Cardinal Tobin to TAS: Yes, Italian Actor Francesco Castiglione Lived at My Rector
The American Spectator
Cardinal Tobin to TAS: Yes, Italian Actor Francesco Castiglione Lived at My Rector
The American Spectator
I helped oversee safeguarding in England and Wales. I wonder if some bishops ‘get it’
by Danny Sullivan – Catholic Herald
I witnessed the complacency of Church officials at first hand
When Pope Francis wrote his recent letter on abuse to the world’s Catholics, the BBC interviewed a survivor in the United States. Asked what she thought of the letter, she replied “nothing”, as it only contained words and proposed no actions. “I have no faith in the Church any more,” she said, “but I still have faith in God. And I know the difference.”
This was a devastating judgment on Church leaders who, even after all these years, fail to meet abuse survivors face to face and take action against those who have covered up crimes, putting the reputation of the institution before the criminally destroyed childhood of victims.
Recently the bishops of England and Wales announced that they had asked the National Catholic Safeguarding Commission (NCSC) to commission “an entirely independent and comprehensive review” of safeguarding. Cardinal Vincent Nichols will give evidence to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) on December 13th.
These are welcome developments, but it would be unwise for Church leaders in England and Wales – and, indeed, Scotland – to stand back from the current global abuse scandal as if all were well here.
I served as chairman of the NCSC from 2012 to 2015. The commission is an independent body working within the Catholic Church in England and Wales. In that role I recognised some good safeguarding practice, in particular the work of diocesan safeguarding coordinators. But what I experienced led me to ask if some leaders still don’t “get it” when it comes to abuse.
For example, one bishop declined my request to meet the mother of a teenager who was groomed and abused by his parish priest, because his lawyer had advised him not to. An archbishop decided not to meet an abuse victim because he had been advised the person was “mad”. Another bishop appointed a diocesan safeguarding coordinator who did not fulfil the agreed national criteria for the role. When I raised this with the bishop, he simply ignored my concerns. One missionary order to this day will not meet survivors of abuse in one of their schools, failing to support them and their families.
Understandably, some victims regard these kinds of actions as “secondary abuse”.
In his letter to Catholics, Pope Francis described Church leaders who fail to engage with survivors and support them as spiritually arrogant. Words without actions are empty, and abuse victims continue to make this clear.
Will they ever be heard? One doubts it, given the continuing scandals and the effort it takes to remove bishops or heads of religious orders who have made protecting the Church’s reputation their priority.
Following the IICSA report on Ampleforth and Downside, a representative of the Benedictines apologised to victims, but made no offer to meet them or give their families support. Ampleforth is still not trusted by the Charity Commission to oversee safeguarding on its own. I believe that if the Benedictines are unable to reform their safeguarding procedures, then the schools should close.
Only radical action will change the context of the continuing scandal. The following should be considered:
■ Pope Francis should remove responsibility for abuse cases from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which has failed to process cases swiftly enough, and give it to local bishops’ conferences. They should set up investigating panels including lay canon lawyers and abuse survivors. They should be able to discipline – and dismiss – bishops and other leaders. They would send their decisions to the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors in Rome, which would then confirm the decision to the Pope or seek further clarification. This would give the commission the authority and power it currently lacks.
■ Every bishop and leader of a religious order should invite every abuse victim in their communities to meet them, so that they can apologise to them and offer appropriate support. Anyone who declines to do so should be required to resign.
■ The Pope should remove the arcane distinction between bishops and heads of religious orders which has allowed some bishops to claim they can do nothing about allegations of abuse by Religious, leading some leaders of orders to behave as if they were untouchable. Religious should be placed under the jurisdiction of the president of the bishops’ conference. The president should be able to call to account any missionary or religious order in the country.
Sadly, even if these proposals were implemented, it would be already too late for those who have killed themselves, or who are a long way from faith in the Church and, indeed, in God. The leaders of our Church are largely responsible for this.
In 2014, I took two survivors to meet Pope Francis in Rome. At Mass, he explicitly named the experience of victims: for some suicide, for others alcohol and drug addiction, for others still an inability to make or sustain relationships or alienation from the Church.
I have yet to hear a bishop or religious superior in this country talk in such a moving and direct way about survivors’ lives. But it is never too late to try.
Danny Sullivan is a former chairman of the NCSC and was a member of the McLellan Commission in Scotland from its inception in 2014.
Danny Sullivan is right, Many bishops everywhere do not get it when it comes to abuse and many of those who do not get it – do not want to get it!
RC bishops have been formed and trained to put the RC institution and its interests before all else – even before children that are raped by priests.
To them the greatest sin is to be “disloyal” to the institution that gives them power, wealth, influence – and above all else a massively inflated view of how important they are.
Hence, when a bishop receives a report of a child being abused – or a report of a priest being sexually active – he contacts his lawyers – instead of going to his chapel and asking Jesus Christ to help him deal with the matter openly, honestly, compassionately in line with the teachings of the New Testament.
Such a bishop has two books on his desk – the Bible and the Code of Canon Law. RC bishops think more of canon law than they do of scripture.
The only way that bishops will be forced to change is when they see one of their episcopal colleagues going into prison in handcuffs.
They will then act – not because it was right – but to save their own sweaty necks.
I was delighted to see the police and the state troopers in Texas force their way into Cardinal Di Nardo’s house and remove all his files and his three computers. That’s the only language that these boyos understand. Hit them with the full weight of the police, the prosecutors and the prison service.
We look forward to the day when an Irish bishop has his house raided and is led away in handcuffs by the Gardaí or the Police Service of Northern Ireland.
THE ABOVE INTERVIEW FROM ETWN HIGHLIGHTS THE FACT THAT THE VATICAN IS TRYING TO DIVERT PEOPLE AWAY SEXUALLY ACTIVE GAY BISHOPS AND PRIESTS BY HAVING THE COMING FEBRUARY MEETING ON “PROTECTION OF MINORS”.
The protection of minors was another issue and scandal that raised its head some 15 or 20 years ago.
The latest and biggest scandal is about the promiscuous of cardinals, bishops, priests and seminarians.
This scandal was given a thrust by the disgraceful story of ex Cardinal McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington.
McCarrick had been sexually promiscuous for decades with seminarians and young priests.
And in spite of his sex life he was promoted and promoted.
