All roads lead to Rome – to Francis and Benedict

All roads lead to Rome – to Francis and Benedict

August 27, 2018 (Steven O’Reilly) – It has not been a couple days since Archbishop Vigano’s testimony (see here) implicating U.S. and Roman prelates – inclusive of Pope Francis – in the cover-up of Cardinal McCarrick’s homosexual abuse of seminarians. As time drags on it becomes all the more certain that the allegations that Pope Francis knew of McCarrick’s history, but ignored them in order to continuing to benefit from McCarrick’s advice and counsel in reshaping the Catholic Church in the U.S. with the odiouslikes of Cardinals Cupich, Tobin and Bishop McElroy, are true.

It is improbable that Archbishop Vigano would have made the charges he did, referencing official documents and naming individuals privy to relevant conversations and events, if he could be readily contradicted by any of them. One of the Archbishop’s key revelations – that Pope Benedict had placed private penalties circa 2010 upon McCarrick for his homosexual abuse of seminarians was confirmed by Monsignor Jean-François Lantheaume, the former first counsellor at the apostolic nunciature in Washington D.C.  (see here).  Yet, knee-jerk Francis defenders still object to the growing evidence in support of Vigano – a sign of their desperation.

Vigano in his testimony states that if Francis had not been previously informed of these accusations against and penalties on McCarrick, he most certainly was personally informed of them by Vigano himself on June 23, 2013 during an impromptu papal audience. There are two individuals who can comment directly on two of the most pertinent issues (but there are more!):

(1) the existence of the aforementioned penalties on McCarrick dating back to at least 2010, and

(2) the subject matter and content of Archbishop Vigano’s June 23rd meeting with Pope Francis in 2013.

These two individuals are: Pope Francis and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.  Benedict could confirm or deny there were such penalties on McCarrick, while Francis could confirm or deny his knowledge of these penalties, both before or after June 23, 2013.  However, Francis refuses to answer questions on this matter, slyly telling journalists instead ‘to go do their job and see for themselves’ – when certainly it is clear to all reasonable people that all roads lead to Rome…to Francis in this matter…because only he, aside from Vigano, know the truth about that June 23rd meeting in 2013.

The Pope’s response clearly smacks of a cover-up. There is no other reasonable explanation for his unwillingness to give an answer.  If the allegations were deniable – deny them! Why let Catholics think their Pope covered for a evil man like McCarrick all for the sake of benefiting from his counsel in reshaping (deforming?) the Church?  The truth appears to be that Francis is afraid to respond at this time because he cannot be quite sure yet what documents and witnesses might be produced in support of Vigano which would contradict anything Francis might say at this early point in the crisis.  However, if he were innocent of the allegations, there would be nothing to worry about.

The other witness we must hear from is the Pope Emeritus. Benedict could clarify matters as to whether he placed any private penalties on McCarrick. We are now about 48 hours into this crisis. Has Benedict even been advised of the allegations?  Will Pope Francis make Benedict available to answer questions about Vigano’s assertions? Or, will the Vatican press office only issue a denial of some sort in the name of Benedict – something which would be entirely insufficient and unacceptable.  The faithful need to hear from both Pope Francis and the Pope Emeritus on this matter.  For both to remain unavailable, or for both to remain silent would only point to the truth of Archbishop Vigano’s allegations.  If these allegations are true, it is clear that for the good of the Church: Pope Francis should resign immediately.  After reading Vigano’s testimony, it is depressing to consider the following.  How many good cardinals are there left to even confront the Pope on this question?  Or worse…are there any?  There are cardinals Burke, Sarah, Mueller and Brandmuller, and perhaps a few others.  Still, we need bishops around the globe to speak up and demand answers of Pope Francis….and the laity to light a fire beneath them if they are hesitant to do so!

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One comment on “All roads lead to Rome – to Francis and Benedict

  1. Pope Benedict confirms he disciplined McCarrick, sources claim

    Matthew Cullinan Hoffman

    August 27, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – Pope Emeritus Benedict has confirmed the claim that he acted during his tenure to discipline now ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick in response to accusations of sexual abuse, according to sources that have spoken to the National Catholic Register.

