43 responses

  1. I cannot subscribe to the thesis that Vatican II Catholics are not really Catholics.. There are many good, faithful N.O. Catholics who say their prayers, attend Mass during the week as well as on Sundays, generously support those who need support, and generally are good, holy people. The younger ones are certainly far less well instructed that their forebears were, but they do love God as best they can. I would echo Michael Matt that the clergy are generally less well instructed but they are faithful priests. I’m not massively impressed by my Archbishop here in Perth (in Australia not in Scotland). We have a totally pathetic choice for attending a Traditional Latin Mass here. There is one Church of the SSPX in a district called Jolimont and one only Church where there is one only Latin Mass under the auspices of the Archdiocese. All of the other Churches are N.O. only and I do not know anywhere where there is any chance of that changing. So, you see any Catholics here just have to be N.O. Catholics! Despite that we have many faithful Catholics here even if we do attend N.O. Masses.

    • John,

      There can be no doubt at all, that the priests and bishops will be held chiefly accountable for the destruction of the Faith in these times. People like your good self, who have almost no traditional Mass provision but who pray and adhere to the Faith the best you can, are a different kettle of “guilt”.

      Indeed, I think every priest and bishop in the world would do well to reflect on the following warning from Pope Saint Pius X, who spoke, prophetically, about the danger of ignorance in matters divine, which applies directly to our crisis situation today:

      ““But it seems to Vs, Venerable Brethren, that while we should not overlook other considerations, We are forced to agree with those who hold that the chief cause of the present indifference and, as it were, infirmity of soul, and the serious evils that result from it, is to be found above all in ignorance of things divine..”

      “It is a common complaint, unfortunately too well founded, that there are large numbers of Christians in our own time who are entirely ignorant of those truths necessary for salvation. … We refer to those especially who do not lack culture or talents and, indeed, are possessed of abundant knowledge regarding things of the world but live rashly and imprudently with regard to religion. It is hard to find words to describe how profound is the darkness in which they are engulfed and, what is most deplorable of all, how tranquilly they repose there… Grace, the greatest of the helps for attaining eternal things, the Holy Sacrifice and the Sacraments by which we obtain grace, are entirely unknown to them. .. And so Our Predecessor, Benedict XIV, had just cause to write: “We declare that a great number of those who are condemned to eternal punishment suffer that everlasting calamity because of ignorance of those mysteries of faith which must be known and believed in order to be numbered among the elect.”

      “. … We do maintain that the will cannot be upright nor the conduct good when the mind is shrouded in the darkness of crass ignorance. A man who walks with open eyes may, indeed, turn aside from the right path, but a blind man is in much more imminent danger of wandering away. Furthermore, there is always some hope for a reform of perverse conduct so long as the light of faith is not entirely extinguished; but if lack of faith is added to depraved morality because of ignorance, the evil hardly admits of remedy, and the road to ruin lies open.”

      “How many and how grave are the consequences of ignorance in matters of religion! And on the other hand, how necessary and how beneficial is religious instruction! It is indeed vain to expect a fulfilment of the duties of a Christian by one who does not even know them.”

      “We must now consider upon whom rests the obligation to dissipate this most pernicious ignorance and to impart in its stead the knowledge that is wholly indispensable. There can be no doubt, Venerable Brethren, that this most important duty rests upon all who are pastors of souls. … the first duty of all those who are entrusted in any way with the government of the Church is to instruct the faithful in the things of God.” End of extract.
      http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/pius_x/encyclicals/documents/hf_p-x_enc_15041905_acerbo-nimis_en.html

      So, first up, it is clearly imperative on all of us to do everything in our power to help educate our fellow Catholics. Having said that, I have found – very recently, in fact – that there is now a real hostility among many diocesan Catholics to those of us whom they consider “traditional” (although I always stress that I’m no such thing, that I’m merely a [not very good] Catholic). There is especially, sad to say, hostility towards the traditional Mass and the idea of restoring it is even mocked by some. Still, we have a duty to chip away at the modernism which has infected the dioceses. And leave the results to God.

      One thing’s for sure, John – nobody, but nobody, could accuse YOU of not being a “real” Catholic 😀

  2. I feel as though I should just add one little bit to what I wrote above. Here, in my parish, after Saturday morning Mass we have Benediction and we sing all the usual hymns in LATIN. Yes, in Latin and I know that because I am the person who starts the singing off every time. Despite my age I can still sing in a loud, clear voice. My parish has been doing this Benediction for at least five years and probably for even longer. I have been told that if I go away for a couple of weeks or so, then the singing goes to pot!

