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June 1997 Roman Catholic Faithful, P.O. Box 109, Petersburg, IL. 62675   
 (217-632-5920)    (Fax 217-632-7054)


Heavenly Father, we ask Your blessing on our efforts. Show us the way to spread the Truth of the Catholic faith in the midst of error and infidelity. Fill our hearts with authentic love for our priests, bishops and all the clergy, a love that moves us to unceasing prayer for their souls and to constant exhortation to faithfully fulfill their sacred task of preaching the Whole Truth of the Catholic Faith without compromise.

Grant us wisdom in our deliberations, courage in promoting the truth, prudence in exposing error, and Charity in all the things we do. Bless our Holy Father the Pope by granting him loyalty and fidelity from the bishops and all the clergy of the church.

We ask these things through the intercession
of our Holy Mother Mary.

 


INDEX:
[ The Wanderer Interviews Father Malachi Martin ] [ Fr. Martin Joins RCF! ]
[Is the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois Catholic? ]
[ A Priest's View] [ Death Comes to the Archdiocese! ]
[ RCF Board Member Arrested While Praying! ]
[ St. Thomas More Lawyer's Guild Speaks Out! ]
[ Upcoming RCF Events and Meetings ]
[ The Good Priest ]


Interview from The Wanderer
By PAUL LIKOUDIS

Since the publication of Malachi Martin's WINDSWEPT HOUSE, (Doubleday) everyone who has read it is asking the same question:

Is it all true?

The brilliantly conceived and elegantly written novel presents Vatican City as a nest of intrigue, where the Holy Father is cautiously temporizing as disloyal cardinals subvert his Papacy and scheme with government and business elites in London and Brussels to advance the New World Order.

Believing that the Church must be a key player in the New World Order - primarily for financial reasons - and that Catholic doctrine on key issues must be "moderated," "transformed," or simply dropped in order for the Church to be accepted as a player in the new power structure, the Pope's unfaithful cardinals plot to isolate John Paul II. That plot - along with dozens of other subplots, ''wheels within wheels " - boils rapidly, making WINDSWEPT HOUSE a thrilling, if somewhat disconcerting, novel.


The novel's title, WINDSWEPT HOUSE, takes its name from a grand home in Galveston, Texas, occupied by an old, very wealthy, and prominent Catholic family which over the centuries has provided valuable services to the Holy See. Two members of that family, brothers - one a priest, the other a lawyer - are the novel's chief protagonists, but they are merely pawns in a high-stakes chess game on which hinges the future social, economic, political, and spiritual development of the world.


Of course, if the work is entirely fiction, Martin's latest book can be dismissed as merely the product of an overly stimulated Irish imagination. If it is largely true, every Catholic should both appreciate the peril the present Pontiff is in, and pray that the Lord have mercy on His Church.

Is WINDSWEPT HOUSE true? That's the question THE WANDERER put to Martin in a recent telephone interview.

 

Q: How is Windswept House selling since its release in June?
A: The book is selling steadily, all over the country, with no dip in sales yet. Almost 55,000 copies in hardcover are in circulation, and the book is expected to come out in paperback within a year.
Q: Have you received any comments from any important Church leaders?
A: Yes, I have. I cannot quote names. Some approved highly, some disapproved highly, with those disapproving challenging the thesis of the story. Those who approve say it's about time someone started telling the truth.
Q: In general, what reaction has there been among most readers?
A: Those who correspond with me or talk to me on the radio shows I have been doing are thanking me for "telling it like it is." Then they ask: Now what is to be done? What are we to do? That is the question answered in the sequel to Windswept House, which I am writing now.
Q: The burning question among Wanderer readers who have read the book is: How much of Windswept House is true?
A: To speak in percentages, roughly 85% of the fictional characters mirror real people, and roughly 85% of events in the book mirror real events, except those which are obviously mythic, such as the final stay of the Slavic Pope in Poland. We are talking about real events and real people masked in the form of a novel; nowadays it is called faction, a term coined by Norman Mailer, but an art form really created by Taylor Caldwell.
Q: Is there such a place as Windswept House? Are there really such people as the Gladstones? Is there as much intrigue in the corridors of the Vatican as you suggest?
A: The answer to all three is yes; and with regard to the last, the answer is yes, and more.While we believe and know by our belief that the Holy Roman Catholic Church is centered in Rome in the person of the Pope, we also know that clustered around his persona, whoever he is, there has grown up a highly skilled chancery and this is seated in a sovereign Vatican City State which enjoys a prestige and global position that no other organization enjoys.

It would be impossible, humanly speaking, and only a miracle could prevent it from happening, that such a spiritual power clothed in sociopolitical garb and living for so long - roughly 1,700 years in full vigor - for the intrigue not to be intense.

If one wants reasons for that, consider a few points: The Vatican has 180 ambassadors who desire to be represented diplomatically with the Holy See. That costs money and personnel, which countries are willing to spend. Apparently, it is worth it.

Second, the Pope has 80 personal ambassadors in over 80 countries, including all the highly industrialized countries and around the world.

Third, the nominal membership of the Catholic Church is almost one billion. It is the only example today of a global organization up and running, even though it is inefficient in terms of promoting its religious mission.

There Is No Evangelization

Q: Regarding that "inefficiency," your book presents a scene in which Pope John Paul II laments the fact that Pope Paul VI's "new evangelization" never got off the ground, and, in fact, your book shows Vatican intriguers boasting about their successful "antievangelization" efforts around the globe over the past 30 years. Can you elaborate on that?
A: There is no doubt that throughout this global organization, there is no vibrancy, there is no burning initiative, there is no manifest movement to convert, to spread the Catholic faith as the Catholic faith. There is no evangelization. We have even gone so far as to have our Churchmen suggest that the Gospel of John should be revised to meet the new concept of Catholicism.

This new concept is enshrined in the movement we call ecumenism, exemplified by the agreement signed with the Orthodox in Lebanon a year ago, in which all the parties agreed not to evangelize each other.
Q: Since you mention the revision of St. John's Gospel, what did you think of Joseph Cardinal Bernardin's famous speech at Hebrew University during Lent, 1995 when he described the Gospel of John as a well of anti-Semitism?
A: That was certainly one of the clearest manifestations of the apostasy into which His Eminence Cardinal Bernardin and other members of the Sacred College have fallen: They have decided that for the good of humanity the Roman Catholic organization should collaborate completely with the New World Order and its demographic and educational exigencies - population limitation and the takeover of schools by the state. His Eminence is not alone in this apostasy.
Q: Is this view assumed for religious reasons primarily or is it as you suggest, for financial reasons?
A: Their choice has been made because they have lost the Roman Catholic faith. They are sincerely attached to the New World Order's promise of peace and plenty.
Q: Is there such a mountain as Aminadab outside of Jerusalem, at the peak of which is a Masonic Lodge? Some readers suspect you are referring to Tantur, a gathering place for some of the most liberal Catholic ecumenists in the world. Is Aminadab Tantur?
A: No. Aminadab is an actual hill or mountain, and from it you can see the Lebanese mountains, the Mediterranean, and the mountains of the Sinai peninsula. The Masonic Lodge building at the peak is an invention, but there is a large lodge in Israel to which Catholics, Muslims, and Jews belong. This ecumenical lodge believes that all these religions have a contribution to make to the socio-cultural and sociopolitical stability of nations. It is purely and simply on the natural plane.
Q: You describe a gruesome murder in Century City (Chicago) when introducing readers to your Cardinal Leonardine (Bernardin). There are a number of people who will be very disturbed when they see that murder described, because they know you are recording an event that actually took place. If you have the story on that ritual murder, why not tell it as fact, and not fiction?
A: Because I am writing a novel, and I am not blaming any body, living or dead, nor am I fixing any responsibility to anyone no more than any novelist does. Let those who write factual reports please write it. It is about time they fulfill their duties.
Q: How do you know a common effort among business and Church elites to create a New World Order exists? For example, did you ever see any evidence documenting the meeting you de scribe in Strasbourg between top European business leaders and Vatican officials?
A: Strasbourg was a novelistic ploy. There have been several meetings and get-togethers. These are very quiet meetings. They are very private. How does word get out? There is always diplomatic communication and people who pass papers on. It is impossible for such powerful men to get together regularly and to hone their policies to suit each other, without word getting out. It doesn't become public knowledge because no one will talk about it publicly.

