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Wednesday, January 23, 2019

ANATOMY OF A COVERUP: Francis, Vatican Exposed

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mccarrick in romeThen-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, key spokesman for bishops at the summit meeting with JPII on the sex abuse crisis unfolding in the U.S., faces the press at the Vatican on April 24, 2002. The Remnant's Chirstopher Ferrara was there to ask McCarrick the $64,000 question. (Reuters photo)

 Introduction: the “Abuse of Minors” Ruse

The homosexual priest and bishop scandal has erupted anew, just as I predicted in an article for this journal seventeen years ago, concerning the useless “pedophile summit” in Rome, presided over by none other than ex-Cardinal McCarrick, the serial sexual abuser of seminarians and altar boys Pope Bergoglio was finally forced to discipline after having rehabilitated him in full knowledge of his past. The 2002 Roman junket for well-fed prelates was cunningly designed to avoid the issue of homosexual activity among the clergy and their “consenting adult” partners in sodomy.

 

With vipers like McCarrick running the show, the participants would never get anywhere near the third rail of rampant homosexuality in the post-Vatican II priesthood. The problem, we were told, was “abuse of minors” by pedophiles—an outright lie designed to conceal the widespread homosexual corruption of Catholic clergy. I attended the event as a reporter for The Remnant, confronting McCarrick personally at a press conference during its worthless proceedings. Herewith my question and McCarrick’s supremely deceptive and hypocritical answer, a carefully worded nod to the continuing ordination of homosexuals so long as they profess not to have been “active”:

Ferrara: Nearly every single case has involved an adolescent and does not constitute a true case of pedophilia. So, we're dealing with the acts of homosexual males who could not control their predilection. To avoid what would be a perpetual bumper crop of this type of scandal, is the hierarchy in North America going to enforce the Vatican’s [1961] Instruction that homosexual males simply should not be ordained? 

McCarrick: I think certainly every seminary in the country has a program that says, “anyone who is an active homosexual should never be admitted.” I don’t know of any bishop in the country who would allow someone who had been actively involved in homosexuality to enter a seminary. I don't think any bishop would allow anyone who was actively engaged inheterosexual [his emphasis] activity right before they went in to enter the seminary.

We believe in celibacy. It’s not the easiest road in today’s crazy world, but we believe in celibacy. We believe that if you practice celibacy with all your heart, with all your love, you can be free to serve God’s people, to serve God in a beautiful way. If someone gets into a seminary, and that question is not asked, that’s a terrible thing. But any seminary that I know, you say, “have you been acting celibately up until now?”

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Knowing what we now know about McCarrick’s crimes, which forced even Bergoglio to remove him from the College of Cardinals when the media heat became too intense, consider the Washington Post’s glowing description of his role back then as the “leading spokesman … national leader… [and] most sensible voice” on “the sexual abuse crisis” in the Church, who “understands the depth of the problem” of “abuse of minors”—which he himself had committed!

If only it were a joke. One of the most cunning snakes in a brood of vipers—“the crafty McCarrick” I called him at the time—was put in charge of misdirecting the focus of the meeting to “abuse of minors” by “pedophiles” instead of sodomy between priests and young adult males. As for “consensual” sodomy between priests and their fellow priests or other “consenting adults,” that would not even be mentioned, much less addressed.  Protection was thus assured for the “gay Mafia” that now afflicts the Church as never before.

Bergoglio Continues the Coverup

Bergoglio has made his own novel contributions to Operation Homo Coverup. While coddling homosexual associates and refusing to identify homosexual infiltration of the hierarchy as the root problem (see below), he condemns instead an ill-defined “clericalism” as the cause of the “abuse of minors,” thereby adding another layer of rhetorical misdirection to the phony “abuse of minors” narrative. 

In the immediate aftermath of the devastating Grand Jury report last August on widespread homosexual predation in the dioceses of Pennsylvania, much of it covered up by Cardinal Wuerl, Bergoglio issued a “Letter to the People of God” in which he decries “clericalism,” not homosexual predation: “Clericalism, whether fostered by priests themselves or by lay persons, leads to an excision in the ecclesial body that supports and helps to perpetuate many of the evils that we are condemning today. To say ‘no’ to abuse is to say an emphatic ‘no’ to all forms of clericalism.”

