Pope lifts suspension imposed on Nicaraguan priest 34 years ago

Cindy Wooden

Feb 18, 2019


This Aug. 29, 2008 file photo shows poet while under house arrest, in Managua, Nicaragua. (Credit: Esteban Felix/AP.)

ROME – Pope Francis has lifted the canonical penalties imposed 34 years ago on Father Ernesto Cardenal, 94, the Nicaraguan poet and former member of the Sandinista government.
In a statement Feb. 18, Archbishop Waldemar Sommertag, the Vatican nuncio in Nicaragua, said Francis had “granted with benevolence the absolution of all canonical censures” imposed on the ailing priest after he had made the request through the nunciature.
St. John Paul II had suspended Cardenal and several other priests from active ministry in 1985 for joining the Marxist-influenced Sandinista government. Cardenal resigned from the Sandinista Front in 1994.
Sommertag did not say exactly when Cardenal’s suspension was lifted. But Auxiliary Bishop Silvio Jose Baez of Managua signaled that the action had been taken when he tweeted a photo of himself at Cardenal’s hospital bedside Feb. 15.
Baez tweeted, “Today I visited in the hospital my priest friend, Fr. Ernesto Cardenal, with whom I spoke for a few minutes. After praying for him, I knelt down beside his bed and asked for his blessing as a priest of the Catholic Church, to which he agreed joyfully.”
When John Paul visited Nicaragua in 1983, Cardenal greeted him by dropping to one knee and attempting to kiss his ring. But the pope pulled his hand back and shook his finger at the priest in one of the best-remembered images of the Sandinista years.
The Code of Canon Law prohibits priests from holding partisan political offices. After repeated attempts by the Vatican and their religious orders to convince them to resign their positions in the Sandinista government, Maryknoll Father Miguel D’Escoto, Cardenal and his brother, Jesuit Father Fernando Cardenal, the Sandinista education minister, were suspended. A fourth priest, Father Edgar Parrales, who was ambassador to the Organization of American States, requested laicization.
In 2014 D’Escoto petitioned Francis, and his suspension was lifted. Father Fernando Cardenal was readmitted to the Jesuits in 1997, four years after renouncing his membership in the Sandinistas.


Cardenal is one of my all time heroes.

He stood with the oppressed against the oppressors.

Rome and hierarchirs sided with the despots and punished prophetic priests.

Cardenal suffered at the hands of the Papal Pollak.

History will judge Cardenal to have been the better man.



Christopher White


ROME – A new book, whose release is timed to coincide with the start of Pope Francis’s major summit on sex abuse on February 21, contains sweeping, although unverified, claims that 80 percent of the Vatican clergy are gay.
In the Closet of the Vatican: Power, Homosexuality, Hypocrisy by French journalist Frédéric Martel will be released in 8 languages in 20 countries and is the product of 4 years of research and interviews with over 1,500 individuals in 30 countries, including 41 cardinals, 52 bishops, and 45 apostolic nuncios.
Ahead of its release, Crux reviewed portions of the work, which, among its most scandalous claims, alleges Colombian Cardinal Alfonso López Trujillo, Pope John Paul II’s point man on marriage and family, had a “double life” with male prostitutes and affairs, alleges the two deceased “dubia” cardinals were gay, and that “this best kept secret of the Vatican is no secret to Pope Francis,” and it is the motivation for the pontiff regularly speaking out on hypocrisy.
While Martel, who is openly gay, fails to document what percentage of Vatican clergy are actively gay, and at times makes the distinction between those whom he believes are in-touch with their homosexuality but do not act on their orientation and those who do so, he maintains that “the world I am discovering, with its 50 shades of gay, is beyond comprehension,” and ultimately defines many of the power struggles inside the Church.
Martel begins the nearly 600-page book with the expression “he’s of the parish,” a phrase he claims is used frequently inside the Vatican to identify members of the clergy who are known to be homosexual.
As the text unfolds, Martel establishes what he terms as fourteen “rules of the closet,” which are broad principles for understanding both the operations and tensions within the Vatican over this issue.
Perhaps the most salient reason for the timing of the book’s release is the rule that “behind the majority of cases of sexual abuse, there are priests and bishops who have protected the aggressors because of their own homosexuality and out of fear that it might be revealed in the event of a scandal.”
“The culture of secrecy that was needed to maintain silence about the high prevalence of homosexuality in the Church has allowed sexual abuse to be hidden and prelates to act,” he continues.
While Martel steers clear of the argument that homosexuality within the priesthood is a driving force for sexual abuse, he argues that the culture of secrecy is what allows it to flourish, along with its cover-up, even within the highest ranks of power.
Pope Benedict XVI’s abdication from the papacy is 2013, Martel argues, was largely motivated by his inability to navigate and control this environment. While he details the various factors which he terms Benedict’s “via crucis,” including his own declining health, Martel says ten out of the fourteen reasons for the retired pope’s resignation were “linked to the homosexual question.”
Although he doesn’t offer evidential support, besides certain rumors and his affinity for liturgical dress, Martel claims that Benedict “liked to flirt,” and throughout the book implies that the majority of the popes of the last century were at least homosexually inclined.
His most stinging critiques are focused on dominant figures in Pope John Paul II’s more than two decades-long papacy, including his right-hand men, polish prelate Cardinal Stanisław Dziwisz and Cardinal Angelo Sodano, along with Father Marcial Maciel, the disgraced Mexican priest who founded the Legion of Christ and was later found guilty of facilitating a culture of abuse within the movement, in addition to having numerous affairs with both men and women.