    • John,

      I LOVE Benediction – and it sounds (excuse the pun) like we could use your help in our congregation where the singing is thinner than a certain popular pizza…

  3. John Rayner,

    I know that most of us have no option but to attend the new Mass and to go along with everything that has changed but I have to be honest and say that I don’t think we necessarily FEEL like “real” Catholics. I am now always aware that I am attending a protestantised “service” and everything that Michael Matt said in that video resonated with me, especially when he showed the clips from the old black and white films with storylines about priests and nuns, and showing the respect which Hollywood had for the Church. Compare that with now when every time there is a priest or a nun in a film, we know they are going to end up being unfaithful in the predictable way. It’s depressing, really.

    I also think there is a difference between being good people and good Catholics. I can see that in your situation it is very difficult to attend the old Mass but most of us here in the central belt of Scotland could attend with just a bit more effort. The truth is, we don’t think it’s really that important, when it boils down to it and that’s because we’ve been changed inside. My own family and friends regard the issue as a non-issue and although they wouldn’t use the word, I’m sure they think of people who want to “restore” the old faith as extremists.

    Looking at the poll results, most people agree with you that modern Catholics are real Catholics, and I’d say that they are, too, because it’s now been so long since the changes were brought in and especially younger Catholics really don’t know any better. As long as they are doing their best to live Catholic lives, how can they not be “real” Catholics, IMHO.

    • Fidelis,

      “I also think there is a difference between being good people and good Catholics.

      I think that’s where the importance of education comes into play – while the clergy have chief responsibility, we all share in that duty, as Confirmed Soldiers of Christ.

      Read the quote from Pope Saint Pius X above in my reply to John.

  4. When Michael Matt listed the stuff that we are witnessing now such as the priesthood having become “a gay profession”, and the deluded pope thinking of saving the planet from rising temperatures and so on, I couldn’t help thinking that, yes, because so many of us have just gone along to get along since Vatican II, we have destroyed what he called “the greatness of the Catholic Church” – and no real Catholic would do that. What we’ve actually done is make it impossible for the younger generation to be real Catholics, and that’s shocking.

    Michael Matt did use the words “diabolical disorientation” to remind us that Fatima is the answer to all of this. We need to get it across the Pope Francis that the only way he can save the planet now is to consecrate Russia.

    • Nicky,

      You are right that the only way the Pope can save the planet now is to consecrate Russia – but he doesn’t really believe in the Fatima message or he would be able to see that himself.

    • Nicky,

      What we’ve actually done is make it impossible for the younger generation to be real Catholics, and that’s shocking.

      Again, that’s why we need to do all in our power to make sure the youngsters in our lives are made aware of the truths of the Faith, whether in passing comments, longer conversation, full blown discussions – if the priests are failing to preach the Faith (and they are, generally speaking) then laity must do it, in one way or another.

      Absolutely, Fatima is at the heart of this crisis. No doubt about that. If only we could convince the hierarchy!

  5. Actually, I was surprised at what Michael Matt said about the new Mass at one point – he seemed to dismiss the change as unimportant when he said something about whether you prefer Mass in the vernacular doesn’t matter. Maybe I’m misinterpreting but apart from making very good points to show how the Church has declined, he doesn’t really say anything new, although he does say get back to tradition – I’m not really sure what to make of that video, to be honest.

    I would only add that any member of the faithful who is doing their best to live by the Church’s laws and God’s law, has to be a real Catholic.

    • Margaret Mary,

      I agree – being a Catholic has got to be about trying our best to live by God’s law and I now have the words of St Vincent Ferrer etched on my brain, I’ve read them so often in Catholic Truth, including this blog, that when there is any doubt, we have to stick to what has always been believed by Christians since the beginning. That’s really all any of us can do in the middle of this mess.

    • MM,

      I’m sure Michael wouldn’t have been dismissing the importance of the Mass – in fact, towards the end he commends Archbishop Lefebvre – so I think you may have misinterpreted him on that point.

      As you say, he does exhort everyone to return to Catholic Tradition – and once you’ve said that, in fact, you’ve said it all (or Michael Matt has said it all!)

  6. I think one of the most telling moments in that video was when Michael Matt just mentioned Cardinal Pell’s conviction and brushed off the question of his innocence or guilt. His point was, I took it, that such a state of affairs would never have come about before Vatican II when the Church was strong and the priesthood was well respected (certainly not a “gay profession”).