He also saw to it that many of the priests and seminarians he abused went on to become bishops too.
The Vatican knew about McCarrick and covered up for him too – because he kept sending millions of dollars to the Vatican.
The Church has addressed the question of the protection of minors. There are child protection people in every diocese and parish.
So, there is no need for the Vatican to have February’s conference on minors.
They should be concentrating on the sexual abuse of adults by bishops, priests and seminarians.
They need to discuss:
These are the CURRENT scandals – not the protection of minors – but of course the protection of minors must always be kept at its best.
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A grave matter: Church funerals denied to priests accused of abuse, says ACP
By Cian Molloy – 01 December, 2018
Is it contrary to Canon Law to insist that funerals of priests accused of abuse must take place in private chapels?
Several diocese and religious orders have policies that allow church funerals to be denied to clergy that have been accused of sexual abuse, says the Association of Catholic Priests (ACP).
Instead, requiem Masses for these priests are being held in private chapels, with no death notices published in national or local media.
The National Board for Safeguarding Children in the Catholic Church in Ireland (NBSCCCI) has had a “Guidance on the Funerals of Clerics or Religious against whom there is a Case to Answer” available for several years now.
It includes considerations as to whether those who made complaints against a priest should be informed of his death; what role other priests of a diocese or a religious community should play in a funeral Mass; how the location and the timing of the requiem Mass might have a negative impact on complainants; what burial sites are appropriate; and what inscription should be put on headstones.
The guidance document is not an exhaustive list, the NBSCCCI admits. It appears that several diocese and religious orders have put additional measures of their own in place.
“A number of priests have contacted us to say that as a group they are being singled out and treated differently to everybody else,” Fr Tim Hazlewood, a member of the ACP’s admin team, told CatholicIreland.net.
“I know of no lay person who was ever denied a funeral because of their involvement in paramilitary activity, gang violence or abuse of children, but it seems that priests who have an allegation of abuse against them are being denied public funerals.”
Fr Hazelwood says the ACP has in its possession two policy documents – one belonging to a diocese and one belonging to a religious order – where restrictions go beyond what is proposed by the NBSCCCI. The diocesan guideline suggests “consideration be given to have the funeral liturgies in a private chapel and/or a time other than the usual times”.
When the notorious child abuser Fr Brendan Smyth was buried by the Norbertine Order, his funeral took place before dawn and the grave was covered in concrete to stop it being vandalised.
But the ACP say there are priests who are being denied normal funerals even though the accusations against them have never been proven and are unlikely to ever be substantiated. Holding funerals in private chapels appears to be contrary to normal Catholic practice. In an online guide to Catholic funerals, prepared by St Mary’s University in London, it says “a funeral is a public event so anyone can attend”.
There are also subtle differences between a church and a chapel, with a church being a centre of community worship and a chapel being a subsidiary place of worship. Insisting that a funeral take place in a private chapel is probably contrary to Canon Law. Canon 1185 states: “Any form of funeral Mass is also to be denied to a person who has been excluded from a Church funeral.”
The additional guidelines seen by the ACP also suggest that no funeral notice be published of priests accused of abuse and that their requiem Masses not be concelebrated. “I don’t know about the Canon Law aspect,” said Fr Hazelwood. “But not publishing death notices is very unfair to relatives. One of the purposes of a funeral is to offer consolation to the bereaved, but this measure denies that to families.”
False allegations of abuse have been made against priests in the past, as Fr Hazelwood knows to his cost. Two years he had to take a civil case to the High Court before a person making false accusations against him admitted he had been lying. He said that Church policy in this area is not priest-friendly and that there is a presumption of guilt.
The Cloyne diocesan parish priest points to the fact that the NSBCCCI operates to seven different standards: creating and maintaining safe environments, procedures for responding to child protection concerns and allegations, care and support for the complainant, care and management of the respondent, training and support for keeping children safe and quality assuring compliance with the standards.
“All of these standards are audited, except for the one to do with the care and management of the respondent,” said Fr Hazelwood. “So if it’s not audited, it’s not worth the paper it is written on and priests are left in a very vulnerable position. Why does the Church treat us differently? Why do these special funeral arrangements only apply to priests and to no one else? It is not fair to priests, some of whom might be suspended from ministry for decades on the basis of unsubstantiated allegations. Then when they die and they don’t get a proper funeral, their families have to live on with hurt and shame.
“Those who are accused of abuse are being treated like lepers. While not condoning their actions, it is not right to single out one group of people like this. Judging them after they have died is the role of God, not the Church. We should not be distinguishing between what type of funeral we will give one group of people and not another.”
A Catholic funeral is, traditionally, a Mass celebrated asking God to allow a departed sinner into Heaven.
So logic would suggest that the bigger the sinner the more need for the funeral.
I always thought that it was very cowardly of the Irish RC Church to bury Brendan Smith in the middle of the night and to pour concrete in over the coffin so that the grave could not be attacked.
Mind you, now that the Norbertines have sold their monastery to a builder for housing it will be easier for a crane to lift a 7 x 4 concrete block out of the ground that it would have been to go coffin and bone fishing.
The questions raised here are threefold:
AN ACCUSED BUT NOT CONVICTED PRIEST:
In civil law a not convicted priest is an innocent man.
However every accused priest generally has two trials – a civil one and a canonical one. So you can have a priest innocent in civil law and guilty under canon law.
And of course we have priests like Father Hazelwood who was falsely convicted.
A CONVICTED PRIEST:
A convicted priest will have been sentenced and have served his sentence – unless like Brendan Smith – he dies in prison.
If he has served his sentence he has paid his debt to society – although his victims may suffer forever.
TREATING PEOPLE LIKE LEPERS:
I think we know from Jesus’ teachings that the Church should never treat people like lepers.
Having said that, I attended one nation meeting of The Association of Catholic Priests and most of the priests there – including the ACP leadership treated me like a leper!
Was the ACP right to do that – and are they now hypocrites by saying that no one should be treated as a leper?
I think that every Catholic should be accorded a public funeral in the church they were associated with.
In the case of convicted priests maybe the funeral should be held in the cathedral and celebrated by the bishop, who makes it clear at the funeral that people are not there to memorialise the dead priest but to pray for his eternal soul.
In doing this we should be as sensitive as we can not only to the priest’s family and friends – but perhaps more so to his victims.
