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Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Cardinal McCarrick and the Last Novus Gasp

Written by  Michael J. Matt & Thomas More, MA, JD, PhD
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Bishops in whiteCardinal Carrera assists Cardinal McCarrick. Also pictured are Cardinal Pell, Cardinal O'Malley, and Cardinal Mahony. (Photo Cred: Paul Haring | CNS)

The Barque of Peter is stuck in an unholy see of “filth.” Many of its occupants struggle to normalize their relationships with the cabin boys. On the poop-deck is Theodore (“Uncle Ted”) Mc Carrick, and behind him are numerous clerics, all saluting McCarrick and sporting blue-striped sailor ensembles. Apparently, he liked his victims and “lovers” to wear such outfits on occasion. Those saluting encourage the oarsmen, as the barque forays deeper and deeper into the filth:

“Forward, forward, there shall be no turning back,” as Pope Francis has stated with regard to the changes of Vatican II.  

Cardinals Farrell, Maridaga, Wuerl and O’Malley, among many other Cardinals, are behind these men. As they stand there, their long flowing white frocks billowing in the wind, they sport blindfolds and weighing scales. Resembling Lady Justice in such attire, they proclaim their innocence of any knowledge of any impropriety, sexual or financial, and they say that they are “shocked” and dismayed. They wonder openly how Uncle Ted could have gotten away with all of this seemingly well-known behaviour, although even if they had known, they say in lawyer-speak, it would not have been within their jurisdiction to unveil his evil. In other words, “It was not my job! I know him not!” Moreover, they say, while the conduct in question was “immoral,” it was not illegal. But, like the raven, they quoth “Nevermore.” We shall see! #Seminarians&PriestsToo.

Behind such high-ranking prelates, in turn, are the clerics who speak of “mercy” and compare the righteous anger at McCarrick and his clerical cohorts, conspirators, and enablers to a “mob” persecuting Jesus, the sinless Lamb. Even within the hierarchy, the words of Christ himself have become truly perverted, so that good is bad and bad is good.

The usual suspects in Rome start threatening to shut down the blogs complaining about those who give voice to the self-evident proposition that both marital adultery and clerical sodomy and sexual impropriety are prohibited by both our Tradition and the Bible. These clerics seek to persecute those of the Faithful who hold true to our Tradition. This, they say, is in “the best interests of the Church,” of course, not because of that individual’s malice or any hidden homosexualist agenda on his part. The threat to punish free, truthful and open speech and opinion is, rather, styled as an attempt to punish “hatred,” and it is financed, ironically, by the donations of the laity themselves and contrary to their intent in giving said monies.

THE REAL SITUATION FOR US:

Bill McGurn of The Wall Street Journal compares the McCarrick situation to a watershed moment akin to the Reformation:

A reform serious and meaningful must emerge from it, or must assuredly the Church will split. In this process, let us thank God and His Providence for the First Amendment, which will protect the laity in doing what we need to do to rid ourselves from such evil men and their evil ways.

Thank God, the McCarrick story broke before the Dublin Synod, which was undoubtedly going to take “the logic of Amoris” and apply it to active homosexuals “in the Church.” Amoris, after all, makes the astonishing claim—especially after the pederast abuse crisis—that continuing an adulterous relationship can be better than healing a broken sacramental marriage. Moreover, it seems to assert that some non-sacramental relationships can be more filled with grace than sacramental marriage.

Within this context, the current Bishop of Rome allegedly has said that there is no Hell. And, his ghost-writer on Amoris, cardinal Heal-Me-With-Your-Mouth-Fernandez, has allegedly stated that he believes “all are saved.” Within this theological/philosophical context, the behaviour of people like Uncle Ted, would seem to be, possibly, as moral as the sexual behaviour of married couples. Once Christ’s precise words on adultery have been denied or undermined, as they have been in Amoris, then over-ruling the Bible’s prohibition on homosexual sodomy and other forms of clerical deviance would be a piece of cake. All of this was, from a Catholic perspective, seemingly an attack on “the family” as that notion was and is Biblically enshrined. As such, in light of Uncle Ted, it looks as if these men may have been seeking to normalize their own deviancy, and it is unsurprising, as such, that they are now seeking to overturn—“reinterpret”—Humanae Vitae.

