It's official. The Catholic Knight is retired.  I'm hanging up the helmet and passing the torch. There will be no more articles, no more commentaries, no more calls to action. THIS BLOG IS CLOSED. I've spent a very long time thinking about this, I believe the time has come, and is a bit overdue.  I want to thank my readers for everything, but most especially for your encouragement and your willingness to go out there and fight the good fight. So, that being the case, I've spend the last several weeks looking for bloggers who are fairly active, and best represent something akin to the way I think and what I believe.  I recommend the following blogs for my readers to bookmark and check on regularly. Pick one as your favourite, or pick them all. They are all great..... In His Majesty's Service, THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

THE PASSION OF THE POPE

(USA Today) - "Ecce homo," "Behold the man!" These were the words spoken by Pontius Pilate when he presented a scourged Jesus Christ to a hostile mob shortly before his crucifixion. The same words aptly apply today to Pope Benedict XVI, as he is being held up to unprecedented ridicule and scorn by a hateful press and a world so out of touch with its spiritual nature and moral being.

One can almost hear Jesus saying to the peaceful and benevolent pope: "If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first" (John 15:18). Contrary to his critics, the pope, like Jesus, is completely innocent and is doing everything in his power to weed out those priests guilty of sexual abuse and to justly compensate victims for their suffering.

In fact, he is the one who has tackled these things head on. Remember that even Jesus had his Judas. But the world wants to see the death of the church because it knows the church is the mother of all saints.

It knows that the Catholic Church is the last bastion of hope against a materialistic world that craves immorality at every step, including homosexuality, same-sex marriage, easy divorce, abortion, radical feminism, contraception, embryonic stem cell research and cloning. Benedict will be remembered not for the scandals of a few priests but for his intense suffering in protecting the faith from wolves in sheep's clothing. He will be known as one of the greatest of Catholic martyrs.

read full story here
THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: The sexual abuse of minors in the Catholic Church reached it's peak in 1981, and that year marks one of the darkest periods in all of Church history. (On May 13th of that same year Pope John Paul II was nearly assassinated in St. Peter's Square.) The crime of sexual abuse of minors was exacerbated by the intentional cover-up by some misguided leaders in the Church who sought to protect the Church's reputation more than protect the victims and seek the justice they deserved. There is no excuse for this. There can never be. It is a crime against God, nature, Christianity, the Catholic Church and of course the victims themselves. Everybody suffers for this crime. Let me make this perfectly clear, The Catholic Knight desires to have every sexually abusive priest removed from ministry, defrocked, excommunicated and handed over to the civil authorities. Every church official who engaged in cover-up should be removed from office too, and yes, that would include the pope himself if he were to blame. (This article will show however, that he is not guilty.) The Catholic Knight also advocates reasonable financial restitution for all victims, when there is credible evidence that Church leaders were negligent, as well as Church reimbursement for medical and psychological care. Furthermore, The Catholic Knight suggests that a series of masses be offered for the intention of healing and justice for the victims of sexual abuse, by various bishops all around the world, including the Bishop of Rome himself, to address the profound spiritual dynamic of this criminal offense against God, his Church and his children. I think this should be done publicly for a period of one year, but this is just a suggestion.

Before we go any further a few things need to be defined here. First and foremost, the mainstream news media has done a real number on public perception. The term "pedophile priest" was invented by the mainstream media to briefly describe the kind of sexual abuse perpetrated by some priests. The only problem is that the term is inaccurate. Pedophilia only involved a small fraction of the cases. The overwhelming vast majority (80%) of all sex-abuse cases in the Catholic Church involved male victims between the ages of 11 and 17. This is not pedophilia! The American Psychiatric Association defines pedophilia as sexual urges or behaviors toward a prepubescent child (roughly age 10 or younger) by someone who is over age 16. While this sort of thing did happen in the Catholic Church (as with every other organization on the planet) it was extremely rare. What did happen overwhelmingly was post-pubescent molestation. So what we have in the Catholic Church was an overwhelming case of predatory homosexual behavior of vulnerable adolescent boys starting to become young men. Make no mistake about it. This was a homosexual problem.