OVER THE WEEKEND I DISCOVERED SOMETHING THAT I ALREADY SUSPECTED. THE IRISH RC CHURCH HAS EMBARKED ON A WELL FUNDED CAMPAIGN TO SILENCE ME ON SOCIAL MEDIA AND THE INTERNET.
I’m told that Diarmuid Martin does not approve of this action?
Amy and his Episcopal friends like Lugs Monahan of Killaloe feel differently.
The censoring of my blog began some time ago. This is what happened.
4. Last week I had a notice from Blogger that my blog had been locked and that it may be permanently deleted i9n 89 days. I have appealed but have heard nothing. It is still down
5. I have several anonymous emails and comments to tell me that Catholic individuals and entities have already been in touch with WordPress to take this blog down.
6. I have had general threats against my personal safety and a number of death threats. All reported to the police.
7. At the weekend my Twitter account was locked after several complaints from Gorgeous – Deacon Michael Byrne.
There is a rumour circulating among the Dublin clergy that Gorgeous, who is living in a presbytery, will be ordained in 18 months time?
In any event, it seems that Gorgeous is trying to erase all mention of his various “travails” on social media – maybe with a view to ordination?
8. I have had solicitor’s letters from Paul Prior, Conor Gannon and Eamon Martin.
9. Over the weekend a senior and well known Irish cleric informed me by email that he had knowledge of a well funded plan within the Irish RC Church to silence me on all social media.
The organised Irish media is afraid to carry all the scandals that are going on in the Irish RC church at all levels. They are afraid of the power, influence and money of the RC crowd.
This blog has been one of the few, if not the only place that these matters can be aired in public, commented on, debated and condemned.
We have only heard a small percentage of what is really going on among the clergy and priests.
They do not want me to tell the whole story and for you to read it and know about it.
In more crude times they would have prepared a fatal accident for me. Some of them are still capable of doing that – or of getting or paying someone to do it for them.
In the meantime they are concentrating on attacking the blog and my social media accounts.
They are powerful and wealthy.
I have no power and no wealth.
Its like dealing with the regimes in Russia, China, Iran or Saudi Arabia – although the Romans these days try to be more hidden and subtle about their tyrannies.
I’ll continue to blog and speak out.
If they suppress me on social media I will still speak out – in O’Connell Street in Dublin or at the gates of Maynooth.
I will accept being a voice in the wilderness.
Many better men and woman than me had to live like that.
UPDATE 2 PM
COUNTRIES WHERE BLOG HAS BEEN READ TODAY:
ONE COUNTRY IS NOT IN THE PIC – HONDURAS 1 READER
Pope Francis says ‘there is no place’ for gay priests in clergy
Sofia Lotto Persio PINK NEWS
Pope Francis leads a special audience with members of a volunteers association from Sardinia island in Paul VI hall at the Vatican November 30, 2018. REUTERS/Max Rossi Pope Francis has been quoted as saying that “there is no place” in the clergy for gay people and that the issue of homosexuality “worries” him.
Several Italian news outlets have published excerpts from a four-hour interview between Pope Francis and Spanish Missionary Fernando Prado, soon to be published as a book titled The strength of vocation. Consecrated life today.
The book addresses various issues regarding serving in the Catholic Church, including who is best placed to enter the clergy.
Catholic newspaper Avvenire published on November 29 the full excerpt in which Prado asks the Pontiff specifically addresses the inclusion of “people with homosexual tendencies.”
Francis begins his answer admitting that the issue is “something that worries me, because perhaps at some point it has not been dealt with well.”
“In our societies it even seems that homosexuality is fashionable.”
— Pope Francis
He then proceeds to describe homosexuality as “a very serious matter, which must be discerned adequately from the beginning” with those who seek to become part of the clergy.
“We must be demanding. In our societies it even seems that homosexuality is fashionable and this mentality, in some way, also affects the life of the Church,” Pope Francis said.
Pope Francis Upholds traditional teachings on homosexuality
The official teaching of the Catholic Church reject homosexuality as an “objective disorder” and “intrinsically disordered.”
Despite his reputation as a progressive force within the Church, having previously voiced support for embracing LGBT+ Catholics, Pope Francis upheld these teachings in the interview with Prado.
The pontiff, who recently suggested that LGBT+ children should be taken to see a psychiatrist, said that the existence of gay priests is an issue that he has discussed with other members of the clergy.
He recalled a religious leader telling him that, in his congregation, there were “good young students and even some already professed clergymen” who were gay.
“He himself had doubts about the thing and asked me if there was anything wrong with this,” Francis recalled, adding that the religious leader told him that perhaps it wasn’t a serious issue and that ultimately it was only “an expression of affection.”
But the pontiff disagreed with such position, telling Prado the religious leader was mistaken.
“It is not just an expression of affection. In the consecrated life and in the priestly life there is no place for this kind of affection,” Pope Francis said, adding: “For this reason, the Church recommends that people with this rooted tendency are not accepted in the ministry or in the consecrated life. The ministry or the consecrated life are not their place.”
Pope Francis has previously expressed opposition to gay men entering the clergy in closed-door remarks to the Italian Bishops’ Conference quoted in CNN. “If in doubt, better not let them enter,” the pontiff reportedly said at the time.
I do not agree with Pope Francis and the RC Church on their teachings about homosexuality. To them it is an objective disorder. I think that homosexuality is a perfectly normal sexual orientation.
Their teaching on this is also hypocritical as most bishops and priests are gay and many of them are sexually active.
But I do think that, as long as you want to stay in the Church as a cleric who has promised to be celibate you must keep that promise – either that or leave the Church. Leading a double life is neither good or healthy.
When they fired me out and deprived me of the “privileges” I no longer felt bound to the “obligations”.
The problem is NOT gay priests or seminarians. The problem is that many gay bishops, priests and seminarians are not only sexually active but are as promiscuous as tom cats!
The authentic moral position for such bishops, seminarians and priests is to either observe celibacy or get out!
Doing the double is dishonest and hypocritical.
IS FR RYAN MC ALEER LEAVING THE PRIESTHOOD?
A well connected Catholic parishioner from Dungannon telephoned a Sunday newspaper in the last few days to tell them that Fr Ryan McAleer, Eamon Martin’s religious advisor for primary schools, was leaving the priesthood.
One of my clerical contacts in Armagh has said that this rumour is unfounded.
