who lives in a high rise tenement block, no doubt. It is good fun of course to express zany and screwball ideas, but you will find that the ‘penny has dropped’ and the people know the truth.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

     What a nasty thing to say.  What a sinister thing to say. 

    We cannot be sure if anyone from “national security” is watching although the way things are going in good old “democratic” Scotland wjere (we’re even having our vocabulary restricted  -  I will be writing to my MSP  on this matter very soon to tell him he’d better get my prison cell ready. If I decide to call a homosexual person “homosexual” I jolly well WILL.   But while we cannot be sure if anyone from national security is watching us we can be positive that heavenly  security sure is.  You’d do well to reflect on that truth, Sugar Plum.

    As for taking a holiday to “loosen up a bit” – listen: if I’m not  allowed a blankety blank fresh cream meringue, he sure as blankety blank better not to off on holiday.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

    “Strawberries and cream” ms catholic state?  Are you not aware that there are people starving in the world.

    Signed: Shocked to the Core, Glasgow.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

     Atheist:  someone who believes there’s no God and no afterlife. A person of faith in nothing.

    As good a definition as any I’ve seen, from the Dictionary of EditorCT

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

     Well, Wee Jock, a gal’s gotta have SOME faults…

  • Fr G T Walsh

    A CATHOLIC STATE (Bunreact na hEireann, The Irish constitution)It was enshrined in the Irish Constitution that Ireland would be governed by Christian principles. However, the Irish language version stated that Ireland would be governed on Catholic principles.The English language version stated that clerics could not be prosecuted for any offence by the police and only with the permission of the Director of Public Prosecutions. The Irish language version stated that clerics could only be prosecuted with the consent of the Papal Nuncio. As Gaelic was the first language of Ireland it carried precedence over all other languages therefore it was not possible to prosecute priests nuns and brothers for any crime. This was the status quo until very recently. In 1948 the coalition government led by John A. Costello at the behest of the Papal Nuncio Paschal Robinson, The President Sean T. O’Kelly (and the Knights of Columbanus) and The Taoiseach John A. Costello sent the following message to Pius XII (Hitler‘s Pope):
    “ We the Irish people desire to repose at the feet of Your Holiness the assurance of our filial loyalty and our devotion to your August person, as well as our firm resolve to be guided in all our work by the teachings of Christ and to strive for the attainment of a social order in Ireland based on Christian principles”. Ireland rescinded loyalty to the British Crown and transferred their loyalty to The Pope. Ironically, the Irish nation are crying out for reunion (A United Ireland) within the United Kingdom. The Catholic Church has destroyed Ireland and everything else it has touched.When I left Ireland in disgust to serve as a British Army Chaplin in India. It soon became apparent to me that if I was to be accepted in India I better get myself a woman. I did just that and got married to a wonderful woman and I stayed there. We have children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. I still smoke a pipe and I drink brandy twice a year. I am still sexually active thanks to Zen Meditation and Hatha Yoga. I am still a Catholic priest in the same way that applies to married Anglican priests who converted to Roman Catholicism.

  • JonnyB

    That “whooshing” sound was the salient point passing way over your head, again.

    Firstly, to point out a judgemental assumption you make, you say “… your own secular record…” when you have absolutely *no* idea what my faith/belief is.

    Secondly, the point I made is that the RC church claims to be *the* true church & some kind of all encompassing power of perfection (a point you so arrogantly exponentiate at others). For this to be true, it would be impossible for the church to have been responsible for the death of *any* innocents, not a single one (I use the word ‘innocent’ loosely, as it is clearly dependant on individual views of what actually is ‘innocence’).
    Trying to avoid/deflect by comparing favourably with anyone/anything else is meaningless, unless, and this is the real point, the truth is that it is not *the* church of God, but merely a man made organisation which began with the right intentions but, sadly, became seduced by it’s own power along the way.

    The whole child abuse scandal becomes much clearer when you view the RC church as a man-made & man-led organisation making mistakes of judgement, for which it can openly admit its failings, then apologise, seek to repair damage and, most importantly, change for the better.
    If, as seems to be the sad reality, it continues to refuse to acknowledge reality & believe it is more important than any single member of it’s flock (especially with zealots like you included), then the only possible outcome is the complete demise of itself.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

     Now we have it.  You are an unfaithful priest.  I know  plenty of priests in India and they are native Indian priests who do NOT “have women.”  Goodness, sin if you must, but please don’t try to justify  it. Your anti-Catholic hatred is now evidently as a result of your affair, which doesn’t sit too well on your conscience, by the grace of God. Yes, you will always be a priest, and will present at your judgment as a priest – one of the many who, not content with having  abandoned his vocation, then spent his time beating the Church with whatever stick is closest to hand.   I suggest you at least stop doing that.