Of course there are those who will immediately object to this candid assessment and point to endless studies suggesting that homosexual men are no more likely to molest children then heterosexual men. That may be true, but we're not talking about child molestation here are we. Pedophilia is not the topic. I think I just established that above. We're talking about the sexual abuse of adolescent boys. That's different. So the "studies" on pedophile homosexuals are irrelevant. It seems to me there is a focused effort by some to distort the facts and muddy the waters when it comes to WHO actually was doing the overwhelming vast majority of abuse in the Catholic Church. This particular cover-up doesn't come from within the Catholic Church. It comes from the outside, specifically from the mainstream news media and homosexual advocacy groups. I wonder why? One would think they would be even more interested in rooting out the problem. Instead they cite irrelevant statistics to cover the identity (and orientation) of the real perpetrators.

Again, a few may object, saying there is no evidence that homosexuals abuse adolescent boys anymore than heterosexuals do. I would observe that as a laughable claim once you stop and think about what the objectors are really saying here. Heterosexual men molest teenage BOYS just as much as homosexual men? Come on, that doesn't even make sense! One would think heterosexual abusers would be more interest in teenage GIRLS.

So we've established who the abusers where - homosexual predators - now we must ask why this was so profound in the Catholic Church. Again, I must point out that sex-abuse and cover-up is no higher in the Catholic Church than it is in any Protestant organization. That again is a statistical fact backed by the insurance agencies that underwrite churches for liability. Furthermore, it deserves mention that sexual-abuse and cover-up is far more common in the public school systems, where according to one government report, a child is over 100 times more likely to be molested in a public school than in a Catholic Church. The facts need to be said, often and loudly, because this helps us get to the heart of the problem. This is because the same statistics also show that while sexual-abuse as a whole is actually lower in the Catholic Church than other institutions, they also show that per capita, homosexual abuse of adolescent boys is disproportionately higher in the Catholic Church. Why is that?

The answer is obvious. Who sexually abuses adolescent boys? Is it heterosexual predators? I think not. We do see a lot of those in the Protestant churches going after adolescent girls. No, the only people who would go after adolescent boys are homosexual predators. So we must ask ourselves the painful question. Why are there so many homosexual predators in the Catholic Church?

Before we go on we owe it to the innocent that another statistical fact be pointed out. Less than 5% of all priests serving between 1950 and 2002 ever had credible allegations of sexual molestation made against them. That's less than 5% total - of all allegations - homosexual, heterosexual and pedophile. That means over 95% of all Catholic clergy never had any allegations made against them, lived quiet and holy lives, dedicating their entire existence to the service of God and their fellow man. Let us NEVER FORGET that! Let us not allow the actions of a tiny minority of perverts to stain the reputation of these good men. Let us always REMEMBER that over 95% of Catholic priests who served between 1950 and 2002 were never accused. Granted, they were human, and nobody ever said they were perfect, but they served well and do not deserve to be defamed and humiliated by the mainstream news media every night for something only a tiny fraction of their brother priests did.

Now let us get back to the homosexual predator problem in the Catholic Church. So why on earth would the Catholic Church have a disproportionate number of homosexuals in the priesthood to begin with? Granted, not all homosexuals are predators, and it would be unfair to label them as such. Nevertheless, logic dictates that in order to get a disproportionately high number of homosexual predators in an organization, you must first have an even higher disproportionate number of homosexuals in general in that same organization. Some studies seem to confirm that as many as 15% (or higher) of Catholic priests serving in the western world are homosexuals (either active or inactive). Why is that? And why the sudden spike in homosexuals (and homosexual abuse cases) during the 1950s through 70s?