This year, for example, between May 29th and June 2nd, the Bilderbergers met in King City, Ontario. There has never been a word about that, even though the purpose of the discussions was to talk about global communications control, an issue that affects every one of us. Attending it were several prominent Americans, including Vernon Jordan.
Q: One of the strongest criticisms of your book is that it is fiction, and it can easily be derided as "just fiction. " If all you say is true, why didn't you name the names? Why didn't you name Agostino Cardinal Casaroli instead of inventing Cardinal Maestroianni, etc.?
A: I am a Roman Catholic priest and have a reverence for prelates and their privacy, no matter how off course they might be. And a certain amount of reverence is implied by fictionalizing their characters and actions.

Besides, it keeps the book in a certain literary genre which is safe to use from the point of view of the public record. And I am not going to write a book judging morally the present regime of cardinals and prelates in the Church unless absolutely necessary for the good of the Church.
Q: What do you think generally of the level of skill and competence - from a merely secular point of view - of the staff members in the Secretary of State's office? How do they rate with their peers in the world?
A: They rate very highly, especially the Second Section, which deals with foreign nations. Most recently, there is no doubt that they, under the stimulus of the present Pope, achieved notable results in their struggle against the UN demographers proposing very drastic means of population control.

They out-maneuvered them; they have cultivated parliamentary procedures matching the most malignant of their opponents, because malignant those opponents were in Beijing and Cairo. So they get good marks for that. The measured statement the Second Section allowed the Holy Father to make criticizing President Clinton for partial-birth abortion was strong enough to let the world know that Clinton had committed an abomination.

One of their chief levels of skill is the collection and use of information. They have an Intelligence system which is superb. That is why many nations want representatives in the Vatican. They want the information.
Q: What kind of information are we talking about?
A: The coded messages sent over the wires and in diplomatic pouches are about the stock market, industrial production, academic conditions, economic conditions, family conditions, and so on. They cover every aspect of human life. The Vatican must have this information because it has a very large portfolio invested in every sector.

For example, the Vatican has all the details on what really happened in Burundi between the Hutu and the Tutsi. It won't publish the information because it would reveal the infidelity of the clergy to their Catholic principles: the collapse of the clergy and the bishops, and taking sides and indulging in killing. It was a disgrace. Tribalism won out.

Then there is the fact that it was the Vatican which provided Boris Yeltsin with the short-wave radio he needed to address the Russian people from the top of the tank during the coup.

Now here's the rub for a man like me: I find that lock, stock, and barrel, this skill and intelligence, this romanitas, is now backing the New World Order, fighting for certain things, but backing the New World Order nevertheless, and that's where the difficulty comes.

But it all goes back to Pope Paul VI's closing comments to the bishops in December, 1965 at the end of the council, in which he said that the Church will now collaborate with men in building the human habitat.
Q: But this isn't new, is it? Is this not the 20th-century equivalent of Church and king collaborating as they did 1,000 years ago?
A: The Church never, but never, asserted that it's mission was to help man build a better world. The Church has always asserted that its mission was to save souls to help men get to Heaven. They promulgated laws to make men more moral and less sinful. But to join hands and make religion sub sidiary to the socioeconomic well being of nations is nonsense.
Q: Doesn't the Vatican-Israel accord signify the failure of the Holy See's diplomatic corps which you previously appraised as the most highly skilled in the world?
A: It means precisely the following: that the Holy See as a financial power was out-maneuvered.

The Burden Of Peter

 

Q: Often, when an American prelate is praised by the secular media for his ability to "get things done in Rome" - prelates such as Cardinal Bernardin or Pittsburgh's Bishop Donald Wuerl - reporters use the word romanitas to characterize their skill.

No one who reads your book will ever think highly of romanitas again, because the word is loaded with the concepts of blackmail, murder, intrigue, hypocrisy. Is this really what romanitas signifies?
A: It is what romanitas has come to signify in the present epoch. The romanitas of a man like Cardinal Consalvi, the secretary of state dealing with the Congress of Vienna after the Napoleonic wars, cannot be compared to what we have today. Consalvi not only matched wits with giants like Metternich and Castlereagh, but also secured the advantageous position of economic independence of the Holy See. But he did this without conceding one inch either to the rampant republicans or to the very dictatorial attitudes of the imperialists.

The compromisers today are such that romanitas is a means of perpetuating a bureaucratic class which is no longer interested in genuine evangelization.
Ecclesiastical romanitas started in earnest with Pope Sylvester I in the fourth century. He was provided a public identity and power from the Emperor Constantine, and from then on dates the constant enmeshing of the spiritual power with temporal surroundings. Before that, the Church was utterly separate, independent of the temporal power.

The skill Vatican diplomats have developed over 17 centuries has given them a group instinct for where the gravamen of human power in any particular epoch is moving. For a long time it was used for survival; but the enmeshing often became dangerous for the morality of clerics. It also enabled the Church to escape from dilemmas posed to it over 1,700 years, and the guiding light in all cases was always the behavior of the man who was elected Pope.
Q: On the levels of skill and intrigue, how would you compare the diplomatic skill of Churchmen such as Cardinal Richelieu with Cardinal Casaroli, and do you think Casaroli's accomplishments will be compared to those of Richelieu?
A: Richelieu was, and remains, unmatched for the skill which he used, alone, to change the map of Europe disastrously for the Roman Catholic Church, because he ended up promoting the Protestant powers.
Q: Is the same going on today?
A: Yes, but in an inverse way. The Pope today is as impotent as was Pope Urban VIII in the time of Richelieu. On top of that, the present Holy Father has the added difficulty that there is a complete lack of fervor and enthusiasm for the Catholic cause throughout Europe and the Americas.

The reason this Pope does not get rid of cardinals and bishops who violate traditional rules is that he happens to share the view of the relationship between Pope and bishops according to the postconciliar version of the doctrine of collegiality.
Q: You write in Windswept House that the Pope has his own vision for Europe and the development of the modern world, and he even has a few good men working in support of his plan, against the machinations of the professional intriguers. Will the Pope succeed over time, or is he in an ecclesiastical end-game?
A: This Holy Father will not succeed in changing the onrush of events which will culminate once he leaves the scene, either by resignation or by death. He simply can not outmaneuver his opponents.

His Papacy has been successful in this basic sense: that nobody can ever doubt his consciousness of carrying the burden of Peter. He has carried the message of Christ all over the world, and given millions the richness of the Gospel.

With his encyclicals, he has provided Catholics with a sheaf of new principles and fresh insights with which they can navigate the New World Order, which will not be a friendly place for Catholics.

The Wanderer
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 Father Malachi Martin has joined RCF and offers his full support. Father is working on a statement which will be published in our next newsletter.

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RCF needs your prayers and financial support!

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Please print out and mail your donation to:
Roman Catholic Faithful, Inc.
P.O. Box 109
Petersburg, IL 62675

ph: 217-632-5920 Fax: 217-632-7054

http://www.rcf.org

 

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Prayer, Fasting & Proclaiming the Truth.

Thanks for all that you do.

A.M.D.G.
We are a Not-For-Profit Corp.
but are not a 501 c/3 because we intend
to confront Catholic Politicians who are Pro-Abortion, etc.

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

[Return to Index]


Is the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois Catholic?
By Stephen Brady

Four years ago when parish council members and a religion teacher at our local parish were introducing the public school children to Planned Parenthood, "safe sex" and contraception, I felt confident the problem could be remedied by our pastor’s intervention. Boy was I wrong. Not only did the scandal continue, the Parish Council member that publicly endorsed Planned Parenthood’s message was appointed to the Diocesan Tribunal.

Last October I interviewed several priests from our diocese and was told of their bishop’s homosexual activities. Once again I felt confident that we could correct the situation with the help of the American hierarchy. Once again I was wrong!
 