    You wrote: “Ironically, the Irish nation are crying out for reunion (A
    United Ireland) within the United Kingdom.” Really?  That’s news to me.  Most of us in the UK are angling to get our independence from Westminster.  Not me, personally, I  don’t  give  a  toss  I don’t trust ANY  politicians, Scots, English, Welsh, Irish, Americans, you  name it. But I think whoever is telling you that Ireland and the Irish want to be part of the UK, is telling you porky  pies if not fresh cream meringues.

    Since you have exchanged your priestly  ministry for a wife and children, and I’m presuming, in charity, that you have obtained all  necessary dispensations, why do you persist in using the title “Father” which is reserved, surely, for priests in good standing?

  • JonnyB

    I believe you misunderstood the context of the point I was making – apologies if it was down to a lack of clarity in my own writing.
    I was merely refuting the ‘excuse’ of slaughter being okay because of the times and/or because others were doing the same. True Christian values should not be based upon the current trends, but on a core set of beliefs.

  • JonnyB

    Interesting to note that your response to someone of your own faith imparting wisdom to you, is to childishly, & without due deference, demean the examples given to you as reference of Fr. Walsh’s experience.
    Swiftly followed by the irony of you suggesting other people leave judging to Jesus – perhaps you can follow your own advice, instead of assuming anyone who is different to you is inherently evil.

  • JonnyB

    A person of faith in nothing? I think your dictionary is a dud, unless it qualifies that statement with a context.

    An Atheist believes there is no God(s) – no more, no less.

    There is nothing in being an Atheist that gives them more propensity to be good, evil or indifferent. As Fr.Walsh has already stated, the vast majority of Atheists tend to be indifferent and take a ‘live & let live’ approach to life – not so different to Jesus’ teachings on how we view others, is it?

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

     Oops, typo – my definition should have concluded: “A person of faith in nothing supernatural”

    Mind you, it does often transpire that alleged atheists do believe in the occult.  A devil but no creator God. Numpties.

  • ms catholic state

    There is no excuse…..it is a law of war that if a nation doesn’t surrender….then civilians will be slaughtered.  This is not to excuse such a horrendous tactic…..but to highlight secular hypocrisy….tut tuting at the Crusaders….while ignoring secular culpability in carrying out the EXACT same practices….with even greater loss of innocent life.
     
    Check out your own sins first…..
     
     

  • JonnyB

    Are you really as dim as your writing suggests?

    I will spell it out, again, clearly for you…
    The crusades I referred to (in response to being asked to name ONE Catholic who committed atrocity) were NOT wars in the sense to which you allude. I even gave you the names (some of them) for you to be able to read up on it for yourself. The crusades I referred to were a campaign, ordered by Pope Innocent III, against heresy in a region of France. The campaign included the indiscriminate slaughter of Catholics simply because they lived among the, so-called, heretics.
    You can waffle on all you like about other, so-called, crusades & attempt to point fingers at others as some kind of redeeming excuse, but the point still stands, whether you ignore it, or not.

  • JonnyB

    “A person of faith in nothing supernatural”
    “… does often transpire that alleged Atheists believe in… the Devil”

    Put your own words together and, I am sure, you cannot fail to note that it is impossible to be an Atheist AND to believe in the Devil. Ergo, anyone believing in the Devil is *not* an Atheist. Numpty.

  • ms catholic state

    The Crusades that I am talking about and know… were a necessary means against Islamic expansionism.  Unless of course you approve of that.  Which would be typical anti-Catholic maliciousness…ie that Catholics should not defend themselves.  Evil bigoted attitude.

  • JonnyB

    Sigh, for the last time…
    It does not matter which ones you are talking about!

    Quotes, slightly paraphrased, but in order, for you:
    “Name even ONE fully believing and committed Catholic who carried out…”(EditorCT)
    “Pope Innocent III… crusades against Languedoc heretics… slaughter of innocent Catholics”(me)

    What anyone else did is irrelevant in this context, as I was asked to name “even ONE” & I did so. Now, even you must be able to grasp this point, finally?!?!

    I will simply continue to laugh at your increasingly astonishing, yet consistently false, assumptions about *my* attitude to something which I have not even discussed. Or, was this last sentence merely a piece of self-descriptive acknowledgment?