Martel’s account of the John Paul era is a blend of both sexual and financial corruption, often entangled.
“The suitcases containing money were a gift only made possible under the pontificate of John Paul II,” he writes, describing Dziwisz and Sodano’s long tradition of bringing in “dirty money for good causes” that were used to promote anti-Communist and pro-marriage and family initiatives.
“Many cardinals around John Paul II in fact led a double life,” he concludes, describing his inner circle as “a ring of lust.”
Trujillo is a major focus of Martel’s exposé, wherein he recounts his four visits to Colombia to interview numerous individuals, including members of the “assembly line of prostitutes” allegedly serviced by the South American cardinal.
“If there is one pathetic character in this book, it is Lopez Trujillo,” Martel writes of the former president of the Pontifical Council for the Family, who reportedly kept an apartment in Medellin near the cathedral for his affairs.
He also recounts interviews with several high-ranking Church officials who either confirmed those accounts or implicity acknowleged them, with Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli, the former head of Vatican communications, telling him, Trujillo was “not a saint by any means.”
In Rome, Martel interviewed numerous male prostitutes that are stationed near Termini, the city’s main train station, who describe priests and members of the hierarchy as being among their most regular, and often most demanding, clients.
During his regularly monthly visits to Rome, where at one point Martel lived inside a Vatican apartment, he also spoke to eleven Swiss Guards, who told Martel they felt as if they were viewed as “fresh meat” by members of the Roman Curia.
“They want to impose celibacy on us and refuse to marry because they want to keep us for themselves,” one told him.
In addition, Martel interviewed members of one of Italy’s main law enforcement branches, the carabinieri, who described numerous cases involving male escorts and Vatican officials relying on their diplomatic immunity for protection.
Many of the recent controversies, both over doctrine and administration, during the Francis pontificate, Martel alleges, are motivated by competing factions of homosexuals within the Church with competing agendas.
He alleges that now deceased Italian Cardinal Carlo Caffarra and German Cardinal Joachim Meisner, two of the four cardinals who famously issued a “dubia” to Pope Francis related to questions over communion for divorced and remarried Catholics, were both homosexually inclined, along with American Cardinal Raymond Burke, another dubia cardinal, with whom Martel spent time in his apartment but whose interview was eventually cancelled due to a scheduling conflict, whom he describes as “unstraight.”
Speaking about the recent letter published by former papal ambassador to the United States, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, which along with alleging that Pope Francis knew of former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick’s history of misconduct, decries the underground “homosexual collusion” of clerics inside the Vatican, Martel says that Viganò fails to acknowledge that many of his perceived allies are, in fact, homosexuals themselves.
“Francis today is the object of a violent campaign, precisely because of his supposed liberalism on questions of sexual morality, by conservative cardinals who are very homophobic – and many of them, secretly homosexual,” writes Martel.
Among his other “rules of the closet” is that the clerics who are perceived to be most “pro-gay” are likely heterosexual and that within the Vatican, heterosexuality is “the exception.”
Martel claims French Cardinal Jean-Louis Pierre Tauran, who died in 2018, served as a close source during his research. The author described Tauran as being “in touch” with his homosexuality. Among his other notable interviews is American Cardinal James Francis Stafford, who the author describes with particular affinity and recounts him as being scandalized by Martel’s findings.
In sum, for Martel, Francis’s own words that “behind rigidity there is always something hidden, in many cases a double life,” serve as a truism for his account.
While the printed book does have an index, at the time of the book’s publication, another 300 pages of additional notes will also be released online.
[Editor’s Note: The claim that 80 percent of the Vatican clergy are gay does not come directly from Martel, but from a priest interviewed in the book.]


What a lot of detail on the corruption and sexual scandal within the Vatican ant the RC church.

It seems to be easier to list the ones who are not “at it” than those that are.

I believe they did a secret deal with McCarrick to stop him all he knows about so many others.

But the rot is universal and goes from the bottom to the top and in every diocese in the world.

Its going to keep coming out until everyone walks away from it all.



Carol Glatz – Catholic News Service February 15, 2019

Archbishop Luigi Ventura, the Vatican nuncio to France, meets with Pope Francis at the Vatican in this file photo from Oct. 18, 2018. French authorities confirmed Feb. 15 they are investigating an allegation of sexual assault filed against Archbishop Ventura. (CNS photo/Vatican Media)

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Italian Archbishop Luigi Ventura, 74, a Vatican diplomat who once served in Canada, Chile and western Africa, is under investigation by police in Paris for allegedly sexually assaulting a city official.
The Vatican learned from news reports that the investigation had been launched and it was “waiting for the results of the investigation” by city prosecutors, said Alessandro Gisotti, interim director of the Vatican press office, in response to reporters’ queries.

A French judicial official confirmed to the Associated Press Feb. 15 that the prosecutor’s office in Paris had opened an investigation into an allegation of “sexual aggression.”

