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IRISH ARMY HEAD CHAPLAIN SUPPORTS GAY PRIDE.

It is very interesting to see the head chaplain of the Irish Army supporting his LGBT parishioners and saying he had planned to walk with them in Dublin Gay Pride.

Father Madigan is a priest of the Diocese of Limerick.

I wonder what his statement and support means in practice?

Does it mean he supports same sex marriage?

And more importantly, does it mean that he will preside over same sex marriage ceremonies?

That would be the logical and pastoral outcome of his public statement.

I dont think his bishop, Leahy, would give him any grief for that.

But his former diocesan, Phonsie?

Now that would be a white horse of a different colour.

FATHER GOLDILOCKS OF EAST ANGLIA

On Vocations to the Priesthood, he says: “Vocations are like house plants. House plants are not the same as hardy outdoor plants. If you water them too much they die, if you don’t water them enough they die. They need sunlight. They need care and attention, but not too much. You’ve got to get it just right. It’s the Goldilocks formula (ie which one is “just right’) which nobody really knows but which is ultimately the work of God, the work of the Holy Spirit acting through people.

TRIBUTE TO FATHER GOLDILOCKS FROM FATHER JOHN PROMISE OMEOZURU OF PORTSMOUTH DIOCESE.

Father John Promise is looking forward to calling Father Goldilocks MY LORD?

So we have a Bishop Goldilocks in the oven, have we?

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CATHOLIC TRUTH SCOTLAND AND BISHOP PAT.

I have always said that I would go to meet ANYONE, ANYWHERE.

The human being must always have an intellectual openness.

The Christian must always regard every human being as their brother and sister.

The people of CTS are our brothers and sisters.

We might have deep theological and liturgical disagreements with them.

But they ARE STILL our brothers and sisters

CTS wants the RCC purified of its scandals and corruptions – as do we.

Here are excerpts from their July newsletter.

*******

CTS have suggested that we blog jointly about all matters on July 22nd – Feast of St Mary Magdala.

I think it’s a good idea.

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SAINT GEORGE PELL – PASTOR AND SPIRITUAL GUIDE ?

A CATHOLIC publisher is seeking donations from supporters of Cardinal George Pell so that it can release his prison diary, describing it as “a spiritual classic”.

Catholic publisher Ignatius Press hopes to release the diary in instalments, with the first volume likely to be published in 2021.

Ignatius’ editor Jesuit Father Joseph Fessio has sent a letter to email subscribers asking for donations, saying Ignatius wanted to give Cardinal Pell “appropriate advances” for the diary to help offset his legal debts.

“I’ve already read the first half of the journal and it is extraordinary,” Fr Fessio wrote.

“I think it’s going to be a spiritual classic.

“The entire journal is about 1000 pages, so we will print it in three or four volumes.

“With your help, we can proceed with this project and offer Cardinal Pell appropriate advances on these volumes, which he can then use to remove much of the worry he (Cardinal Pell) now has about his legal debts.”

In the diary, it’s understood Cardinal Pell reflects on his time in solitary confinement, politics, and the Church, including his reform efforts at the Vatican.
Cardinal Pell served 13 months in prison before the High Court in April acquitted him of sexual abuse charges involving two choirboys at Melbourne’s St Patrick’s Cathedral during the 1990s.

Cardinal Pell, who rose to become the inaugural prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy, always maintained his innocence.

“His victory was not just a victory for one man,” Fr Fessio wrote.

“It is a victory for the Church. And not just the Church in Australia.

“It revealed to all the world just how far the Church’s enemies will go and how deceitful they will be to discredit her.”

A royal commission into child sexual abuse examined whether Cardinal Pell had knowledge of abuse allegations of a Ballarat priest and a Melbourne bishop in the 1970s and 1980s.

A commission report released in 2017 with sections redacted, was finally made public in full in May this year.

It found Cardinal Pell knew a priest was moved because he had sexually abused children and he should have done more about an unstable priest in another Victorian parish.”

PAT SAYS

We all realise that George Pell’s convictions have all been set aside as unsafe by the Australian courts.

If he was innocent, he has suffered a great injustice.

If he was guilty his victims have suffered a great injustice too.

However, I think it is very grotesque to want to promote him as a great spiritual thinker and guru – and to suggest that people can find God by meditating on his prison journal.

And, selling it to pay off his vast legal expenses is hardly helpful in selling it as a “great spiritual classic”.

Even if Pell is totally innocent he is no Francis if Assisi, no John of the Cross, no Little Flower, no Catherine of Sienna.

What next? Canonising him when he dies?

The RCC is really losing the plot suggesting that Pell is a martyr or holy man.

Like all bishops he did cover up abuse.

And, being a cardinal and a saint are almost totally incompatible notions.

