Malachi Martin’s actions against the Church during the 1960’s

Clever pseudonyms, paid intelligence work and fabricated Papal Prayers

by John Grasmeier
May, 2007

Late 1400s
Jews are expelled from most of the Iberian Peninsula in southwestern Europe (Portugal and Spain).The Jews who were expelled consisted primarily of two groups; those who refused to convert to Catholicism, and the “conversos” – sometimes referred to as “New Christians” or Marranos. The conversos vastly outnumbered their non-converted brethren. Many of New Christian conversions had been voluntary, while others had been brought about by coercion or force. The conversos consisted largely of three groups:

1. True converts.

2. Those Jews who weren’t particularly religious in any sense, but converted in order to “get along” or access societal circles of influence and opportunity that weren’t available to their non-Christian counterparts.

3. “Crypto Jews”, who would publicly profess Catholicism for many of the same reasons as their non-religious conversos, but illegally continued to practice Jewish religious rituals and customs behind closed doors. The expulsion, which marked the beginning of the Inquisition, was at first partly an effort to religiously and culturally homogenize the region in order to bring about stability. The preceding century had seen a great deal of societal upheaval, violence and bitter strife between the “New Christians” and Christians. The contentious political climate was rather complicated, with Christians often aligning themselves with Jews and visa-versa. These alliances usually had more to do with business relationships, social connections and political sympathies than the religion or lineage of those involved. Deadly riots – instigated by either side at various times – claimed the lives of many innocent Jews and Christians. Converso and non-Converso Jews and their descendants settled in numerous diverse areas around the world, among them Palestine, Greece and Amsterdam. Even though England, like Spain, had expelled the Jews 300 years earlier, small groups of conversos settled there as well. To this day many Christian descendants of the conversos still practice many Jewish customs such as not eating pork, circumcision and eating unleavened bread during Passover.

Russian literary icon Alexander Pushkin pens “Gavriiliada,” an obscene poem about the Virgin Mary that was so blasphemous, the Church sought to prosecute him for its publication. To this day, it is difficult to find reproductions of the poem as few (Christian or non-Christian) will dare reproduce it due to the repulsive content. Only two years before writing Gavriilada, Czar Nicholas I had released Pushkin from an exile imposed on him by Nicholas’ brother and predecessor, Czar Alexander I. The exile was due to Pushkin’s promotion of atheism and political agitation. Pushkin was also a Freemason, a leftist radical and apolitical activist. His legacy and writings were often used for propaganda purposes by the Bolsheviks

August 15, 1954
Malachi Brendan Fitzmaurice-Martin is ordained a priest.  

Mid through Late 50’s
Martin receives doctorates from University of Louvain, Oxford and Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

March 25, 1960
John XXIII charges Jesuit Cardinal Augustin Bea with establishing the Secretariat for the Promotion of Christian Unity (SPCU).

June 5, 1960
John XXIII officially establishes the SPCU. Cardinal Bea is appointed president and Bp. Johannes Willebrands is secretary. By September, the secretariat has two-full time staff members, 15 bishop members and 20 consultors. Malachi Martin is to serve as periti (or “expert”) and translator to Cardinal Bea.  

Mid-June 1960
John XXIII meets with French Jewish historian and scholar Jules Isaac, who once proclaimed “the permanent and latent source of anti-Semitism is none other than Christian religious teaching of every description, and the traditional, tendentious interpretation of the Scriptures.”(1) Isaac presents the pope with a lengthy memorandum on supposed abuses Jews have suffered throughout history as a result of Catholic teaching, then offers his ideas on what Christian teaching regarding Jews should be according to his interpretation of the Gospels. After the 30 minute discussion concludes, Pope John asks Isaac to discuss the memorandum with Cardinal Bea.

September 18, 1960
Cardinal Bea meets with Pope John XXIII to discuss Isaac’s memorandum and positions. Bea recommends that SPCU should take up the “Jewish question.”(3)  

Nov 14-15 1960
The SECU is told that they now have a second mandate of dealing with Catholic-Jewish relations.

October 11, 1962
Second Vatican Council begins.  

