Thursday, September 30, 2010

Saying goodbye slowly to liturgical abuse

Lay Eucharistic ministers not entitled to position, Archbishop Burke clarifies :: Catholic News Agency (CNA):

"Archbishop Burke clarified, however, that the reality of the matter is that neither the presence of girls at the altar, nor the participation of lay faithful 'belong to the fundamental rights of the baptized.'"

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Society of Saint Pius X Canadian District Pilgrimage part II


The Shrine church can be seen in the distance in these.

Various pictures of the13 Km walk from Saint Ignace II to the Shrine church. Fr. Webber from the church of the Transfiguration in Toronto was providing beautiful Rosary meditations and sermons from Saint Alphonsus de Liguori for our group. There were 4 or 5 different groups each led by a priest.

Monday, September 27, 2010

I don't see Christ, I see bread

Comment from Protestant pastor in the TV interview immediately after the Swiss ecumenical Mass in which he had led the congregation in the Our Father, replacing the priest.

The Ultra-Catholic


Poem from Pi in the High by the late E L Mascall, Anglican cleric and leading Thomist, read by myself satirising the reluctance of some Anglo-Catholics to "Pope".

He never did himself.

Society of Saint Pius X Canadian District Pilgrimage part I


On Saturday, September 25, I attended the official pilgrmage of the Canadian District SSPX to the Martyr's Shrine in Midland, Ontario, Canada. I just wanted to share some pictures of this wonderful event. The pigrimage included a walk from Saint Ignace II, which is the site of an old Huron Indian settlement and the spot where Saint Jean de Brebeuf was martyred for our holy faith, to the Martyr's Shrine church which is a 13km walk. I was walking with the group from Transfiguration of Our Lord church Toronto.

Here are some photos from Saint Ignace II. The cross marks the spot where Saint Jean de Brebeuf was martyred.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Belgian lawyers for sex abuse victims to meet with American colleagues

The lawyers Christine Mussche and Walter Van Steenbrugge, representing thirty victims, are now trying to obtain the documents found during the searches in the Archdiocese of Mechelen and the residence of Cardinal Danneels and hope that they can learn from the experience of their American colleagues, whose summons against the Vatican has not yet been declared unfounded.

Koran blessed in Catholic Cathedral


We will be waiting for some time to have a Bible blessed in a mosque, but not necessary or required.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Maverick Belgian politician asks if Cardinal's brother protected Bishop of Bruges

Dedecker veut "castrer Vangheluwe avec deux briques" -- RTL info

Dedecker also wants to "castrate Vangheluwe with two bricks"

Jean-Marie Dedecker was wanting to speak on pedophilia cases that have shaken the church. And he did not beat around the bush.

The former president of the LDD and MP Jean-Marie Dedecker believes that the ex-Bishop Roger Vangheluwe must "as a convicted pedophile, be arrested, jailed and neutered. "

" I am ready to carry out this last task using two bricks, "he said in an interview published in Het Nieuwsblad op Zondag.

Mr. Dedecker finds it unacceptable that the Catholic Church investigates pedophiles and other
sex offenders in its own ranks. For him, "it is the Justice authorities, and nobody else, who must establish what sexual offenses have taken place and prosecute."

"Conspiracies between the justice authorities and the Church"

The MP also wondered about the number of "cases of sex abuse by priests in the last thirty or forty years that were actually prosecuted " and the number that have been hidden. "How many conspiracies have there been between the justice authorities and the Church? "

Mr. Dedecker speculates further. "Remember that Danneels brother was until 2007 Chairman of Court of First Instance of Bruges. These are elements that must be addressed urgently " the MP believes.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

The Great Seminary of Bruges has just one recruit this year.

Big thank you to Cardinal Danneels and his old friend from seminary days, the former Bishop of Bruges.

30 years of Danneels games left the whole of Belgium a devastated vineyard.

Belgian Church spokesman thinks direct action by Pope on abusing Bishop would be authoritarian!

"And a penalty imposed by the Pope himself, I find very authoritarian. In my opinion the best solution possible would be for Vangheluwe to punish himself by requesting a return to the secular state."

It is reckoned a canonical trial could take five years.