To get to be a cardinal you have to sell your soul.

YESTERDAYS HOMILY BY PAT

I love The bishopbuckleyspodcast | 14TH SUNSAY 6.7.2020, let’s play it!
https://www.podbean.com/ea/pb-8ad48-e24184

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FORMER SEMINARIAN OF SAINT PATRICK’S SEMINARY SPEAKS OUT.

Dear +Pat,

I apologise for the delay in submitting the following, but between moving, work and other mattes, I had to check everything just to make sure that there is no reason to doubt the veracity of what is printed.

In 1994, 5 students went to St Patrick’s College, Thurles for training to the priesthood – 1 student from the Dioceses of Killaloe, Limerick and Clogher and 2 from Raphoe.

They began in September, and by Christmas, 2 had left, leaving just Killaloe, Limerick and 1 from Raphoe from the original batch.

It was well known that ‘pranks’ would be played on the new students – a seminary hazing shall we say.

As these students were newbies, they were responsible on a daily basis to ring the bell in the morning to wake everyone up, again for morning prayers, Mass, breakfast, each and every lecture, prayers, meals, study etc…short of ringing it for toilet breaks. Each student had a rotational week of doing this and only the newbies were to do it.

Within the 1st month of being in the college, the ‘medical exam’ was to take place, and each student was called to a room in which the local GP was present, and the explanation was that the medical was required (which was suspicious as one of the pre-requisites in the application process was an up-to-date medical exam – 14 days before going to the college) and it consisted of dropping the trousers and jox, at which point the GP felt the testicles and then signed a document which found its way into the office of the college president – then Fr Christy O’Dwyer.

The student was sent to Fr O’Dwyer by the GP, and the student then signed the official book of registered students – he could now do so having being medically assessed as being male (in line with Canon Law).

There were cliques in the college, and one of them was effectively the Presidential Pryers…..and they could take a dislike to a student, make up stories about them, report it as fact back to the willing ears of the President and inevitably that student could be summoned to the Presidential suite for interrogation etc….however the Pryers were never held accountable or otherwise for their shit-stirring lies, and indeed caused many a vocation to be lost to an Irish diocese.

It is interesting to note that out of the 5 that made up the Pryers at that time, only 1 of them has since remained in the priesthood, and from what I understand, he is as much a shit stirrer now as he was then, and also a bully, and has managed to continue in his ways.

Anyway, the ‘Henry’ as it is known, was coming up at the end of October, and before that, all students and only some of the priests would go to the fields to harvest the potatoes for the local Erin soup factory (with some for the college of course).

As many who have done this in their time know, it is a back-breaking job, tedious and if the weather is not good, it makes it a harder and dirtier job than perhaps it could be.

The new Dean of Formation was Fr Colin Bergin (now married) and he ended up being upended and having the clay dirt being poured all over him and at different stages throughout the day, the 5 new students also got upended and had the same done to them…but they were not allowed to leave and get washed or changed so they would be walking around with the dirt clay for the whole day.

This was considered good fun and shur didn’t everyone have to go through it as a form of initiation, and then there was the ‘Henry’ which can only best be described an act of public humiliation of the new students in front of the Archbishop, President and all other staff members in the college.

It was degrading, soul-destroying and the fact that it seemd to have the imprimatur of the hierarchs was also questionable and worrying.

In one week alone, one of the newbie students, only too well aware of the pranks carried out on all other students, decided to have his post held at the local post office in Thurles, and in going to the post office one day, was noticed by the Pryers.

It resulted in his room being literally cleared out of all that was moveable, and transferred to the college attics by use of the lift. When the student returned to the room, only with the kindness and support of another student did he manage to track his stuff down, and for the next 2 hours, brought it all down to this room in rote, as the rooms could not be locked.

2 days later, after evening prayer, same said student found a pigs head in his bed, and he eventually found out what he was being punished for….

His birthday was that very day (turned 21) and he decided he did not want it to be known as there would be possible theatrics etc, and so he had his post kept in the post office to avoid it being found out.

The Pryers had noticed and somehow obtained access to the personal (and supposedly confidential) files of thstudents and realised the birthday and its significance, and being pissed off at the thought of losing out on a prank, rewarded the student with a pigs head in his bed for his 21st…as you do.

Throughout the time that I was there, the immaturity of some of these priests-to-be was shocking, and the fact that they got away with it made it all the more reason to have cause for future concern.

Students who were spiritual/religious were disrespected and considered to be a nuisance and in many ways, were undermined, discredited and lied about to the President, and as we are aware heretofore, 1 was falsely accused of theft and had his name dragged throught he local Garda Station….and yet no reprucssions for the instigators.