It is up to the laity. The Papal Nuncio and the NCCB seem to fear the Cross that Christ said they must carry if they wish to follow Him. We need to examine the life styles of our Church leaders in this country to find out why this is so. While so many of their fellow priests are being persecuted the NCCB pays us lip service. Why? We at RCF intend to find out as soon as we resolve the situation within the Springfield Diocese.
 
When one looks back at the early Church and all those who gave their lives rather than deny their Faith, we must ask —how can we allow the leadership in this diocese to mock the authentic Catholic Faith and tradition?
 
Father Eck throws insults at traditional Catholics at Sacred Heart by changing the words of the Mass to suit his own desires. "You must be willing to accept change" Father says as he talks down to those whose lives were once nourished at Sacred Heart.
 
Fr. Costa, in his April 13, 1997 church bulletin states, "Only 32 percent of the registered parishioners of Holy Family parish attend Mass each weekend, and only 36 percent of the registered parishioners of St. John Vianney parish attend Mass each weekend." Can you assure us you believe in the Real Presence Father? If Jesus was there, the people would also be there. Can good fruit come from a rotten tree.
 
The January 26, 1997 Cathedral bulletin advertises "Introduction to Enneagram". What are we to think? Is this Catholicism?
 
Bishop Ryan and Father Holinga, what are you afraid of? You have threatened legal action, threatening to turn to the civil courts— have you no Faith to stand on? Call me in, demand a full accounting, have me explain myself, Save My Soul!! Do you fear the Truth? "The Truth will set you free".
 
It is time to remove the cancer eating away at this diocese. Heresy, schism, and apostasy are feeding that cancer. We must expose the problem before we can ever attempt to solve it.
 
What does it mean to be Catholic? Fr. Swiatek (RIP) once told me "to join the Church, you must be willing to accept all that She teaches". Even if we narrow that statement down to the basic teachings of the Church such as the Real Presence, the Virgin Birth, the Blessed Trinity and so on—where does this diocese stand on these issues?
 
If a Bishop, Priest, Nun or Catholic teacher represent themselves as Roman Catholic only to deny some Truth of the Catholic Faith which must be believed—are they still Catholic?
 
Peter, our first Pope, was given the keys to the kingdom, "upon this Rock I shall build my Church..." We were given an institution by which we could always know the Truth. The Council of Trent in the canons on the sacrament of order stated:
 
Can. 6 If anyone says that in the Catholic Church there is not instituted a hierarchy by divine ordinance, which consists of bishops, priests and ministers let him be anathema."
 
Not only does the teaching office of the Springfield Diocese deny Canon 6, they mock the Council of Trent. I will explain.
 
In October of 1995, I attended a class offered by the Springfield Diocese Office of Education. This class was called "Overview of Catholic Teaching." The classes were held at Christ The King School in Springfield and were a total of ten hours. These classes were required for Diocesan Basic Certification. During these classes we were given some printed hand-outs for study. I have taken a few quotes from one such hand-out. These quotes were in the form of question and answer. They read as follows:
 
Question 15: "Jesus set up the positions of Pope and bishops as we have them today." False. The positions of Pope and bishops as we have them today are different from the positions in the 3rd century, and they were different then from the time of Jesus and the period immediately after his death. Theologians argue today about what institutional aspects of the church, if any, were established directly by Jesus.
 
Does that sound like Catholic teaching? Remember the Council of Trent "Let them be anathema" Well, the Office of education had an answer for the Council of Trent. The following year The Office of Education for the Springfield Diocese was selling T-Shirts which stated "The Council of Trent; Been there, Done That, Moved On." Once again the Springfield Diocese denies the Catholic Faith. Here were a few more statements given out during this class:
 
Question 4: "Jesus preached against sexual sins often." False. Because he mentioned sexual sins only a few times, Jesus clearly did not preach against them often. No obsession about sexual matters can be found in the attitude of Jesus. He preached against hypocrisy more than anything else.
 
Question 6: "Jesus knew all things since he was a child." False. Theologians argue and always will about the knowledge and consciousness of Jesus, but most would agree that Jesus did not know all things since he was a child. Karl Rahner writes that Jesus grew in knowledge and consciousness the way we do, through experience, historical influence, and personal relationships.
 
 
"I guess God did not know he was God" as Mother Angelica would say.
 
 
In February of 1995 I attended a day long retreat at the Dominican Renewal Center in Riverton. Sr. K. Cour (Office of Worship) played a part in this retreat. The speaker, Carla Mae Streeter, O.P., taught us that
 
1. The Baltimore Catechism taught us to hate Protestants.
2. She compared all male Church to slavery, that has reduced
     one-half the  Church community to slavery.
3. "We are all saved, but we (Catholics), unlike others, we know
     who saved us, who brought us healing, and we say thank
    you."
 
It would serve no purpose to go on with the list of abuses. Most of you have your own story to tell. But there is one recent event I would like to share with you.
 

In the June 8, 1997 issue of the Taylorville Breeze-Courier there was some interesting information about an Eckankar Memorial Service which was held at St. Mary’s Church. The deceased Edward K. Hames was "a member of the Masonic Order" and "an ordained minister in Eckankar, Religion of The Light and Sound of God."
 

ECKANKAR
- The Ancient Science of Soul Travel
Eckankar, otherwise known as the "Ancient Science of Soul Travel", was founded in 1964 by Paul Twitchell (Enroth 59). Although Eckankar claims to be the "oldest religious teaching in all the world", one can easily see by looking at Twitchell's life that this claim is not true (Gross 2).....
.......The members of Eckankar believe their movement is the only way to God.

As Darwin Gross contends: "Eck is the shortest way to God...Whenever a man pursues creeds, priests and organizations, he will find a religion of some sort, but never the way to enter the kingdom of God as stated by the great Eck Masters" (Gross 27). Thomas Flamma also states in his book that the: "prime purpose of making known the existence of Eckankar is to allow individuals the opportunity to experience this direct path to God..." (232). Again, he is supporting that Eckankar is the quickest and only way to God. Another strong belief held by all Eckists is their respect of the Living Eck Master. They uphold him so high that they seem to put him equal with God. Twitchell says this of the Living Eck Master:

"The Living Eck Master is the only man, or should I say being, who is capable of manifesting both individualism and universalism in their full expressions. He is law unto himself, does what he pleases, has what he wants, comes and goes absolutely at his own will, and asks no favors of any man." (67). (Cult Awareness & Information Centre - Australia)

It is time to march on the Chancery!!!

1. RCF is in the process of creating a Web Page devoted to the Springfield Diocese.(http://www.fgi.net/~rcf). This Web Page will contain information about heretical teaching and practices, abuses and other anti-Catholic practices going on within the Springfield Diocese. If you have any contributions to make, please contact RCF for instructions on where to send the documentation. We must expose the problem!

2. We need to hear from every Catholic that would be willing to take part in prayer vigils and protests that will be taking place in the Diocese on a regular basis.

3. We need the help of an Illinois attorney with experience in Not-For-Profit organizations to help RCF determine what rights Catholics may have when in comes to obtaining access to records concerning how their donations are spent.

4. RCF needs the names of our members with computer skills and Internet access who would be willing to help with the Web Page.

Roman Catholic Faithful, Inc.
P.O. Box 109
Petersburg, IL. 62675
ph. 217-632-5920 fax 217-632-7054

http://www.rcf.org
http://www.fgi.net/~rcf

[Return to Index]


The following letter was sent to me by a priest from the Springfield Diocese. There will be more to come.