The French newspaper, Le Monde, reported that the diplomat was suspected of having sexually molested a young male employee at the Paris city hall Jan. 17, the day the mayor was giving her New Year’s address to diplomats and other leading figures.
Archbishop Ventura has been serving as apostolic nuncio to France since 2009. Prior to that posting, he was the Vatican’s representative in Canada between 2001 and 2009, helping with preparations for St. John Paul II’s visit to Toronto for World Youth Day in 2002.
He served as the nuncio in Chile from 1999 to 2001 and, before that, in Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso and Niger from 1995 to 1999.
A Vatican nuncio plays an important role in compiling recommendations to the pope concerning the appointment of new bishops and archbishops in the country he is placed.


Another big one hits the dust.

What was he thinking of – assaulting a young man at a state function.

It all shows how indemic the rottenness is – especially at the top.

And we are only seeing the tip of the iceberg.

There is a lot more to come out.


Charges included ‘solicitation in the Sacrament of confession’ and ‘sins against the Sixth Commandment with minors and adults’


Pope Francis and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith ordered this week the laicization of Theodore McCarrick, a former cardinal and archbishop emeritus of Washington, and a once powerful figure in ecclesiastical, diplomatic, and political circles in the U.S. and around the world.
The decision followed an administrative penal process conducted by the CDF, which found McCarrick guilty of “solicitation in the Sacrament of Confession, and sins against the Sixth Commandment with minors and with adults, with the aggravating factor of the abuse of power,” according to a February 16 Vatican communique.
The conviction was made following an “administrative penal process,” which is a much-abbreviated penal mechanism used in cases in which the evidence is so clear that a full trial is unnecessary.
Because Pope Francis personally approved the guilty verdict and the penalty of laicization, it is formally impossible for the decision to be appealed.
According to a statement from the Vatican on February 16, the decree finding McCarrick guilty was issued on January 11 and followed by an appeal, which was rejected by the CDF on February 13.
McCarrick was notified of the decision on February 15 and Pope Francis “has recognized the definitive nature of this decision made in accord with law, rendering it a res iudicata (i.e., admitting of no further recourse.)”
CNA contacted this week McCarrick’s canonical advocate, who declined to comment on the case.
McCarrick, 88, was publicly accused last year of sexually abusing at least two adolescent boys, and of engaging for decades in coercive sexual behavior toward priests and seminarians.
The allegations were first made public in June 2018, when the Archdiocese of New York reported that it had received a “credible” allegation that McCarrick sexually abused a teenage boy in the 1970s, while serving as a New York priest. The same month McCarrick stepped down from all public ministry at the direction of the Holy See.
In July, Pope Francis accepted his resignation from the College of Cardinals, ordering McCarrick to a life of prayer and penance pending the completion of the canonical process concerning the allegations. Since the end of September, McCarrick has been residing at the St. Fidelis Capuchin Friary in Victoria, Kansas.
Key among McCarrick’s accusers is James Grein, who gave evidence before specially deputized archdiocesan officials in New York on December 27.
As part of the CDF’s investigation, Grein testified that McCarrick, a family friend, sexually abused him over a period of years, beginning when he was 11 years old. He also alleged that McCarrick carried out some of the abuse during the sacrament of confession – itself a separate canonical crime that can lead to the penalty of laicization.
The CDF has also reportedly received evidence from an additional alleged victim of McCarrick – 13 at the time of the alleged abuse began – and from as many as 8 seminarian-victims in the New Jersey dioceses of Newark and Metuchen, where McCarrick previously served as bishop.
As emeritus Archbishop of Washington, D.C., and before that Bishop of Metuchen and Archbishop of Newark, McCarrick occupied a place of prominence in the US Church.
He was also a leading participant in the development of the 2002 Dallas Charter and USCCB Essential Norms, which established procedures for handling allegations of sexual abuse concerning priests.
Though laicized, McCarrick does not cease to be a bishop, sacramentally speaking, since once conferred, the sacrament of ordination and episcopal consecration cannot be undone.
The penalty of reduction from the clerical state – often called laicization – prevents McCarrick from referring to himself or functioning as a priest, in public or private. Since ordination imparts a sacramental character, it cannot be undone by an act of the Church. But following laicization he is stripped of all the rights and privileges of a cleric including, in theory, the right to receive financial support from the Church.