  • David Ayalon

    No! I am not part of “The Lemon Meringue Gang”, and I have no wish to see a Catholic State led by a bunch of power crazy zealous religious nutter’s. It is now so clear what paranoid religious zeal can do. I do not want to belong to a ‘whites only’ Catholic state under the banner of Joan of Arc. These are very dangerous people. Just examine some of their recent responses to comprehend the magnitude of their insane aspirations.

  • Fr G T Walsh

    I have not been excommunicated because I have not broken Canon Law. The Catholic hierarchy in India and the Vatican know of my situation. I met John Paul II, and he did not complain. He understood the sociological and psychological reasons for my married status. There are good reasons why many missionary priests get married, and it is widely accepted throughout the world.It does not surprise me that you have been ungracious and insulting. I do not feel singled out one little bit. Having time on my hands, I have looked some of your other blogs and the other people you have insulted. Your favourite word is ‘WRONG’. Maybe if you worked with lepers and destitute people for a few years, your judgemental attitude would be enlightened and your humility enhanced.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

     JonnyB,

    You  make the classic mistake of thinking there is anything logical about atheism.  “Numpty” you say?
    Don’t be too hard on yourself.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

    I’ll take that as a compliment.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

    Well, you’ve clearly never seen an abortion if you don’t know that the baby is “ripped from the womb” – often limb by limb.  Check it out. There are videos available online.  Watch the procedure and see if you still think the woman has the right to “terminate an unwanted pregnancy” or – put another way – to murder her unborn child. But you’re right about one thing.  It’s wrong to compare you  with the “apologists” (?) for sex abuse.  Last time I checked, sex abuse victims continue to exercise their right to life. Horrific though it is, sex abuse is not terminal.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

    Women have the right to murder their children in the womb and to be priests etc etc, as much as I have the right to be tall, blond and blue-eyed.

  • JonnyB

    Umm I made no comment about “thinking” anything, I just put your own statements together in a way that you might be able to see the hypocrisy of your own logic. Ironic, then, that you attempt to accuse anyone else of flawed logic. Amazing how many zealots tend to resort to (attempted) petty insults rather than dealing with the actual discussion – in this case, a discussion which branched from your own ludicrous generalised assertions about people you, subsequently, showed you know nothing of.

    I can call myself a Muslim Catholic Jew, but it does not make me any of them, let alone all three – it is only my acts that make me what I am, if, indeed, I felt a need to label myself, at all. ‘Atheist’ has a definition which, even by your own words, debunks your ‘theories’ about the occult.

    Conversely, if your argument were to be true, then the same theory would validate such ridiculous claims as:
    “Some who claim to be Catholics are paedophiles, so all of them must be” & “Catholics burn heretics” – are these, equally exaggerated, generalisations also true? I think not.

    We are all the same, we are all free to be what we choose to be, we should all love & care for one another, regardless of difference. If you despise all Atheists (or, even, non-Catholics) which, from your writing, seems to be the case, then you are no more Christian than the most unholy person to exist.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

    Firstly, it’s not about “apples and oranges”  There can be no doubting that certain trends occur, certain “offences” become fashionable to oppose and/or fashionable to ignore/accept.  Not so long ago, everyone, but everyone, was shock-horror opposed to homosexual activity.  Now it’s almost mandatory with – in my own homeland, Scotland – legislation being proposed which  will ban even the use of the word “homosexual”!  Unbelievable. And unenforceable, I hope, cos I’m going to make a POINT of using the word as and when I choose.

    Right now, it’s all the rage to scream “horrendous!” about child abuse.  When I was a  schoolgirl (what a memory) we were “abused” all the time; belted if we couldn’t add up (me) belted if we were caught telling a joke (me) and all because it was believed that “to spare the rod” is to “spoil the child.”  Again, what was legal and recommended, caning or strapping children for bad behaviour, is now considered beyond the pale, with parents in fear of their children being removed from the home and put into care, if they so much as raise their voices in mild anger at disruptive offspring.  Ditto teachers.

    Sexual abuse, of course, is appalling but only a few years ago, Dr Jack Dominion, darling of the English Bishops Conference, a well known speaker on Catholic platforms all over the land, gave a very positive review to a book that claimed that not all paedophilia was bad, that – like it or not – children are sexual beings.  Someone sent me a photocopy of the Review and I still remember being appalled when I read it. Yet, I don’t think a single letter was published challenging this view.  This would have been around 1997 – somewhere there in the late nineties. 