    There were some sobering moments in the video – plenty of food for thought for sincere Catholics who are horrified at what is going on.

    • Laura,

      I agree with you about the Cardinal Pell moment – Michael Matt will be perfectly well aware of the Cardinal’s (more than) probable innocence, but he is clearly cheesed off at the (unnecessary) conviction, by which I mean that the laxity that has gone unchecked since Vatican II has brought the Church into such disrepute that – in one sense – if there are such injustices, well, too bad. That, I think, is what Michael Matt is communicating at that point in the video.

      Just my interpretation – I could well be wrong.

  7. Michael Matt comes across as really war-weary in that video – I remember in a previous video he sounded the same, and who can blame him.

    Here’s a very interesting commentary on the death of Cardinal Daneels – who definitely needs prayers for his huge part in destroying “the greatness of the Catholic Church”.

    • Josephine,

      Yes, I think Michael Matt is a bit war-weary these days – and little wonder. He is not merely the editor of the newspaper, running the blog etc but is also a husband and father of a large family so I would be surprised if he didn’t wonder (as we all do) where are all the brave clergy, priests and bishops, who COULD and SHOULD be leading this fightback?

      As for Danneels – shocking beyond words. Thank you (sort of!) for posting that video.

    • Crofterlady,

      While I entirely sympathise with your sentiments, that’s the human bit of us flawed creatures, speaking, we should have such a horror of any soul falling into Hell that we must pray very hard for Cardinal Danneels because if ever a soul were in need of huge graces of repentance on his deathbed, it is he. And without pretending any insight into or judgement of his soul, I recommend that we all do exactly that right now – pray for the spiritual safety of this apparently lost soul.

      Jesus mercy! Mary, help!

      • I sincerely cannot. I hope he IS in Hell. I know that sounds terrible and, I’ve even asked myself why, if God wishes the salvation of all souls, I wouldn’t wish the same, but I cannot. I seriously hope the lot of these apostate prelates, like Dante depicted them, end up down below for all eternity; upside down in pillars, like the pillars of the Church they were supposed to be. It is God’s prerogative to forgive mankind, not mine. These devils, like Cormac Murphy et al, deserve Hell’s fire. They didn’t believe in its existence but now they know. I further add that, on the face of it, that’s where the majority of today’s bishops are also heading.

        • Crofterlady,

          I am quite scandalised by your comments. I’ve never heard a Catholic wish Hell on another soul. It’s entirely contrary to the Faith. Look at the Fatima children who did severe penances to make reparation for sinners. Poor Jacinta constantly lamented the poor souls who go to Hell. Remember the words of the Fatima prayer, Crofterlady?

          “O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of Hell. Lead ALL SOULS to Heaven, especially those IN MOST NEED of Thy mercy!”

          I would say that prayer applies to the errant Cardinals who have failed in their duty. I urge you not to let human weakness make you become bitter.

        • Crofterlady,

          I do sympathise with your anger which is righteous – I don’t think it’s bitter – but Petrus is right to say we can’t wish anyone the torments of Hell. You are right about most bishops ending up in Hell, and there’s a saint often quoted in Catholic Truth who says exactly that. I was interested to see that even Rorate Caeli, which I’ve never thought was “hard hitting” particularly, don’t mince their words about Danneels. Here’s the link – and notice the dreadful vestment.
          https://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2019/03/requiem-for-wicked-man.html#more

        • Editor

          That video is horrendous, it shows the level of corruption in the highest places in the Church. And regarding Pope Francis: the old adage is “show me your friends and I’ll tell you what you are”. The numbers of men of dubious moral character (I’m being restrained!) that this Pope has promoted into high office is just horrific.

          Crofterwummin

          No, no, no and a thousand times no! Do not allow your natural inclination to anger and outrage destroy your charity. We are never, ever permitted to wish Hell on any soul or to take any form of pleasure from souls ending up in that place of despair and suffering. No matter how evil a person’s life may have been on the face of it, we have no idea where their eternal destiny now lies. God alone is permitted to make the judgement and it greatly saddens Him to have to declare Hell to souls He sacrificed His life to save.

          We must always pray for the salvation of souls, both living and dead, that’s charity. Remember, it is said that when we die we will be very surprised by the presence of some in heaven we would never have thought would have got there, and likewise shocked by the absence of some we thought would have got there.