Feb 15, 2019
by Michele Dillon Accountability/Opinion NCR on line
Pope Francis speaks to members of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments during their plenary meeting at the Vatican Feb. 14. (CNS/Vatican Media)
Leaders of the national conferences of Catholic bishops will soon convene Feb. 21-24 in Rome to collectively confront the scourge of clerical sex abuse that failures in leadership have allowed to fester over several decades. Concrete action outcomes are urgently needed and impatiently awaited.
Any emergent policy, however, if it is not built on church leaders’ recognition of how sacramental power (ordination) may contribute to the fermentation of abuse, is unlikely to be effective in eliminating clerical sexual activity and its cover-up. This task requires Pope Francis and his fellow bishops to actively choose to get to the truth and to outline it.
Our sister publication is hiring! Learn more about employment opportunities with Global Sisters Report.
The great late French sociologist Pierre Bourdieu wrote in his book Practical Reason: On the Theory of Action about how word games, including euphemisms, are a crucial strategy in the Catholic Church’s reproduction of inequality between the hierarchy and the laity. Euphemistic language is not simply jargon or the pragmatic shorthand of insiders. It is used rather to mystify and to distract from and, especially, to deny a given reality. Church officials use euphemistic language, Bourdieu argued, to inoculate themselves from acknowledgement of the real truth of church practices and to convince the laity (and others) that there is nothing arbitrary about hierarchical power and the clerical privilege it embeds.
I thought about Bourdieu in August 2018 as I read the findings from the Pennsylvania grand jury report on sex abuse in Pennsylvania Catholic dioceses. The report documented multiple instances of euphemization in action. And indeed it called out euphemization for what it is.
Summarizing the analysis of the diocesan sex abuse files conducted by the FBI, the grand jury wrote: “It’s like a playbook for concealing the truth: First, make sure to use euphemisms rather than real words to describe the sexual assaults in diocese documents. Never say ‘rape’; say ‘inappropriate contact’ or ‘boundary issues.’ … When a priest does have to be removed, don’t say why. Tell his parishioners that he is on ‘sick leave,’ or suffering from ‘nervous exhaustion.’ Or say nothing at all.”
Euphemisms, as the grand jury noted, conceal the truth. But what is the truth being concealed? Most obviously, a truth being concealed is that some Catholic priests (and some bishops and cardinals) are having sex with children (and with adults). This truth should not be glossed over. It reveals a blatant violation of a child’s personhood and dignity; a violation that, notwithstanding its criminality and irrespective of any psychologically benign assessment communicated to church officials, would and should be seen as a violation of Natural Law, the thesis anchoring Catholic moral reasoning.

This truth also reveals behavior that is, of course, a violation of the vow of celibacy obliged by ordination to the priesthood. Euphemization thus serves to conceal the double truth or the “coexistence of opposites” that, Bourdieu maintains, is necessary to sustaining the church’s power.
This is the truth that although, as the Second Vatican Council affirmed, the church comprises the whole People of God — the laity and the ordained — in practice, the church is structured by inequality that is sanctioned and consecrated by priestly ordination. The fact that clerics engage in sex and the fact that such clerics are protected by the church both materially and symbolically (through euphemistic language) illuminates the double truth of celibacy and sexual activity. It also conveys the truth that the priesthood, as the Vatican argues, is different — it “is of another order,” bound up with “the mystery of Christ” (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, “Women in the Ministerial Priesthood,” in Origins) — but nonetheless concretized in particular ways by the church. Indeed, its concretization reveals the double truth in the church’s claim that “priesthood is a service and not a position of privilege or human power over others.”
Francis repeatedly denounces clericalism and expresses concern lest “sacramental power [become] too closely aligned with power in general” (Joy of the Gospel). And he emphasizes that the church “is not an elite of priests, of consecrated people, of bishops — but that everyone forms the Holy Faithful People of God.” In reality, however, power in the church is inextricably bound to ordination, and which, by definition, consecrates a clerical culture as well as exclusionary practices toward the non-ordained. Language, no matter how deftly employed, cannot obscure this reality.
Unless church officials can come to recognize the standpoint of privilege and power that they occupy, and how it might be distorting their understanding of priesthood, of equality, of sex and sex abuse it is hard in the current moment to see a way out of the crisis they have created. Euphemization has enabled the hierarchy to mask the double truths — celibacy/sexual activity and priestly service/power — that have sustained its consecrated status for many generations of Catholics.
But the effectiveness of that strategy may be waning, as suggested by the laity’s declining confidence in church leadership found in a Pew Research study. The February summit provides an opportunity to forge a different strategy.
[Michele Dillon is professor of sociology at the University of New Hampshire. Her latest book is Post-secular Catholicism: Relevance and Renewal (Oxford University Press). The views expressed here are the author’s own and do not reflect the views of the University of New Hampshire. Follow her on Twitter at @MicheleDillon15.]


Yes. Catholic laity have been trained for many centuries to regard the bishops and clerics as gods and themselves as vastly inferior.

This meant that these gods could swindle their inferiors out of money and possessions and property

It also meant the gods could use men, women and children to satiate their lusts.

The RC organisation is probably the biggest con in the history of mankind.

And all done in the nsme of God and with Gods approval.

Thankfully the scales are fast falling from the eyes of the plebs and inferiors.

We are in the throes of a great revolution.

It is a new anti clerical liberation theology.

Te Deum.


I cannot publish comments on the Irish Catholic article referring about me as legal action has begun.