The answer is western Liberalism of course. During the 1950s through 70s it became fashionable in liberal Catholic circles to encourage young Catholic men, who displayed tendencies toward homosexuality, to join the priesthood. It was assumed by these liberal "geniuses" that the celibacy rule was the best thing for them, and who better to keep an eye on them than a bunch of holy Catholic priests. Right? Of course, few of these homosexual men objected, because after all it gave them opportunity to be with a lot of other attractive young men in the seminaries. Some of them of course felt remorseful for their homosexual history and indeed used the disciplines of the priesthood to reign in their homosexual temptations. They should be commended of course. Some of them however, did not take advantage of clerical disciplines and continued to engage in homosexual behavior with other similarly inclined seminarians and adult male parishioners once they became parish priests. A small handful of them started preying on adolescent boys.

The notion of putting gay Catholic men in the seminaries was not viewed favorably by some high ranking officials in the Vatican, most notably Pope John Paul II and Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger who headed the 'Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith' or CDF. Ratzinger advocated a zero tolerance policy, not just for abusers within the priesthood, but for homosexuals in general. He saw no place for homosexuality of any kind in the priesthood - controlled or uncontrolled. Pope John Paul II generally agreed with him, but preferred to deal with this matter using a pastoral approach, encouraging bishops to purge their own seminaries of homosexuals without forcing them through Church law. Later when Ratzinger became Pope Benedict XVI in 2005 his view was not only put into practice, but actually written into Church law. So as it stands right now, it is a violation of Church law for a homosexual man to even step foot in or near a Catholic seminary. Not even the seminary employees may be homosexuals, and homosexuals are certainly not allowed to teach or offer counseling services. Furthermore, candidates for the priesthood are more thoroughly checked to make sure there is no history of homosexual behavior. If homosexual behavior is displayed among seminarians, they are expelled from the program.

Naturally this has raised the ire of western Liberals and homosexual advocacy groups. They view this latest pope's actions as "intolerant and homophobic." Never mind the fact that they are orthodox and consistent with Christian disciplines going back 2,000 years. It's important to remember that the mainstream news media is overwhelmingly controlled by western Liberals and is increasingly influenced by homosexual advocacy groups. Remember that, it plays an important role in the rest of this story.

With that the focus now turns to the man who is Pope Benedict XVI. Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was elected to the papacy in 2005 after the death of Pope John Paul II. He served as Prefect of the 'Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith' (or CDF) for 24 of John Paul II's 27 year pontificate. He was appointed to the CDF in 1981, the same year Pope John Paul II was nearly assassinated and the number of sexual abuse cases had reached it's peak. It is believed that John Paul II appointed Ratzinger specifically because of his hawkish record against Church abuse in all it's forms, but especially because of his zero tolerance of homosexuality in the priesthood. Of course this infuriated liberal Catholics, and liberals in general, earning Ratzinger the epitaph of "God's Rottweiler." For years many of Ratzinger's attempted reforms were blocked by liberals in the Vatican. Nevertheless, he was still able to get through enough reforms to drop the annual clerical sex abuse rate down to pre-1950s levels by the turn of the century...


Sex-Abuse Statistics

In 2001 Pope John Paul II saw the fruit of Ratzinger's efforts and immediately turned over to the CDF the authority to deal with all sexual abuse cases directly, instead of going through the Roman Rota (a tribunal authority within the Vatican), as was the previous policy. Clerical judges of Church tribunals inform us that once this happened, cases of sex abuse were handled much more efficiently and with greater speed, bringing sexual abusers to Church justice within a much shorter period of time.