SOME AREAS OF CONCERN -
A PRIEST'S VIEW

LITURGICAL ISSUES-

In 1977 a committee of the NCCB produced a document called "Environment and Art in Catholic Worship". This document was presented to the "Administrative Committee" for approval but was never approved by a plenary session of the Bishops. Because of that, it was never presented as "particular law" for the dioceses of the United States. In Springfield we were told it was the binding law and Churches were torn apart with EACW as justification. If the "experts" had read the NCCB Committee on the Liturgy Newsletter (Vol XXI 1965) they would have seen that EACW was not in fact particular law. This fact has been known for years but in our diocese Sr. Kathleen Cour O.P. with Bishop Ryan’s full knowledge and support has continued to use it as a tool to destroy Churches. If you allow the Office of Worship to "renew" your Church, you will have no crucifix, no tabernacle, no kneelers, even the altar may be pushed to the side. What is being done here in Springfield is NOT the vision of the Roman Catholic Church. Several new and renewed Churches have the tabernacle in a very small space which in no way could be honestly called a Eucharistic chapel. ( In one new Church I saw two folding metal chairs stuck in a small space the size of a large bathroom lit by two emergency exit lights!)

Those who have tried to protest have been ignored or treated with disdain. When the Presbyterial Council asked for a "study" day to question many of the liturgical values, the day was so filled with presenters trying to convince the priests that the office of worship was correct that there was only five minutes left at the end of the day to bring up questions! The questions that had been raised by a questionnaire given to all the priests were never addressed!

The bishop has even given Sr. Cour such power that if a Priest needs to re-paint the sanctuary he must fill out a long questionnaire and provide a detailed plan for the "renewal" of the entire church. This extortion has Bishop Ryan's full approval.

Anything having to do with traditional Catholic worship is looked down upon and is tolerated at best. The Pope has granted permission for the Tridentine Mass to be celebrated with the local bishops permission and has asked that bishops give this permission "generously"! Those who have sought this permission in this diocese have been refused by the bishop. He gives the excuse that no one really wants it, but I believe the truth is that he and Sr. Cour are scared to death to think that a very large number of people would respond if they only had the chance.

The fact is the fullness and richness of the Roman Catholic Liturgy is being withheld or taken away from the people of this diocese by a very few powerful people supported and protected by Bishop Ryan. If they are truly concerned about the liturgy, why is a priest at Blessed Sacrament sitting while extraordinary ministers distribute Communion? Why did a priest at the Cathedral go back in the sacristy during a mass and dump unconsecrated hosts from a plastic bag into the ciborium and distribute them as the Body of Christ?! Why are sisters giving the homily at masses? There is a long list of abuses that are not only tolerated but encouraged by this administration.
Recently a priest put an insert in his bulletin questioning why Mass attendance was so poor. It is hard to believe he had to ask the question. The numbers tell the truth. The people want to worship God, they want to hear the truth and want to be proud of being Roman Catholic. That has been taken away from them by people who should be nourishing their faith rather that taking it away from them.

People are beginning to wake up! From Cardinal Ratzinger to the people in the pew, slowly people are beginning to say out loud what has been obvious for years - What we experience as liturgical renewal is not what Vatican II intended and has had a devastating effect on our Catholic people!

THE PASTORAL PLAN IS NEITHER:

The word "pastoral" suggests it is concerned with the care of God’s people and the good of the Church. The word "Plan" would give one the impression that there is some clear way of addressing those needs in an orderly fashion. Therefore a real "pastoral plan" would be a plan for Vocations to provide more priests for the diocese. Parishes are closing and yet the bishop in a radio interview says that "we don’t have too few priests, we have too many parishes."! Several years ago all the priests met with the bishop in Sherman and one priest stood and asked the bishop what we are doing for vocations? The bishop said he would let our Diocesan Vocation Director answer that question. Fr. Kuse went to the microphone and said simply "We have no program." It has been years since that meeting and we still have no program. The so-called pastoral plan is nothing more than a set of rubrics for an orderly wake. It does nothing to address the real problems but only provides for an orderly burial of priestless parishes. When the people of God have no priest in there parish or a priest who only drops by once a week on his way to three other Churches, it is cold comfort to tell them; "Don’t worry, its all part of the pastoral plan!"

PRIESTLY MORALE IN THE DIOCESE OF SPRINGFIELD:

The priesthood is under attack in the diocese of Springfield!

1. We cannot seem to develop a vocation program, but we
     have a high powered lay-ministry program to provide
     people to replace priests.
2. Priests are not consulted concerning the disposition of their
     own parishes.
3. The presbyterial council has become something of a joke,
     only existing because it’s canonically required. The bishop
     wants to emphasize the "pastoral council" instead but put a
     few priests on it for window dressing.
4. We are now talking about a "vocation office". Which will
     certainly be concerned with all kinds of vocations and not
     just priestly ones. (The "seamless garment approach")
5. In the past money could not be found for a raise in the
     priests’ salary, but raises for sisters, teachers, janitors, etc.
     were matters of "peace and justice!"
6. Priests do not trust the Bishop or those close to him. We all
    wonder what happened to the results of the survey we all
    filled out. We paid thousands of dollars for it. But apparently
    when the Bishop saw the results of the priests evaluation of
    the value of the Curial offices........ The report just
    disappeared! Instead we got a thinly disguised "pep rally" in
    the name of planning for the new millennium, which was
    nothing more than an effort to try and convince priests how
    lucky they were to have all these new offices!
7. The entire Diocese used to be run out of the basement of the
    Cathedral rectory, now we are filling up an entire high school
    building with offices, staff, and salaries.
8. The Diocese demands a detailed accounting of parish funds,
     but does not provide one on its own budget (Detailed!!!!!!)
     Many people would like to see some financial accountability
     and disclosure. In the past few years the diocesan        
     beaurocracy has ballooned to an absurd degree. All of these
     offices with their staffs and secretaries may not be necessary
     or even useful to the parishes. (But we’ll never know since
     the aforesaid survey was "lost"!
9. During previous administrations if a person made a complaint
    about a priest for any reason, the priest was notified and
    given an opportunity to respond. Now a priest has no idea
    what is being said about him or how it may affect his present
    or his future. The Bishop has had "secret meetings" with
    individuals and groups without allowing the priest to
    participate or even be aware the meeting occurred!
10. To have no vocation program tells a priest more than
    anything how much his office is valued in the Diocese!!!
11. The janitors in our parishes had better insurance benefits
    than the priests. For years some priests have paid a large
    part of their salaries for prescriptions to keep them healthy
    and at the altar. While there was such great concern about
    our employees retirement and health we did little to
    take care of our retired priests and the bishop is reported to
    have said at a presbyterial council meeting that they could
    very well end up on welfare and food stamps. (Not something
    likely to happen to the Bishop!)
12. The future of the priesthood in this diocese is to be a
     "sacrament machine" running from parish to parish having
    mass while a layman or a sister is in fact the "pastor".
13. We are creating structures and lines of authority which in
     fact do not exist in the canonical structure of the Roman
    Catholic Church.
14. Many priests themselves, in an effort to survive, have lost
    much of their integrity. They know they are not valued and
    have no place in the future of the church being created in this
    diocese and so have an "I got mine" attitude. "Just leave me
    alone in my parish, the less I have to do with Springfield the
    better!" This is because they feel helpless to change the
    situation in which they are trapped. There is a depression
    because they see a bleak future and nothing being done by
    those in authority to change it for themselves or the people
    they serve!
15. As a group, priests are rather intelligent men, if for no other
    reason than the years of schooling they have shared. When
    intelligent, spiritual men are treated like simple fools it is
    demeaning and frustrating. To be treated with condescension
    rather than respect produces anger, and to think that
    priests are so foolish as not to notice is the greatest
    disrespect of all!!!!!
16. There is a serious morale problem among the priests of this
    diocese! We have received a little "pious verbiage" but little
    in the way of any hope for a future for priestly ministry here;
    on the contrary, all the planning is toward the death of the
    priesthood in our diocese.
17. Strangely enough in recent weeks there has been an
    outpouring of concern for priests from the diocese. We got a
    raise and a prescription card and so did our retired priests.
    This is seen as too little, too late. It’s not perceived as a
    caring response to need, but an effort to avert scandal.
18. In a time of priest shortage our work is made more difficult
    by the structures that have been created. What used to take
    a phone call now requires committees, meetings,   
    questionnaires, and unwanted interference from chancery
    officials. This is NOT perceived as helpful, but simply
    distrustful of a priest’s knowledge and ability to guide his own
    parish. (Where did our survey go!)
19. Letters are not answered, permissions are not given, priests
    are left hanging. The astounding and expensive beaurocracy
    that is still expanding in our diocese has replaced the simple
    image of a bishop and his priests working together. This
    enormous structure is seen as the Bishop’s way of
    insulating himself from the responsibility of decision-making.
20. The evidence reveals that the Bishop and those to whom he
    has given authority are working from and toward a model of
    Church that is not traditional Roman Catholic, nor the model
    presented by Vatican II. He has focused on the expanded
    ministry of the laity as is proper, but he has failed to support
    his priests in there special ministry.
21. One sign of the unhappiness of priests in this diocese is the
    large number of priests who find work elsewhere, or retire
    early, or simply withdraw within their parish boundaries. The
    priests know that this is a very easy diocese to leave, very
    little effort is made to keep priests.
22. The difficulties priests have with Bishop Ryan are not
    personal. His vision of the Church is not the vision of Vatican
    II, and he does not have the leadership abilities that are
    needed. We pray for him daily and sincerely!