JD Flynn/CNA
13 February, 2019


The ex-cardinal faces dismissal from the clerical state. But what does that mean in practice?
Archbishop Theodore McCarrick will reportedly be laicized this week, if he is found guilty of having sexually abused minors.
But what does it mean to be “laicized,” “defrocked,” or “dismissed from the clerical state?”
Ordination, the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches, “confers a gift of the Holy Spirit that permits the exercise of a ‘sacred power’ which can come only from Christ himself through his Church.”
The Church says ordination marks a person with an irremovable imprint, a character, which “configures them to Christ.” Ordination, in Catholic theology, makes a permanent change that the Church has no power to reverse.
“You are a priest forever,” the Letter to the Hebrews says.
This change is referred to as an ontological change, or a change in being itself.
In addition to making an ontological change, ordination also makes a legal change in a person’s status in the Church. By ordination, a person becomes in canon law a “cleric.” The word “cleric” is derived from the Greek word for “casting lots,” a process of selection similar to drawing straws or rolling dice, because in Acts 1:26, Matthias is added to the 11 remaining apostles after lots are drawn to select the right person.
A cleric, or a sacred minister in the Church, is an ordained man who is permitted by the Church to exercise sacred ministry. A cleric is bound to certain obligations, among them is usually celibacy in the Latin Catholic Church, and he possesses certain rights, among them is the right to be appointed to pastoral leadership positions in the Church. Clerics have the right to be financially supported by the Church, and are bound by obedience to the pope and to local Church authorities.
While ordination can never be lost – no power on earth can erase the sacramental imprint of ordination – a person can lose the legal status of being a cleric – this is what is referred to as “laicization.”
When a person loses the clerical state, he no longer has the right to exercise sacred ministry in the Church, except the extreme situation of encountering someone who is in immediate danger of death.
Someone who has lost the clerical state also no longer has the canonical right to be financially supported by the Church.
Often, a man who is laicized is also dispensed from the obligation of celibacy, and permitted to marry – but this is not always the case, especially when someone has been involuntarily removed from the clerical state.
Ordinarily, the Church does not permit a person who has been dismissed from the clerical state to teach, as a layman, in a Catholic college or school, to be a lector or extraordinary ministry of Holy Communion, or to exercise other functions in the name of the Church. This is determined on an individual basis, and exceptions and dispensations can be made.
A person can lose the clerical state because he has requested it through a special petition to the pope personally, or he can lose it as a penalty for committing an ecclesiastical crime, as is likely to be the case for McCarrick. There are even provisions which allow for a priest or deacon who has abandoned his ministry to be removed from the clerical state after a protracted period of time, and through a specified canonical process.
Losing the clerical state as a penalty comes after a person has committed some crime. But it is not the case that everyone who has been laicized has done something wrong- the Church does not suggest that it is immoral for a priest or deacon to request laicization, and there are many legitimate reasons a priest might do so, though these are often deeply personal.
A laicized priest is no longer referred to as “Father,” or by any other honorary title given to clerics.
If McCarrick is laicized, the Church will no longer have responsibility to provide him with housing, medical care, or any other financial benefits. He will not be permitted to celebrate Mass or any other sacraments, except in situations he is unlikely to encounter, such as being with a person in danger of death.
If he is laicized, it is not yet known whether McCarrick will leave the Kansas friary where has been living a life of prayer and penance. Though he is reported to have some financial means at his disposal, and is likely entitled civilly to a Church pension, it is not yet known what options are available to him.


It is absolutely right that McCarrick is laicized.

He has committed numerous criminal and canonical crimes.

He sould not be allowed to parade around as a VIP.

He should of course being in jail.

I imagine that he has enough lolly to live very comfortably.

I believe he has no faith, no morals and no remorse.

This is the kind of creature that the RC crowd turns out in the hundreds of thousands.



On the day that Pope Francis’ sex abuse summit is due to start, a potentially explosive book will be published claiming to lift the lid on gay priests in the Vatican and the double lives of senior officials.
The book, “In the Closet of the Vatican”, written by French sociologist and journalist Frederic Martel, reports that around 80 per cent of clerics working in the Roman Curia are gay – although not necessarily sexually active – and details how they adhere to an unspoken code of the “closet”.
After four years of gathering material which took him across the world Martel, a non-believer who is openly gay, spent around a week a month in Rome, sometimes staying in residences inside the Vatican or on Holy See property. He claims to have completed 1,500 interviews with 41 cardinals, 52 bishops and monsignors, 45 papal ambassadors or diplomatic officials, 11 Swiss guards and more than 200 priests and seminarians. The book is due to be published on 21 February simultaneously in 8 languages across 20 countries and will hit stores as bishops from across the world gather to discuss how to respond to clerical sexual abuse.
Defenders of “In the Closet” say that Martel will reveal the problems of a dysfunctional clerical culture that is in denial about sex, while others argue the timing of the book’s publication will once again unfairly conflate homosexuality with sexual abuse of children and intensify a witch hunt against gay priests.
Sources say that Martel’s research reveals that while some gay priests accept their sexual orientation and a number maintain discreet long term relationships, others live more extreme double lives through casual encounters and the use of male prostitutes, while others are in denial about their sexuality. He is said to argue that the intra-church battles of recent decades should be read through a closeted gay paradigm. Those with knowledge of “In the Closet” say the French writer reserves his harshest criticism for senior figures in the Church who have attacked homosexuality yet are secretly gay. One of the “rules” of the Vatican’s closet, Martel argues, is that the more a cardinal or bishop denounces homosexual behaviour or same-sex couples the more likely they are to be gay.
While, sources say, Martel does not focus on the sexual abuse of children, he alleges that the secretive sexual culture among clerics made it difficult for them to denounce priests accused of abuse. “In the Closet” claims that Pope Francis has sought to break up this pattern of behaviour by repeatedly condemning priests living a “double life”. At the same time, Martel argues that in doing so he has made the Church an unstable structure for closeted gay clergy, which in turn purportedly explains some of the opposition that Francis is facing from inside the Church.
One of the most explosive claims in the book, sources reveal, centres around deceased Colombian Cardinal Alfonso López Trujillo. Cardinal López Trujillo, a former President of the Pontifical Council for the Family, and said to have been for many years the chief obstacle to the canonisation of St Oscar Romero, is presented as both an arch-defender of the Church’s teaching on contraception and homosexuality while also using male prostitutes.
“It is not always easy to tell when Martel is trafficking in fact, rumour, eyewitness accounts or hearsay,” says a source with knowledge of “In the Closet.”
Among those Martel interviewed was German Cardinal Walter Kasper, who agrees that some in the Vatican hide their sexuality but adds that what most worries him is not sexual orientation, but whether the Church is helping people find the way of God.