But what about “saying an emphatic no” to all forms of homosexual activity? The subject finds no mention in the sanctimonious missive, which dares to imply collective guilt of the faithful for the depraved acts of priests and bishops: “I invite the entire holy faithful People of God to apenitential exercise of prayer and fasting [his emphasis], following the Lord’s command. This can awaken our conscience and arouse our solidarity and commitment to a culture of care that says ‘never again’ to every form of abuse.”  It is not our consciences need awakening, nor is it we who are obliged to do penance for the homosexual molestation of boys by sexual perverts who should never have been ordained to the priesthood and should have been laicized the moment their perversion came to light.

Bergoglio cannot even bring himself to state clearly that the “abuse” in question involves the acts of homosexuals. Notice how the depraved acts of homosexual perpetrators are rhetorically elided into “every form of abuse” and “all forms of clericalism.” According to Bergoglio, the homosexual molestation of boys reflects, not sexual depravity as such, but rather “a peculiar way of understanding the Church’s authority, one common in many communities where sexual abuse and the abuse of power and conscience have occurred.” A “peculiar way of understanding the Church’s authority” is certainly a peculiar way to describe homosexual priests and bishops molesting boys.

As Life Site News points out, Bergoglio does not even “recognize the role bishops have played in the scandal. In fact, the word ‘bishop’ does not appear once in the entire letter.” The same grand jury report that prompted the “Letter to the People of God” revealed that Wuerl, whose name appears 206 times in the report, had been instrumental in covering up the sex crimes of homosexual priests when he was Bishop of Pittsburgh. As Lifesite News summarizes: “[W]hile he corresponded with the Vatican concerning the liability these priests created for the Church, he kept their actions concealed from parishioners.” Wuerl also approved payments to “a known molester of underage boys” who demanded money in exchange for information on his fellow priests engaged in the same activity. Wuerl had previously returned the same priest to ministry after he threatened to sue over the allegations against him. The same priest, who was “murdered in Cuba where he lived with his boyfriend, was ultimately found to be involved in producing child pornography based on religious imagery on Church property, and to be part of a group of priests who ‘used whips, violence and sadism in raping their victims.’” 

Wuerl has also demonstrably lied about his longstanding knowledge of ex-Cardinal McCarrick’s homosexual predation. When his lies were exposed, he was forced to issue increasingly hedged, evidently lawyer-drafted, “clarifications,” including that he “forgot” what he knew about McCarrick. He was finally forced to resign as Archbishop of Washington two months after the grand jury report was made public. But the “resignation” was another Bergoglian ruse. Bergoglio’s letter accepting Wuerl’s faux resignation last October portrays him as the heroic victim of the “father of lies” and declares that he had “sufficient elements to ‘justify’ your actions” and had not covered up any crimes but merely  “commit[ed] some mistakes.” Yet, said Bergoglio, “your nobility has led you not to choose this way of defense.”  The same letter appoints the noble Wuerl as Apostolic Administrator of the diocese—meaning, preposterously enough, that he replaces himself ad interim, thereby retaining all the authority he only pretended to relinquish. Wuerl will no doubt also handpick his own successor.

A Fatal Blow to the “Humble” Reformer Narrative

Then there is the Gustavo Zanchetta affair, which exploded only this month.  Even Philip Lawler has described it as “a fatal blow to the Pope’s reputation as a reformer.” Zanchetta, a friend and “spiritual son” of Bergoglio, who was his confessor, held the title of executive undersecretary of the Argentine bishops’ conference under Bergoglio as its head. Bergoglio made him bishop of the remote Argentine diocese of Orán, one of his earliest episcopal appointments. Four years later Zanchetta suddenly resigned in the midst of allegations of financial impropriety and the sexual harassment of seminarians, only to receive from Bergoglio, in December 2017, a Vatican sinecure as “assessor” of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See (APSA), which handles the Vatican’s real estate and investments.  Bergoglio created the position just for Zanchetta, ASPA never having had an “assessor” before, as John Allen notes.  A most curious appointment for someone already in flight from allegations of financial misfeasance.