The newspaper called me back and I was able to tell them that the rumour had been denied.
The caller quoted said she had heard this from a member of Dungannon Parish Council.
For a long time now, in my opinion, Ryan has given many people the impression, in many ways, that he is a round peg in a square hole.
AN ADVENT REFLECTION
Some Blog readers have been complaining that I had not published an Advent reflection – and asked me to be more “spiritual”.
Here is a very inspirational one:
We know the scene: the room, variously furnished,
almost always a lectern, a book; always
the tall lily.
Arrived on solemn grandeur of great wings,
the angelic ambassador, standing or hovering,
whom she acknowledges, a guest.
But we are told of meek obedience. No one mentions
The engendering Spirit
did not enter her without consent.
She was free
to accept or to refuse, choice
integral to humanness.
Aren’t there annunciations
of one sort or another
in most lives?
undertake great destinies,
enact them in sullen pride,
when roads of light and storm
open from darkness in a man or woman,
are turned away from
in dread, in a wave of weakness, in despair
and with relief.
Ordinary lives continue.
God does not smite them.
But the gates close, the pathway vanishes.
She had been a child who played, ate, slept
like any other child–but unlike others,
wept only for pity, laughed
in joy not triumph.
Compassion and intelligence
fused in her, indivisible.
Called to a destiny more momentous
than any in all of Time,
she did not quail,
a simple, ‘How can this be?’
and gravely, courteously,
took to heart the angel’s reply,
the astounding ministry she was offered:
to bear in her womb
Infinite weight and lightness; to carry
in hidden, finite inwardness,
nine months of Eternity; to contain
in slender vase of being,
the sum of power–
in narrow flesh,
the sum of light.
Then bring to birth,
push out into air, a Man-child
needing, like any other,
milk and love–
but who was God.
This was the moment no one speaks of,
when she could still refuse.
A breath unbreathed,
She did not cry, ‘I cannot. I am not worthy,’
Nor, ‘I have not the strength.’
She did not submit with gritted teeth,
Bravest of all humans,
consent illumined her.
The room filled with its light,
the lily glowed in it,
and the iridescent wings.
opened her utterly.
LAST WEDNESDAY EVENING IN ARMAGH CATHEDRAL THE ARCHBISHOP – EAMON MARTIN SAID THAT HE AND RCs ARE BEING PERSECUTED IN IRELAND FOR THEIR FAITH AND WILL BE PERSECUTED MORE IN THE FUTURE !!!
He cited Ireland’s new secularism and materialism and the recent Irish votes for equal marriage and abortion.
I’m afraid that Amy has no grasp of history.
Ireland was colonised by two foreign forces – the British Empire and the Roman Catholic Church.
The Brits came in the 12th century under the leadership of Strongbow – and at the request of an Irish king who was fighting with he fellow kings and chieftains.
But the Romans – I mean the Roman Catholics – were hear hundreds of years before the Brits.
The Brits stole our lands and our language.
The RCs stole our hearts and our souls.
We have gotten rid of the Brits from the 26 counties.
And modern Ireland is in the process of getting rid of the RCs – and people like Eamon Martin.
The drop in Mass attendance and the very powerful recent referenda in which the Irish People said a massive NO to the RC institution, its teachings and its dogmas – is a clear sign that the RCs have been served their P45 by the Irish people.
When the Brits left the bishops and clergy became the new overlords. London rule was swapped for Roman Rule.
And the unionists in the North were right when they said: “Home Rule means Rome Rule”.
From 1922 the Irish Catholic Hierarchy had most Irish politicians under their thumb – with the honourable exception people like Dr Noel Brown – whose ministerial career was brought to and end by Archbishop John Charles McQuaid of Dublin.
The then Taoiseach said: “I am a Catholic first and a politician second”.
The Bishop of Cork – Dr Lucey said: “Even in political matters the Bishops are the final arbiters”.
They even played a major part in writing the Irish 1937 Constitution – which the Irish people are changing election by election, referendum by referendum.
Millions and millions of Irish people lived and died believing they were going to Hell for one act of masturbation, for having sex outside marriage, for being gay, for marrying Protestants etc.,
They imprisoned our unmarried mothers in Roman Catholic gulags.
They incarcerated our children in their homes and orphanages, where they starved, beat and raped them.
They banished public sinners and religious dissidents to Evil England.
They controlled hospitals, maternity clinics, labour wards, schools, colleges, universities etc.,
They stole babies and sold them to good Catholics in the USA and Australia.
They tortured and starved little babies and buried in septic tanks.
Priests roamed the roads beating courting couples with blackthorn sticks.
Eamon, you a descendent of the moral and physical persecutors of the Irish people.
Eamon, you are the successor – not of the Apostles – but of the abusers.
And after 1600 years of Roman Catholic invasion and torture the Irish people are calling time on you.
If you are persecuted – and I don’t wish persecution on you – it is Karma – and what has gone around has come back around.
Get used to being an organisation like a golf club – a private members club with no influence.
Your glory days are over.
And as the Chinese say:
You, Eamon, are accursed to be living in interesting times!
Scandal Report Reveals Details of Ongoing Homosexual Network in Northeastern U.S.
A 2012 investigation at the Connecticut seminary found evidence of a homosexual network that extended into several dioceses, and despite its findings, some of those involved were subsequently ordained to the priesthood.
CROMWELL, Conn. — Some of the seminarians and transitional deacons at the center of an investigation into homosexual behavior and activity at a small Catholic seminary in Connecticut apparently were ordained to the priesthood for the Archdiocese of Hartford and the Diocese of Paterson, New Jersey — despite the revelations outlined in a six-year-old report obtained by the Register.
According to the 2012 report’s disturbing conclusions, the homosexual activity at Holy Apostles took place in the context of a much wider homosexual network that spanned a number of U.S. dioceses as well as some foreign countries. The network reportedly involved homosexual activity between seminarians, transitional deacons and visiting priests serving elsewhere.
The rector of Holy Apostles College and Seminary and his chief investigator have come forward to publicly discuss the 2012 investigation that led to the swift removal of 13 seminarians.
Sources also told the Register that the Archdiocese of Hartford ordained a priest in 2010 who had allegedly previously been expelled from another seminary for sexual misconduct. This priest was figured in Holy Apostles’ investigation and was, according to the investigation’s final report, “directly involved in hosting parties and engaging in unacceptable behavior/homosexual activity with select seminarians from both the Diocese of Paterson and the Archdiocese of Hartford.”