    It’s the Murdoch Saga all over again.  What is generally accepted and even promoted, suddenly falls foul of “public opinion” largely through the machinations of certain media organs who “become” said “public opinion”. 

    As the Archbishop of Dublin admitted in a probing Jeremy Paxman Newsnight interview, this shocking sex abuse in Ireland dates from the 1960s.  Right now it’s the fashion  to be pro-Vatican II and accepting of the lax moral attitudes that resulted in our current crop of decadent clergy (I know there are exceptions but the clergy is, largely, decadent.)   We all like the “Father John” and “Father Joe” types, the much more “human” priests, then heretofore.  No comment.  Except to say, that it is only when we break through THAT barrier and recognise the damage done to the Church by Pope John XXIII’s rash act in throwing open that notorious window, that we can begin to address the underlying causes of the child sex abuse cases (apostasy – loss of Catholic Faith) Then the real reparation can begin.

    As for your focus on Pope Innocent III etc.  Off the wall. 

    This post is lengthy enough, however, so I’ll go and find your other belligerent off the wall posts on the same theme and deal with this nonsense there.  In the meantime, behave yourself.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotlande.com EditorCT

    Don’t be daft. I have a hard enough time being myself, without inventing other characters behind which to hide.  If I wanted to hide I would NEED a high rise tenement block.  It’s those fresh cream meringues, you see…

  • H J McCracken

    I feel better and will be able to sleep more soundly in the knowledge that the civil and ecclesiastical authorities know of a gang of fascist rascals “The Lemon Meringue Gang”, who want to create a Catholic State and claim that their Catholic Truth is the only truth. I feel sure their subterfuge and power crazy intentions are being observed.

  • Anonymous

    As soon as I saw your “Hitler’s Pope” comment I knew you were a bitter and unhappy man. Your further revelations about being married, having children, drinking brandy and being sexually active through Zen and Yoga confirms this.

    It breaks my heart to read such comments from one who was especially called by Our Lord to the consecrated state. How much glory you could have given to God and how many souls you could have brought to Him. Instead, you are crucifying Our Lord all over again with your public scandal. My advice to you, Father, is to repent of your scandalous life before it is too late.

    If you are as old as you suggest in your post of proud boasting, then you already have one foot in the grave and the other on a banana skin. Your judgment is not far off. Remember the motto of the Redemptorists: “You have one life to live and one soul to save. Death will come soon, then Heaven or Hell for all eternity.” Believe me, sex, brandy and Zen are a poor exchange for your immortal soul. You may wish to read up on the revelations of the saints regarding the torments of the damned.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotlande.com EditorCT

    I am now very puzzled.  Are you  a Catholic priest who promised to live a celibate life or not?
     
    You wrote: ” It soon became apparent to me that if I was to be accepted in India I better get myself a woman. I did just that and got married to a wonderful woman and I stayed there. We have children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. I still smoke a pipe and I drink brandy twice a year. I am still sexually active thanks to Zen Meditation and Hatha Yoga. I am still a Catholic priest …”

    It really doesn’t matter a jot whether or not Pope John Paul II knew of/approved your situation - that’s just one more problem to add to the long list already on offer about his pontificate. 

    The key thing is: are you still “ministering” as a priest or do you no longer work as a priest? 

    I’m passing over in near silence the sheer cheek of you to lambast me for having the odd cake given the list of indulgences you admit to enjoying yourself, because it’s much more important for us to know whether or not Pope John Paul II approved of a priest going out to look for a woman, “marrying” her and having children, grand-children and great-grandchildren, whilst offeirng Mass and hearing confessions.

    I repeat:  I am now very puzzled. Are you a Catholic priest who promised to live a celibate life and who – according to your own testimony- went out of his way to be unfaithful to that promise?