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Lawler rightly wondered whether Bergoglio had ignored the sexual molestation charges against Zanchetta “just as, a few years earlier, he had dismissed charges against the Chilean Bishop Juan Barros; just as, according to Archbishop Vigano, he ignored complaints about then-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick.” That concern was well-founded. On January 20, as this article was about to be posted, Associated Press published an exclusive report based on an interview with the former vicar general for the Diocese of Orán, Father Juan Jose Manzano, who is now a parish priest.  Manzano revealed that Francis had summoned Zanchetta to the Vatican in 2015 and again in July of 2017, months before the appointment to ASPA, to answer to allegations that he “had taken naked selfies, exhibited ‘obscene’ behavior and had been accused of misconduct with seminarians…” Manzano, who had forwarded Zenchetta’s nude selfies to the Vatican in 2015, told AP that he was only “one of the three current and former diocesan officials who made a second complaint to the Vatican’s embassy in Buenos Aires in May or June of 2017 ‘when the situation was much more serious, not just because there had been a question about sexual abuses, but because the diocese was increasingly heading into the abyss.’”

According to Manzano, Zanchetta told Bergoglio when summoned to Rome in 2015 that “his cellphone had been hacked, and that there were people who were out to damage the image of the pope.”  As AP further reports, in May or June 2017, Manzano, the seminary rector and another priest “presented their concerns to the No. 2 in the Buenos Aires nunciature, Monsignor Vincenzo Turturro” after which “the pope summoned Zanchetta again in July 2017. Returning home, Zanchetta announced his resignation in a July 29 statement saying he needed immediate treatment for a health problem.” A few months later, Bergoglio created the Vatican sinecure for his friend at ASPA.

When the allegations of Zanchetta’s sexual misconduct first exploded into the world media at the beginning of January, the Vatican Press Office, through its interim spokesman Alessandro Gisotti (replacing the sacked Greg Burke) gave a statement to AP denying that Bergoglio had known anything of the allegations before Zanchetta’s appointment to ASPA in December  of 2017.  In the wake of the just-published AP report, however, the Vatican has had to fall back on Manzano’s hair-splitting distinction between “a report about alleged sexual abuse [from Manzano and others] and a formal complaint.”

As Lawler had rightly concluded nine days before this new evidence surfaced:

The Zanchetta case demonstrates that Pope Francis continues to protect his friends and allies, regardless of his professed commitment to accountability. This one case illustrates how, since Francis was elected, the Vatican has actually moved backward [his emphasis] on two crucial fronts: the fight against sexual abuse and the quest for financial transparency. In this pontificate, the cause of reform is dead, unless the reform begins with the Pontiff himself.

Note well:  Even a commentator who had never previously been inclined to level strong criticism of any Pope now declares that the reform of the Church under Bergoglio is impossible unless it begins “with the Pontiff himself.” Lawler’s piece demonstrates that there is scarcely a responsible Catholic commentator left who has not had quite enough of Bergoglio’s double-talk and crooked maneuvers.

The Bergoglian double-talk now reportedly includes some carefully timed statements in an upcoming book-interview wherein he suddenly recognizes that homosexuality is a problem in the Church after all and that homosexuals should not be admitted to seminary. This, Life Site rightly observes, fits Bergoglio’s “established… pattern of saying one controversial thing which deflects attention from another controversial matter.”  The same would be true concerning reports of statements Bergoglio made behind closed doors to the Italian bishops last May to the effect that that “it is better” that homosexuals not be admitted to seminary if there is “the slightest doubt” about their fitness.

There will never, of course, be any official and binding declaration from Bergoglio to the universal Church strictly banning those afflicted by the homosexual disorder from admission to seminaries or barring their path to ordination should they succeed in being admitted.  On this issue, as with so many others, Bergoglio will say one thing while he intends to do quite the opposite—in this case, nothing. Nothing, that is, except to protect friends and allies who engage in or cover up homosexual activity.

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Worse than the Borgias?

Among those friends and allies is Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga, the Archbishop of Tegucigalpa, Honduras, who is no less than the coordinator of Bergoglio’s “Council of Cardinals.”  Maradiaga is not only mired in allegations of financial corruption but is also orchestrating a determined coverup of  a “widespread and entrenched pattern of homosexual practice in Tegucigalpa’s major seminary,” under the supervision of Maradiaga’s friend, former auxiliary Bishop Juan Jose Pineda Fasquelle, who was forced to resign  last July after evidence surfaced of his own homosexual activity with seminarians. 