[Return to Index]


Death Comes to the Archdiocese!

Erosion of the faith in the Archdiocese
of Milwaukee, Wisconsin
By Stephanie Block

Working down through the mountain of news clippings, letters of the faithful, flyers, brochures, articles, and Vatican documents, the researcher is overwhelmed by the sheer volume of evidence leveled against the Milwaukee Archdiocesan hierarchy. The evidence is dispassionately offered, piece by piece, from supporter and detractor. It makes no attempt to measure the moral cost of scandal or the human suffering from sin which lies behind each documented story. It does, however, cry out for correction and redress.
 
This evidence of willful disobedience to, and defiance of, Church and moral teaching falls into four, primary categories: a failure to provide honest and compassionate homosexual ministry, a failure to provide honest and chaste religious instruction, a failure to defend the unborn, and a failure to provide healthy seminary formation to aspiring vocations. Each failure might be expressed another way. The archdiocese has exhibited tremendous success in exacerbating the moral confusion about homosexuality, about sexuality, about a moral commitment to life, and about religious vocations. This is not a success to be proud of.

Failure to provide compassionate homosexual ministry: As far back as the 1980s, concerned Catholics confronted Milwaukee Archbishop Rembert Weakland for his shockingly imprudent "out-reach" to the homosexual community. What was shocking was not the establishment of programs designed to minister to, or evangelize within, the homosexual community - a moral equivalent of "sitting among sinners and eating with them." Not at all. What was shocking was the establishment of programs which failed to minister and evangelize the homosexual community, and which were themselves a rejection of moral understanding.

Among these programs was the Milwaukee AIDS Project. Archbishop Weakland helped to found, and served in an advisory capacity on the Board of Trustees for the Project. Archbishop Weakland was also a major fund-raiser and spokesman for it. [Milwaukee Journal, "US Bishops Retreat from AIDS Policy," March 25, 1988; Weakland fundraising letter for Milwaukee AIDS Project and AIDS Resource Center, December 19, 1986.]

What differentiated this Project from a Catholic charity or program was that rather than provide help to the stricken individual, it provided instead lessons on how to derive the maximum pleasure with the (apparent) minimum consequence. The AIDS Project distributed graphic brochures which contained instructions on "safe-sex" techniques, including "mutual masturbation," "light S & M," and the use of "one’s own sex toys." Readers were encouraged to enjoy "massages, fantasy, videos, phone sex…and other creative pastimes [which] can add to your sex life without adding risk of disease." [taken from brochures distributed by the Milwaukee AIDS Project.] The Project also distributed condoms in an effort to promote "safe-sex." [Ibid.] Today, the Project seeks the funding to provide free, clean needles for drug use.

Not content merely to recommend, the Milwaukee AIDS Project co-sponsored a Gay and Lesbian Film Festival at Catholic Marquette University in February, 1988, as a part of "AIDS Awareness Week." Members of Milwaukee’s Catholics Serving the Lord (CSL) viewed and audio-taped parts of the Festival. One film which CSL reviewed contained "scenes of gay erotica and masturbation. It further underlined the need for gays to become militant in their fight to make homosexual activity legitimate, legal, and accepted by society."

Milwaukee AIDS Project advertised for its various "Fests" and Fund-raising Benefits in InStep, a local periodical for Milwaukee homosexuals, which contained, in the same pages as the AIDS Project advertisement, photographs of a person engaged in "solo sexual enjoyment" and the advertisement for a "sexually explicit" calendar. [August 6, 1986, InStep]

The archdiocese permitted weekly DIGNITY Masses. As of 1989, the Milwaukee Archdiocesan Board Of Education policy mandated that all Catholic elementary and secondary schools develop an AIDS curriculum which included information about the use of condoms. [Milwaukee Journal, "Right Tone on Tough Topics," November 14, 1989] The archdiocese also produced a brochure, titled simply "To Answer Some Questions," which stated that:

The Bible has very little to say about homosexuality.
The Bible does not identify the sin of Sodom with homosexuality.


A Catholic may in good conscience make a decision not in total agreement with Church teaching on a particular issue and still remain within the Church.

It is hardly surprising, therefore, that episodes of clerical sexual abuse abound in the archdiocese. In 1983, the principal (who was a priest) of the Mother of Good Counsel Parish school, along with several of the school’s teachers, became alarmed over the behavior of a new pastor and his assistants. It had been observed that the new priest had on several occasions taken young boys to his private bedroom, one at a time. When the principal and his teachers warned the Archdiocese, rather than investigate these concerns, the teachers were threatened with a libel suit and along with the principal, were later fired. Subsequently, one of the assistant priests who had been identified as engaging in suspicious behavior was convicted of sexual assault of a child. [CSL Letter to Pope John Paul II, July 10, 1988, detailing Archdiocesan abuses.]

In 1980, a Milwaukee priest, Fr. James Arimond, led a 4-part series on "Homosexuality and Its Impact on the Family." In the Milwaukee Journal’s promotional article for the series, Fr. Arimond was quoted as saying that "a pervert is someone who goes against his or her sexual tendency. If a heterosexual acted homosexually, that would be perversion. Similarly, if a homosexual acted heterosexually, that would be a perversion." [September 20, 1980]

Archbishop Weakland took a similar position. In a July 19, 1990 column of the Archdiocesan paper, he wrote, "Jesus says nothing specific about homosexuality. But St. Paul is quite explicit: he is indeed harsh with heterosexuals engaging in homosexual activity." [The Catholic Herald, "An Open Letter: Who Is Our Neighbor?" by The Most Reverend Rembert G. Weakland, July 19, 1980.]

In 1988, both CSL and Catholics United for the Faith expressed their concern about the teachings of Fr. Arimond, who was by then the chaplain of the Milwaukee Dignity chapter, and a regular columnist for the Wisconsin Light, a member publication of the Gay and Lesbian Press Association. In particular, they drew attention to a mailer, "To Answer Some Questions," (mentioned above) which was co-authored by Fr. Arimond and which were handed out at lectures he gave at the archdiocesan Cousins Center. The 2-page flyer stated that the Catholic Church’s moral theologians held "differing viewpoints on the morality of homosexual acts. When making a moral decision…ultimately it is the individual’s conscience which must be his or her guide. A Catholic may in good conscience make a decision not in total agreement with Church teaching and still remain within the Church if they do not deny any point of divine and Catholic faith and do not reject the teaching authority of the Church. An example of this is the millions of American Catholics who have decided on a moral stance different from the teaching of the Church and use artificial means of birth control, yet remain Catholics in good standing." [Mailer authored by Reverend James Arimond and Leon Konieczny, in Conjunction with the Spouse and Parents Support Committee through Adult and Family Ministry of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, "To Answer Some Questions," envelope postmarked March 18, 1988.]

Not only did Archbishop Weakland fail to respond to the expressed concerns voiced about Fr. Arimond, Weakland promoted Arimond to serve as pastor of a local parish. In 1990, Fr. Arimond pleaded "no contest" to charges that he had sexual contact with a teenage boy (a minor). [Milwaukee Sentinel and Milwaukee Journal, July 24, 1990.]