No-one deserved what they got vis-a-vis the ‘punishment’ handed out by the Pryers, but it was an exercise in futility in making any form of complaint as nothing was done by the President, and if you said anything to your bishop, well lets just say there were plenty of deaf ears at episcopate level.

If this behaviour happened in a workplace, there would be criminal prosecutions left, right and centre…and rightly so.

By his inaction, at the very least, Fr O’Dwyer is culpable of negligence on so many levels, it is frightening to think what he could NOT be charged with….and that is before you would even start with the now retired (but never sober) former priest secretary to Bishop Eamon Casey, the insufferable buffoon that is Clifford.

It is rumoured (and not without basis) that he was so drunk at the ordination of 2 priests in the college, that the relevant bishop for each student quietly ordained them again just to make sure….

I recently became aware of two happenings with staff of St Patricks….

Fr Liam Holmes passed away, and he was an absolute legend to the students as he basically did not give 2 flying ducks for the authoritarianism of the place, and it is well known that of many a Sunday evening, he came back to the college well-steamed and let his non-religious language flow so as to mingle with the prayers of those of us in the Oratory and head Heaven-ways

May he Rest In Peace

PAT SAYS

Irish seminaries in the past, and even still, are places of inhuman cruelty and great dysfunction.

Thurles seems to have been the worst among them?

The biggest unexplained scandal of Thurles remains the TRAGIC DEATH OF OFFALY SEMINARIAN, MICHAEL DEEGAN.

His death cries from beyond the grave for TRUTH and JUSTICE.

For some reason ALL the records of Thurles Seminary have been destroyed.

Or so THEY tell us.

I believe a DEATH and a possible MANSLAUGHTER has been covered up the the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cashel.

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THE BEGINNING OF MY MARRIAGE MINISTRY – 1986 – 1989.

When I began my marriage ministry, especially to divorced Catholics and other Christian’s, things were very bleak.

The Republic of Ireland had no divorce at all. Divorcedcandcseperated people were forced to live a lifetime of being regarded as second class citizens – forced to never remarry, living in sin and denied the Sacraments.

In the North it was a bit better as there was civil divorce and remarriage.

But many good  Christian people, want God’s blessing on their second union.

This was denied by all the churches.

Such people and couples were modern day lepers.

I believe that IDEALLY every marriage should be for life.

But we do not live in an ideal world and people make mistakes and have tragedies happen to them.

Jesus came into the world to be the BRIDGE between the IDEAL and the REAL.

Jesus was the God man of second chances.the early Christian church people like St Masil of Caesarea allowed second marriages on the grounds of COMPASSION.

Basil said that second marriages were not as “sacramental’ as first marriages, but they should be allowed.

Some of the soundest marriages I’ve seen as second marriages.

In a lot of first marriages people get married too young or for the wrong reason.

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SSPX- TRADITIONALISM AND REPORTS OF SEXUAL ABUSE.

THE SOCIETY OF ST PIUX X was founded by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre who disagreed with the Second Vatican Council the the Mass in the vernacular.

This week, on Monday on fact, they ordained a decent number of young priests in Econe, their HQ.

The ceremony was 3 and a half hours long and the ceremonial was uber.

Here is the video. Watch it or dipin and out of it.

https://youtu.be/q2agiaLYvHs

I was amazed, not only to see their new young priests, but also the huge number of young men and seminarians involved.

We have somehow thought, that the older generation are lapping up their Latin Mass – but it seems the young are lapping it up too.

Currently they have over 600 priests.

SSPX AND SEXUAL ABUSE

In recent times there have been reports of sexual abuse by a small number of SSPX priests – maybe 10 or 15 of them.

It has been highlighted by Voris and Church Militant.

Here’s a recording.

Some questions arise in my mind:

1. Is SSPX a useful or needed phenomenon?

2. Is it an aberration or cult of some kind?

3. What about the fact that many of them dont believe the last number of popes are valid popes?

4. What about the accusations that many in the SSPX are neo Naxis?

5. How far should the rest of us go in making room for them and accommodating their liturgical and theological needs.

I’d like to hear your views

PATS MINISTRY 1980s

GO FUND ME NHS

Someone maliciously contacted the GO FUND ME people and said that our effort to raise funds for the NHS was fraudulent.

As a result, everyone who contributed is receiving their donation back.

I believe this action was taken by corrupt clergy or seminarians exposed on here.

They are so full of corruption, hate and sexual promiscuity that they would even deprive the sick and dying of help.

How is this not Satanic?

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MARY MC ALEESE CONDEMNS CATHOLIC CHURCH FOR “INTRINSICALLY EVIL” TEACHINGS ON HOMOSEXUALITY.

The former Irish president warned of the damaging impact the church is having on Ireland younger LGBT community.