Father Richard Sipe produced the list below

English priest text – New York priests calls Spellman Mary

While supplying in the States I once met a senior priest of NY who knew Mary! He said the priests of the archdiocese used to refer to their archbishop as being “on his knees, overseas” when visiting the US Military stationed abroad (Spellman was chief military chaplain). He wasn’t saying his prayers with the young men


It would be a grave mistake to think that homosexuslity among the hierarchy and clergy began with Vatican 11 in the early 1960s.

Homosexuality among the hierarchy and clergy is 2000 years old.

But it is more common now than ever.

Why is it increasing?



NY archdiocese responds to Cardinal Spellman groping allegation

Kevin Jones/CNA

12 February, 2019

A journalist claimed Spellman tried to grope him while he was a cadet in the 1960s
The Archdiocese of New York has said it had only recently learned of an allegation that the deeply influential Cardinal Francis Spellman groped a visiting West Point cadet in the 1960s, but says it will take the accusation seriously and has invited the accuser to contact the archdiocese.
“This is the first time we have learned of this allegation, and take what the writer says seriously, as we do all allegations of abuse or inappropriate conduct,” Joseph Zwilling, director of communications for the Archdiocese of New York, told CNA on February 11. “We have never had a substantiated allegation of abuse against Cardinal Spellman, who died in 1967.”
Lucian K. Truscott IV, a longtime journalist and writer, made the claim about the former Archbishop of New York in a February 9 essay at Salon.
According to Truscott, the alleged incident took place in 1967 in Spellman’s private quarters behind St Patrick’s Cathedral. Truscott said he was a junior at West Point who had sought to interview Spellman for the cadet magazine, The Pointer.
In Truscott’s account, apparently written decades after the fact, he was in a sitting room with the 77-year-old Spellman, his monsignor assistant, and two other West Point cadets, including the magazine’s photographer. Even before the interview began, Spellman placed his hand on the cadet’s thigh and attempted to grope him, Truscott said.
According to Truscott, the monsignor intervened, chastised the cardinal, and placed the cardinal’s hand back in the lap. Truscott said this happened several times during the interview.
Truscott wrote that the cardinal gave him a small gift after each attempted incident of groping. “He did it over and over again, and I just kept asking questions and recording his answers like nothing happened. I left the cardinal’s residence that day carrying a couple of tie clasps, three key chains, and a couple of gold-plated tie tacks,” the essay claimed.
Truscott said he was shocked the incident happened in front of others and was sure he would not be believed if reported. He claimed the photographer had taken photos of the incidents and he and the other two cadets treated it as a joke after it was over.
Truscott said he now wishes he hadn’t laughed off the experience and wishes he had reported it instead, given revelations about sex abuse in the Church.
“I wasn’t an innocent victim. I was an adult, a cadet at West Point, and I knew better,” said Truscott.
Zwilling said the archdiocese encourages reports about alleged misconduct.
“We would welcome Mr Truscott in contacting the archdiocese, and reporting his allegation to our Safe Environment Director and/or the Victim Assistance Coordinator, so that we might offer whatever assistance might be needed,” Zwilling said.
While Truscott was not a minor at the time of the alleged incident, the New York legislature recently passed legislation extending the period for child victims of sex abuse to bring civil charges until the age of 55. Criminal prosecutions can be brought before the victim turns 28.
The legislation also creates a one-year window for victims of any age to come forward.
Cardinal Spellman was one of the most deeply influential churchmen of the United States.
Originally a priest in the Archdiocese of Boston, he worked in the Vatican’s Secretariat of State in the 1920s and 1930s and smuggled Pope Pius XI’s anti-fascist encyclical “Non Abbiamo Bisogno” to Paris for its 1931 release. He served as an Auxiliary Bishop of Boston from 1932-39, and was named Archbishop of New York by Pope Pius XII, a role that included oversight of the military vicariate of the armed forces during the Second World War and beyond.
He was a staunch anti-communist close to controversial FBI director J. Edgar Hoover. He has been the subject of rumors about sexual misconduct, though not necessarily abuse.
The cardinal’s lengthy FBI file, as published in a somewhat redacted and possibly incomplete form at the FBI website, includes many interactions with the bureau and with Hoover; his public statements and speeches; and information about Vietnam War protests targeting the cardinal. At one point a January 20, 1954 memorandum to Hoover described Spellman an FBI contact who “can be of assistance in furnishing information concerning prominent Catholic priests and laymen” and who has “on several occasions made available information in connection with research matters.”
The released files include a December 1954 request from Spellman’s office to the FBI to investigate an anonymous tip that a communist-linked publisher aimed to print a book vilifying the cardinal and the Catholic Church, apparently claiming the cardinal had a scandalous relationship with a woman.
FBI agents found no proof that such a book was forthcoming.
The publisher of a Spellman biography released in 1984 removed a passage citing several people who claimed he had a homosexual relationship; none of them had direct proof, the New York Times reported.