          Let’s just hope and pray that we individually persevere to the end and get there, even if it does mean a long purification in Purgatory.

          • Athanasius,

            Yes, that video is shocking. I watched another one about Cardinal Joseph Tobin and believe me, if anything he puts Danneels in the shade. However, two things made me delete that video as I was just deciding to post it here – firstly the annoying music playing throughout, which blocked out some of the words; I hate music in the background anyway – if I want to listen to music, I will sit down and listen to music or go for a drive and listen to music – something I’ve not done for years partly because I keep coming across drivers who are waving at me and although I appreciate their friendliness, it’s a bit distracting when I’m trying to listen to music drive!

            The second reason why I refrained from posting that shocking video about “The Terrible Tobin” is because, right, bang at the end, the subtitles (which were used on screen throughout) referred to Francis as the “antipope”. Imagine the idiocy – they’ve provided powerful, documentary evidence that this cardinal is an apostate – no question about it – then make it impossible for us to use it because (as I said in their comments section below) they have overstepped the bounds of their authority and so we can’t use their video. It had Cardinal Tobin speaking throughout so we were hearing his apostasy straight from the horse’s mouth, so to speak, albeit having to battle against the overly dramatic music. Unbelievable.

            Anyway, there can be NO doubt that we will be hearing about The Terrible Tobin much in the same way that we heard about McCarrick – trust me, no doubt at all.

            Just one telling snippet (ignoring all the evidence of his heresy, dubious morality etc) – he tells an interviewer that his mother once said to him that she couldn’t believe that she was the mother of a Prince of the Church. Tobin shook his head and told her not to say that again, as he wasn’t a Prince of the Church and Pope Francis didn’t think he was a Prince of the Church – and then, another shocker – he quoted Pope Francis saying that he didn’t k now why he was here. Whether he meant the perennial question which we all face (Why am I here on this earth?) or whether he meant why was he pope, God alone (and possibly The Terrible Tobin) knows. I suspect that is what he meant – hasn’t a clue about the papal office, not that that is exactly breaking news.

            What, as I keep saying these days, a life!

            • Editor

              I perfectly understand your comments about background music, it affects me in the same way. I don’t know how many otherwise good videos have been ruined because the speaker is drowned out by some instrumental racket in the background. I like to concentrate on what’s being said by the person speaking so I don’t know why the producers of these videos include distracting background noise.

              Besides that, I agree about the sedevacantist nonsense at the end of the video in question. What a waste of important information for the faithful, that it should be presented by a person who thinks he’s God. Such are the tragic times in which we live.

            • Editor

              Forgot to say, I’ll need to look this Cardinal Tobin up because I know nothing about him. I am aware of the name Tobin, though. There’s something in the back of my mind concerning a cleric with that name. It will come back to me in about 20 years!

              • Athanasius,

                Here’s a snippet which appeared in the video which I mentioned above…

                And below, a link to a website run by Lifesitenews intended to provide information on the US Bishops – I’ve selected Cardinal Tobin but note that where the headings read “not enough evidence…” there was PLENTY of evidence, out of his own mouth, in the “musical antipope” video. They’d obviously spent precious time editing his various interviews and talks (including an address to an LGBT audience where he said everything except “one of you will be pope some day!”) This – Faithful Shepherds – website gives a flavour of the Cardinal’s mindset.
                https://faithfulshepherds.com/bishop/cardinal-joseph-w-tobin/

                • Editor

                  I followed the link and read this:

                  “In May 2017, Cardinal Tobin said he was “delighted” to welcome a LGBTQ pilgrimage to the Cathedral in his diocese. Tobin personally welcomed the 200 participants when they arrived, telling them “I am Joseph, your brother.” Tobin referred to pilgrimage participants as his “LGBTQ brothers and sisters.” He later said it would not have been appropriate to call on them to leave behind a life of sin and live chastely.”

                  That one statement should be sufficient to defrock this man. He is clearly an enemy of Christian morality and a traitor to his sacred duty to convert sinners and save souls. It would be highly appropriate for the Pope to laicise him, but I guess that will have to wait until we get a Catholic back on the throne of Peter.

  8. Death, Judgement, Heaven, Hell – the four last things rarely mentioned in todays world. How often has anyone thought about them. Rarely or perhaps never.

    When Our Lady appeared to the three children at Fatima in July 1917, they were shown hell and saw the devils and the damned. Terrified they were. It made a great impression on them. So much so that they offered their prayers and sacrifices in reparation for sinners.