FORMER PRESIDENT Mary McAleese has described the Catholic Church’s teachings around homosexuality as “intrinsically evil” and amounting to homophobia, suggesting it “empowers the homophobic bully”. 

The Belfast-born law lecturer who served as President of Ireland for two terms between 1997 and 2011 has long been vocal about LGBT rights and the influence of the Catholic Church in Ireland. 

In a podcast interview with David Watters ahead of last weekend’s Pride celebrations, McAleese reiterated her concerns for the impact the Church has had on members of that community before and after decriminalisation of homosexuality in 1993

“The Church’s teaching on homosexuality is ignorant, it is unreconstructive in the life of science, it’s sad to say. It has never been looked at in the light of the new sciences and it’s not only a pity, it’s worse than that,” she said. 

“The church describes homosexual acts as intrinsically evil. I would regard the Church’s teaching as disorderly and intrinsically evil. Why is it intrinsically evil? Because it conduces to homophobia.

“Look at the language that is used – ‘the homosexuality is disordered’. Who wants to believe that their God-given nature is disordered? That homosexual acts, how they express their love in a loving relationship, for example… that that is regarded as intrinsically evil. I don’t think so.”

“And that by its nature… that language of evil and disordered trickles down into the thinking and it empowers the homophobe, it empowers the homophobic bully. It gives him or her permission to be homophobic and I think the church has got to answer that.” 

McAleese was also critical of the Vatican and Pope Francis, who many see as a more progressive and open-minded Pope than his predecessors, but added some bishops and cardinals across Europe have begun a more positive conversation around the approach of the church to the LGBT community.

“Certain bishops, particularly in Germany and certain cardinals have been champions in this regard, and I think I see in them the green shoots of a future open debate, but let me go back to Francis.

“Alot of people will say ‘Oh wasn’t it wonderful when he said who am I to judge’. Well I was not at all impressed by that, I was angered by it because he does judge. He is the supreme judge of the Church. He is the legislator, he is the judge. If there is something wrong with the law, the only way it can be changed in the Church is if he changes it.

“He is the person who presides over the law that uses these awful phrases ‘intrinisically evil, intrinsically disordered’, he presides over that. He cannot have it both ways but there is a long tradition in the church of having it both ways.”

The 67-year-old also spoke about her own self-education and motivations to become a vocal supporter of LGBT rights as far back as the 1970s. 

“I’ve always been human rights conscious and civil rights conscious, that’s why I did law. You know, a Catholic from Belfast, that’s our thing and so when I came to Trinity in ’75, I moved to Trinity and took up a job there as a law lecturer,” she said. 

“One of the first friends I made there was David Norris and we got chatting and one of the first debates I ever attended was on LGBTI rights… David and I got together and chatted about [it], we’re talking about a time when homosexual acts were criminalised, can you imagine the impact of that on people.

“The one thing I knew was there was something seriously wrong here. In all my life, I’m happily married here for over 40 years to the man that I met when I was 17, I’ve never been attracted to another women.

“I’ve only been attracted to men, not a whole lot of men incidentally… and I remember saying to myself ‘what must it be like to be attracted to another human being and to know that you can’t go there’.”

PAT SAYS

I have never been a natural fan of Mary McAleese.

I still remember all her years as an RCC ass licker.

Has her son’s coming out made her more gay friendly?

But, actually, all she says about the RCC’s crazy teachings on homosexuality are good and accurate.

The fact that the Irish people voted so strongly for same sex marriage shows that the RCC is at odds with the modern, scientific world.

Civil law should hold the RCC nose to the grindstone  on these matters and stop the RCC putting its homophobia into practice in the social sphere.

And the great contradiction of course is the fact that the RCC is the biggest gay club in the world when it comes to its bishops and priests.

PAT BEING INTERVIEWED AFTER THE PUBLICATION OF HIS BOOK: A THORN IN THE SIDE – GERRY KELLY – ULSTER TELEVISION- 27.5.1994.

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Catholic Church told to shut down gay conversion therapy groups

28th June

By Niall Christie THE NATIONAL

All major psychological organisations in the UK consider conversion therapy unethical

THE Catholic Church has been told to act swiftly to shut down groups across Scotland accused of promoting gay conversion therapy after local community, school and university priests were linked to an international anti-LGBT organisation.

Priests have come under heavy criticism for their promotion and management of branches of Courage International, a Vatican-approved anti-LGBT programme which campaigners claim has long-standing links to so-called “cure therapy”.

Since 2017, the church in Scotland has strengthened its connections to the programme, with half of Scotland’s eight dioceses and archdioceses now hosting meetings run by local priests.

Across Europe only Italy has more chapters of Courage than Scotland.