It has been generally accepted for years that Spellman was an active homosexual who had many sexual partners.

He also had himself dispensed from saying the Divine Office because he was “too busy”.

He was really more of an administrator than a pastor.

But I have heard he was known to perform very kind human acts.

His case is further indication that a great number of bishops and priests have been active homosexuals.

Cardinal Cody of Chicago used to out dressed as a women with J Edgar Hoover of the FBI.




• Christopher White
Feb 8, 2019
NEW YORK – Pope Francis has been challenged to go vegan for Lent – and in exchange for his sacrifice, he’d receive a $1 million donation to a charity of his choice.
The high-stakes deal is being offered by a 12-year-old animal rights activist, Genesis Butler, and the Million Dollar Vegan campaign.

Earlier this week, an open letter was published appealing to the pope to abstain from all animal products during Lent, which is set to begin on March 6 for Catholics and will end at Easter. The letter makes a strong case that a vegan diet will yield dividends for the environment.

“Your Holiness, we must act,” writes Butler. “Moving towards a plant-based diet will have substantial environmental benefits. It will protect our land, trees, oceans, and air, and help feed the world’s most vulnerable.”
Should the pope accept the offer, the million-dollar donation would be made by the Blue Horizon International Foundation, which seeks to “accelerate the removal of animals from the global food chain.”
In her letter, Butler also cited the pope’s 2015 encyclical Laudato si’, wherein he calls for collective common action to fight environmental degradation.
“In your encyclical letter, Laudato si’, you stated that every effort to protect and improve our world will involve changes in lifestyle, production, and consumption. I agree with all my heart and seek your support in tackling one of the largest underlying causes of the problems we face: animal agriculture,” wrote Butler.
In response to the initiative, Dan Misleh, executive director of Catholic Climate Covenant, told Crux, “It is so encouraging to see young people stepping up and reaching out. From their perspective, the future is grim and, fortunately for all of us, they are acting.”
While Misleh says a vegan diet may not be for everyone, he believes “we all need to consider a reduction in meat consumption as part of our response to climate change.”
“At a minimum, Catholics in wealthier countries ought to consider meatless Fridays and not just for Lent but for every Friday of the year. Wouldn’t that be a great witness to the world?” he asked. “It would be one very concrete way to rise to the challenges outlined by Pope Francis in Laudato si’.”
Kirsten Powers, a CNN political analyst and USA Today columnist, who is a vegetarian, concurred with Misleh and told Crux she hopes the pope accepts the offer.
“I pray that Pope Francis will accept this challenge to raise awareness of the grave damage the consumption of animal products does to the environment,” she said.
“A plant-based diet would also be better for the Holy Father’s health and for the animals that God has entrusted to the care of humans,” Powers continued.
Such a dare may prove intimidating for the Argentine pontiff, where his native country’s beef is one of its national treasures. In 2016 Argentina ranked second in the world for per capita meat consumption, just behind neighboring Uruguay.
Yet Fordham University theologian and author of the book For Love of Animals: Christian Ethics, Consistent Action Charles Camosy told Crux that there are three reasons he believes the pope should give it serious consideration.
“First, it witnesses to the nonviolent world God intended as revealed at the end of Genesis 1 and the nonviolent Kingdom to come with the lamb will lay down with the lion and the baby by the cobra’s lair. Second, it would put it in solidarity with our Orthodox Christian brothers and sisters who basically go vegan during Lent. And third it would be an important witness to how consuming animal products contributes to the existential threat of global climate change,” he said.
Camosy, who is also a contributor to Crux, said it would also “signal to climate skeptics-the people we need to convince-that people who claim that this is an existential threat are willing to change the way they live, not just call for the government coercion of others.”
The challenge from Butler and the Million Dollar Vegan campaign comes at a time when the intersection between the environment, pro-life concerns, and animal welfare are increasingly linked together. Camosy said that “care for non-human animals, and treating them with kindness…is something that is quite ‘hot’ in Christian theology right now.
“Perhaps counter-intuitively, moral concern for animals returns us to a pre-Vatican II time in which the moral manuals actually took the ethics of our food choices seriously,” he continued. “The humanism of Vatican II – which elevated human beings in problematic ways over the rest of creation – actually stifled some of the development of how our food choices relate to moral concern for animals.”
To date, the Vatican has not announced whether or not Francis will accept the challenge.


Francis does not need a measly $1 million. He already has billions at his disposal.