    If we do not pray for the clergy, no matter their rank, when death comes a calling – who will? No matter how difficult it seems.

    • I meant to add that we should pray for Pope Francis and all priests that they come back to Tradition. And may the Pope and Bishops Consecrate Russia to Our lady’s Immaculate Heart. The sooner the better.

  9. Ok folks, I concede that as a Catholic I cannot wish someone to Hell. The best I can do for the moment is to pray: May Thy will be done!

  10. Cardinal Godfried Danneels, controversial liberal head of the Catholic Church in Belgium who presided over 30 years of decline

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/obituaries/2019/03/17/cardinal-godfried-danneels-controversial-liberal-head-catholic/

    Godfried Danneels, the Cardinal Archbishop of Malines-Brussels, who has died aged 85, presided over the Catholic Church in Belgium for more than 30 years and was one of the international standard bearers of the liberal and progressive wing of the Church.

    His period in office saw an unparalleled decline in the Church’s fortunes, with the influence of the once mighty Belgian Church reduced to insignificance. Danneels was also implicated in the cover-up of child abuse, but despite this he enjoyed the confidence of Pope Francis to the end.

    Godfried Maria Jules Danneels was born on June 4 1933 at Kanegem, a small town in West Flanders, a Flemish-speaking and fervently Catholic part of Belgium. The son of a headmaster, he was the eldest of six children. He was ordained in 1957 in the city of Bruges.

    He carried on with his studies in Louvain, Belgium’s leading Catholic university, and later at the Gregorian University in Rome. Having obtained a doctorate, which dealt with the medieval theologian Henry of Ghent, he returned home and taught sacramental and liturgical theology at the seminary in Bruges and the university in Louvain.

    The Church was undergoing a period of change following the Second Vatican Council, and the young professor took a great interest in the Church’s liturgy, at a time when the traditional Latin Mass was giving way to the new Mass in the vernacular.

    In 1977, because of his academic background, Pope Paul VI appointed Danneels, at the relatively early age of 44, to the important see of Antwerp. A little over two years later, the newly elected Pope John Paul II transferred him to the primatial see of Malines-Brussels, which made him head of the national hierarchy and brought with it a cardinal’s hat, which he duly received in 1983.

    Though a small country, Belgium had long punched above its weight in the Catholic world; many of the leading 20th century churchmen had been Belgians. Though the rot had set in before Danneels took the helm, all this was destined to change during the next 30 years.

    Fluent in many languages, including Italian, and trusted and liked by the important German liberal faction, whose language he also spoke, Danneels was an important and influential figure in Rome. He had a place on several Vatican congregations, including the one that oversaw the appointment of new bishops, even if he may not have been in sympathy with the conservative agenda of John Paul II.

    Nevertheless, when the Pope wished to bring the liberal Dutch church into line, it was to Danneels that he turned as an intermediary. Throughout the Pope’s reign, Danneels was an indispensable figure behind the scenes at synods. Though in person reserved, he was an able committee man, a star of the ecclesiastical bureaucracy.

    As Cardinal of Belgium he also acted as personal chaplain to the Belgian Royal Family, presiding at baptisms, weddings and funerals. But despite these high-profile roles, the influence of the Church continued to wane in Belgian life, with the legalisation of abortion, same-sex unions and euthanasia.

    When King Baudouin was presented with a bill to legalise abortion in 1990, he refused to sign it, eventually using a constitutional loophole to avoid doing so, by abdicating for one day. Cardinal Danneels – uniquely for someone who had taken an oath to uphold Church teaching with his blood – had no such scruples and advised the King that he could in good conscience sign.

    In 1998 Danneels found himself in court as a witness defending the Church on the charge that it had knowingly covered up the crimes of a paedophile priest. There was worse to come. The Bishop of Bruges was forced to resign in disgrace in 2010 after it became known that he had abused a young man, his own nephew, for 15 years.

    The nephew had previously approached Danneels and asked him to sack the bishop, but the Cardinal had not only failed to do so but had tried to get the man to keep silent until the bishop resigned at the end of his tenure. Moreover, he asked the nephew to seek forgiveness and hinted that he, the nephew, was blackmailing the Church.

    Unfortunately for Danneels, the nephew had taped their conversation, transcripts of which were later published by the daily newspaper De Standaard. Danneels claimed he was “improvising” in this embarrassing conversation, whatever that meant, but he had demonstrated that despite three decades at the helm, he had no real appreciation of how serious the paedophilia crisis was.