Gad sir, the Pope has just to stand around and do nothing while the episcopal pedophile remains in the episcopy, just because if he did, it would be too authoritarian. I now heard everything.

This is like not wanting to shoot Hitler because it would be just too violent.

So far clear majority in favour of laicisation or excommunication of Cardinal Danneels

In the Cathcon poll

Bishop of Bruges against celibacy and for women priests

Bisschop Brugge pleit voor niet-celibataire priesters -

"Jozef De Kesel, the new Bishop of Bruges, has placed celibacy and the status of women within the church under discussion. In addition, the church in him blind to the suffering of the abused victims.

According to De Kesel celibacy should no longer be required to be a priest. "One could say that there should be celibate priests, but people for whom celibacy is humanly impossible, the chance should be given to become a priest," he told Radio 1.

The bishop is also open to the possibility of women priests. "That is certainly negotiable and I hope for it, but it is still more sensitive than the issue of celibacy. I think the discussion about celibacy can proceed much faster than the debate on the admission of women to the priesthood."

Bad timing, Bishop! Given the catastrophes that have overtaken the Belgian church, you have little standing in the matter.

Pope gives his opinion of liturgical standards in Westminster Abbey


“Wherever applause breaks out in the liturgy because of some human achievement, it is a sure sign that the essence of liturgy has totally disappeared and been replaced by a kind of religious entertainment. Such attraction fades quickly - it cannot compete in the market of leisure pursuits, incorporating as it increasingly does various forms of religious titillation.” Pope Benedict in Spirit of the Liturgy.

Pope meets with the improper

“The ecclesial communities which have not preserved the valid Episcopate and the genuine and integral substance of the Eucharistic mystery, are not Churches in the proper sense; however, those who are baptized in these communities are, by Baptism, incorporated in Christ and thus are in a certain communion, albeit imperfect, with the Church.”

Bishop Williamson has new day in court

The trial of the arch-conservative bishop of the St. Pius X due to denial of the mass murder of six million Jews during the Third Reich learns a new edition. Appellate proceedings before the District Court of Regensburg have been fixed for 29 November.

The trial of the arch-conservative member of th SSPX, Bishop Richard Williamson, according to a court spokesman goes to a new round. Thus, there will be on 29th November before the District Court of Regensburg, a new round of the trial of the bishop. Williamson relativized in November 2008 before television cameras during an interview with a Swedish TV station in the Seminary of the Sacred Heart in Zaitzkofen bei Schierling the number of Jews murdered during the Third Reich .

In the trial in April, the Swedish state had also snubbed the German legislature. The Swedish Chancellor of Justice wrote to say that the subpoena put forward by the prosecution of the TV journalists involved was incompatible with freedom of expression, which applies in Sweden. She refused help the legal authorities in the case against the bishop.

This Regensburg district court had sentenced Williamson in April 2010 because of incitement to 100 days fine of 100 € per day. It remained slightly below the demand of the prosecution of a 120 days fine, but the SSPX Bishop was given a preliminary conviction in Germany. Already, the bishop's lawyer, Matthias Loßmann had announced that Williamson did not accept the penalty and will go to appeal.

The news of a new judicial round is sensitive given the visit of Pope Benedict to Britain on Thursday. The Pope's visit is already controversial as the Church of England had in the 16th Century split off from Rome. Queen Elizabeth II is also head of the church. British media, which are known as the toughest afraid at the moment does not hold back on Benedict's past as a member of the Hitler Youth - the current Pope was then just 16 years old and was forcibly drafted.

Williamson's remarks and the case against him brought a clarification note from Rome as, Benedict lifted the excommunication of the four illegally SSPX consecrated bishops including Williamson. Worldwide, it resulted massive criticism, because the SSPX had not sufficiently distanced himself from Williamson's remarks.

The picture the Catholic Bishops of England and Wales would have wanted suppressed

Pope Benedict at Evening Prayer at Westminster Abbey

Friday, September 17, 2010

Pope welcomed by Queen


Cardinal Kasper- UK is a third world country

Translation of article in the print edition of the German magazine Focus.