March 31, 1963
Cardinal Bea is picked up in a limousine by members of the American Jewish Committee for a meeting at their headquarters in New York City that was kept secret from the press and the Holy See. The meeting ends with those in attendance drinking sherry and toasting. (4)

June 3, 1963
John XXIII dies

September 29, 1963
The Second session of the Second Vatican Council begins.

November 8, 1963
Cardinal Bea’s schemas are printed and distributed to the Council Fathers. They read in part:  

In addition the Church believes that Christ, our Peace, embraced both Jews and Gentiles in a single love and made them one (cf. Eph. 2:14) and by the union of both is one body (cf. Eph. 2:17) announced the reconciliation of the entire world in Christ… since the Church has so much of a common patrimony with the Synagogue, this Holy Synod intends in every way to promote and further mutual knowledge and esteem obtained by theological studies and fraternal discussions…

Members of the Curia and others immediately express grave concerns that among other problems, the schemas are against Catholic teaching and even heretical. They strongly suggest that the vote on certain chapters be postponed or cancelled altogether, claiming they are a danger to Paul’s papacy and will jeopardize the standing of the Church in the Middle East – where Paul was planning an upcoming visit. Paul VI decides to take their advice and instructs the Council Fathers to vote only on chapters 1-3 and that chapters 4 and 5 will be voted on “afterward.”

A tell-all book, “The Pilgrim: Pope Paul VI, the Church, and the Council in a Time of Decision” by pen-name Michael Serafian by is published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Roger Straus, head of the publishing company, is the sole heir to the Guggenheim fortune. “Serafian” is of Armenian/Persian origin that translates literally to “money changer” or “son of a moneychanger”. A summary on the dust jacket reads in part:

“At the two Council sessions held in Rome during the autumn months of 1962 and 1963, there was a sharp struggle between the progressive tendencies (the majority of the bishops) and the conservative forces (powerfully represented in the Roman Curia). The author describes the crisis in the Council last November which presented Pope Paul VI with a grave and difficult choice. The Pilgrim is an authoritative and devastatingly frank analysis of Catholicism at a cross-roads. The author sees the present drama of the Council as the latest, and perhaps the decisive, step in an age-long struggle to free the Roman Catholic Church from historical accretions which prevent its message from reaching the modern world in a language it can understand. This drama is related with an utter frankness and the author gives intimate disclosures of behind-the-scenes plans, conversations, deals, and arguments among various Vatican personalities. The author contends that the crisis of last November was resolved in a way that may prove to have been disastrous, in the long run, for the Church and for humanity.

The author uses the sense of frustration felt by numerous bishops, as well as many observers, at the end of the second session of the Council last December as the basis of one of the most critical self-appraisals of Catholicism to appear in recent years.”

The author – pen named Michael Serafian – believed when he wrote “The Pilgrim” that the turn of events in early November of 1963 (described above) which led Paul VI to keep the council from voting on the chapters on the Jewish issue and religious liberty was “disastrous.” He was fully on the side of the progressive bishops, believing that the “historical accretions” of traditional teaching was an obstacle to modernization.

Late May, 1964
The text of the Jewish declaration which failed to come to a vote during the previous council session in November is amended by the council coordinating committee despite resistance from the SECU.(2) The amended version contains language that expresses hope that Jews will eventually enter into Holy Mother Church. While strongly condemning the denigration or imputing of Jews for Christ’s sufferings, it does not specifically mention the word “deicide”. The “conversionary” tone of the document and the fact that it failed to specifically mention “deicide” were against what progressive bishops and Jewish interest groups had fought for all along.

June, 1964
Martin receives a “dispensation from all privileges and obligations deriving from his vows as a Jesuit and from priestly ordination.” From that point forward he wore only layman’s clothes in public and when asked, told others he should be referred to as “Malachi” or Dr. Martin.

September 14, 1964
The third session of the Second Vatican Council begins.

Debate on the Jewish declaration ensues. Progressive bishops and cardinals mount an effort to keep any perception of Jewish proselytism out of the declaration, and insist that it mention specifically the word “deicide”. Conservative and Arab bishops (who worry that Catholic clergy, congregations and institutions in the Middle East will suffer and that Israel will make political hay out of what is not “purely a religious matter”) are concerned that the process has been politicized in a way that is not in the interest of the Church. After the debate, the document is sent back to Bea’s committee with scores of recommendations.

