Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Pope Benedict's Vatican Legacy May Wind Up Being All About Trust--As In No One Has Any

Change the word 'financial' to 'Catholic sexual abuse crisis' and one gets the same results. Nobody trusts the managment team, no matter their politics.

One can't help but wonder just how stupid Benedict and his Cardinal cronies think the 'simple' faithful are. I no longer believe this is a matter of thinking the 'simple' are naive. No, it's a matter of thinking the 'simple' are plain stupid. Sometimes translated as 'willfully blind' but in either case, perfectly willing to sustain an incredible level of dishonesty and deceit.

One of the recent trends which is a very ill wind for the papal barque, is the admission by true believing Catholics that their faith is hanging by a thread. It didn't get that way because of the 'evil anti Catholic' media, or gay agendas, or what ever else the Vatican has puked forth. It's gotten that way because it is no longer possible to ignore the deceit and the lies.

The latest information on the Hullerman case is just one more nail in the Vatican coffin. This is no longer a story about the 'coincidence' of a multitude of individual bishops hiding predator priests. It is a now story about how the Vatican does business and how little integrity there is in how they conduct their business. It is becoming all too apparent that Jesus's Church conducts its business no differently then any other corrupt wealthy secular organization. This generates a fundamental mistrust of the real motivation for virtually everything the hierarchy may pronounce. It forces backtracking and convoluted explanations and sometimes when prelates are really under pressure, it elicits truth. One such case is the Hullerman case where the pressure forced a monsignor to admit he was pressured to take the fall. Another such case is this one, in which an Archbishop is forced to fumble his way around his truth.

After distorted interview, Brazilian archbishop reaffirms Catholic teaching on abortion
Recife, Brazil, Apr 17, 2010 / 07:16 am (CNA/EWTN News).-

After an interview with a Brazilian newspaper appeared to indicate he supported abortion, Archbishop of Olanda y Recife Fernando Saburido has said there was “a misunderstanding” and that he may have been insufficiently clear. He said he fully adheres to Catholic teaching that life is a “gift from God.”

Last year the then-archbishop of his diocese, Jose Cardoso-Sobrinho, said that anyone who performed or facilitated an abortion would incur an automatic excommunication. Archbishop Sobrinho's remarks came in response to the case of an abortion performed on a nine-year-old pregnant with twins after being raped by her mother’s companion. (I can't help but notice the word 'step father' was not used.)

Recently a forced abortion was performed on a 10-year-old girl, who became pregnant after being raped by her stepfather. (Where was CNA's editor? We're not supposed to use that word anymore.)

Archbishop Saburido responded to the new case by reiterating Catholic teaching that life must be defended at all points. However, during an interview with a local Brazilian newspaper, Diario de Pernambuco, he appeared to imply that abortion was permitted if deemed necessary by a physician.

In a statement provided to CNA, Archbishop Saburido said there was a “misunderstanding.”
“I adhere, in fullness; to the teaching of our Holy Church which defends life and does not admit, under any circumstances, its destruction because it is a gift from God that only He can take away,” he explained. (Except in the cases of war, capital punishment, self defense, and women in life threatening pregnancies forced on them by the state.)

Noting that there are some specific cases in Brazil in which abortion is not penalized, he said: “With the Church, I believe that this law is contrary to the basic principles of Christian ethics and cannot be accepted, because it is a law that kills.” (It's OK if abortion laws kill the mother though.)

He said he disagreed with the case of the pregnant girl, saying he believes it to be “anti-Christian for taking away a life that could have perfectly been saved.”

“A family willing to adopt the baby would have not been missing, providing affection and dignity,” he continued. (That's all fine and good for the baby, but what about the child mother?)

He said his comments to the press corps on April 10 would verify his position against abortion in any circumstances.

“In the specific case of the Diario de Pernambuco, I believe the interview was biased, with repetitive questions, and I admit I may have not been sufficiently clear, leaving room for doubts that I want to clarify by means of this statement,” he continued.

“I believe that all those who know me and know my history, will never have doubts regarding my love for the Church and my fidelity to her Magisterium,” Archbishop Saburido’s statement concluded.


I have no doubt about Saburido's fidelity to the Magesterium. I have doubts about his compassion for ten year old girls, and his understanding of the medical dangers in pregnancy for ten year old girls, or for the sexual abuse male 'companions' inflict on girl children. And, I have very serious reservations about the motivation for his 'clarification'.

So do conservatives as judged by this comment after the CNA article: I am quite horrified at the statement made by Archbishop Saburido of Brazil. He then compounds the problem by lying.

That's the just the problem Benedict and the Magisterium are now facing: neither conservatives nor liberals are buying into the lies and the clarifications. The Magisterium and their defenders are losing the faith and trust of everybody. In the end, that may just be Benedict's legacy.


  1. Take a look at Erikson's stages of development - which begin with trust. I did a blog on that at TPM about a year ago, which pertains so well to the current crisis of the church. Just substitute "church" for "society" and consider the issues Colleen has raised about trust. Substitute a "Vision Quest" for the heart and soul of the Church (instead of America). And think carefully about the "higher stages" - the kind of mature wisdom of advanced personality development (which facilitate trust).

    Sometimes it floors me how my work analyzing problems within American society so closely parallel the same problems which are now so evident within the church. Clearly, the Catholic Church has FAILED to follow Jesus - if it simply repeats the worst aspects of any imperial secular power!

    You may find the links useful as well. And just keep substituting what's going on in the church for the issues I was raising related to US politics and society:


    And here's another TPM post I wrote a month prior to the one above, which also powerfully addresses the "breakdown of civic trust" - and just substitute the breakdown of trust within the church:


    Honestly, it sometimes seems to me as if all the work I did analyzing American society was just a prelude to seeing the same dynamics in the church. What an indictment of those claiming the Mantle of Christ!