  • http://www.catholictruthscotlande.com EditorCT

    Somehow this got posted in the wrong place. It is supposed to be a reply to Fr Walsh. Will repost but don’t know how to delete. Over to the powers-that-be.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotlande.com EditorCT

    I am now very puzzled. Are you a Catholic priest who promised to live a celibate life or not? You wrote: ” It soon became apparent to me that if I was to be accepted in India I better get myself a woman. I did just that and got married to a wonderful woman and I stayed there. We have children,
    grandchildren and great grandchildren. I still smoke a pipe and I drink brandy twice a year. I am still sexually active thanks to Zen Meditation and Hatha Yoga. I am still a Catholic priest …”It really doesn’t matter a jot whether or not Pope John Paul II knew of/approved your situation – that’s just one more problem to add to the long list already on offer about his pontificate. The key thing is: are you still “ministering” as a priest or do you no longer work as a priest? I’m passing over in near silence the sheer cheek of you to lambast me for having the odd cake given the list of indulgences you admit to enjoying yourself, because it’s much more important for us to know whether or not Pope John Paul II approved of a priest going out to look for a woman, “marrying” her and having children, grand-children and great-grandchildren, whilst offeirng Mass and hearing confessions. I repeat: I am now very puzzled. Are you a Catholic priest who promised to live a celibate life and who – according to your own testimony- went out of his way to be unfaithful to that promise?  

    And would you also confirm that you continue to  have the approval of your local bishop and the Pope.

    Please and thank you.    

  • Anonymous

    The worst leprosy of all is that of sin on the soul. Bodily ailments and diseases can help us imitate Christ Our Lord and get to heaven. Disease of the soul has the opposite effect.

    By the way, you are suspended from your priestly ministry under Canon 1394 of the 1983 Code of Canon Law for failing to enter into the Church’s mandatory and lengthy process for laicisation. Like other unfaithful priests, you try to con the faithful by applying Code 1335 as justification for your illicit continuation in the priestly ministry. That particular Code, however, only allows you to administer the Sacraments in cases where there is danger of death and no possibility of a priest in good standing.

     

  • Anonymous

    I think you’ll find historically that Communists have much more blood on their hands than “right wingers.” The last body count for Stalin was, I believe, around 50 million, a great percentage of whom were Christian. And you may wish to reflect that Hitler, not a right-winger but a National SOCIALIST dictator, racked up a similar number.

    Yes, it seems the greatest murderers in the history of humanity have actually been atheists!! 

  • Fr G T Walsh

    The values you mention are so good when you are ministering in a white middle class European diocese or in North America and Australia/New Zealand. But where I was the parish was hundreds of miles wide. The people who could walk came twenty or thirty miles to mass, only to get a bowl of soup and some bread, and some medical care. Many were too unfit to walk and were suffering the most terrible tropical diseases, tuberculosis, leprosy, malnutrition. My counsellor and friend was Bede Griffiths and I will take no lessons from you about Canon Law or any other officious dogma that you care to quote. How does the Catholic Church explain the teaching of Christ when five eights of the world are starving and have no possessions whatsoever? When the priest, on some occasions has to be the doctor, the nurse, the midwife and sometimes the surgeon (self taught) only out of necessity, and in spite of his efforts patients still die. I do not care one jot about your comfortable values and you spouting Canon Law at me. Starving children and sick people do not care about man made self serving theology. Christ was more evident in India than in the Vatican, and I have no fear about the judgement of God. Your attitude and brand of theology is what has brought the Catholic Church to it’s final and imminent dissolution.

  • Anonymous

    It is the whole political spin dressed up in a cloak of moral outrage – the quote from St Benedict was a nice touch – that is so reprehensible in the leader of a government that itself has failed its people in many ways.  If Mr Kenny had reflected more he might see that his proposed legislation is not only an attack on the Sacrament of Penance but is the closing of a door to those people who may have been abused but simply do not want to go public, do not want the government or the police involved.  Such people will, quite literally, have no one to talk to in Ireland, since everyone will be under the obligation to report their account to the civil authorities.  One can understand Archbishop Martin’s running a mile from the rider ‘unless the person doesn’t want it reported’ for who is to say that further down the road – perhaps thirty years further down the road – someone will not accuse a priest/teacher/other of not having reported the abuse that the person in his/her pain and anxiety had confided to him/her?  Perhaps the person might even have forgotten by then that s/he had asked for confidentiality.

    I think that the Irish government should publish statistics about child abuse cases by profession – including parenthood – so that this speaking and acting as though priests were uniquely responsible for abusing children could be tempered somewhat.  Of course, this would probably be difficult because other bodies may not have kept records as the Church did.  For example, at least in England, Public (private) schools were notorious for the abuse that went on, physical and sexual.  I have not heard of Eton or Winchester having enquiries and publishing reports and paying out vast sums in compensation.  Someone should also do a breakdown of the levels and types of abuse in the form of an easy to read table etc etc.  This would enable people to form a clearer picture of the whole sorry saga.

  • Anonymous

    David Ayalon

    Well they are not Catholics then.