Forty-eight seminarians in Tegucigalpa joined in a letter protesting the homosexual infestation of their seminary, citing “irrefutable evidence” that “a homosexual network pervades the institution and is being protected by its rector.”  The evidence includes “graphic photographic evidence of homosexual pornography, exchanged on WhatsApp between seminarians who did not sign the letter, as well as other obscene messages.” Maradiaga, who continues to protect a cadre of homosexuals in the seminary after sending some of them away, has denounced the protesting seminarians as “gossipers.”  He remains fully a member of Bergoglio’s inner circle.

Another protected Bergoglian ally is Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio, former head of Bergoglio’s Pontifical Council for the Interpretation of Legislative Texts, who endorses Bergoglio’s catastrophic authorization of Holy Communion for the divorced and “remarried.”  As the whole Catholic world knows and as Life Site News reported, in 2017 Coccopalmerio’s secretary, Monsignor Luigi Capozzi, “was arrested by Vatican police after they caught him hosting a cocaine-fueled homosexual orgy” in an apartment Bergoglio had secured for him, located in the same Vatican building as the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

It was later revealed that Coccopalmerio, who has since retired to Milan, was not only present during the orgy but was “‘was presiding’ over it when the Vatican Gendarmes broke in, and that they instructed him to absent himself before they started making arrests,” including the arrest of Capozzi. As LifeSite further reports: “At the time of the arrest, Capozzi was allegedly so high on cocaine that he was hospitalized for detoxification for a short period in the Pius XI clinic in Rome. He is currently in an undisclosed convent in Italy undergoing a spiritual retreat…”

Not surprisingly, Coccopalmerio had earlier argued for the Church’s recognition of “positive elements” in “homosexual unions,” an abomination in keeping with the infamous “midterm report” of the 2014 sham Synod on the Family, written by Bergoglio ally Bruno Forte, another “gay”-friendly propagandist Bergoglio handpicked as the Synod’s general secretary. The report declares that “homosexual unions” can exhibit “mutual aid to the point of sacrifice [which] constitutes a precious support in the life of the partners.”  Bergoglio reviewed and approved the report before it was released to the press without the Synod Fathers having had a chance to review what was supposed to be their own document.

Also not surprisingly, it was Coccopalmerio who “generally spoke against the laicization of a priest as a punishment” for homosexual predation, which he viewed as “a kind of ‘death penalty’ for a priest.”  Accordingly, while serving as a member of the CDF’s review board for priest sex abuse cases, to which he was appointed by Bergoglio,  he “regularly proposed mild punishments…”

LifeSite’s commentary on the Maradiaga scandal is appropriately entitled: “The new Borgia pope? Francis and the Maradiaga catastrophe.” Life Site quotes Riposte Catholique on the significance of the Coccopalmerio-Capozzi scandal: “One thinks one is dreaming: in the most deplorable of ways, the Rome of today seems to have fallen lower than the Rome of the Borgias.” 

Another Sham Summit

And now Bergoglio is about to stage-manage another sham summit on clerical sexual abuse that will continue to hide the homosexual priest problem as did the “pedophile summit” of 2002. The meeting in Rome from February 21-24, to be attended by the presidents of all the national episcopal conferences, will be entitled “The Protection of Minors in the Church.” Once again, it’s all about protecting minors. Nothing whatever to do with homosexual priests and bishops and their acts of sodomy with legal adults—not even vulnerable adults in their very late teens or early twenties exploited by clerical authority figures.  Minors, minors, minors, that’s the ticket!  Repeat after me: minors. Clerical sodomy between “consenting adults” is of no concern to Bergoglio and his collaborators, including the homosexuals among them. The event might as well be entitled: “The Protection of Homosexual Priests in the Church.”