The investigation’s final report was provided to the Register by Holy Apostles’ president and rector, Basilian Father Douglas Mosey. He said the investigation, conducted during the spring semester in 2012, was based on eyewitness testimony and other evidence of ongoing homosexual behavior among some seminarians.
Father Mosey said he had been told by two seminarians that they had witnessed inappropriate conversation and contact among a group of seminarians from Colombia.
And in mid-April 2012, according to Father Mosey, a seminarian approached him with an eyewitness account of sodomy between two of the seminarians, and he decided to take steps to deal with the burgeoning crisis. With the support of Bishop Michael Cote of Norwich, Connecticut, the seminary’s home diocese, Father Mosey and the vice rector, Father John Hillier, acted swiftly, Father Mosey said.
“In late April 2012, the administration of the seminary became aware of alleged homosexual practice by several students on the Cromwell campus,” Father Mosey, the president since 1996, told the Register. “With the full support of the board of directors, a thorough internal investigation was immediately launched.”
The investigation was led by transitional Deacon (now Father) John Lavers of the Archdiocese of St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada — a late vocation whose experience in law enforcement and national security work was brought to bear. Deacon Lavers, along with Fathers Mosey and Hillier, interviewed the seminarians in the presence of Auxiliary Bishop Christie Macaluso of Hartford.
Extensive Sexual Misconduct
Father Mosey said the investigation also uncovered incidents of plagiarism and alcohol violations, but that the expulsions were motivated primarily by indications of sexually inappropriate behavior and sexually charged conversation in common areas, eyewitness testimony of homosexual activity and forensic evidence of homosexual content on computers.
The investigation’s final report, written by then-Deacon Lavers and dated June 29, 2012, also revealed that seminarians would often make weekend trips to New York City and Hartford and New Haven, Connecticut, to visit bars well-known for catering to a homosexual clientele. Former seminarians confirmed the facts of those trips to the Register.
Other disturbing findings included evidence indicating that “select seminarians” from the Diocese of Paterson and the Archdiocese of Hartford had “engaged in various evening and late-night parties at a local church rectory in Connecticut where sexual encounters between seminarians and priests would occur”; that select seminarians were “meeting former seminarians for intimate encounters; these former seminarians were expelled from a U.S. seminary for unacceptable behavior/homosexual activity”; and that select seminarians “were discovered to be on a ‘blacklist’ of seminarians expelled from Colombian seminaries for engaging in unacceptable behavior/homosexual activity.”
The report also stated that the seminarians under investigation “had their diocesan personnel files altered or sanitized, resulting in the lack of full disclosure or transparency of a seminarian’s background, thus causing that seminarian to be misrepresented to other people,” and that “certain members of the clergy (i.e., vocation directors) coached or prompted select seminarians to give misleading responses to questions in advance of their interview with the Holy Apostles College & Seminary investigation team.”
And, according to the report, “select seminarians and certain priests have facilitated the recruitment and placement of other seminarians sharing in a similar alternative lifestyle within some U.S. dioceses.”
The redacted 2012 report did not name any of the individuals that it found had engaged in sexual misconduct and/or other wrongdoing.
“The evidence at Holy Apostles led us to a very systemic homosexual network of individuals, not only covering for each other, but actively sanitizing files, moving people around, engaging in all sorts of negative activity,” Father Lavers told the Register last month.
“That effort represented a large network involving several dioceses, including Paterson, Newark, Hartford and Buffalo — this last of which is coming out in the news now,” he added, referencing the recent allegations that the Diocese of Buffalo, New York, has sought to downplay the extent of clergy sexual abuse there.
Holy Apostles’ Response
The 2012 investigation led to the removal of 13 men from the seminary.
“As a result of the swift and thorough investigation, seven seminarians were immediately expelled from Holy Apostles. Six additional students were withdrawn from the program by their original sponsoring diocese,” Father Mosey told the Register.
“Holy Apostles acted immediately and decisively, in full compliance with its safe-environment protocol, to ensure the integrity of its seminary program,” he said. “We had not encountered such an incident previously nor have we since.”
Expulsion by a seminary rector normally reflects a grave moral or academic failure and is generally taken by the sponsoring bishop or religious superior as an indicator of the seminarian’s unsuitability for ordination. Withdrawal is an action initiated by a seminarian or his sponsoring bishop. However, in both instances, according to sources, a bishop would still have the authority to decide whether to pursue further seminary formation for the seminarian at another seminary.
The Register has learned that, of the seminarians removed, seven were from the Diocese of Paterson, five were from the Archdiocese of Hartford, and one was from an unnamed religious order.
The diocesan seminarians were sponsored by Bishop Arthur Serratelli, the current bishop of Paterson, and Archbishop Henry Mansell of Hartford, who was succeeded in 2013 by Archbishop Leonard Blair. Archbishop emeritus Mansell, who previously served as the bishop of Buffalo from 1995 to 2003, is currently living at the rectory at St. Paul’s parish in Glastonbury, Connecticut.
None of the five expelled seminarians from Hartford were ordained to the priesthood. However, the priest ordained by the Archdiocese of Hartford in 2010, who was involved in the incidents investigated at Holy Apostles and whom the investigation revealed had allegedly been expelled from another seminary for sexual misconduct, remains a diocesan priest.
The priest, who, according to sources, was alleged to have been sexually involved with seminarians and even to have physically assaulted one of the seminarians at a beach house in New Jersey not long after his ordination, was serving as pastor of a parish in the Archdiocese of Hartford until late November. While he remains a priest in good standing, he resigned his pastorate Nov. 20 for undisclosed reasons.
With respect to this priest, Father Ryan Lerner, the chancellor of the archdiocese, told the Register in a Nov. 13 email, “The archdiocese is unable to respond to your latest questions, as they involve personnel information … which the archdiocese is required to keep confidential pursuant to Connecticut’s ‘Personnel Records Act’ (Connecticut General Statutes, Section 31-128f).”
Three Archdiocese of Hartford transitional deacons, two of whom had attended Holy Apostles and were scheduled for priestly ordination in May 2012, figured prominently in the seminary’s investigation.