When Ratzinger took over the direct handling of sex-abuse cases in 2001, he issued a letter in which he instructed how evidence was to be handled within the Church so as to provide a fair trial to those accused. These were standard legal procedures, which applied exclusively to the Church and had nothing to do with civil authority. Clerics were instructed to handle evidence with care and discretion, to make sure the accused were not subject to idle gossip and preconceived judgment before the evidence could be heard by the CDF. Again, this was an ecclesiastical letter, dealing with ecclesiastical instruction, specifically for ecclesiastical trials. Church law already mandated that local bishops report all allegations of sexual abuse to local authorities. This is important to note because some incompetent clerics who failed to report abuse to authorities have claimed the 2001 letter instructed them to maintain secrecy (even from the civil authorities). This is of course a bogus claim, made by desperate men seeking to avoid criminal prosecution for negligence and conspiracy. Virtually all canon lawyers in the Church agree that the 2001 letter can in no way imply such a thing. However, the civil courts are unfamiliar with how Church law works for now, and so that explains why these incompetent clerics are using it as their defense in civil court. Of course the mainstream news media latches on to this as well, reporting the 2001 letter as casting a "cloud of suspicion" over Ratzinger. Never mind the fact that all of the cases of abuse in question happened before 1990, long before the letter was ever written. The claim that the 2001 letter had anything to do with abuse, and the failure to report abuse, in the decades prior to it's release will probably go down in history as one of the most lame legal defenses ever. How can a letter prevent someone from reporting abuse to civil authorities when in fact the letter had not been written yet, and would not be written for years (even decades!), after the abuse and failure to report occurred? Sadly, virtually nobody in the mainstream news media is asking this question. I wonder why?

Instead the media has chosen to focus it's attention on two isolated incidences that happened in the late 20th century. Neither of them involve Ratzinger directly, but both happen within his close proximity, so by the rationale of the liberal 'geniuses' in the mainstream news media, they MUST be connected. Right? Well let's examine the facts, since we now know that's something the mainstream news media will never do.

The first isolated case deals with the transfer of an abusive priest while Ratzinger was the Archbishop of Munich in 1980. In this case the transfer occurred without his knowledge or permission and was authorized by his vicar general, Father Gerhard Gruber, who has publicly admitted full responsibility for authorizing the transfer without the future pope's knowledge or consent. This however doesn't seem to matter to many within the mainstream news media who continue to report that the transfer happened under Ratzinger's watch and that he "must have known." Some especially irresponsible news media have falsely reported that Ratzinger himself made the transfer! These claims are made without any evidence to support them, and with plenty of evidence to the contrary.

The second case involves anti-Catholic libel by the New York Times. Please understand 'The Catholic Knight' does not state this opinion lightly. The evidence against the New York Times is plentiful and damning. The Times, which has been fighting bankruptcy for at least two years now, has been running negative stories against the Catholic Church for much longer, with or without sufficient evidence to back their claims. In this particular case the Times, using a faulty computer translation of Italian documents, ran a story that specifically slandered Pope Benedict XVI while he was Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger of the Vatican CDF. The Times story asserted that Cardinal Ratzinger failed to discipline a known sexually abusive priest in the United States back in 1997. The case involves a horrible episode of a priest (Father Lawrence Murphy) who apparently molested some 200 boys at a deaf school back during the 1960s. The case was brought to the attention of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee in the 1970s. At that time the archdiocese failed to defrock Father Murphy, which was solely the responsibility of the archbishop himself, Rembert G. Weakland. Thankfully, the case was reported to authorities but unfortunately the statute of limitations had already expired and Father Murphy could not be prosecuted. Weakland, who became archbishop in 1977, apparently did not write to Rome until 1996. Cardinal Ratzinger doesn't enter the scene until the middle 1997, a full two decades after the archdiocese handled the case. It was then reported that the ecclesiastical trial of Murphy was stopped after the accused priest sent a letter to Ratzinger begging mercy since he was in frail health and near death. No response was received from Cardinal Ratzinger. However the case was put on hold by the order of Cardinal Burtone. (Remember, in 1997 the jurisdiction to hear these cases was not directly under the jurisdiction of the CDF. The Congregation of which Ratzinger was head would not take direct responsibility for these cases until 2001.) The claim is made that Father Murphy sent a letter to Cardinal Ratzinger, which may be true, but there is no evidence that Ratzinger ever received it, nor is there any evidence that he did anything about it even if he did receive it. The Catholic Knight speculates Father Murphy's alleged letter may have been redirected to Cardinal Burtone's office once it reached the Vatican, and it would appear it was Burtone (not Ratzinger) who moved to put the trial on hold (not dismiss it) shortly thereafter. Father Murphy did eventually die within days after the trial had been suspended. He has gone on to receive his eternal reward, whatever that may be. So where was Cardinal Ratzinger's involvement with any of this? We don't know. His name does not seem to appear on anything. All we have is an alleged letter begging for mercy that was allegedly addressed to him, with no evidence that he ever received it, and even if he did we have no evidence that he did anything about it (one way or another). From this the New York Times implied the future pope knew everything and intentionally failed to discipline an abusive priest? Give me a break!
(The American Conservative) - By the time Cardinal Ratzinger was commissioned by John Paul II to clean out the stable, Murphy had been dead for three years.