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And just to be sure that nothing is actually done in the meantime about homosexual corruption in the hierarchy, the Vatican, in the very midst of the USCCB’s meeting back in November, decreed that the assembled bishops were not permitted to vote on two measures directed to episcopal misconduct in committing or covering up homosexual abuse—only of “minors,” of course: i.e., promulgation of Standards of Episcopal Conduct and creation of a Special Commission for Review of Complaints Against Bishops for violation of those standards. Any such vote, said the Vatican, must abide the outcome of the upcoming Roman junket, where we can be certain no such measures will be approved.  As a clearly disgusted Raymond Arroyo tweeted when the USCCB’s proceedings were unexpectedly derailed by the Vatican’s directive: “The Vatican has pulled the rug out from under an already reeling episcopacy in the US with this demand that they not vote on even a toothless Code of Conduct for Bishops.”

The elaborate continuation of Operation Homo Coverup soon to take place in Rome will be presided over by Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago, Cardinal Oswald Gracias, Archbishop Charles Scicluna, and Jesuit Father Hans Zollner, who is also President of the laughably named “Centre for the Protection of Minors” at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome.  All four members of the steering committee have been carefully chosen by Bergoglio not to rock the homo love boat on which the head of his very household is a notorious passenger: Battista Ricca, dubbed “prelate of the gay lobby” by Sandro Magister, a flagrantly active homosexual of whom Bergoglio infamously said “Who am I to judge?”  Ricca joins Coccopalmerio and Capozzi on the passenger list.

As Life Site notes, the appointment of Cupich to the steering committee “is raising concerns because [he] has notably dismissed Archbishop Viganò’s testimony on the McCarrick abuse cover-up as a mere ‘rabbit hole’ distracting the Church, believes that homosexuality is not a significant contributing factor in the abuse of minors… and has defended the Vatican postponing U.S. bishops from voting on measures to prevent abuse cover-up.” As Archbishop Viganò alleges without contradiction, once having been rehabilitated by Bergoglio, McCarrick as kingmaker assisted both Cupich, Wuerl and Joseph (“gay pilgrimage”) Tobin in their rise to power as pro-“gay” prelates. Viganò remarked Cupich’s “ostentatious arrogance, and the insolence with which he denies the evidence that is now obvious to all: that 80% of the abuses found were committed against young adults by homosexuals who were in a relationship of authority over their victims.”

As for the other three members of the steering committee, all are reliable operatives for the Bergoglian program of undermining obedience to the Sixth Commandment under the guise of “discernment” and “accompaniment.”  Cardinal Gracias has pronounced the disastrous Amoris Laetitia (AL) “a precious gift for our Church.”  Archbishop Scicluna is the very promulgator of the Maltese guidelines for implementing AL, which authorize Holy Communion for the divorced and “remarried” in “more complex cases” in which observing continence “may not, in fact, be feasible”—as if feasibility had anything to do with obedience to negative precepts of the divine and natural law forbidding intrinsically evil acts.  Bergoglio has dared to endorse as “authentic Magisterium” this radical break with the Church’s constant moral teaching and practice concerning exceptionless moral precepts.  As for Zollner, his basic mission as head of the “Centre for the Protection of Minors” requires him to perpetuate the very cover story that protects the operation of the “gay Mafia.”

Just it was in 2002 so it is today: the mantra “protection of minors” will continue to conceal homosexual networks and the rot of sodomy among sexually disordered clerics who should never have been ordained, as well as those to be ordained prospectively precisely with the same networks’ help. Absolutely nothing will be done to address this spreading ecclesial gangrene.  Quite the contrary, everything will be done to mask it with rhetorical bandages issued at useless meetings. To that end, the Vatican has announced that there will be “plenary sessions, work groups, common moments of prayer with listening to testimonies, a penitential liturgy and a closing Eucharistic celebration.” And later, pasta and a good local red on the Borgo Pio.  There will not, of course, be any discussion of the urgent necessity to rid the Church of homosexual corruption in the seminaries, the priesthood and the episcopate.  Instead, the bishops will hobnob, dine, hobnob some more, dine some more, and make a big show of asking each other what to do, what to do about “the abuse of minors” caused by “clericalism” and a “peculiar way of understanding the Church’s authority.”

Is Another Eruption of the “Authentic Magisterium” Imminent?