Father Lavers told the Register his investigation uncovered forensic information on the deacons’ computers that led to websites that catered to homosexual and pedophilic tastes and received testimony from seminarians that they were sexually involved with other seminarians and diocesan priests from Hartford and Paterson.
Four days before the transitional deacons’ ordination, Father Lavers said that a dossier was hand-delivered to Archbishop Mansell’s office. It included the evidence gleaned from the seminary’s investigation into the seminarians, which included information on the archdiocesan priest and the transitional deacons. The evidence included photos and screenshots from the websites taken from the forensic evidence. The dossier delivered by Father Hillier also included a letter from Holy Apostles asking that the deacons not be ordained.
On the day the transitional deacons were to be ordained to the priesthood, with their families in attendance at St. Joseph Cathedral, the archdiocese announced a delay of their ordinations in order to conduct its own investigation.
The Archdiocese of Hartford newspaper, the Catholic Transcript, reported May 18, 2012, “Three candidates from Colombia, who were listed among the ordinandi in the program, had asked permission to delay their ordination in a letter to Archbishop Mansell, he announced.”
Father Lavers said that, in a conference call with Archbishop Mansell and “three or four other priests” of the archdiocese in May 2012 to discuss his findings, Father Lavers explained the methodology of how the investigation was conducted and where the archbishop could find additional evidence that could be added to the original dossier against the deacons to be ordained.
More than three months later, Father Lavers said he was contacted by retired FBI agent Frank Rudewicz, who told him he was investigating the incident for the archdiocese. Rudewicz declined comment for this story.
Two Ordinations Occurred
One transitional deacon was permanently removed from archdiocesan formation due to information provided to the archdiocese by Holy Apostles. The other two deacons — one who was studying at the Theological College in Washington and the other, listed by Holy Apostles as a “commuter” for the Archdiocese of Hartford who was on a summer assignment at a parish in Enfield, Connecticut — were ordained to the priesthood by Archbishop Mansell in December 2012.
Father James Shanley, Hartford’s vicar for communications, confirmed to the Register via email that the transitional deacons were scheduled to be ordained to the priesthood in May 2012.
“They were not, as a result of the investigation and allegations occurring at Holy Apostles, which was underway. Following that investigation, the Archdiocese of Hartford conducted its own,” he said. “After a summer assignment, Archbishop Mansell made the decision to ordain them priests in December of 2012 based on the fact that the AOH investigation found no reason to cancel their ordination and no pertinent evidence on their computers.”
In a Nov. 26 interview with the Register, Archbishop Mansell told the Register his decision to ordain the deacons named in the Holy Apostles investigation was the result of the investigation he commissioned.
“The archdiocese conducted an intensive, professionally run investigation,” he said, adding it was “supervised” by then-vocation director Father Michael Dolan. The results of the investigation led the archbishop to believe “the charges against the two deacons were invalid.”
Father Lavers told the Register Nov. 9 that he had urged Archbishop Mansell and archdiocesan officials at the May teleconference to confiscate the deacons’ computers to obtain further forensic evidence and then was informed by the archdiocese after it conducted its report more than three months later that one of the computers had been “recycled” and another had been “sent home.”
In addition, in an early November interview with the Register, Father Mosey recalled that there was a break-in at the seminary in May 2012 soon after the initial investigation, and it was discovered that files were stolen. Father Mosey said the only files that were stolen were those of Hartford seminarians related to the Holy Apostles investigation. He didn’t file a report with the Cromwell police.
The transitional deacons and the priest named in the Holy Apostles investigation are, according to Father Shanley, priests in good standing.
“Priests of the Archdiocese of Hartford are in ‘good standing’ if there are no substantiated allegations of misconduct against them,” Father Shanley told the Register in an Oct. 31 email. “Archbishop Blair has told all the clergy of Hartford that living a ‘double’ or secret life sexually in serious sin with or against another is to betray not only the priesthood, but the people, and that ‘if someone is given to behaviors that betray his priestly ordination, then he should seek help, and if he cannot commit to doing so, then he ought to seek voluntary laicization.’”
He added, “Any information or reports concerning alleged sexual, financial or other misconduct are investigated, even using outside professional investigators, when necessary, to establish the facts and to proceed accordingly.”
Of the seven men from the Paterson Diocese removed from Holy Apostles, two Paterson seminarians who figured in the investigation were ordained to the priesthood. One other Paterson seminarian involved in the homosexual network referenced in the investigation, but who was studying at another seminary, was also ordained to the priesthood for Paterson, which in recent years has been one of the top five U.S. dioceses in terms of per capita numbers of vocations to the priesthood.
In a statement provided to the Register Nov. 8, the Diocese of Paterson said, “No seminarian dismissed in 2012 from Holy Apostles College and Seminary for homosexual activity was ordained to the priesthood in the Paterson Diocese.” The statement did not comment, however, regarding the seminarian studying elsewhere, who was also named in the Holy Apostles investigation.
Nor did it clarify if two of the seminarians involved in the investigation were withdrawn by the diocese, rather than dismissed or expelled by the seminary, and later ordained as diocesan priests. Documentation obtained by the Register indicates that, in total, 17 seminarians from the Diocese of Paterson were studying at Holy Apostles in the spring of 2012.
The Register has also learned that some of the seminarians named in the investigation from both dioceses sought entry to and were recommended to seminaries in other dioceses.
According to a 2005 Vatican instruction, men with “transitory” homosexual leanings may be ordained deacons following three years of prayer and chastity. However, men with “deeply rooted homosexual tendencies” or who are sexually active cannot be ordained.
In 2006, Bishop Serratelli chaired the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Doctrine when it published “Ministry to Persons With a Homosexual Inclination,” which reaffirmed Church teaching that a homosexual inclination is not sinful in itself, but that homosexual activity is gravely disordered and sinful.
At that time, Bishop Serratelli told USA Today, “Homosexual acts are never morally acceptable. Such acts never lead to happiness” because they are “intrinsically disordered.”
Seminaries vs. Dioceses
Father Mosey told the Register that, as with the McCarrick scandal, the incident at Holy Apostles was widely known inside the Church, yet unreported. Six years later, residue of the 2012 scandal continues to overshadow the small seminary, which has a reputation for Catholic orthodoxy, according to former seminarians.
“There is little doubt that such a scandal does serious damage to the reputation of the seminary,” Father Mosey said. “The ‘troubles’ of Holy Apostles are well-known and widely discussed in seminary and diocesan circles. As I traveled to ordinations this summer, I attempted to give an honest but general overview of the situation to the bishops and vocation directors who support Holy Apostles.”