What to do now, especially since Cardinal Farrell—who lived with McCarrick for six years and was one of his proteges—was recently selected to head the quiet revolution in sexuality envisioned at the Youth Synod, which, incidentally has been plagued by allegations that the preliminary commission refused to take seriously the recommendations of Traditional Catholics? This pontificate of sinful facilitation must surely feel stymied at this moment in time. The filth of it all has been revealed to the world, and investigations will surely follow, in one form or another. Can they now get away with what was possibly planned? The only rational action lest they row themselves further into their own filth is to stop this Synod, NOW! It cannot get any better for them, and we must let them know this, immediately.

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Along those lines, we—those of us who believe—must use every weapon at our disposal to free our Church from its recalcitrant clerics and the squalid reality in which the Church finds itself. The Church is ours, it is Christ’s, and we must take it back from such evil men. We cannot allow them to scourge Christ and stand idly by as they attempt to wash their hands of the situation, as Pontius Pilate and people like Cardinal O’Malley appear to have done, while possibly all neatly dressed in blue-and-white naval stripes. No amount of lawyering should be allowed to facilitate their hand-washing. Thus, the question arises: How do we fight a clerical and hierarchical Church, when we are only lay people?

Well, although lay, we have been called also as part of “The People of God,” and we can resist; we have Christ on our side. In this regard, one author has recommended that we put our ideological differences aside when it comes to this issue. In essence, many of us view ourselves as being Traditionalists, Conservatives or Liberals. But all of us are disgusted by this. As such, coming together for this limited purposes seems like a good idea.

Many authors say that we should simply stop giving money to corrupt bishops and priests. In the interests of coming together in the face of this crisis, it must be noted that Church Militant’s Michael Voris has recommended this course of action: Let them reap what they have sown; let the dead bury their dead. Much of our money recently has been diverted to abuse settlements and the support of “lovers” and extravagant lifestyles. Let’s turn off the spigot. From now on, let us donate only to good priests and parishes. Pope Francis has said that he wants a “poor church for the poor.” Let them have it.

On The World Over with Raymond Arroyo, it was recommended that we set up another—third—commission to look into this predatory behaviour within the Church. Undoubtedly we should petition the Vatican to set up such a commission for “The Good of the Church.” This should be a lay-led, but Church-empowered commission “with teeth,” says Marjorie Murphy-Campbell, a mother, attorney and canonist. If such a commission ever does see the light of day, undoubtedly this kind lady should be on it. However, it is unlikely that this hierarchy will open up fully—at least not within this context!

Raymond Arroyo, himself, notes that in addition to homosexual predation and rape, the commission should also involve financial impropriety, for where there is one, there is normally the other. Similarly, Father John Zuhlsdorf, a well-known priest and blogger, yesterday stated that perhaps Pope Francis should appoint a canonical Special Prosecutor, an Inquisitor, who shall look into the Dioceses in question. All of these suggestions are good and desirable. Let’s open the books of the Church and see how many settlements of this sort have been made nationally, and who knew what and when. After all, the Church is a charity and the hierarchy is a fiduciary of our money. We have a right to know what was done with it and whether it was used in a way that serves our intent.

But, add to all of these another idea, one not yet spoken of openly: Civil investigation and prosecution. After all of this—after all of these years and all of these scandals—we Catholics should not only tolerate, but request—nay, demand—that the State and Federal authorities become involved in rooting out the predatory rape culture that seems to have infiltrated our seminaries and Church. What we see appears to be an institutional, national and international set of behaviours which qualify for protection under State and Federal versions of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizational Act (RICO). It also smacks of human trafficking and organized exploitation and rape, something Pope Francis has put on his list of priorities, and something upon which our civil law frowns, as well.

If, ultimately, somehow, remarkably, such predatory sexual contact under duress does not qualify for prosecution, then there is a gap in the law which must be closed. Let us petition our government for new laws that protect us all from such men. Never again can we have a Cardinal attempt to dismiss such predatory behaviour as being “immoral.” From henceforth let us make sure that it is unequivocally viewed as being illegal, and let us make sure that when bishops know about it, they are under a duty to act.

Thus, from this point forward, let us lift our heads from the sand and stand behind the civil-criminal authorities, such as Attorney General of Pennsylvania, Josh Shapiro, who seeks full-disclosure from the Vatican on issues like this. Desperate times call for desperate measures, and let us not forget that civil society—unlike the hierarchy—responds directly to us: We, The People. In this regard, and at this moment, the interests of the civil authorities and the interests of the Catholic laity are aligned. This is equally true for the personal injury-lawyers and those who seek civil redress for the harm done to our seminarians. Let us welcome such actions, for without the law we are now lost!  

 

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