The pensioned Curial cardinal Walter Kasper sees in Great Britain, the destination of the Papal journey now underway, a new and aggressive atheism at work.

Why have so many British people expressed annoyance at the Papal visit?

England is today a secularised, pluralistic country. When you land at Heathrow Airport, you think that you are landing in a third world country.

Are Christians discriminated against there

Yes, ahead of anything in England an agressive new atheism is being diseminated. If you even wear a cross on British Airways, you are discriminated against. We want however to publically show our faith. Everyone in England knows that there is a great Christian tradition there. Europe would not be Europe any more if this tradition cannot be preserved.

Why has the Pope expressed himself against the planned equal rights for homosexuals in England

The question whether we can accept the long term relationship of people of the same sex and on this matter the Church has defended for hundreds of years an understanding of marriage and the family that corresponds to the divine order.

Shouldn't the Anglican see the beatification of Cardinal Newman who converted to Catholicism as a provocation?

I have talked with the AB of C many times about this matter and he thinks to my amazement that it would be a quite a great event for Anglo-Saxon culture. Newman will be seen as a great teacher. I do not believe that the beatification will lead to ecumenical fault lines.

The Pope meets the Queen, the formal Head of the Anglicans. She carries the title "Defender of the Faith", an attribute which was first used by the church dividing Henry VIII. Is the Pope going to seek with the Queen a joint defensive strategy for the Faith in contemporary Europe?

The Queen is not the Head of the Anglican Church, as is always said, rather she is the Chief Moderator. Her tasks are restricted to the administrative area. The Queen however is an intensely Christian woman, and without doubt the theme of Christian Europe and the protection of the Faith in Europe will play a role. The question also greatly concerns the AB of C. The theological discussions will take place with him not with the Queen.

What goal is the Pope pursuing with the visit

He wants to work on the difficult dialogue with the Anglican community. He will
discuss possible fields of cooperation. In GB, there is a special interest in the social encyclicals of the Pope and also the questions of universal justice.

Will the Catholic Church ordain women
The decision of JPII was so unambiguous that I cannot reckon on it.

Not in 100/ 200 years
I am not a prophet but I don't believe so.

Why cannot women become priests?
"The whole Catholic, Orthodox and also Protestant tradition until the 20th century speaks against the idea We cannot expect from female ordination or lifting celibacy requirements a great increase in the Faith. Look at the Protestant churches. They have no celibacy and female ordination But is it going better? Also the Anglican Church has caught itself in immense problems with the new practice. I do not want these problems for my church.

Exactly at this moment, Pope Benedict is being strongly criticised in Germany

That is true and unfair. Outside Germany many shake their head about how the Germans treat the Pontiff who is from their country.

Do the abuse scandals shake the foundations of the Church?

Yes, they have gravely wounded the Church and much trust has been lost in the process. But the German bishops are following the right path.

What is the real reason for the contemporary crisis of faith?

It is a crisis of Western society, a crisis of values and direction, which since the Enlightment was time and again to be sensed and through the 68 movement aquired new impetus. The Church,Catholic and Protestant lives in this society, whose sense of faith is weakened. Many don't know any more what Catholic and Protestant is and live with certain misunderstandings, that are often one sided and polemical. How can I hand on the faith to a new generation? I know- that is not going to happen if I simply customise the Church to contemporary society.

Has the crisis of faith also reached the clergy?

Naturally, the Church and the clergy fall down on the job. But one cannot sweepingly judge the Church in which many priests do their work to the best of their knowledge and with a clear conscience. You should see- Abuse is a problem of society which tragically has reached even into the Church. I am convinced that the Church will resolve this problem although there will always be sinners who belong to the Church.

As featured in The Times coverage of the Papal visit.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Church takes action on sexual abuse

7s7 Belgique - L'Eglise veut creer un centre pour les victimes d'abus (1156742)

The Belgian Catholic Church has for the first time since the publication of the Adriaenssens Commission report officially responded at a press conference.

Bishop Leonard spoke with emphasis first on the victims' suffering, "suffering that we live mainly in the course of contemporary events and which should never have happened." An empathy which has been insisted on by the victims of sexual abuse who accused the Church until now of lack of compassion, even if Bishop Leonard stopped short of asking for forgiveness.