In such a climate, Catholic morale and discipline plummeted. By 1993, there were 7 known priests involved in pedophilia in the Milwaukee Archdiocese, involving over a hundred young victims. In the cases of most, if not all of these priests, the Archdiocese had been informed of the problem long before it made the headlines. By 1997, more cases of pedophilia had surfaced.
 
Where in all of this "out-reach" is the Christian charity which will lovingly tell a man to his face that his behavior is self-destructive and hurtful? Where is the moral guidance and spiritual support he needs to escape temptation and disordered proclivities?

Failure to provide honest and chaste religious education: In addition to this disturbing (and flawed) homosexual "out-reach," CSL was deeply distressed over the use of several unchaste sex education programs in Catholic parochial schools. One of these was the "New Creation Series," which Edouard Cardinal Gagnon of the Pontificium Consilium Pro Familia has referred to as a "travesty," but which continues to be used in archdiocesan schools.
 
The Archdiocese also produced its own sex education program, "Valuing Your Sexuality." The textbook for the Archdiocesan series was written by two abortion advocates and two dissident nuns. Among the program’s many amoral components is an exercise from the teacher’s manual in which children are asked to decide on their own at what age activities such as masturbation, oral sex, abortion, contraception, incest, and premarital intercourse are appropriate. Another lesson has the children playing a word search game to teach familiarization with the terms "erection," "copulation," "masturbation," "rape," clitoris," "testicles," and the like.

The Archdiocese also ran an adult sex education program called "Sexual Attitude Reassessment." Offered from 1978 to 1988, the program’s registration form invited prospective participants to examine their sexual attitudes by considering the following statement, "I am aware that although my partner and I have a sexual relationship, I am not as free as I would often like to be…" Far from using the program to ask people why they were copulating with "sexual partners" and not spouses, the program promised to examine "how we were trained (or not trained) to hold restricting attitudes about our sexuality." Sexually explicit films, produced by the National Sex Forum ( a distributor of other such educational titles as "Plain and Fancy Penises," "Hookers," and "Women in Love: Strategies of Black Lesbians") showed male and female masturbation, heterosexual and homosexual intercourse, and variations in oral sex. [Flyers and registration form from 1988 "Reassessment of Sexual Attitudes" workshop conducted at Archdiocesan Cousins Center.] The program was protested for years, but it was not until 1988, when CSL exposed the program on television, that public opinion forced the archdiocese to shut it down.
 
One need not penetrate the motives behind the AIDS Project or the Archdiocesan sex education programs to ask what has been the practical success - the outcome - of the Archdiocese’s amoral, "non-judgmental" sexual preoccupation. Did these programs curb illicit homosexual and heterosexual behavior in Milwaukee, or did they exacerbate such activity and deaden the conscience to chastity?

Failure to defend the unborn: In 1990, Archbishop Weakland released a 21-page statement attacking what he called "the strong influence of fundamentalist positions on some of the pro-life women." [Milwaukee Journal, "Weakland Not Looking for ‘Holy War,’" May 21, 1990] The statement caused a furor among Catholics, but provided deep solace to pro-abortion groups.
Pro-choice professor, Daniel Maguire, publicly interpreted the Archbishop’s statement as "calling for more dialog, not saying how can we convince these women. For [Weakland], abortion is not a closed question. He treats it with compassion and sees it full of ambiguity, not a choice that is crystal clear." [Milwaukee Journal, "Abortion Opponents Angered by Weakland’s criticism," May 21, 1990.] Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin and the National Abortion Rights Action League of Wisconsin (NARAL) also expressed their delight at the statement. "This is a significant step forward for the church," NARAL crowed. [Ibid.]

The defenders of the unborn ask how such capitulation to abortion providers and their proponents has saved a single unborn life, or rescued one pregnant mother from making the most heart-rending decision of her life?
 
Failure to provide healthy seminary formation to aspiring vocations: Weakland has attacked the US Catholic Bishop’s for denying support to women’s priestly ordination. [Milwaukee Sentinel, "Weakland Rips Pastoral Letter for Avoiding Woman’s Role," May 11,1990] The Sacred Heart School of Theology, a seminary located within the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, has publicly touted its not-so-subtle efforts to prepare the present generation of priests for the ordination of women. "I will do everything I can to push that edge forward," said a retiring nun who had taught at the seminary for 22 years. "I totally affirm and believe that there is no obstacle to the ordination of women." That remark appeared in the May 19, 1990 Milwaukee Sentinel.

By 1993, the Milwaukee Journal had deeper scandals to report out of Sacred Heart. A student had placed a personal ad in a gay publication, providing the seminary phone number. Another student was arrested for soliciting sex from a male officer in a public park. A third student was discovered to own 2 gay bars in another state. [Milwaukee Journal, March 28, 1993] In such an unchaste environment, it is difficult to imagine how there could be any vocations whatsoever.

Other Archdiocesan seminaries, lacking vocations, have invited the laity, including women, to participate "in some of the same classes, programs (and) liturgical events as the seminarians." [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "St. Francis Seminary Evolves with Changes," September 7, 1996.] As a further discouragement, St. Francis seminarians were subjected to the "Sexual Attitude Reassessment" adult sexual education program (see above), no doubt because one of their moral theologians was a co-presenter of the program. Yet in 1991, Weakland issued a statement to the Vatican, asking for the ordination of married priests in response to priest shortages in the diocese. "I see at this moment no other way out of this very difficult situation….I see no other solution." [Catholic Herald of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, "Facing the Future with Hope," January 10, 1991.]

In response to this reasoning, Margo Szews, a Milwaukee Catholic blames archdiocesan policies for creating the priest shortage. "Isn’t it the archbishop," Szews asks, "who has allowed potential seminarians, whose loyalty to church teaching is viewed as ‘rigid and inflexible’ to be rejected? …Isn’t it the archbishop who has encouraged women to attend the seminary…where they have outnumbered men for years? ….Isn’t it the archbishop who has, through forced early retirement, rejected the services of able-bodied priests who are seen as ‘rigid and inflexible’? Isn’t it the archbishop who had routinely allowed seminary students to view a pornography program …so they could ‘rethink’ their views on sexuality…? Archbishop Eldon Curtiss of Omaha points out that the vocation ‘crisis’ in this country is ‘more artificial and contrived than many people realize….[It] is precipitated and continued by people who want to change the Church’s agenda…" [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Married Priests? The Debate Continues," November 17, 1996.]

The laity of Milwaukee, threatened with losing their priests, are not unaware that other U.S. dioceses have seminaries which are bulging with stellar vocations. These are the seminaries which are uncompromising about the faith and unambivalent about the moral standards to which the priesthood must be held. The laity must ask, in the light of such a contrast, are the seminary policies of the Milwaukee Archdiocese fostering or crippling vocations?

In conclusion: CSL president, Tom Phillips, has said, "We’re clearly in the middle of spiritual warfare. Archbishop Weakland has singled out sexuality as ‘the big one’ on which to teach and speak, and his views directly oppose the Vatican and the 2,000 year-old teachings of the Church." [The Honolulu Advertiser, "Prelate: Won’t Be Muzzled," October 5, 1991]

Another Milwaukee Catholic observed, "The continuing effort by small cliques surrounding some bishops to foist their own view of Catholic Christianity on existing Catholic communities is, in this age, an outrageous power play….[T]heir attempt to trick us into believing that they represent authentic Catholicism is an unforgivable deception." [The Milwaukee Journal, "Disobedient Catholics Free to Leave Church for Own," Thomas Darien, January 4, 1993.]

[Return to Index]


RCF Board Member Arrested
While Praying On Church Property.

May 31, 1997 at 11 am James Bendell, a Washington State Trial Attorney and Board Member of Roman Catholic Faithful, was arrested by the Lantana, Florida police and charged with trespass. Jim was arrested at the Cenacle Retreat house where he was praying the rosary and distributing Catholic literature defining the Church's teaching regarding homosexual acts and the treatment of homosexual persons. ( 1986 Document of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, "Letter to Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons")

Also present were Kyran Murphy, an RCF group leader in West Palm Beach, Florida, Kyran's wife, and several other RCF members. Fr. Robert Nugent and Sr. Jeannine Gramick were giving a talk at the retreat house.