“By and large, they expressed gratitude that decisive action was taken to protect the priesthood and the Church from further scandal,” he said. “On the other hand, I have been told that a competing narrative of ‘blaming the messenger’ is being repeated, whose message is that the formation program at Holy Apostles is broken and false allegations have been made by the seminary.”
Sources told the Register that minor seminaries, such as Holy Apostles, are beholden to dioceses and, consequently, can be tempted to compromise their values by taking in questionable seminarians.
A former formator, commenting on background, told the Register that seminaries work for the dioceses, and it’s up to the seminaries to form the men for their “customers.”
“The dioceses are the real gatekeepers,” he said, adding that it’s the dioceses’ responsibility to vet seminarians, collect their transcripts and any psychological evaluations and provide them to the seminaries.
Both Hartford and Paterson severed ties with Holy Apostles after the incident. Father Shanley said Hartford currently sends its seminarians to Our Lady of Providence in Rhode Island, St. Charles Borromeo in Philadelphia, Mount St. Mary’s in Emmitsburg, Maryland, the Theological College in Washington and the Pontifical North American College in Rome. The Diocese of Paterson has not responded to the Register’s inquiry regarding where its seminarians currently study.
‘Window of Transparency’
Those involved in the investigation said they are coming forward now, in the context of the scandal surrounding disgraced ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, because they didn’t think the bishops would have addressed the problem otherwise.
Father Lavers, currently serving at St. Patrick’s parish on Hayling Island in England, in the Diocese of Portsmouth, told the Register that the Holy Apostles investigations team presented the results of their investigation to the bishops of Paterson and Hartford immediately, but that their collective response was dismissive of the gravity of the situation.
In the current context, Father Lavers added, “We now have a wonderful window of transparency and openness in the Church.”
Thomas Wehner is the Register’s managing editor.
From: National Catholic Register: Edward Pentin
Honduran News Site Publishes More Details of Bishop Pineda’s Alleged Misconduct
In an editorial, ‘ConfidencialHN’ says the “children of Honduras are worth as much as those of Chile, Pennsylvania or Ireland,” and asks for a “thorough investigation” of clerical sex abuse in the country.
“It’s confirmation of all the filth,” a Honduran source told the Register last week.
He was referring to a Nov. 8 article on ConfidencialHN.com, a trusted Honduran news site, which, by drawing on the account of a key witness and other documentation, not only corroborates many of the allegations against disgraced auxiliary bishop of Tegucigalpa, Juan Jose Pineda Fasquelle, but also gives more details on the case.
In July, Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Bishop Pineda, who had been accused of sexually abusing seminarians, two testimonies of which were obtained by the Register earlier this year. He was also accused of having a string of homosexual lovers, and financial misconduct in the archdiocese.
Bishop Pineda, 57, has been close to Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga, the archbishop of Tegucigalpa who is also the coordinator of the C9 Group of Cardinals charged with Church and curial reform. In the spring, the bishop was placed in charge of the archdiocese while the cardinal was on medical leave.
Prior to Bishop Pineda’s resignation, the allegations of moral and financial corruption had led to an apostolic visit in May 2017 at the Pope’s request, but the findings have never been made public, nor has any sanction against the bishop been publicized, or word of any act of reparation by the bishop.
The financial misconduct allegations centre around the alleged embezzlement of $1.3 million from the Honduran government earmarked for charitable projects but which “completely disappeared,” according to sources.
Drawing on a key testimony that formed part of the Vatican inquiry, the Spanish-language ConfidencialHN reports new information, including how, in order to secure the government grant, Bishop Pineda visited various parishes, asking priests to give him details of purported projects the funds could supposedly go to. Some priests complied, others did not. None of the projects were executed. The article also alleges that a mediating body, alleged to launder government money, was also used for the purpose of acquiring the funds.
The article’s author, David Ellner Romero, explains how one of Bishop Pineda’s alleged lovers, Erick Cravioto Fajardo, a Mexican layman whom the auxiliary bishop dressed up as a priest to secure a tax exemption on a Toyota Yaris car he bought for him, drew up a “well written” document to secure the grant.
It was “so well written,” Ellner says, that Cardinal Maradiaga signed off on it, “ignoring the true purpose of his assistant” and of the “criminal organization created to loot these state funds.”
Cardinal Was ‘Cheated’
Ellner also reports how the Church never properly audited the funds, but instead they were “handled personally by Bishop Pineda.” The cardinal “had nothing to do but to sign the document,” Ellner reports, adding that the witness said: “He [the cardinal] was played, cheated and he signed.”
The ConfidencialHN article corroborates other allegations: that Bishop Pineda used the money “to pay for sexual favors, maintain a network of lovers, for whom he bought several real estate properties, cars, motorcycles, trips abroad with a paid lover, among others.” These are then listed in some detail, as are the alleged homosexual practices.
Noting the vast disparity between the auxiliary bishop’s actions and his homilies, Ellner says the “protected witness” testified to homosexual relationships between Bishop Pineda, Cravioto and others. These sexual acts were practiced in a “covert manner,” but always with windows left “open to curiosity and suspicion,” and allegedly they often took place in Villa Iris, the cardinal’s residence.
The Register reported in March that, for years, Cravioto lived in a spacious room adjacent to the cardinal’s quarters at the residence. Bishop Pineda also lived at the property.
The article recounts how Bishop Pineda “used to tour through different municipalities” of the archdiocese, always requesting “two rooms” although the party comprised three people. “He always stayed in a single room with his assistant, Oscarito,” the witness said.
But more serious was the witness’ allegation that Bishop Pineda used to bring altar boys, who were also seminarians at the time, to help him celebrate Mass at a place called Valle de Angeles.
“In the house there was only a room with a bed and a sofa, and he [Bishop Pineda] was left with two kids,” the witness alleged in the testimony he provided to the Vatican inquiry. “And the strange thing was that the next day we were going to have breakfast and the sofa was fixed [unused]. This means that he had slept with the two of them in bed.”
Ellner then returns to Cravioto and explains how after they split up, they allegedly took up with other lovers — Bishop Pineda with Oscarito, and Cravioto with someone called Denis who was awarded a full-time scholarship at the Catholic University of Honduras.