Yet here is Times columnist Maureen Dowd’s summation of the case:
“Now we learn the sickening news that Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, nicknamed ‘God’s Rotweiler,’ when he was the church’s enforcer on matters of faith and sin, ignored repeated warnings and looked away in the case of the Rev. Lawrence C. Murphy, a Wisconsin priest who molested as many as 200 deaf boys.”
In Goodstein’s piece, Weakland is a prelate who acted too slowly. The controversy over his clouded departure from the Milwaukee archdiocese is mentioned and passed over at the bottom of the story. It belonged higher.

For Weakland was a homosexual who confessed in a 1980 letter he was in “deep love” with a male paramour who shook down the archbishop for $450,000 in church funds as hush money to keep his lover’s mouth shut about their squalid affair.

According to Rod Dreher, Weakland moved Father William Effinger, who would die in prison, from parish to parish, knowing Effinger was a serial pederast.

When one of Effinger’s victims sued the archdiocese but lost because of a statute of limitations, Weakland counter-sued and extracted $4,000 from the victim of his predator priest.

Dreher describes Weakland’s tenure thus:
“He directed Catholic schools … to teach kids how to use condoms as part of AIDS education and approved a graphic sex-education program for parochial-school kids that taught ‘there is no right and wrong’ on the issues of abortion, contraception and premarital sex. He has advocated for gay rights and female ordination, bitterly attacked Pope John Paul II, denounced pro-lifers as ‘fundamentalist’ and declared that one could be both pro-choice and a Catholic in good standing.”
Speaking of sex-abuse victims in 1988, Weakland was quoted: “Not all adolescent victims are so innocent. Some can be sexually very active and aggressive and often streetwise.”

Just the kind of priest the Times loves, and just the kind of source on whom the Times relies when savaging the pope and bashing the church.

As the Catholic League’s Bill Donahue relates, 80 percent of the victims of priestly abuse have been males and “most of the molesters gays.”

And as the Times‘ Richard Berke blurted to the Gay and Lesbian Journalists Association 10 years ago, often, “three-quarters of the people deciding what’s on the front page are not-so-closeted homosexuals....

read full story here
About a week after the Times article was released the ecclesiastical judge that presided over the Murphy case, Father Thomas T. Brundage, came forward in an Internet blog revealing that neither the New York Times, nor anyone from the news media, made contact with him regarding the matter, even though the Times saw fit to "quote" him in their hit-n-run article on the pope. Furthermore he revealed that alleged "quotes" attributed to him in the Times were from hand written sources without his signature. (It would seem the Times is unable and apparently unwilling to verify them.) Furthermore, Father Brundage continued to reveal some of the details of the Murphy case so as to set the record straight. He informed us of the antics of Father Murphy and that the trial was merely suspended (not dismissed) due to Murphy's failing health. Murphy died before the trial could be resumed. We should take note here that clerical discipline was already underway at the Vatican (as soon as the Vatican knew about it). It's not as if the Vatican was ignoring the case. It is however unfortunate that it took the Archbishop of Milwaukee two decades to get the ball rolling.