  2. Here's the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's "The Passionate Eye" showing a BBC documentary "Sex Crimes and the Vatican" including the role of Cardinal Ratzinger. (44 minutes)



  3. This second post in that Vision Quest series also pertains. Hugely! (And I hope you understand I'm flagging these old blogs in order to further our purpose here. To save us all time. I could rewrite them - but I honestly think you, dear reader, may enjoy making those connections for yourself!)


    And after you read that one, I think there will be NO DOUBT about the point we have now reached with the Roman Catholic Church! There have been too many abuses. And we cannot stretch our minds any longer to swallow the the dictatorial doctrines and behavior.

  4. One of the more common phrases used to describe a recently deceased priest or bishop is: "he was a loyal son of the Church".

    Yes.....but did he believe in God?

    It obvious that this Bishop is just one of those 'loyal sons'...whose loyalty is unquestionably to those who cut his paycheck.

    I have attended (or at least been well aware of) the funerals of countless priests....who were truly scoundrels. Embezzlers, pathological liars, Alcoholics or drug addicts, and those who died from STDs/AIDS/Hepatitis referenced as....(cough)..."cancer".

    Most of the latter could not even spell the word...'chastity'....

    In every case they were 'loyal sons of the Church"...who....'served the Church well'.....

    There is a great similarity with a Masonic funeral. In this: the 'guest of honor', like the priest, is a known scoundrel. Often guilty of the same non-repented sins.

    In both scenarios the deceased is honored as 'being faithful'. To a very flawed human organization.
    Not to God.....

    The irony & pathos of both scenarios is frighteningly similar. This brings us back to the conception of seeing Opus Dei as 'eccelsiastical freemasonry'.

    By that phrase I do not mean a direct & literal connection between the two groups. But in MODE. It's all about loyalty & OBEDIENCE to a human,hierarchial authority structure - for which you are rewarded.

    ...not necessarily in Eternity.

    Anon Y. Mouse

  5. I was thinking that last night, that the Vatican does tend to operate as a secret society in which loyalty to the society supplants the message--especially in the ruling or leadership classes.

    I have a couple of very Mormon friends who make the same point about the ritual and upper levels in the LDS. They maintain it's all taken straight from the Masonic ritual and constitution with some stolen theology from other traditions.

    That's why they maintain the LDS church is another male only, power hungry, secret cult hiding behind it's 'simple' people.

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  8. Dennis, what wonderful comments!

    But I'm more concerned about your last thoughts: Your personal illness. Your disease and dying process.

    I'm not sure if you've taken a look at my blog: Nothingness. You can reach it by clicking on my name. It's a more personal, spiritual blog, than the TPM one. Mostly I've tried to post only "timeless" essays.

    (And you can reach me simply by "commenting" to any blog there - just flag it as not for publication. Since everything there is moderated, you can send me a way to reach you - without anyone else being the wiser.)

    I would also recommend some blogs at TPM by Lux Umbra Dei, who was dying during the 7 or 8 months he was at TPM. We all venerate his memory. Especially his blog, "Wind on the Beartooth Plateau."


    I did not realize you were dying, dennis. Today is my mother's funeral. I will think of you as well this day.

    Please stay in touch. I send my love. This needs to be a fruitful time for you - not just one where you are concerned about what you're leaving behind. I'd like to help, if I may. TheraP

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  10. No you're not becoming to concrete Dennis. You are merely pointing out a very sad fact. Spiritual sustenance is hard to come by at this point in time.

    I've written in the past about Leon Secatero. Leon suffered from any number of terminal illnesses. He had reached the point where he wanted to check out, but he wasn't allowed to. I got to meet him in his last year of life and a couple of my close friends were with him hours before he was finally allowed to cross over. It was a phenomenal experience which effected them deeply. Where ever he is, he is still very much alive and is one reason I am in New Mexico.

    He spent the last part of his life working to bring like minds together in order to move mankind beyond religious ideology and into spiritual truth.

    In his experience, death was a just a different state of physical vibration and he felt he would still be engaged in the same mission to break down spiritual barriers, to help people really understand the power and reality of spiritual ritual and human consciousness, and of course, unconditional love.

    You might find this link helpful:


  11. TheraP,

    Thank you for some suggestions and I will check out your information and will contact you. My disease is painful, symptomatic and terminal but the prognosis of just when is less clear. Even though I feel strong with lots of family love and support, there are many spiritual issues that I am having to deal with. There are also lots of painful therapeutic issues, and my life seems rather manic right now with all the complications and symptoms.

    Colleen, thank you so much for the reminder of the positive part of this time frame in life. It was encouraging. I am not ready to give up just yet as "I have miles to go and things to do before I sleep," but it is a very different time in life. It is exhausting, and painful even with good family and fraternal support. I will also look up your reference. For now it is back to clinical trials and then to see a few of my own patients. dennis

  12. I will look for your contact, Dennis. I feel for all the uncertainty you must be facing here.

  13. Dennis - not sure if you have tried to reach me, but there was a note of a comment and then I couldn't find it. (if it was you, please try again...)

  14. TheraP

    I sent a second note containing my Email. dennis

  15. Dennis. I did not get either! Does Bill at Bilgramage know your email? If so, he has mine.

    I'm concerned that you didn't get through to me....

    And you left a comment to a nothingness blog?

    I'm sorry I either didn't receive it or didn't comprehend it contained your email address.

  16. I left my Email through your nothingness blog again this morning 4-24 dennis