    If true, the Pope Emeritus’ confirmation that he knew about McCarrick and sought to punish him lends strong weight to the claim that Pope Francis knew about McCarrick’s abuse but permitted him to act freely as an emissary of the Holy See and as a “kingmaker” for bishop and curial appointments in the Francis papacy.

    Although Benedict reportedly cannot remember the exact nature of the punishment he imposed on McCarrick, he recalls having instructed Cardinal Bertone, his then Secretary of State, to impose “measures” against the cardinal in response to the allegations against him of homosexual predation against seminarians and adolescents.

    “The Register has independently confirmed that the allegations against McCarrick were certainly known to Benedict, and the Pope Emeritus remembers instructing Cardinal Bertone to impose measures but cannot recall their exact nature,” the publication states in a widely overlooked passage in its original article on the scandal published on Saturday. The Register does not reveal its sources for this information.

    The affirmation comes in the wake of allegations made on Saturday by Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, former Apostolic Nuncio in the United States, that Pope Benedict had imposed severe penalties on Cardinal McCarrick years before Francis became pope, forbidding him to celebrate Mass in public, to participate in public meetings, to give lectures, and to travel, “dedicating himself to a life of prayer and penance.”

    In his written testimony on the affair, simultaneously published by and the National Catholic Register on Saturday, Viganò says that he personally knows that Pope Francis was aware of the accusations against McCarrick, because he mentioned them to the pontiff himself on two different occasions in 2013, shortly after his election, when Francis appeared to be probing him to see if he was an ally or an enemy of McCarrick.

    Asked, “What is Cardinal McCarrick like?” Viganò writes, “I answered him with complete frankness and, if you want, with great naiveté: ‘Holy Father, I don’t know if you know Cardinal McCarrick, but if you ask the Congregation for Bishops there is a dossier this thick about him. He corrupted generations of seminarians and priests and Pope Benedict ordered him to withdraw to a life of prayer and penance.’”

    “The Pope did not make the slightest comment about those very grave words of mine and did not show any expression of surprise on his face, as if he had already known the matter for some time, and he immediately changed the subject,” continues Viganò. “But then, what was the Pope’s purpose in asking me that question: ‘What is Cardinal McCarrick like?’ He clearly wanted to find out if I was an ally of McCarrick or not.”

    Viganò states that despite Francis’ clear knowledge of McCarrick’s record of sexual abuse, McCarrick was allowed to freely travel and engage in public appearances on behalf of the Church. He also says that McCarrick became a sort of emissary and “kingmaker” during the Francis papacy, facilitating the rise of notoriously gay-friendly clergy such as Cardinals Blase Cupich, Donald Wuerl (McCarrick’s successor as Archbishop of Washington), and Joseph Tobin of Newark, Wuerl’s previous diocese before his appointment to Washington, as well as the sudden ascent of Bishop Ilson de Jesus Montanari as Secretary of the Congregation of Bishops and of the College of Cardinals.

    The accusations, which also include numerous explosive claims about complicity by various cardinals, bishops, and curial officials, are being called an “earthquake” by mainstream media, and curial officials reportedly are calling it an “atomic bomb.” Bishops and other members of the Church hierarchy are calling for an investigation of Pope Francis, who is refusing to answer questions about Viganò’s testimony.

    Pope Benedict’s confirmation that he gave instructions to Vatican Secretary of State Tarcicio Bertone to penalize McCarrick tends to confirm Bertone’s involvement in the case, which Viganò suspects was a cause of delays in the disciplining of the sex abuser, which did not occur until 2009 or 2010, according to Viganò.

    “I believe it [the delay] was due to the Pope’s first collaborator at the time, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, who notoriously favored promoting homosexuals into positions of responsibility, and was accustomed to managing the information he thought appropriate to convey to the Pope,” writes Viganò.

    Archbishop Viganò’s accusations have also been corroborated by the former first counsellor at the apostolic nunciature in Washington D.C., Monsignor Jean-François Lantheaume, in an interview with Catholic News Agency.

    In response to Vigano’s claim that Lantheaume heard the then-Apostolic Nuncio Pietro Sambi lambast Cardinal McCarrick over his sexually abusive behavior, Lantheaume told Catholic News Agency, “Viganò said the truth. That’s all.”

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