That same morning a protest was taking place at St. Ignatius Loyola Cathedral on Military Trail and Holly Avenue in Palm Beach Gardens. Kyran Murphy had tried unsuccessfully to convince Bishop Symons that Gramick and Nugent should not be allowed to speak in the diocese. The following is a copy of the statement distributed by Kyran's group.

Why are these people allowed to spread their errors in our diocese?
 
"Homophobia Workshops" sponsored by "Center for Homophobia Education" based in Hyattsville, MD and NYC have been Scheduled in our diocese. Sister Jeannine Gramick, of Dignity fame, and Fr. Robert Nugent, stripped of his faculties to preach and hear confessions in the Washington Archdiocese, are the seminar "facilitators". The purpose of the seminars is to quell "Any unwarranted fear of homosexuality in oneself or others- usually based on ignorance, stereotyping or other psychological factors." All this taught without altering its pro-homosexual disposition and with no apparent effort to impart Church teachings that homosexuality is an "OBJECTIVE DISORDER".
 
Nugent's and Grammick's jaded past includes:

1978 - Fr. Nugent stripped of his faculties to preach and hear confessions in Washington.

1979 - Gramick and Nugent sponsored a retreat for homosexual religious women causing the Vatican to order the FIRST OF THREE INVESTIGATIONS by their superiors.

1981 - After planning a national conference on homosexuality and the Catholic Church in Washington, DC, the second Vatican ordered investigation commenced. Archbishop, now Cardinal Hickey wrote to the US bishops and religious superiors informing them that New Ways Ministries, co-founded by Nugent and Gramick, had an ambiguous stand on the morality of homosexual activity.

1983 - Cardinal Hickey asks Grammick's and Nugent's superiors to withdraw them from his archdiocese.

1984 - Sacred Congregation for Religious had them withdraw from New Ways Ministry under threat of disciplinary action. They nevertheless continued to offer workshops on homosexual ministry, according to a Catholic News Service report.

1984 - Gramick signed the infamous NY TIMES pro abortion ad.

1985 - Third Vatican request for investigation of their activities.

1992 - US CATHOLIC August issue, Sr. Gramick candidly described her mission as helping US Catholics to approve same sex relationships between gay and lesbian people.

1994 - Cardinal Maida of Detroit, was appointed head of a Vatican committee to probe the "gay ministry" of Gramick and Nugent.

Gramick and Nugent continue their activities to this day. She was quoted to have said in a talk at the University of Tennessee Catholic Center, "If gay people are in a committed relationship, then sexual expression is morally okay."

Gramick and Nugent have been banned in Boston by Cardinal Law, In Newark by Bishop McCarrick and in Washington by Cardinal Hickey----

When Jim was arrested he was taken to the City Police Station and placed in a holding cell. He was later transported to the county jail where he was searched and fingerprinted. After several hours Jim posted bail and was given a court date of July 1.

The American Catholic Lawyers Association has stepped in to help.

American Catholic Lawyers Assoc.
10 Audrey Place
P.O. Box 10544
Fairfield, N.J. 07004

Kryan Murphy,
1362 Breakers West Blvd., West Palm Beach, FL. 33411
561-790-4858

[Return to Index]


The St. Thomas More Lawyers Guild
Presents a Clarification of the
Teachings of the Catholic Church on Homosexuality

On March 1, 1997, Bishop Matthew H. Clark of the Diocese of Rochester, New York presided at a "Mass for Gay and Lesbian Catholics" at Sacred Heart Cathedral. Prior to the celebration of the Mass, Bishop Clark stated that he was "going to disappoint" those Catholics who had expressed the concern that he should remind those attending the Mass that homosexual activity is sinful. According to Bishop Clark, it would have been "oppressive and manipulative" to "pound on" the sinfulness of homosexual activity. (Catholic Courier, February 27, 1997, p. 3.) The media reported that "[Bishop] Clark avoided any discussion of the official teachings of the Catholic Church" on the homosexuality issue. (Rochester Democrat & Chronicle, March 2, 1997, p. 1A.)
 
Because of his failure to convey the full teaching of the Catholic Church on the issue of homosexuality, his words and actions caused much confusion among the faithful, especially our youth.

Canon 212, Section 3 of the Code of Canon Law of the Catholic Church provides that Catholics "have the right, indeed at times the duty, in keeping with their knowledge, competence, and position, to manifest to the sacred Pastors their views on matters which concern the good of the Church.... They have the right also to make their views known to others of Christ's faithful." With all due respect to the episcopal office of Bishop Clark, we, the undersigned, are compelled to exercise this right and to articulate for the benefit of Catholics and other interested parties the relevant teaching of the Catholic Church on the issue of homosexuality which the bishop omitted.

The Church's Teaching

"Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that 'homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.' They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved." (Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 2357, quoting Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Declaration, Persona humana (1975), n. 8.)

"Although the particular inclination of the homosexual person is not a sin, it is a more or less strong tendency ordered toward an intrinsic moral evil; and thus the inclination itself must be seen as an objective disorder." (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Letter, On the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons (1986, n. 3.)

"[Persons with deep-seated homosexual tendencies] are called to fulfill God's will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord's Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition." (Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 2358.)

"It is up to the Bishops to instruct the faithful in the moral teaching concerning sexual morality, however great may be the difficulties in carrying out this work in the face of ideas and practices generally prevailing today. . . . It is likewise the Bishops' mission to see that a sound doctrine enlightened by faith and directed by the Magisterium of the Church is taught in faculties of theology and in seminaries. Bishops must also ensure that confessors enlighten people's consciences and that catechetical instruction is given in perfect fidelity to Catholic doctrine." (Persona humana, n. 13.)

"It rests with the Bishops, the priests and their collaborators to alert the faithful against the erroneous opinions often expressed in books, reviews and public meetings." (Persona humana, n. 13.)

"No authentic pastoral program will include organizations in which homosexual persons associate with each other without clearly stating that homosexual activity is immoral. A truly pastoral approach will appreciate the need for homosexual persons to avoid the near occasions of sin." (On the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons, n. 15.)

"All support should be withdrawn from any organizations which seek to undermine the teaching of the Church, which are ambiguous about it, or which neglect it entirely. Such support, or even the semblance of such support, can be gravely misinterpreted. Special attention should be given to the practice of scheduling religious services and to the use of Church buildings by these groups, including the facilities of Catholic schools and colleges. To some, such permission to use Church property may seem only just and charitable; but in reality it is contradictory to the purpose for which these institutions were founded, it is misleading and often scandalous." (On the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons, n. 17.)

In his encyclical Veritatis Splendor (1993), Pope John Paul II reminded his brother bishops that they have the duty "to be vigilant that the word of God is faithfully taught.... As bishops, we have the 'grave obligation' to be personally vigilant that the 'sound doctrine' (1 Tim. 1:10) of faith and morals is taught in our dioceses." (n. 116; emphases in original) Similarly, the teaching of Vatican II's Dogmatic Constitution on the Church (Lumen Gentium) is clear that an individual bishop's authority must be exercised in union with the Pope (see nn. 22, 25).

In 1987, during his second visit to the United States, the Holy Father stated to American bishops that the pastoral care to be given to homosexual persons "includes a clear explanation of the Church's teaching, which by its nature is unpopular. Nevertheless, your own pastoral experience confirms the fact that the truth, howsoever difficult to accept, brings grace and often leads to a deep inner conversion." (Address, September 16, 1987, n. 18.) Indeed, there are countless documented cases where homosexuals have turned away from their disordered "lifestyle," confirming the promise of conversion when the truth is known.

Every witness who appears before a court of law in this country, before giving testimony, is asked some variant of the question "Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?" Just as any attempt to testify in court as to only part of the truth and to conceal or avoid the rest violates this oath, so should any attempt to give witness to only part of the truth of Catholic doctrine be viewed with grave concern. Truth is disserved and the faith discredited -- with incalculable damage to souls -- where words and actions by diocesan officials, including bishops, do not clearly indicate adherence to the entire body of official teaching of the Catholic Church on matters of faith and morals.