October, 1964
After various internal political struggles (one that involved then Bishop Marcel Lefebvre) a new document emerges. All references to Jewish proselytism or desire for conversion are struck.

November 20, 1964
Third session of the Second Vatican Council ends with a successful vote on the Jewish and religious liberty documents. It is not yet promulgated and could still be amended or struck down as it awaits final approval by the Council and Pope Paul VI in the last session of the council set to take place in fall of 1965.

January, 1965
The article “Vatican II and the Jews” by the pseudonym of “F.E Cartus” appears in the American Jewish Committee magazine “Commentary”. “Vatican II and the Jews” is a lengthy article (over 10,000 words), that offers a vast wealth of data detailing the internal machinations of the Second Vatican Council and the sensitive dealings in regard to the Jewish declaration contained in “Nostra Aetate.”

The article identifies the various key figures and groups, giving background information on their positions, influence and ideological/theological leanings. It extensively delves into the internal politics and organizational structure of the council and the various official and unofficial satellite groups both inside and outside of ecclesiastical hierarchy. In meticulous detail, the article reveals the who, what, when, where, how and why of the behind-the-scenes inner workings of the council, the Curia, the SPCU, the Council Fathers and others involved in the process. The information contained in the article would not have been known by anyone but a well placed insider. In the footnotes, the article references Michael Serafian’s book, “The Pilgrim”

If one’s sympathies regarding the formulation of Nostra Aetate were with the progressive bishops and the Jewish lobby groups, there would have been no better venue for “Vatican II and the Jews” to be published. The American Jewish Committee was and is a high profile and powerful Jewish/Israel advocacy organization. Its magazine “Commentary” according to Benjamin Balint, fellow at Jerusalem’s Van Leer institute, is “one of the most influential opinion magazines in American history”. In the mid-60’s it had a circulation of around 60,000.

“Vatican II and the Jews” was arranged by the author in chronological order, told in easy to read “storybook” fashion, then submitted to a prominent Jewish advocacy organization for publication in their flagship periodical. Not only would it, of course, have been read by those involved with the American Jewish committee who already had contacts and dealings with the council, but it would also have been distributed to a veritable “who’s who” of individuals and organizations that would have had an interest in the Jewish declaration succeeding at the council. This would include, but not be limited to, advocacy groups, lobbyists, cronies of episcopates, media organizations, power brokers and journalists of all stripes. The article contains a curious statement that the author, F.E Cartus, attributes to Pope John XXIII. Cartus claims that it was written three months before John XXIII’s death, and was intended to be read in all Roman Catholic churches worldwide on a specific date. The statement reads as follows:

“We are conscious today that many many centuries of blindness have cloaked our eyes so that we can no longer either see the beauty of Thy Chosen People nor recognize in their faces the features of our privileged brethren. We realize that the mark of Cain stands upon our foreheads. Across the centuries our brother Abel has lain in the blood which we drew or shed the tears we caused by forgetting Thy Love. Forgive us for the curse we falsely attached to their name as Jews. Forgive us for crucifying Thee a second time in their flesh. For we knew not what we did. …”

Cartus goes on to say about the statement:

“It is against this superb Christian statement, with its acknowledgment of past injustices, its recognition of false accusations, and its affirmation of the intrinsic value of Judaism, that the various drafts of the document on the Jews must be measured…”

February 2, 1965
Dr. Henry Allen Moe, The trustee of the Harry F. Guggenheim foundation, receives a note from Harry F. Guggenheim (founder of both Newsday and the Guggenheim Foundation and relative of Roger Strauss) suggesting that Malachi Martin be sent an application for a Guggenheim fellowship. Dr. Moe forwards the note along with Martin’s curriculum vitae to Dr. Theodore M. Newcomb, the Director of the brand new fellowship program.

April 29, 1965
According to minutes taken from a meeting of the Fellowship Committee, all nominations for the new Guggenheim fellowship program were culled from a symposium called the “Fair Lane Symposium on Domination.” Director Newcomb contacted those who attended the symposium as well as those who were invited but did not attend. He canvassed 40 people in all, from whom 10 nominations were received. The minutes of the meeting indicate that Martin’s explicit nomination by Harry Guggenheim himself (as per the note from February 2, 1965) seems to be the sole exception to the fellowship nomination process.