The organisation does not believe people can be born lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender and teaches them to live “chaste lives”, abstaining from sexual activity and suppressing their sexuality.

According to LGBT rights charity Stonewall, conversion therapy, “cure therapy” or reparative therapy refers to any form of treatment or counselling which aims to change or suppress a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity.

All major psychological, psychotherapeutic and counselling organisations in the UK consider conversion therapy in relation to gender identity and sexual orientation as unethical, potentially harmful and not supported by evidence.

Earlier this month the Conservative Government confirmed it would shortly be bringing forward plans to ban the practice across the UK.

While Courage claims it does not officially endorse the use of conversion therapy by its branches, its teaching and insistence LGBT people must remain chaste falls within Stonewall’s definition of these conversion techniques.

A spokesperson for Stonewall Scotland told The Ferret: “The promotion of the idea LGBT people can and should be cured or changed, is extremely dangerous, particularly for impressionable young people who may be seeking answers about themselves.

“These so-called conversion therapies have been condemned by all major UK health organisations as they try to shame a person into denying a core part of who they are.

“Same-sex attraction is natural and normal. Lesbian, gay, bi and trans people are not ill. LGBT people seeking support need to be accepted for who they are, not subjected to prejudice and these harmful practices.”

Campaigners and politicians have now said the church must act to end all links with Courage International.

Scottish Greens co-leader and equalities spokesperson, Patrick Harvie MSP, said: “I wish I could say I was shocked this cruel and dangerous practice is taking place in Scotland at all, but the fact it appears to have grown in recent years is a moral stain on Scotland’s ambition to be an inclusive and welcoming country.

“Even the Tory Government in Westminster has recognised this should be illegal. The Catholic church in Scotland must act swiftly not only to publicly condemn conversion therapy but to put an immediate stop to their members’ promotion of it.”
Courage’s branches in Scotland launched almost three years ago after a UK tour by Courage director, Father Philip Bochanski.

The Diocese of Paisley was the first area of Scotland to launch a Courage chapter in late 2017, organised by Bishop John Keenan.

Bishop Keenan has travelled across the world for conferences linked to conversion therapy techniques, including with a delegation of young people from Scotland during a July 2019 trip to Courage International’s annual conference in the United States.

The former Glasgow University chaplain gave the closing speech at the gathering last year, where he said he had “admired Courage for decades”, before acting as the keynote speaker at an online conference run by Courage during lockdown in April.

LGBT Catholic advocates have said the continued promotion of conversion therapy within the church is “cruel”, warning it causes long-term harm to the health of gay and queer people.

Francis DeBernardo, executive director of New Ways Ministry, said: “We have heard from people that some leaders and local chapters have recommended it to people.

“Recommending this kind of therapy, especially when it is connected to religious ideas of repentance and prayer or is conducted under religious auspices, is psychologically and pastorally harmful.

“Catholic Church officials, at all levels of governance, should roundly denounce and forbid the practice of so-called conversion or reparative therapy for LGBT individuals.”

Following the launch in Paisley, two groups – in Glasgow and the Diocese of Motherwell – were started by local priests in 2018 as part of a Scottish expansion.

BISHOP Keenan’s successor as University of Glasgow chaplain, Father Ross Campbell (above), also set up his own Courage chapter in Scotland, before joining him on the journey to Courage’s conference in July 2019.

Father Campbell reportedly carries out his ministry off campus to avoid confrontations with LGBT campaigners. He says his work as Courage chaplain for the Archdiocese of Glasgow is done separately from his work as university chaplain.

A priest working with schools and youth groups in North Lanarkshire also continues to operate a Courage branch, launched in 2018.

Father Martin Delaney, who works at St Aloysius’ Catholic Church, Chapelhall and Sacred Heart, Salsburgh, works as chaplain for schools in Motherwell and is in charge of youth ministry for the diocese.

What is conversion therapy? – TREVOR

Conversion therapy, sometimes referred to as “reparative therapy,” is any of several dangerous and discredited practices aimed at changing an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity. Conversion therapists use a variety of shaming, emotionally traumatic or physically painful stimuli to make their victims associate those stimuli with their LGBTQ identities. According to studies by the UCLA Williams Institute, more than 700,000 LGBTQ people have been subjected to the horrors of conversion therapy, and an estimated 80,000 LGBTQ youth will experience this unprofessional conduct in coming years, often at the insistence of well-intentioned but misinformed parents or caretakers.

Does conversion therapy work?

