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April 19, 2017
“All the Men Behind the Opus Dei Curtain”
By Randy Engel
“You can fool all the people some of the time,
and some of the people all the time, but you
cannot fool all the people all the time.”
President Lincoln may or may not have uttered these words, but what is clear from E. Michael Jones’ book The Man Behind the Curtain – Michael Voris and the Homosexual Vortex is that the author didn’t believe them. Jones thought he could, indeed, fool all his readers all the time. And he almost succeeded.
Jones never mentions the words “Opus Dei” in his book on Michael Voris, nor does he identify any of the main characters as members or cooperators of Opus Dei, although he puts the two words in the mouth of Christine Niles, Editor-in-Chief of ChurchMilitantTV (CMTV) on one occasion when she denies that Voris has been funded or influenced by any outside group.
The truth is that every one of the main characters in Jones’ book – Voris, Father Paul Nicholson, Marc Brammer, and the author himself – is tied to Opus Dei in a concrete way and that the Jones’ tale is really a story of an Opus Dei media venture gone wrong.
Why the long delay in writing this exposé? After all, nearly a year has gone by since the e-book and magazine publication of The Man Behind the Curtain appeared in the late summer and fall of 2016. Unfortunately, I was mid-way through my investigation of the late Father Anthony Cipolla sex abuse case at the time and couldn’t begin any new project until the New Year.
So, by the time you read my story, the dust has pretty much settled on the matter. The public battle has ended and both combatants have gone back to their respective corners, taken off their gloves and left the ring – Voris to Church Militant.com in Ferndale, Michigan and Jones to his Fidelity Press/ Culture Wars home office in South Bend, IN.
However, as it so often turns out, the delay has worked out to my advantage. It has given me time to reread and study Jones’ uncharacteristically sloppy and disjointed missive; to exam the many public pro and con reviews of the book; and to conduct my own investigation of the tragedy. I trust my findings will help fill in many of the calculated as well as unintentional information gaps left by Jones in his rush to get his book to the Amazon marketplace.
In addition to Gary Michael Voris and Eugene Michael Jones, this article highlights the role of four other key players in the controversial affair – Marc Brammer, Frank Coan, Father Paul E. Nicholson, and Terry Carroll as well as a sundry of incidental actors in The Man Behind the Curtain.
Finally, this article shines the spotlight on what can best be described as an unseen entity that binds this tragic tale together – that of the Prelature of Opus Dei.
A Rocky Introduction to RealCatholicTV.com
For the record, while this writer has never subscribed to either RealCatholicTV.com (RCTV) or its successor, ChurchMilitantTV (CMTV) due to time limits and economics, over the years many subscribers have been kind enough to forward various segments to me for my comments. I generally try to oblige, as I certainly will try to do for readers of this column.
The fireworks between RCTV and this writer began on March 25, 2010, with a special edition of the network’s flagship show, The Vortex in which Senior Executive Producer Michael Voris provided an accurate litany of the many woes besieging the post-conciliar Church, but an inaccurate solution to meeting the crisis. He gave a ringing endorsement to Opus Dei as the entity which will save the Church. He used the term “holy intransigence,” a favorite expression of Father Josemaría Escrivá, founder of Opus Dei, and one rarely heard outside of Opus Dei circles. Yet Voris claimed he was not a member of Opus Dei and he got “nothing from anyone in any shape or form or manner to promote this group.”
Four days later, on March 29, 2010, I circulated a strong rebuttal to Voris’ promotion of Opus Dei by noting that the money-power cult is part of the problem, not part of the solution to the current crisis in the Church. I also challenged Voris to dedicate a segment of The Vortex to explaining why Opus Dei Bishop Rogelio Ricardo Livieres Plano of the Diocese of Ciudad del Este in Paraguay, who died in August 2015, was harboring the notorious clerical pederast, Father Carlos Urrutigoity, founder of the formally suppressed U.S.-based, Society of St. John. The e-mail gained international circulation.
Shortly after the e-mail reached RCTV, Simon Rafe, Senior Platform Administrator, issued a strong response stating: “Obviously, individuals like Randy can be safely ignored as they are heretics and schismatics in open rejection of the Church…” Since the poor chap did not know me from a hole in the wall, I presume some worm tongue had whispered sweet nothings in his ear.
To his credit, Rafe later apologized and retracted his charges, but added, “We do, however, stand by our support and endorsement of Opus Dei. We consider your identification of them as a “cult” to be rude, objectionable and slanderous towards a group recognized by and endorsed personally by the Holy Father.” His reference to “we” indicated to me that Voris continued his public support of Opus Dei.
From Rafe’s short e-mail and his lengthy full page e-mails to other Catholic critics of Opus Dei who had contacted RealCatholicTV.com, it was clear that Voris and Company stood four-square behind the Prelature.
For my part, I accepted Rafe’s apology and the Opus Dei matter was closed.
Voris on Homosexuals as Victim Souls… [ click link to continue ]