Cravioto and Denis reportedly then broke up after a fight, which Bishop Pineda had to intervene to stop, and Cravioto then met another lover called Darwin who also reportedly has a full-time scholarship at the university.
Ellner, who contends that it was the $1.3-million grant that was the catalyst for bringing to light all the alleged misconduct, reports that threats followed when Bishop Pineda became overwhelmed by complaints, especially from seminarians at Our Lady of Suyapa seminary.
He reports that Bishop Pineda allegedly scrawled the names, in red on a mirror in the “large halls of Villa Iris,” of half a dozen priests and laymen who he believed had betrayed him, an action which the witness said denoted “his state of madness.”
In a Nov. 16 editorial, ConfidencialHN highlights other alleged abuse cases in Honduras. It singles out that of Father German Flores, accused of raping several young girls, but also says “there are other names” which, for the sake of “professionalism,” they choose not to mention. None of these cases, it says, “has been referred to the civil and judicial authorities.”
The editorial alleges that Bishop Pineda moved Father Flores to another parish, then tried to silence the situation, but issued no “precautionary or penitential measures against the offender or any action that reflected reparation and healing of the victims.”
“The recidivism of the abuser was remedied with transfers,” the editorial states. “There was never a gesture of action that spoke of empathy or Christian sympathy with the victims.”
It goes on to say that the “last straw” was when the sister of Maryorie Almendares, one of Father Flores’ alleged victims, went to the Church authorities to file a complaint. Their bishop, Bishop José Canales Motino of the Diocese of Danli, then allegedly “obstructed the canonical process” and kept Father Flores hidden in a Tegucigalpa parish. To this day, according to the editorial, only Bishop Canales knows Father Flores’ current whereabouts, and continues to provide for him.
ConfidencialHN says the case shows “erroneous and deficient handling” by Bishop Canales, and the editorial quotes Pope Francis’ words on clerical sex abuse in Philadelphia in 2015: “I promise that those responsible will be held to account.”
“The children of Honduras are worth as much as those of Chile, Pennsylvania or Ireland,” the editorial continues, referring to recent cases of clerical sex abuse there, adding that such crimes are offenses “mixed with contempt for the poor.”
“The fact is that the cases of Honduras are not known in the Vatican and nobody speaks of repairing the damage, of comforting the victims, or of penalizing or canonically sanctioning the evildoers or their accessories, the bishops.
“A thorough investigation would soon give a clue about such crimes in the Church of Honduras,” the editorial concludes.
Translations of the ConfidencialHN articles from the Spanish by Sabrina Ferrisi.
This is just another in a long, long chain of RC bishops and priests involved in sexual abuse and financial corruption.
The Irish disgraced Bishop Eamon Casey took £70,000 of diocesan money to try and silence his lover Annie Murphy and their son Peter.
Bishop Noel Treanor of Down and Connor spent an alleged £4 million on luxuriating his Belfast palace.
This type of misspending has happened all over the world.
Here in Ireland we have
AND – very often where you have sexual misadventure you have some kind of financial misadventure.
The Roman Catholic institution is probably the most evil regime that has existed in the history of the world.
In one way they are as bad as the Nazis – they are neo-Nazis.
We know Hitler & Co killed 6 million people between 1939 and 1945 – but God knows how many deaths and horrific and horrific happenings the RC institution has been responsible for during its 2,000 reign.
And that is not even to mention the personal. psychological and moral damage it has inflicted on millions and millions through its crazy teachings, dogmas and edicts. For instance many millions lived and died that one act of masturbation would bring you to the fire of hell for all eternity.
Past evil is one thing – and a lot of it we can do nothing about.
But present evil is different – we can expose, oppose, condemn the present evils of the RC junta in absolutely everyway we can – and everyday.
Let us recount the present evils:
1. The widespread sexual abuse of children, men and women by cardinals, archbishops, bishops, priests, monks, religious and nuns.
2. The coverup of this widespread abuse by popes, cardinals, archbishops, bishops, priests, religious and lay Catholics.
3. The widespread financial corruption at every level of the institution’s life.
4. The widespread political meddling done by the Vatican and church people all over the globe.
5. The hijacking of education and medical services by the church with the resulting curtailment of rational and professional provision.
6. The spreading of philosophies, theologies and teachings that anti-rational and antiscientific – one example – the rejection of condoms in Africa etc for the prevention of HIV.
Bill Mulvihill, who has strong views and one of them is that Pope Francis is an international criminal.
He is right – and so are many members of the hierarchy in many countries.
WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT THIS RC EVIL INSTITUTION?
LIVING IN THE TIMES WE LIVE IN AN EDUCATED AND RATIONAL ANTICLERICALISM IS WHAT IS NEEDED FOR DEALING WITH THE RC JUNTA!
WHEN CLERICS ARE SHOWN TO BE EVIL – ANTICLERICALISM IS VITAL!
THE BLOG THAT FRIGHTENED THE IRISH CATHOLIC CHURCH
WERE TWO SEMINARIANS HURT IN MAYNOOTH?
WERE TWO SEMINARIAN HURT IN MAYNOOTH IN DIFFERENT WAYS IN RECENT TIMES?
I ask this question because I have received a report from a Maynooth source claiming this.
I wrote about this to Eamon Martin two days ago and he never answered me.
He neither agreed that these things had happened or denied they had happened.
What are we to make of Eamon Martin’s “No Comment”?
Personally I do not think its good enough for the Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland – and a trustee of Maynooth to simply say: “No Comment”.
But there you have it……………………………….
If it happened – say it happened.
If it didn’t happen – say it didn’t happen.
Its an important thing called TRUTH.
My source gave me the names of the two people who were, allegedly, hurt.
One of those names in Sean Hickey from Kilkenny and the Diocese of Ossory.
Another is called David Dysky from Ennis and the Diocese of Kilalloe.
The piece below appeared in a Co. Clare parish newsletter last year:
We are all aware that there have been and still are serious concerns about Maynooth.
Those concerns caused Archbishop Diarmuid Martin to withdraw all his seminarians from Maynooth,
The question is: were these two young men – or any others – physically or psychologically hurt in Maynooth?
We should be deeply concerned about these matters.
And a “No Comment” from Eamon Martin will not suffice!
If this latest Maynooth case ever finds its way into court it will burst the Irish RC corruption bubble.