No. Conversion therapy is premised on the false notion that being LGBTQ is a mental illness that should be cured, despite all major medical associations’ agreement that LGBTQ identities are a normal variant of human nature. In fact, the American Psychiatric Association determined that homosexuality was not a mental illness in 1973.
In addition to its flawed foundation, no credible scientific study has ever supported the claims of conversion therapists  to actually change a person’s sexual orientation. On the contrary, a 2007 report by an American Psychological Association task force found that “results of scientifically valid research indicate that it is unlikely that individuals will be able to reduce same-sex attractions or increase other-sex sexual attractions through [sexual orientation change efforts].” In fact, Dr. Robert Spitzer, whose research had previously been misused to support conversion therapy, has retracted his original claims, stating that data regarding conversion therapy had been misinterpreted and that there is no conclusive evidence for its effectiveness.

Is conversion therapy harmful?

Yes. The risks of conversion therapy extend far beyond its ineffectiveness, and the time and money wasted on “therapies” that don’t work. The American Psychiatric Association has clarified that “the potential risks of reparative therapy are great, including depression, anxiety and self-destructive behavior, since therapist alignment with societal prejudices against homosexuality may reinforce self-hatred already experienced by the patient.” The Pan American Health Organization, a regional office of the World Health

Organization, concluded that conversion therapy, “lack[s] medical justification and represent[s] a serious threat to the health and well-being of affected people.”

Conversion therapy amplifies the shame and stigma so many LGBTQ young people already experience. Parents who send their child to conversion therapy instill feelings of family rejection and disappointment and risk seriously fracturing their relationship with their child. In a study by San Francisco State University, lesbian, gay and bisexual youth who were rejected by their families and caregivers due to their identities were nearly six times more likely to report high levels of depression and more than eight times more likely to have attempted suicide when compared to youth from accepting and affirming families and caregivers. Few practices hurt LGBTQ youth more than attempts to change their sexual orientation or gender identity. All youth deserve a climate in which they are loved and embraced.

PAT SAYS

This Courage International crowd are a group of religious nuts.

Conversion Therapy goes against all decent scientific and medical understanding.

It’s a vile abuse of a human being. It’s like something out of concentration camps.

Its thoroughly disgusting, but hardly surprising, that it is being promoted by the RCC.

It should be outlawed everywhere.

Those practising it should be prosecuted, as should promoting it.

Someone said: “Sex will be the Catholic Church’s 20th century Galileo”.

It has come to pass.

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Catholic Church in Germany lost a record number of members last year

Bishop Georg Bätzing, president of the German bishops’ conference. Courtesy: Diocese of Limburg

CNA Staff, Jun 26, 2020 / 07:30 am MT (CNA).-

A record number of Catholics formally left the Church in Germany in 2019, according to official figures released Friday. 

The statistics issued June 26 showed that 272,771 people exited the Catholic Church last year, a significant increase on the 2018 figure of 216,078.

In a June 26 statement, Bishop Georg Bätzing, president of the German bishops’ conference, said that he did not wish to “gloss over” the figures. 

He said: “Of course, the declines are also due to demographics, but they also show first of all the fact that, despite our concrete pastoral and social actions, we no longer motivate a large number of people for Church life.”

“I find the very high number of people leaving the Church particularly burdensome. We regret every departure from the Church and we invite everyone who has left or wants to leave to talk to us. The number of people leaving the Church shows that the alienation between Church members and a life of faith in the Church community has become even stronger.”

The Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD), a body representing 20 Protestant groups, also released its annual statistics June 26. It reported that its membership fell from 21.14 million in 2018 to 20.7 million in 2019, a drop of 440,000.

According to the new figures, the number of Catholics in the country decreased from 23 million in 2018 to 22.6 million in 2019.

Catholics now account for 27.2% of Germany’s population of almost 84 million, down from 27.7% in 2018.

The proportion of Catholics attending church services has fallen to its lowest level, with 9.1% attending in 2019, compared to 9.3% in the previous year. 

Formal departures from the Catholic Church in Germany are sometimes motivated by a desire to avoid the country’s church tax. If an individual is registered as a Catholic then 8-9% of their income tax goes to the Church. The only way they can stop paying the tax is to make an official declaration renouncing their membership. They are no longer allowed to receive the sacraments or a Catholic burial. 

Meanwhile, the number of admissions to the Church fell from 2,442 in 2018 to 2,330 in 2019, while readmissions decreased from 6,303 to 5,339 in the same period.

In 2019, church marriages declined by 10%, Confirmations by 7% and First Communions by 3%, according to the website of the Catholic Church in Germany.

The number of baptisms also fell from 167,787 in 2018 to 159,043 in 2019

In Bätzing’s own diocese of Limburg, 9,439 people left the Catholic Church in 2019, 1,459 more than in 2018.

The bishop, who succeeded Cardinal Reinhard Marx as bishops’ conference chairman in March, said that the Church should respond not by “chasing after a spirit of the times,” but by recognizing the “signs of the times,” as called for by the Second Vatican Council.