Too early
According to the Archbishop of Malines-Brussels, it is still too early as of today given the complexity of the facts, to make a concrete proposal to resolve this matter.

The bishop of Tournai, Mons Guy Harpigny, then reiterated his desire that the former Bishop of Bruges, Roger Vangheluwe, accused of pedophilia should be tried at a canonical trial.

Then Johan Bonny, Bishop of Antwerp, spoke to announce the creation of a "Centre for the Recognition, Healing and Reconciliation" for the pastoral care of victims of sexual abuse, which will succeed the Adriaenssens Commission .

Finally, when asked about the case of Roger Vangheluwe by the press, Archbishop Leonardo reiterated that it was for the Pope to decide the fate of the former Bishop of Bruges. (Vt)

Sunday, September 12, 2010

English and Welsh Catholic Bishops insult intelligence of faithful

Guidance Notes for the Papal Visit 

An altar is no mere table, unless they want us to be Protestants!

Bishop goes into hiding

7s7 Belgique - Le porte-parole de Danneels en desaccord avec le pape (1156549)

Spokesman for Danneels disagrees with the Pope

The spokesman of Cardinal Danneels, Toon Osaer, said Sunday he disagreed with the Pope and there was a structural problem within the Church. Saying that he spoke on his own behalf, Mr. Osaer said the Church was able to pose critical questions.

"I do not agree with the pope when he says there is no structural problem. Each institution, certainly when it has 2000 years of history, must dare to pose critical questions . The institution is simply a way to communicate a message, the message of the Gospel. If it appears that there are aberrations, so I think it can be questioned," said Toon Osaer.

Pope Benedict XVI said Wednesday that the penance was more effective than structural changes to address abuse of the clergy.

Toon Osaer also deemed inadequate the action taken by the former Bishop of Bruges Roger Vangheluwe who announced Saturday that he was leaving the community of Westvleteren to reflect in all discretion on his future in a place outside the Diocese of Bruges.

"This is a first step, but it is not enough," said Toon Osaer. He believes that Roger Vangheluwe must distance himself from his ecclesiastical office. However, he does not advocate the reduction to the lay state which he said would be a "punishment" detrimental to the efforts of many laymen in the Church.

The former spokesman of Roger Vangheluwe, Mark Van de Voorde, also participated in the discussion of VRT. According to him, he would appeal to the Pope to decide on a possible sanction against the former bishop of Bruges. "It is not for Vangheluwe to decide his fate because it would give him the prerogative to determine his future and I would not give him the opportunity," he said.

The revelations of sexual abuse by Bishop Vangheluwe have been the source of a shock wave caused by the publication of the report of the Adriaenssens Ecclesiastical Commission which reports of hundreds of victims abused by priests across the Belgium, over the last fifty years. (Belga)

Poll on the future of Cardinal Danneels


Cardinal Danneels shocked

Others would say pretends to be surprised.

Rapport Adriaenssens: le cardinal Danneels se dit "choqué"

Adriaenssens Report: Cardinal Danneels says he was "shocked"

The spokesman of Cardinal Godfried Danneels reported Saturday that he was "shocked" to read stories of victims of pedophilia within the Church.

Possible civil actions

Walter Van Steenbrugge, a lawyer for thirty victims of sexual abuse by church people, said on Saturday that the statute of limitation on certain abuses did not prevent the conduct of litigation, including civil to obtain compensation.

"It constructs, piece by piece, stories of blatant human suffering, some of which are quite horrific." The cardinal "wishes once again to express his sincere sympathy to the victims and their families and the suffering imposed on them by people active in the Church, whose behavior is a persistent disgrace to the Church.

The Cardinal hopes that "the measures that have already been developed in recent years, both in terms of prevention and victim support (point of contact, pastoral guidelines, Commission), will be further refined. Cardinal Danneels said he was "confident that the bishops will take to heart the recommendations of the Adriaenssens Committee and will do everything necessary to help alleviate the suffering of the victims.