Now as a side note, The Catholic Knight wouldn't mind seeing Father Murphy's rotting skeleton dug up and placed in the witness chair so that the trial may go forward, but I'm sure that violates some sort of canon law and perhaps a few civil health and safety codes as well. That being the case, it looks like the trial will be suspended indefinitely. Where does Ratzinger fit into this? Well based on all the evidence available, he apparently does not. So where does the New York Times get off implying that he does? This question is probably best answered by a Wall Street Journal article, just recently published, pointing out that the lawyer quoted in the Times piece has a conflict of interest. He is one in the same lawyer who has been suing the U.S. Catholic Church for billions of dollars.

This, combined with many other stories published by the Times, leads The Catholic Knight to conclude the New York Times has become nothing more than a libel and slanderous anti-Catholic tabloid on par with Jack T. Chick tracts. Why any good Catholic would ever want to subscribe to such a hate-filled sacrilegious rag is beyond me.

Once the Times story was published however, the media feeding frenzy began. Like a school of piranha, crazed with the scent of blood, the gnashing, ripping and tearing began. The Times story reverberated through the Associated Press and then other media outlets, until finally just about every major news organization from national to local was carrying the story. Never mind that the story was false. Never mind that the information given was inaccurate. Never mind that the most important figure in the whole scoop (the ecclesiastical judge) was never even contacted or interviewed. Never mind any of this. Sex and scandal had finally hit the Vatican (or so it seemed) and the man at the center (or so it was made to appear) was none other than the pope himself! Story after story surfaced. Each one repeating, regurgitating and rehashing what was written in the Times article. Virtually none bothered to do investigative reporting on their own. It wasn't long before the pope's approval rating plummeted in the general public. As far as the liberal mainstream news media was concerned, it was mission accomplished. In fact, the anti-Catholic bias in the western media has gotten so bad in this case, that even the former communist newspaper Pravda has taken notice and come to the defense of the pope.

“Anti-Catholicism is the anti-Semitism of the intellectual.”
- Arthur Schlesinger Sr.

Such a statement couldn't be more true, for the sectarian anti-Catholicism of centuries past pales in comparison to the new anti-Catholicism that arises from the Marxist intellectuals running the western mainstream media, popular universities and various branches of western government. Never underestimate the connection between the press and politics. No sooner than the mainstream news media outlets in Europe and America began their unwarranted assault on the pope the protesters began to appear, wearing makeshift clerical outfits and prefab signs calling for the pope's resignation, the ordination of women and the acceptance of homosexuality in the Church. In the United States a federal court ruled that the pope could be subpoenaed for questioning and even held liable for damages. In England lawyers began debating if the pope's diplomatic immunity really applied in cases involving alleged cover-up. Of course the question on everyone's mind in England right now is will the pope be arrested by police just as soon as he sets foot on British soil this September? Personally, I imagine that to be very unlikely, but it does underscore just how bad things have gotten, all because of yellow journalism.
(AP) - The Vatican heatedly defended Pope Benedict XVI on Tuesday, claiming accusations that he helped cover up the actions of pedophile priests are part of an anti-Catholic "hate" campaign targeting the pope for his opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage.

Vatican Radio broadcast comments by two senior cardinals explaining "the motive for these attacks" on the pope....

read full story here
Indeed, that appears to be EXACTLY what is going on, but the pushers of this kind of hate-filled and intolerant anti-Catholic propaganda should beware of getting what they want. Already hate-filled violence is surfacing in Europe against Catholic clergy because of this media driven propaganda campaign. The senseless beating and/or murder of a few priests and bishops may escape the scorn of the general Catholic population. Should the violence spread however, to include high ranking Vatican officials, especially the pope, it will be the mainstream news media that will be held accountable. The blood of the martyrs will be on their hands.