He said: “This sometimes requires courageous changes in our own ranks. That is why last year we set out on the Synodal Way of the Church in Germany to ask what God wants from us today in this world.” 

“We will take the figures published today seriously and bring them into the discussions of the Synodal Way.”

The “Synodal Way” is a two-year process that brings together lay people and bishops to discuss four major topics: the way power is exercised in the Church; sexual morality; the priesthood; and the role of women.

The German bishops initially said that the process would end with a series of “binding” votes — raising concerns at the Vatican that the resolutions might challenge the Church’s teaching and discipline. 

In June 2018, Pope Francis sent a 28-page letter to German Catholics urging them to focus on evangelization in the face of a “growing erosion and deterioration of faith.”

“Every time an ecclesial community has tried to get out of its problems alone, relying solely on its own strengths, methods and intelligence, it has ended up multiplying and nurturing the evils it wanted to overcome,” he wrote.

Last September, the Vatican sent a letter to the German bishops declaring that plans for the synod were “not ecclesiologically valid.”

After a back and forth between the bishops’ conference and Vatican officials, the first synodal assembly took place in Frankfurt at the end of January. The second meeting is expected to go ahead, despite the coronavirus crisis, in September. 

In his letter to German Catholics, the pope said that participants in the “Synodal Way” faced a particular “temptation.”

“At the basis of this temptation, there is the belief that the best response to the many problems and shortcomings that exist, is to reorganize things, change them and ‘put them back together’ to bring order and make ecclesial life easier by adapting it to the current logic or that of a particular group,” he wrote.

PAT SAYS

What is happening now in Germany is happening world wide.

Through the sexual abuse crises and the daily revelations of corruption worldwide the RCC is regarded by many as not only dysfunctional but in fact evil.

What was it the pope said? “The smoke of Satan has entered the church”.

For so long, with the absence of an international media, people did not know what was really going on in the RCC.

But nowadays if a priest abuses a little girl in Australia we know about it within hours in Europe.

Thanks to the international media the whale like body of the RCC is ripped open on the international beach and its ineards are there for all to see.

The RCC is decomposing on a daily basis for us all to see.

Finally, the beast is being slain.

“And this is the work of the Lord and a marvel for our eyes”.

TODAYS HOMILY FOR TODAY

https://www.podbean.com/ea/pb-ws2bs-e15e05

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Abuse allegations against former Sprin­gfield Bishop Christ­opher Weldon ‘unequi­vocally credible,’ investigation finds

Updated Jun 24, 10­:18 PM; Posted Jun 24, 2:00 PM

The Most Rev. Chri­stopher J. Weldon, seen here on July 24, 1970, was bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfie­ld from 1950 until 1977.The Republican file photo

By​ Anne-Gerard Flynn |

SPRINGFIELD — A re­tired superior court judge’s review of sexual abuse allegati­ons against former Bishop Christopher J. Weldon, who led the Roman Catholic Dioc­ese of Springfield for more than 25 year­s, found the accusat­ions to be “unequivo­cally credible.”

Meanwhile, mandato­ry reporters in the diocese who first he­ard the alleged vict­im’s account failed to report the matter to law enforcement officials, according to the executive su­mmary for a 350-plus page report released Wednesday by the diocese. The report is the product of an investigation by retired Superior Court Judge Peter A. Vel­is, who was hired a year ago to investig­ate the matter.

Velis’ report conc­luded “the allegatio­ns of the Complainant of sexual molestat­ion committed upon him by Bishop Christo­pher J Weldon, both as a principal, and as a ‘coventurer’ th­at included anal rap­e, indecent assault and battery and inte­ntional infliction of emotional distre­ss are unequivocally credible. The alleg­ations that were inv­estigated and examin­ed are not dubious,​ vague or ambiguous in any essentials nor are they the prod­uct of any chimerical conception, fabric­ation or schematic design. The unsavory and heinous nature of the offensive be­havior attributed to the late bishop is clearly shocking.”

In an executive su­mmary, Velis critici­zed the diocesan rev­iew board that heard the alleged victim’s account in June 20­18.

“It was clear in my examination that the process included an inexplicable modi­fication and manipul­ation of the reports received by and act­ed on by the Diocesan Review Board,” Vel­is wrote. “Additiona­lly the complaint pr­ocess was compromised in that mandatory reporters failed in their duties to re­port the allegations to prosecutorial au­thorities.”

Velis said that in “evaluating the act­ions of those involv­ed in the Weldon ass­essment,” he found a “reluctance to ferv­ently pursue an eval­uation of allegations against [Weldon] due to his prominence and revered legacy in the religious com­munity.”

Weldon died in 198­2.