  • Anonymous

    Fr.G.T.Walsh

    With friends like you who needs enemies?  

    By the way, if you still smoke a pipe and drink brandy and have sex, why censure those who eat cream meringues?

  • Anonymous

    You will find the poor being similarly used by Judas in the Gospels to justify his greed, ironically enough in the house of Simon the leper. He too had only one master – his passions – and look where they led him.

    There is a great prayer in the Tridentine Mass that reads: “…Set a watch, O Lord, before my mouth, and a door round about my lips. May my heart not incline to evil words, to make excuses for sins.”

    All of those poor unfortunates you mention are probably in a happier state than you. They have been willing to suffer for Christ. You, clearly, have not been willing. You broke your promise to God, the promise of your ordination, and now you indulge your passions freely and blame Our Lord and His Holy Church for it. It’s pathetic! I will pray for your immortal soul.

  • Anonymous

    The Benedictine monk you write of is not actually “The Venerable Bede Griffiths,” but just plain old Bede Griffith’s, a Benedictine monk of suspect orthodoxy. 

    I reckon this 1983 statement of the Benedictine/Hindu in question is heresy: “We’re now being challenged to create a theology which would use the findings of modern science and eastern mysticism which, as you know, coincide so much, and to evolve from that a new theology which would be much more adequate.”

  • Mark Castilano

    Father Walsh said that he smokes his pipe and drinks brandy twice a year, but you have chosen to skew and twist this, to suggest that he is profligate. He sounds to be a brave and good man who has served the sick and the wretched as Christ wished for priests to do. Whatever you say is academic because right wing Christianity is on the way out in Europe. What could be more fascist and right wing than your brand of Catholicism and it has had it’s day. The old priest is judged harshly by armchair prognosticators, whilst excuses are made for people like Bishop Magee. Bede Griffiths was a brilliant academic and philosopher. He made marvellous inroads into the concept of pheromone theory as a communication system. Constantine’s child abuse system of Catholicism is finished. Incidentally, the sanctity and secrecy of confession has never been respected. There have always been codes of confessional disclosure (for payment) without the priest ever saying of writing a word. The priest could swear on oath that he never revealed a penitent’s confession, but at the same be lying through his teeth. Social change has decreed that old men dressed up as women, uttering incomprehensible archaic dogma is no longer acceptable.

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

    Spot on Licjjs.  An American study,
    published online by Sam Miller, who is not a Catholic but a prominent
    Jewish businessman from Cleveland, reveals that while a disgraceful 1.7% of
    Catholic Clergy have been found guilty of sexual abuse in the USA, 2.0 – 3.0%
    of Protestant Ministers have been found guilty.

    It also showed that child
    abuse is far more prevalent in schools, youth organisations and sports training
    centres while Catholic clergy are actually at the bottom of the list – below
    doctors, teachers and farmers. Mr Miller ends his article with these words “Walk
    with your shoulders high and your head higher…Be proud to speak up for your
    Church. Be proud that you are a Catholic.” http://www.catholictruthscotland.com/Putting%20the%20record%20straight.pdf

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

    Spot on, licjjs.  Your observations are borne out by the
    available research.  An American study,
    published online by Sam Miller, who is not a Catholic
    but a prominent Jewish businessman from Cleveland, reveals that while a disgraceful 1.7% of Catholic Clergy have been found guilty of sexual abuse in
    the USA, 2.0 – 3.0% of Protestant Ministers have been found guilty.

    It also showed that child
    abuse is far more prevalent in schools, youth organisations and sports training
    centres while Catholic clergy are actually at the bottom of the list – below
    doctors, teachers and farmers. Mr Miller ends his article with these words “Walk
    with your shoulders high and your head higher…Be proud to speak up for your
    Church. Be proud that you are a Catholic.” http://www.catholictruthscotland.com/Putting%20the%20record%20straight.pdf

    It also showed that child
    abuse is far more prevalent in schools, youth organisations and sports training
    centres while Catholic clergy are actually at the bottom of the list – below
    doctors, teachers and farmers. Mr Miller ends his article with these words “Walk
    with your shoulders high and your head higher…Be proud to speak up for your
    Church. Be proud that you are a Catholic.” http://www.catholictruthscotland.com/Putting%20the%20record%20straight.pdf

     

  • http://www.catholictruthscotland.com EditorCT

    Sorry about the layout and duplication in the above post – there is no longer any edit button on these blogs, so it is impossible to correct typing errors.