"This is the Dutroux case of the Church"

The publication of the damning report of the Committee Adriaenssens on pedophilia within the Church has been a bombshell on Friday. It contains hundreds of testimonies from victims of priests, nearly 500 gathered between January and June 2010. "This is the Dutroux case of the Church, " said Louvain Professor Adriaenssens during a news conference, comparing the expected impact of the report on Belgian society with the shock of the revelations of the crimes of the pedophile murderer Marc Dutroux in the mid-1990s.

Belgian pedophile priest wanted by Interpol to give himself up

Het Nieuwsblad - Pedofiele pater geeft zich maandag aan

BRUSSELS - The Flemish pedophile priest Eric Dejaeger , who is internationally wanted by Interpol for child abuse in Canada, is going to surrender Monday to the Prosecutor's Office in Louvain/ Leuven. He seems to have recognized his errors, even ahead of ex-bishop Roger Vangheluwe.

It was an open secret for years that the suspect resides at the Oblate Fathers in Blanden in Leuven. Dejaeger himself will go Monday to the State Prosecutor's Office in Leuven. The fathers who gave him shelter begged him to.

Dejaeger abused eight children when he worked as a missionary in Canada. He served his sentence of 18 months , but there are nine new complaints of child abuse. Canada asked three months ago, via Interpol to Belgium to extradite the priest.

Adriaenssens Report: Cardinal Danneels says he was "shocked"

More soon.

The shame of the Catholic Church in Belgium

Some of the conclusions of the outgoing Commission on sexual abuse. The Church is announcing a new Commission on Monday.

Two thirds of the victims were boys, girls one third. There are only 45 reports from French-speaking Belgium. 80% of the victims are now over forty years.

* On average, victims were 12 years old when the abuse started, but one was only two years old. Female victims are spread evenly across all ages, the boys are at much higher risk between 10 and 14 years.

* The testimonies show that it is not about superficial groping, but oral and anal abuse, forced and mutual masturbation.

* There is sexual abuse in all religious orders. But there is not one case committed by nuns.

* Thirteen victims committed suicide.

* Only 5% of known victims went to court.

* Half of the known offenders are already deceased.

* The events occurred between the fifties and the late eighties in boarding schools According to the Commission the abuse happened in all schools for boys. After 1985 a sharp decline in the number of known victims.

* Two out of three victims who have personally met the Commission had the facts in their youth told their parents, but almost no one was believed.

* Celibacy is rarely the cause of the sexual abuse that perpetrators commit, according to the first interviews with offenders.

The Commission recommends that in addition a discussion of the statute of limitation:

* Sexual abuse in other religions should be examined. Adriaenssens advocates a faith center for adults, not only addressing sexual abuse, but also violence.

And Cardinal Danneels knew nothing!

Feast of the Holy Name of Mary

Feast established in thanksgiving for the defeat of the Turks at Vienna on this day, 1683

Friday, September 10, 2010

Bishop of Bruges should face church trial

Mgr Vangheluwe doit être jugé, selon l'évêque de Tournai

The Bishop of Tournai, Guy Harpigny believes that Bishop Roger Van Gheluwe must have a canonical trial, he stated Friday in the columns of " Le Soir".

Bishop Harpigny is the prelate responsible in Belgium for sexual abuse cases involving priests. Only the Holy See is empowered to punish Bishop Van Gheluwe in the Church, he recalls. According to some canon lawyers, a trial could take place, the alleged crime being under statute of limitation, but according to the Bishop of Tournai, the pope could lift these limitations.

Bishop Harpigny had reservations regarding the call by Christian Democrat Senator and canon lawyer , Rik Torfs, who says Bishop Van Gheluwe must request to be reduced to lay status. "They want him to decide for himself about his sentence? Nothing forbids him from doing so, certainly. But for me, it seems that we cannot decide on such facts without trial. We must give sentence but we must also ensure the right of defense. I prefer the way which is more respectful of law and justice," he said. The residence of Bishop Van Gheluwe in the Abbey of Westvleteren is a temporary solution, stresses the Bishop of Tournai.

"It was he who decided to go there in the wake of his resignation. But it was only a temporary housing solution. In any case, a privilege. He must go. It is not healthy that he resides in the diocese presided over" he added.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

We the People of God throw off the Papal Monarchy


Belgium needs a new Cardinal- will the Pope create one?