But the questions of being vegetarian and vegan are real issues.

As an animal lover I ponder these questions all of the time – but have never come to a conclusion.

I dont even like to think about the things that happen in slaughter houses 😱

I am really interested to hear what readers think.




ROME – Various news agencies have reported, and Crux has confirmed, that the Vatican will shortly announce a ruling in the case of former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, accused of sexual abuse of a 16-year-old boy more than 50 years ago as well as various incidents with adult priests and seminarians.
By all accounts, McCarrick will lose his clerical status, more commonly known as being “laicized” or “defrocked.” When that decision is involuntary, it’s considered the death penalty for a cleric in Church law, the most severe punishment that can be imposed for especially heinous offenses.
McCarrick already received an unusual sanction in July, when he became the first cardinal in a century to lose his red hat. Assuming the laicization happens, he would also be the highest-ranking Catholic cleric in modern times to suffer that penalty.
Much of the reporting has indicated that the timing of the announcement is deliberate, in that Pope Francis and his Vatican team want the McCarrick case to be resolved before a high-profile summit of presidents of bishops’ conferences from around the world on the clerical abuse scandals set for Feb. 21-24.
Here’s the thing, however: Even if McCarrick is defrocked, that hardly would mean his case is over.
To be sure, the specter of a former cardinal suffering the Church’s ultimate penalty would send an important signal ahead of the pope’s summit, suggesting that Francis is committed to a “zero tolerance” policy no matter who’s involved.
In all honesty, however, all that would accomplish is confirming something that most observers believe should have been settled a long time ago: That, in the words of St. John Paul II, “there is no place in the priesthood and religious life for those who would harm the young.”
We’ve known for a while that at least in most parts of the West, the Catholic Church has adopted stern accountability measures for clergy who commit the crime of abuse of a minor. Faced with such an allegation, a cleric will be immediately suspended from ministry while a Church investigation unfolds and his case is reported to civil authorities. If he’s found guilty, he’ll probably suffer loss of the clerical state, meaning he’ll be defrocked.
That’s been true for more than a decade now, and the only thing such a decision in the McCarrick case would add is that cardinals aren’t exempt.
Yet that’s only half the battle, because what survivors and reformers really want isn’t just accountability for the crime, but also for the cover-up.
What’s angered people from the beginning about the McCarrick scandal isn’t simply the pattern of behavior that’s been exposed, which may be especially galling because it involves an ex-cardinal but which, in itself, is sadly familiar. What’s created the deep sense of frustration one senses at the Catholic grassroots is the perception that senior authority figures in the Church were aware of concerns about McCarrick but continued to move him up the ladder, often for reasons of politics and self-interest.
From the beginning, the clamor hasn’t just been for disciplinary action against McCarrick, however welcome some people may find such an outcome to be. (In all honesty, laicization at this point is mostly symbolic, given that McCarrick is 88 and kept under wraps at a Capuchin friary in western Kansas – ironically enough, just about 15 miles from where I grew up.)
The real demand has been for full disclosure about who knew what, and when – who propelled his rise to power, and what did they know about the rumors and reports concerning McCarrick at the time?
Early on, Francis seemed to grasp that dealing with the cover-up would be just as important as dealing with the crime. A Vatican statement said he had ordered a “thorough study of the entire documentation present in the archives of the dicasteries and offices of the Holy See” in order to ascertain “all the relevant facts, to place them in their historical context and to evaluate them objectively.”
How or when the results of that review might be communicated wasn’t made clear, although a Vatican statement said that conclusions will be revealed “in due course.”
At the time, the Vatican also seemed prepared to let the chips fall where they may, signaling that the investigation might place some senior churchmen in a bad light.
“From the examination of the facts and of the circumstances, it may emerge that choices were taken that would not be consonant with a contemporary approach to such issues,” that statement said.
Finally, the Vatican explained the reasons for such a review of its files in the clearest possible terms: “Both abuse and its cover-up can no longer be tolerated,” it said.
Precisely … there’s either accountability for both the crime and the cover-up, or the job’s not done.
It’s now been more than four months since the Vatican issued that pledge of a thorough study, and, so far, “due course” would appear not yet to have arrived since no information about the study’s findings has been released.
Granted, experts warn that there almost certainly won’t be a “smoking gun” in the archives, meaning indisputable proof that someone had firm knowledge of McCarrick’s sins and still advanced his career. At most, we’ll likely get hints and be left to connect the dots, nothing more – but, of course, even that would be more data than we’ve got right now.
If Francis and his advisers want the McCarrick case to be wrapped up before the summit later this month, therefore, just laicizing him won’t do the trick. They’ll also need to explain how we got to a point where such a move is necessary – and, of course, offer some reason to believe we won’t be here again.


Defrocking is NOT the ultimate church punishment.

Excommunication is.

Mc Carrick and all clerics, of whatever rank, who abuse minors should be excommunication.

I was excommunicated for becoming a bishop without a papal mandate.

Which is more serious – acting without a mandate or sexually abusing a child.

McCarrick should be excommunicated.

He should also trace a canonical trial in the Vatican and be imprisoned there.

If they can do it to papal butlers for leaking documents they should certainly do it for child abuse.