Lay Catholics "have the duty and the right to acquire the knowledge of Christian teaching which is appropriate to each one's capacity and condition, so that they may be able to live according to this teaching, to proclaim it and if necessary to defend it." (Code of Canon Law, Canon 229, Section 1) All Rochester Catholics -- and now, particularly those with a homosexual inclination in this diocese -- must be allowed to exercise their right to the truth.

Before He took up His Cross, Our Lord said: "All those committed to the truth hear my voice." (John 18:37) The voice of Jesus Christ is heard today on the issue of homosexuality -- clearly and forcefully -- through the Magisterium of the Catholic Church in union with Christ's vicar on earth, John Paul II. No local bishop of a particular diocese may unilaterally deviate from this teaching. (See Second Vatican Council, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church (Lumen Gentium), nn. 22, 25. See also, Persona humana, n. 13.)

Respectfully submitted,

The Board of Governors,
St. Thomas More Lawyers Guild,
Rochester, NY

Dated: May 15, 1997

(This manuscript was originally submitted to the Rochester Catholic Courier, the official newspaper of the Rochester Catholic diocese, for publication. The Catholic Courier declined to publish the article, even as a paid advertisement. Therefore, it was the Guild's decision to publish the article as a paid notice in the Messenger-Wolfe Publications. [General Offices for the Messenger-Wolfe Publications -- which include nine newspapers serving the suburbs of Rochester, NY -- are in Victor, NY.])

John Manning Regan -- President
Joseph A.F. Valenti -- Vice President
Mary E. Taylor -- Secretary

Posted by: John F. Wagner,Jr.
Member, Board of Governors, St. Thomas More Lawyers Guild

[Return to Index]


Upcoming RCF Events and Meetings

Past RCF events

Monday, May 19, 1997. Quincy, IL
RCF Meeting held at the Holiday Inn in Quincy. Topic-The Springfield Diocese

Wednesday, May 21, 1997. Cardinal Carberry Campus.
CREDO of St. Louis has Stephen Brady speak on Roman Catholic Faithful, Inc.

Monday, June 9, 1997. Radio interview on
WMAY Radio 970 am, Springfield, IL.
Topic-Bishop Ryan.

Wednesday, June 11, 1997. Serra Club dinner with guest speaker S. Brady
(Crisis in the Church and in the Priesthood) held at the Dominican Priory in River Forest, IL.

Monday, June 16, 1997. Radio interview on the John Nuzzo show, WBVP Radio 1230 AM.

Upcoming RCF events

Saturday, September 20, 1997
A day long event, sponsored by Coalition of Concerned Catholics of Albany, P.O. Box 13-532, Albany, NY 12212-3532. James Bendell, a Washington State Trial Attorney and RCF Board Member and Stephen G. Brady of RCF will be speaking.

Stephen Brady will be speaking in Oneonta, NY, Friday, September 19, 1997
For more information contact: Rita Armstrong at RCF, P.O. Box 483, Oneonta, NY 13820

If you live near Rochester, NY and could help set up a talk there for September — please let us know.

Stephen Brady, RCF will be speaking in Albuquerque, NM & Phoenix, AZ in September. Dates will be made available in two weeks. RCF members in other states interested in a date for a talk, contact RCF, Inc.

Several Orthodox Catholic organizations are working on establishing a Web Site that will contain information on all "Catholic" Groups or individuals that dissent from Church teaching. If you are interested in helping, let us know.

Human Life International
The Pro-Life/ Pro-Family Institute Presents:

A conference for priests and deacons to promote understanding and
encourage preaching about Humanae Vitae.

When: July 22-24
Where: HLI Headquarters, Front Royal, VA.
Cost: $200 per person (includes housing and meals at Christendom College)
Preparation: Familiarity with Humanae Vitae, Familiaris Consortio, and Evangelium Vitae.

For registration and information call Helen Garrity at (540) 622-5278; E-mail: helen@hli.org Human Life International 4 Family Life Front Royal, VA. 22630

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The Good Priest
By Stephanie Block

I recently wrote an exposé concerning a priest who is active in Call To Action. One of his parishioners took exception to the article. She felt that it portrayed the parish and her pastor unfairly. Father is a good priest, she protested, who has "touched home and our hearts with his words." The parish he administers is an institution "that makes resources available to Catholics who are going through a hard time." Clearly, this parishioner has found Father to be a warm, loving, and caring priest, and I see no reason to assume otherwise.

However, the issue of the priest’s "goodness" is irrelevant to his Catholicity. Many non-Catholic clerics are certainly good people. The Catholic faithful have the right to ask if it is sufficient to simply be a neighbor to one’s fellow man, or is one called to be more?

Certainly, the Catholic is called to be a neighbor. We all know the scriptural exhortations, from the story of the Good Samaritan to Jesus’ condemnation of the hypocrites - those whited sepulchers - who pretend to be God’s friend while disdaining the needy. We all know the story of the man who stands before Christ on Judgment Day, crying "Lord, Lord…," but Jesus does not recognize him because he neglected to minister to the least of God’s little ones. We all have memorized the Works of Mercy and understand our calling and our privilege is to strive for perfection, to sell what we have and give to the poor, and to expend ourselves, even to death.

But there are two Laws of Love. Service to God does not end with service to neighbor. If that is all the Christian has to give, he has given too little. The Christian who tries to buy his own salvation with good works is a stingy thing, a spiritual miser who hordes pennies when he has been given an entire universe to spend on charity. It is good to see God in one’s fellow man, but it is not enough to find Him only there. The truth is so much bigger.

God is to be known and loved - as well as served. The soul who loves his neighbor does not necessarily discover God. The soul who loves God, on the other hand, will learn to love his neighbor.

This love is larger than bread and timber and fabric and security. It demands a higher standard for counseling and comfort and education and good intentions than the world can give. It probes into the wounds of a broken humanity more radically than the most wild-eyed revolutionary. It sears the gaping hole closed. It heals.

To love one’s neighbor through God, and in Him and with Him, is to love as God loves, concerned about all that a man needs to live, which is not on bread alone. A Christian who feeds the hungry is concerned not just about gastronomic emptiness, nor about intellectual voids, but about a man’s yearning for the divine. More than that, the Christian knows how that appetite is satisfied. And further still, the Christian knows that there are some who perish, not knowing what they lack.

As the body’s hunger cannot be fed on stones, neither can the soul’s hunger be fed on falsehood. Both are indigestible. Both, indulged in for too long, will destroy a person, no matter how "good" he may be. Ingested stone will rigidify the flesh as spiritual stone indurates the soul.

On God’s mercy, which can change even stones into bread, and which can raise sons of Abraham from stones, we can hope - but we must not presume. A stone swallowed in ignorance is not the same thing as a deliberate diet, swallowed hard-heartedly.

An ordained servant of God, standing before the people of God, has been given a commission. Regardless of his personal worth or the strength of his faith, he must preach and speak and deliver real Bread. As a priest, as the leader of a congregation, he must be a neighbor, yes, but he must also speak the Truth which has been delivered to him from the hands of Christ, through His Church, for the welfare of His sheep. The priest is not at liberty to preach whatever strikes his fancy as "good," nor to lead the flock wherever he wishes. There is only one gate, only one destination, only one Bread which gives eternal Life, only one source of Living Water, and only one Body - only One.

Would you argue that a Good Samaritan is preferable to a Bad Pharisee? Amen! But a Good Pharisee, as Jesus was, is better than both. We are not called to choose the best alternative between bad extremes, but to seek the complete, the whole, and the good. We are called to imitate Christ, who was both a Good Neighbor and the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

A kind man who teaches rebellion against the Church may be better than a cold man whose lips preach Truth but whose icy heart foments rebellion by its very existence. Neither, however, makes a very good Catholic priest.

Thanks, Stephanie, for all that you do!
If you have a question for Stephanie,
send it to RCF and we will pass it along.

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