7s7 Belgique - Andre Leonard cardinal en novembre? (1154815)

Pope Benedict XVI could create a new cardinal in Belgium, in the person of Andre Leonard, according to reports from the Vaticanist of the Italian newspaper La Stampa echoed by Le Soir on Wednesday.

According to this information, the Pope is expected to announce on October 20 a consistory to be held in late November, to create new cardinals, which could include Andre Leonard.

In January 2011, the number of cardinal electors (those aged under 80 years and entitled to elect the Pope) will have dropped to 101 out of 120 vacancies, which would allow the Pope to appoint 19.

Some observers argue that it is unlikely that the Pope creates a new cardinal in an archbishopric which already has a cardinal elector (Archbishop Danneels). The Pope, however, could choose to depart from custom. (Belga)

Cathcon:  Given Danneels complete lack of judgement, one wonders why not strip him of voting rights.    At the last conclave, his judgement was also deeply suspect- his idea of who should be Pope was himself!

Belgium needs a new Cardinal- will the Pope create one?

7s7 Belgique - Andre Leonard cardinal en novembre? (1154815)

Pope Benedict XVI could create a new cardinal in Belgium, in the person of Andre Leonard, according to reports from the Vaticanist of the Italian newspaper La Stampa echoed by Le Soir on Wednesday.

According to this information, the Pope is expected to announce on October 20 a consistory to be held in late November, to create new cardinals, which could include Andre Leonard.

In January 2011, the number of cardinal electors (those aged under 80 years and entitled to elect the Pope) will have dropped to 101 out of 120 vacancies, which would allow the Pope to appoint 19.

Some observers argue that it is unlikely that the Pope creates a new cardinal in an archbishopric which already has a cardinal elector (Archbishop Danneels). The Pope, however, could choose to depart from custom. (Belga)

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

130 new cases of abuse announced in Austria

Bringing the total to 433.

Voluntary laicisation for Bishop of Bruges?

Canonist and Christian Democrat Senator Rik Torfs has suggested the Bishop asks for laicisation to save the church further humiliation and the Pope from having to demand it. He would also save the Belgian state some money because they hopefully would not have to pay his pension.

He dressed as a layman even when he was a Bishop.

Danneels admits to serious mistakes

De Standaard Online - Danneels erkent dat hij ontslag Vangheluwe had moeten eisen

Cardinal Godfried Danneels realizes that he ought have immediately urged Bishop Vangheluwe to resign. He says not doing so his "most serious error of assessment".

He says this in an interview which appears tomorrow morning in Knack. It is the first time the Cardinal has given an interview about the Vangheluwe case.

From the conversations with the victim of the bishop of Bruges which Danneels had, published in The Standard, it appeared that he was not asked to resign. He has always denied that he wanted to cover-up the abuse by Bishop Vangheluwe.

"It was for me in the first place about reconciliation within the family," he says now Knack. "I thought, wrongly, that the family had kept the case private for 24 years , so also wanted to keep it that way."

"That's why I suggested waiting another year until the bishop retired. When there was no immediate explosion, then I have indeed said that something can be forgiven. "

Pastoral approach

Resignation was a "consequence" of that reconciliation, he says now. "But as I suspected dissension within the family, I thought of adopting a pastoral approach."

Danneels denies that he has treated the victim arrogantly. The greeting "Zeg ne keer" (thought patronising) is a common greeting in West Flanders.

"Later in the conversation, I actually told the victim said that I did not wish to hear the story, because I knew the facts. And that was wrong. I should have let him tell the story, however long it lasted. "

Danneels regrets that the conversation ever took place. "I did not go into his (Vangheluwes, ed.) demand for me to meet the family. What Vangheluwe hoped to achieve with this meeting, I can only guess. "

Double whammy of stealth priestesshood

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Yogi Bear Song at National Shrine


Thursday, September 02, 2010

Ironic titles for books authored by Cardinal Danneels

Straight Talk: Conversations with Cardinal Danneels 

Confessions of a Cardinal Interviews with Christian Laporte and Jan Becaus