April 7, 2010

Why I stand for the Pope

The Pope, as everybody can see, has been under attack by the Press since just before Holy Week. This may have a very simple explanation. But first let me say this as a preamble: nothing excuses the sexual abuse of a minor, as much as nothing excuses covering these abuses up. With this being said, here is a plausible explanation: “This latest onslaught of hyperventilating media self-righteousness”—in Fr. Philip Powell words—“is anything but an attempt to throw mud on the Holy Father […] just when the Pope is most visible to the world as preacher and teacher of the Gospel,” that is during Holy Week and Easter. This happens every year. As Steven at The Metaphysical Peregrine summarizes, “We had the (anti Christian) Da Vinci Code movie, emphasis on the Gospel of Judas and how it takes down Christianity, James Cameron finding Jesus’ casket (so obviously he wasn’t resurrected), and nonsense that Jesus was gay.”

This year the attack—a personal and direct one—is based on a New York Times piece about how the then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger ignored a case of pedophilia. Yet, along with Steven, one might ask oneself why at no time did the author of the article interview any of the people involved in the Milwaukee case with Rev. Lawrence C. Murphy, the pedophile priest:

Fairness, and good journalism, you know, is getting both sides of a story, which the Jurassic Press has decided to not do unless it fits their Secularist agenda. From several sources I’ve tried to create a timeline of what happened, and why I think Goldstein is a liar, and the NY Times supported her. In this, I hope to provide something closer to the truth, doing journalism as I was trained to do, though I don’t have access to interview the players.

That’s also why, along with Fr. Philip Powell, I think that what media attacks on the Pope are designed to do is not to bear witness to the truth, nor an honest search for it, but rather “to demoralize the faithful into surrendering hope, thus giving less faithful Catholics the excuse they want to abandon the Church’s unwavering teaching on difficult moral issues.” How does “the system” work? Here is how Paul describes it (Romans 1:28-30):

They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed, and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant, and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil.


  1. I fully understand the natural sense of responsibility of all sincere Catholics to defend Pope Benedict XVI and obviously what he represents.
    There are nevertheless too many authentic reported cases of such crimes, and too many reported cases of the Vatican's not responding as fully as would be expected, on being informed of them, to allow one to simply boil it all down to an orchestrated slur campaign.

    The responsibility of the Vatican in the world is enormous, and the Pope has already shown himself to be a devout and courageous man. The accumulation of evidence and charges against the Vatican for not having responded appropriately after receiving information regarding such crimes, seems to me to be too serious to ignore.

    Would it not be preferable that the Pope made some sort of declaration regarding this very serious issue to reassure all concerned, rather than eventually risk being legally obliged to justify certain decisions should inquiries ever lead to this?

  2. I don't understand all the language, but in 2001, when the Pope was a Cardinal of Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith he issued the Sacramentorum Sanctitatis Tutela which was a "CONGREGATION FOR THE DOCTRINE OF THE FAITH LETTER
    sent from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to Bishops of the entire Catholic Church and other Ordinaries and Hierarchs having an interest
    reserved to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith,
    The signatory was
    Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger
    I read the document, and don't understand much of it, but I did understand it speaks strongly to this issue and how it's to be dealt with. The Pope continues with that now, and I'm sure the Catholic Church will, through his guidance, get this issue resolved. Link to the document:

  3. I wrote today a comment which would translate as follows:
    One can fully understand that there would be a strong, initial tendency to defend the reputation
    of the Vatican by practicing internal discipline limited to the Vatican's own constitution. But with the passage of time such an internal policy could transform itself into a license, a lasciapassare, which instead of punishing eclesiastic criminals, it might even give them the impression of being protected by the Vatican. Thus 'protected' they could assume the freedom of continuing to practice such 'tendencies'. If there is any truth in this, the Vatican itself would be an indirect complice.