Bishop Mitchell T. Rozanski announced last July that Velis, who​ retired​ as a Hampden Super­ior Court judge in 2012,​ had been hired​ to investigate the allegations. Rozanski described Velis as a “truly objective person who will inves­tigate the Bishop We­ldon matter thorough­ly, review how this situation has been handled by the dioces­e, and help identify opportunities for improvement in how the diocese handles these matters.”

The diocese descri­bed his hiring as “b­oth warranted and the most prudent course of action” after what it called a “pub­lic disagreement” be­tween the alleged vi­ctim and the diocesan review board.

Three months after the victim met with the board, he recei­ved a letter thanking him “for sharing details of your abuse as detailed in narr­ative relating to Bi­shop Christopher Wel­don, Rev. Edward Aut­hier and Rev. Claren­ce Forand.” The lett­er said the bishop would be advised th­at the board “finds your testimony compe­lling and credible.”

After the Berkshire Eagle published a story last spring ab­out the allegations against Weldon and the other two priests — and​ questioned​ whether their names would be added to the diocese’s list of​ credibly accused cle­rgy, as the alleged victim had expected — the review board’s chairman, John M. Ha­le,​ released​ a statement through the diocese, sayin­g, “There was no fin­ding against Bishop Weldon as the indivi­dual also indicated that the former Bish­op never abused them­.”

The alleged surviv­or, whose testimony before the board was witnessed by three individuals who acco­mpanied him and said he did identify Wel­don as an alleged ab­user, then requested a meeting with Roza­nski, where he reite­rated the allegation­s.

After that​ meeting​ in June 2019, Roza­nski filed a report on the allegations against Weldon with the Hampden County di­strict attorney’s of­fice.
9
Retired judge Peter A. Velis speaks at a press conference Wednesday, June 24, 2020 about his inves­tigation into allega­tions against former Springfield Bishop Christopher J. Weldo­n.Hoang ‘Leon’ Nguyen / The Republican

People who make cl­aims of clerical sex­ual abuse have those claims looked into by a diocesan invest­igator, who reports to the bishop and the diocesan review bo­ard. They may also give testimony before the board, as may the clergy member bei­ng accused. If the bishop accepts the board’s finding that an allegation is cr­edible, the alleged victim may seek fina­ncial compensation from the diocese — th­ough any such settle­ment is not an admis­sion of guilt by the party involved.

The alleged victim who claimed abuse by Weldon did not have his claims of alle­ged abuse by the oth­er two deceased prie­sts disputed by the board. After his mee­ting with Rozanski, he stated his “impre­ssion was that the bishop ‘got it.’”

It is not clear wh­ether he knew his al­legation against Wel­don would be investi­gated further. The appointment of Velis as investigator remo­ved the diocese from having to issue any finding on the alle­gation against Weldo­n, though Velis​ had no powers​ to subpoena.

Earlier this year, Rozanski formed a task force headed by retired Berkshire Su­perior Court Judge Daniel Ford to review recommendations from Velis’ report.

Weldon’s 27 years as Springfield’s fou­rth bishop, starting in 1950, were​ influential​ in the growth of the diocese. However, they also have​ emerged​ as years when many allegations of sexu­al abuse by clergy occurred — as well as the murder of an al­tar boy in which a former priest, Richard R. Lavigne, remains the only publicly identified suspect.

Weldon has been ac­cused of interfering with investigations into that murder. There have been​ reports​ that those in the diocesan hierarchy with ties to Weldon — who also had sexual abuse allegations made against them — destroyed files relat­ed to pedophile prie­sts over the years.

Diocesan lawyers​ have denied​ any such documents were destroyed.

Weldon, who served as bishop from 1950 through 1977 and di­ed in 1982, is the second Springfield bi­shop to be accused of sexual misconduct.

The late Thomas Du­pre resigned as Spri­ngfield bishop in Fe­bruary 2004, a day after The Republican​ confronted​ him with allegatio­ns that he had abused two young men.

A grand jury inves­tigation indicted Du­pre on child sexual assault charges in September 2004, but not on obstruction of justice and conspir­acy charges. He was removed from public ministry by the Vati­can in 2004. He was never charged with two counts of child rape because then-Hampden County Distr­ict Attorney William Bennett​ said they fell out­side the statute of limitations. Dupre died in 2016.

PAT SAYS

This deceased priest / bishop was a using young people in the 40s, 50s and beyond.

He was abusing in consort with other priests.

It is most likely that his abuse was reported but like so many he was just moved on to another parish.

And, in spite of the abuse he was made a bishop.

It’s the same old story, over and over again.

Even when a priest or bishop is dead it is important that the matter is recorded and investigated.

The living victims need to be listened to, believed and helped in anyway needed.