May 3, 1965
Henry Allen Moe, sends a letter to Harry Guggenheim, Director Newcomb and two others of the Fellowship Committee regarding two interviews he conducted with Martin. Moe states that Martin’s proposed studies for the fellowship program “may have been inspired by the possibility of support by a Fellowship.”

June 23, 1965
Martin is one of the two nominees finally selected for the first Guggenheim fellowship, receiving a grant of $7,350 (approximately $48,000 in 2007 dollars).

September 1965
The article “The Vatican Council Ends – Reform on borrowed time?” by F.E. Cartus appears in “Harper’s” magazine. It is shorter in length, noticeably dourer in tone than the article F.E. Cartus had written for the AJC.

October 15, 1965
Nostra Aetate is adopted by the council.

October 28, 1965
Nostra Aetate is promulgated by Pope Paul VI

January, 1966
In a “LOOK” magazine article, titled “How the Jews Changed Catholic Thinking”, senior editor Joseph Roddy documents the great deal of influence various Jewish lobbies, such as B’nai B’rith and the American Jewish Committee (AJC), had over the final draft of Nostra Aetate, specifically in regard to the Jewish declaration.

The article describes a lone “double agent,” with a “warm and friendly relationship with the AJC.” The double agent, who the article describes as a “hero in the Diaspora,” was using four separate pseudonyms – each in a particular role. The four pens names are identified as “Michael Serafian”, “F.E. Cartus”, “Pushkin” and “Timothy Fitzharris-O’Boyle S.J.” As Michael Serafian, the agent penned the book “The Pilgrim” which gave detailed information on the politics, figures and procedures of the council. “Pushkin” is credited with slipping notes containing timely and sensitive information under the doors of journalists from Time and the New York Times among others. As “Cartus,” he writes the information laden article “Vatican II and the Jews,” for the American Jewish Committee. He also writes “The Vatican Council Ends” for Harper’s. As Fitzharris-O’Boyle, the agent is credited with feeding journalists information he was privy to going all the way back to the year of his ordination, which the article has as 1954, 8 years before the Second Vatican Council began.

The LOOK article gives the year of the mole priest’s ordination (1954). It pegs him as having been a translator for the Secretariat for the Promotion of Christian Unity (SPCU), who lived for a time at the Biblical Institute. It also tells of when he was laicized and when he left Rome.

The Author, Christopher Roddy concludes: “Without him, the Jewish declaration might well have gone under early, for it was Fitzharris-O’Boyle who best helped the press harass the Romans wanting to scuttle it. The man has a lot of priests’ prayers.”

February 13, 1967
Famed literary critic Edmund Wilson meets Malachi Martin for the first time at a dinner party held at the home of Roger Straus. Wilson writes in his diary/memoirs that Straus met Martin in Paris and that he (Wilson) was under the impression that Straus had brought Martin over to the U.S. with him.

June 28, 1967
Henry Moe sends Martin’s unedited manuscript that was written for the Guggenheim fellowship program to Roger Straus. Moe writes in a letter, which is also forwarded to Harry Guggenheim and Martin, that if Straus is interested in turning the manuscript into a book, “a way can be found to provide funds to make Fitzmaurice- Martin’s work on the manuscript a feasible thing to do.”

November 20, 1967
Guggenheim secretary George Fountaine informs Martin that he has been approved for a second fellowship grant of $5,000 (approximately $31,000 in 2007 dollars).

August 21, 1968
Martin signs a formal contract with Farrar, Straus and Giroux for the manuscript of “The Encounter” and receives a $750 advance. “The Encounter” is basically Martin’s work for the Guggenheim Foundation edited into book form.

April, 1970
Edmund Wilson writes in his memoirs: It disillusions me now with life, to become aware of how long everything takes. We have not yet completely sloughed off the absurdities of those old theologies – see Malachi Martin’s Encounter piece – that have been hanging around our lives for thousands of years.

