Tuesday, September 11, 2018

On the "Light Handed" St. John Paul the Great and the "Mild" Benedict: Anti-Francis Catholic Right and "Dinesh DeSouza School of Church History"

Contrast the forceful, direct way that Pope Benedict discharged Morris for discussing the ordination of women to the priesthood with the ambiguity and secrecy surrounding the Vatican's handling (during the same timeframe) of allegations that then-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick sexually abused seminarians. 
In an interview with LifeSiteNews, the PR newswire of the right-wing movement against Pope Francis, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò referred to Benedict’s benign nature as the reason the pope received McCarrick in Rome after supposedly sanctioning him with an order barring travel and public ministry. 
"Can you imagine Pope Benedict, as mild a character as he was, saying, 'What are you doing here?' in front of the other bishops," Viganò was quoted as saying. 
But Pope Benedict was pretty forceful about removing bishops when he wanted to be. To be sure, finesse is helpful, because the Code of Canon Law is cautious about removing a bishop. Canon 401 § 2 says that 'a diocesan bishop who has become less able to fulfill his office because of ill health or some other grave cause is earnestly requested to present his resignation from office.' But Benedict and his predecessor, St. John Paul II, invoked that canon many times, as the journalist Sandro Magister wrote in 2012…. 
Meanwhile, a hazy secrecy surrounded whatever it was that happened in the Vatican over allegations that McCarrick sexually harassed and abused seminarians. And yet, in retrospect, the McCarrick situation has proven far more devastating to the mission of the church than any progressive ideas Morris may have dared to raise during Pope Benedict’s papacy."

Andrea Tornielli, Salvatore Cernuzio, "McCarrick, Benedict's first request (and not sanction) in 2007":

The Viganò affair, which has brought to light the underestimations and mismanagement of the McCarrick case over the last twenty years, is slowly becoming clearer: it is clear that the former nuncio to the United States has cited dates and documents in his possession (or that have passed before his eyes) on which there is no reason to doubt. But it is now equally evident - and this is proven - that the author of the "memorandum" has been selective in recounting his memories. When Viganò in fact organizes his memoirs, they appear unilaterally formulated to damage Francis, shifting all responsibility onto him, even at the cost of making Saint John Paul II pass for a Pope unsound of mind already in 2000, or to justify Pope Ratzinger’s lack of sanctions against McCarrick for of his "mild" character (emphasis in original).

Randy Reno, "Catholicism After 2018": 

John Paul II adopted a relatively light-handed approach to governance because he trusted in the genius of Vatican II.  

Ask the more than 100 theologians silenced and punished by St. John Paul the Great and his CDF watchdog Cardinal Ratzinger how "light handed" St. John Paul the Great was in governing the church, and how "mild" Ratzinger/Benedict is. They would have quite another story to tell — and I have heard that story first-hand from more than one of them. (On this point, see here, here, and here.)

And ask ABC journalist Brian Ross how "mild" Cardinal Ratzinger was when Ross dared to ask him about the Vatican cover-up of the string of sexual abuses committed by the founder of the Legionaries of Christ, Father Marcial Maciel, and Ross got a big slap on the hand from Ratzinger.

Facts matter. Even in a post-truth world.

(Thanks to MarkWilliam for pointing us to the Andrea Tornelli and Salvatore Cernuzio article in English translation.) 

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