Magisterium I

To quote the moral theologian Janet Smith, who can hardly be accused of  “radical traditionalism”: “The problem of clergy abuse cannot be resolved simply by the resignation of some bishops, and even less so by bureaucratic directives. The deeper problem lies in homosexual networks within the clergy which must be eradicated. And, as Archbishop Viganò testifies: “These homosexual networks, which are now widespread in many dioceses, seminaries, religious orders, etc., act under the concealment of secrecy and lies with the power of octopus tentacles, and strangle innocent victims and priestly vocations, and are strangling the entire Church.”

Bergoglio will do nothing that would even remotely threaten to eradicate homosexual networks in the Church.  On the contrary, in defending the flagrant homosexual he had put in charge of his own household (“Who am I to judge?”) he would not even admit that such networks exist: “So much is written about the gay lobby. I still haven’t found anyone with an identity card in the Vatican with ‘gay’ on it.”  Worse, in defending Battista Ricca, Bergoglio said he saw no problem with priests being “gay,” so long as “gays” in the priesthood do not form an actual “gay” lobby—the existence of which in the Vatican he had just denied:

I believe that when you are dealing with such a person, you must distinguish between the fact of a person being gay and the fact of someone forming a lobby, because not all lobbies are good…. The problem is not having this tendency, no, we must be brothers and sisters to one another, and there is this one and there is that one. The problem is in making a lobby of this tendency.”

Likewise, in a report the Vatican will neither confirm nor deny, Bergoglio said the following to Chilean sex abuse victim Juan Carlos Cruz: “Juan Carlos, that you are gay does not matter. God made you like that and he loves you like that and I do not care. The Pope loves you as you are, you have to be happy with who you are.”

Furthermore, Life Site News has compiled no fewer than fourteen examples of Bergoglio’s ostentatious winking and nodding in favor of “gay” and “transgender” perversion.  Life Site observes that the evidence suggests the alarming possibility of another eruption of his ridiculous “authentic Magisterium,” which has already purported to authorize Holy Communion for public adulterers in “second marriages” despite the bimillenial teaching and practice of the Church forbidding it, and has quite impossibly claimed that capital punishment is immoral in every case, contrary to divine revelation and the Church’s invariant doctrine from the time of Saint Paul. Next, it is feared, Bergoglio will attempt to do away with the Church’s infallible teaching on the intrinsic disorder of the homosexual condition and the intrinsic evil and grave depravity of homosexual acts.

In fact—and this would explain a great deal—Bergoglio views sins of the flesh in general as rather trivial matters. Sandro Magister reminds us that in a book-interview published back in 2017 Bergoglio declared: “Sins of the flesh are the lightest sins. Because the flesh is weak…. Priests have the temptation—not all, but many—of focusing on the sins of sexuality, what I call morality below the belt. But the more serious sins are elsewhere.” 

In the same interview Bergoglio held up as a fine pastoral example an unnamed cardinal who, “as soon as someone goes to him to talk about those sins below the belt, he immediately says: ‘I understand, let’s move on.’ He stops him, as if to say: ‘I understand, but let’s see if you have something more important. Do you pray? Are you seeking the Lord? Do you read the Gospel?’ He makes him understand that there are mistakes that are much more important than that.” Bergoglio even went so far as to offer the disgusting opinion that priests who do their duty by inquiring when, how and how often a penitent has violated the Sixth Commandment since his last confession are trying to “make a ‘film’ in their head.  But these are in need of a psychiatrist.”

What sort of Vicar of Christ applauds confessors who do not want to hear anything about sins of the flesh while denouncing as mentally ill priests who properly inquire into the number of gravity of such sins in the confessional?  How are we to escape the impression that the current occupant of the Chair of Peter is a lewd and shallow vulgarian suffering from the delusion that he is some kind of spiritual master?  Not for Bergoglio is the admonition of Our Lady of Fatima that “More souls go to Hell because of sins of the flesh than for any other reason.” Does Bergoglio really not understand that mortal sins of impurity most easily lead to the ruin of souls, the destruction of marriages and families, the commission of innumerable sex-related crimes (prostitution, sale and distribution of pornography, sex-trafficking), the steady erosion of both public and private morality, and ultimately the fall of civilization itself?

But after all, who is he to judge?  Except when it comes to the people he incessantly condemns for sins he considers more important, such as “the promethean neo-pelagianism of those who ultimately trust only in their own powers and feel superior to others because they observe certain rules or remain intransigently faithful to a particular Catholic style from the past.”