December 22, 1973
Ben Kaufman writes an article about Martin for the Cincinnati Enquirer. In the article Martins relates to him that during his work on the council, he would dig up “long-closeted skeletons” in order to coerce prelates who were not on board with Cardinal Bea’s agenda. Martin tells Kaufman. “I saw cardinals sweating in front of me… and I began to enjoy it.” Martin also says that it was at Louvaine where he first came to the attention of Cardinal Bea.

October 26, 1974
Another article from Ben Kaufman appears in the Cincinnati Enquirer on Martin. Martin tells Kaufman that his namesake (Malachi) is after an “Iberian Jewish banker refugee” ancestor on his British father’s side of the family. The article also has Martin as “laicized.”

July 31, 1999
Martin’s obituary appears in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: In “The Encounter,” his 1970 study of Judaism, Christianity and Islam, Martin said history showed Christians were willing to act in un-Christian ways in order to further Christianity, leading to a result hetermed catastrophic.

April 27, 2007
( interviews Dr. Eugene J. Fisher of the USCCB)

John Grasmeier, What is your position with the United States Council of Catholic Bishops?

Dr. Fisher: Associate Director, Secretariat for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs, USCCB

AQ: In January of 1965, an article written by pseudonym F.E. Cartus appeared in the publication of the American Jewish Committee periodical “Commentary.” In the piece, Cartus claims that 3 months before his death, Pope John XXIII prepared a statement of reparation that was to be read in all Roman Catholic Churches. The Statement reads as follows:

“We are conscious today that many many centuries of blindness have cloaked our eyes so that we can no longer either see the beauty of Thy Chosen People nor recognize in their faces the features of our privileged brethren. We realize that the mark of Cain stands upon our foreheads. Across the centuries our brother Abel has lain in the blood which we drew or shed the tears we caused by forgetting Thy Love. Forgive us for the curse we falsely attached to their name as Jews. Forgive us for crucifying Thee a second time in their flesh. For we knew not what we did…”

Did this statement originate from John XXIII or any other pope?

Dr. Fisher: No, it did not.

AQ: Is it your contention that this statement was fabricated?

Dr. Fisher: Yes, definitely. The first papal statement of repentance for Christian mistreatment of Jews over the centuries was that of Pope John Paul II.

AQ: Who fabricated this statement?

Dr. Fisher: Malachi Martin, writing under the pseudonym, “F. E. Cartus,” in the article, “Vatican II and the Jews,” in Commentary magazine, January, 1965, p. 21.

AQ: When, where and from whom did you learn that this statement is fabricated?

Dr Fisher: From Msgr. George G. Higgins, who was at the Council as was Malachi Martin and knew Martin well.

In Summary:

Six months after being laicized and one month after writing the article for the American Jewish Committee, Martin becomes the only one of the nominees hand selected by Harry F. Guggenheim himself (The relative of Martin’s publisher Roger Straus) for the first Guggenheim fellowship. Martin is ultimately awarded the fellowship. His research is then used for a book deal with Roger Straus, who published Martin’s first book under the Pseudonym “Michael Serafian.” Martin was receiving payola from Jewish interest groups, organizations and elite New York publishing firms in order to work against the interests of the Holy Mother Church, both while he was still a priest (ostensibly working for Holy Mother Church during the council), and immediately afterwards.

From the Guggenheim Foundation alone he received at least (what can be documented) around $80,000 in 2007 dollars in less than a year-and-a-half span. He had already written the tell all “The Pilgrim” in 1964 for Roger Straus and received a yet to be determined sum for that while he was still under his vow of poverty as a priest.

Under various pseudonyms, he also wrote the articles for the American Jewish Committee and Harper’s Magazine, for which he was surely paid.

The article provides yet further evidence of the already numerous connections to the Serafian/Cartus/Pushkin/Fitzharris-O’Boyle Pseudonyms. Martin, it seems, had a proclivity for choosing interesting pseudonyms; Alexander Pushkin was a freemason, a leftist radical and a historically infamous blasphemer of the Virgin Mother. As it turns out that the translation of “Serafian”(son of a money changer), the pen-name used by Martin to write “The Pilgrim” while he was still a priest, was more than a mere play on words. Martin claims in 1973 to be the descendent of a Jewish banker.

The papal prayer Martin (writing under the pseudonym F.E. Cartus) cites is a complete fabrication.






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