Conclusion: The Need for Anger

The reader might conclude that this piece seems designed to arouse anger toward its subjects.  And so it is, because there is incumbent upon us a positive duty to be angry about the crimes these men have committed or covered up and the abuses of authority that have facilitated the homosexual infiltration of the priesthood, the episcopate and even the College of Cardinals.

Speaking of the different species of anger according to their objects, Saint Thomas  distinguishes anger that is an exercise of reason whose aim is justice from anger that is mere base passion with an evil object, such as envy. St. Thomas makes his own statements attributed (perhaps questionably) to Saint John Chrysostom: “He that is angry with cause shall not be in danger: for without anger, teaching will be useless, judgments unstable, crimes unchecked…. He who is not angry, whereas he has cause to be, sins. For unreasonable patience is the hotbed of many vices; it fosters negligence, and incites not only the wicked but even the good to do wrong.”

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As St. Thomas explains, righteous anger, informed and limited by reason, merges into the legitimate judgment of wrongdoing: “when a man isangry with reason, his anger is no longer from passion: wherefore he is said to judge, not to beangry.” Thus, St. Thomas concludes: “But if one is angry in accordance with right reason, one’s anger is deserving of praise.” Moreover, when anger is called for according to reason, “lack of the passion of anger is also a vice, even as the lack of movement in the will directed to punishment by the judgment of reason.” (Cf. ST, II-II, q. 158, Arts. 1, 8)

We are morally obliged to be angry at what angers God, the ultimate righteously wrathful judge of wrongs. (Bergoglio, as might be expected, rejects the very idea of divine wrath and declares that Christ only “pretends” to be angry.) Were we to cease being angry about what these men have done or failed to do we would, by “unreasonable patience,” become complicit in their misdeeds and our passive acceptance would indeed contribute to “a hotbed of many vices” that “fosters negligence, and incites not only the wicked but even the good to do wrong.”  And what but a hotbed of vices fostering negligence and inciting evildoing is the utter lack of anger in the vast majority of the episcopate, including the Bishop of Rome, over the epochal scandal of the worst sort of sexual depravity spreading unchecked among them for decade after decade? 

On the other hand, we must not make of righteous anger a mental habit that feeds upon itself and poisons the soul.  Nor must anger ever be allowed to devolve into a hatred of those whose wrongdoing justifies, indeed compels, anger toward them.  Nevertheless, however strange it may sound, we must “hang on” to our anger and never waver in our contempt for contemptible behavior until the just cause for anger and contempt is remedied.  Were we not to do this we would culpably acquiesce in evils we are obliged publicly to oppose and condemn on account of public scandals which, in this age of the Internet, become known almost instantaneously throughout the world, causing incalculable harm to the Mystical Body and the cause of the Gospel.

In this regard it is fitting to conclude with the words of Pope Leo XIII (quoting Pope Felix III) in Inimica Vis concerning the duty of Christians to oppose error and to shame into action those who timidly refuse to do so. While the context is a condemnation of the evils of Freemasonry, Leo’s teaching is no less applicable here:

“An error which is not resisted is approved; a truth which is not defended is suppressed.... He who does not oppose an evident crime is open to the suspicion of secret complicity.” By reminding them of the examples of their forefathers, the broken spirits of these men must be reanimated with that courage which is the guardian of duty and dignity alike, so that they may be ashamed and regret their cowardly actions. For surely our whole life is involved in a constant battle in which our salvation itself is at stake; nothing is more disgraceful for a Christian than cowardice.

 

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Last modified on Friday, January 25, 2019
Christopher A. Ferrara

Christopher A. Ferrara: President and lead counsel for the American Catholic Lawyers Inc., Mr. Ferrara has been at the forefront of the legal defense of pro-lifers for the better part of a quarter century. Having served with the legal team for high profile victims of the culture of death such as Terri Schiavo, he has long since distinguished him a premier civil rights Catholic lawyer.  Mr. Ferrara has been a lead columnist for The Remnant since 2000 and has authored several books published by The Remnant Press, including the bestseller The Great Façade. Together with his children and wife, Wendy, he lives in Richmond, Virginia.