    By this time Danneels was already in retirement and might have been expected to keep a low profile, or even been hustled off into obscurity. But despite the scandal he retained the confidence of many leading churchmen.

    In 2005 Danneels had been touted as a possible successor to John Paul II in the conclave that elected the conservative Cardinal Ratzinger as Benedict XVI. After Benedict’s resignation, Pope Francis’s election in 2013 was considered a huge surprise, but Danneels boasted in his authorised 2015 biography that he and his friends had been instrumental in ensuring Francis’s election.

    For some years, Danneels and other liberal cardinals had been meeting at St Gallen in Switzerland, hoping to bring about what they saw as a more modern and enlightened Church, and specifically to ensure the papal election of Cardinal Bergoglio. This unforced revelation, along with the revelation of his support for gay marriage in Belgium, was profoundly shocking to many Catholics, for it demonstrated that Danneels and his coterie had been doing their best to undermine the papacy of Benedict XVI, as well as trying to influence the outcome of a papal election, which carries the penalty of automatic excommunication.

    Despite this, Pope Francis continued to favour Danneels, appointing him to the Synod on the Family in 2014 and 2015. This choice by the pontiff was met with widespread dismay, and seen as Danneels’s reward for the part he had played in ensuring Bergoglio’s election as Pope. As one cynical Vaticanista commented: “Francis is rewarding his mates.”

    Godfried Danneels, born June 4 1933, died March 14 2019

  11. Oops! Sorry Nicky. I did read your reply but not the link. Perhaps our eagle eyed editor will remove my posting of said link?

    • Crofterlady,

      Two reasons why I’ll just leave it –

      (1) it might help alert others to actually check out links which I’ve long suspected many do not do…

      (2) it bears re-reading!

  12. Editor

    I’m not sure I can agree in this case. I think there is a very distinct possibility that Cardinal Barbarin is another like Cardinal Pell, set up for a public fall by the secular enemies of the Church.

    Here are some lines I read about Cardinal Barbarin in Wikipedia. Note his support for the Tridentine Mass, his opposition to “gay marriage”, the clutching at straws of his accusers decades on and his protesting his innocence. Maybe Francis was actually correct on this occasion to “presume innocence” in a case that went ahead despite the statute of limitations and certain legal minds suggesting otherwise.

    Anyway, read these lines and see what you think.

    …In 2010, Cardinal Barbarin created a programme at the diocesan seminary to prepare for the priesthood any Francophone candidate who wished, in accordance with the tradition in which he was raised, to celebrate Mass according to the 1962 extraordinary form of the Roman Rite…

    …In November 2012, as France prepared to legalize same-sex marriage, he told Osservatore Romano: “Everyone knows marriage is the union between a man and a woman. The parliaments of the 21st century cannot change that…. I and many other priests are engaged in dialogue with a number of homosexual people. They know they are loved and that they will always be welcome. I would remind them however that God watches over and says to everyone: ‘You are precious in my eyes.’ I hope that everyone listens to Christ’s call and are helped to reciprocate.”

    In July 2015, he led the bishops of the Rhône-Alpes region in calling for a Reims hospital to maintain the life support systems of Vincent Lambert, a man who had been in a coma for seven years…

    …Barbarin, and several now deceased archbishops of Lyon before him, did not report to civil authorities the sexual abuse committed by priest Bernard Preynat during boy scout outings between 1986 and 1991. Failure to report such crimes to police is by itself a crime under French law. Barbarin, four of his subordinates, and Gerhard Ludwig Cardinal Müller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in the Vatican, were defendants in a lawsuit by the former boy scouts abused by Preynat. A judge conducted a preliminary inquiry. On 1 August 2016, the prosecuting attorney dropped the case largely based on concerns about the statute of limitations. However, Barbarin and six other priests were charged in 2017 for their failure to report the incidents to the civil authorities.The trial was scheduled to begin on 4 April 2018, but was postponed.

    Prosecutor Charlotte Trabut announced that she would not file charges because the statute of limitations had passed for some charges and there was insufficient evidence to support conviction.The victims invoked their right to press charges, and Barbarin’s trial began on 7 January 2019. Five priests accused of assisting Barbarin in the cover-up were co-defendants. The trial ended on 10 January, and, on 7 March, Cardinal Barbarin was found guilty and given a suspended sentence of six months. His co-defendants were acquitted. Barbarin’s attorney said his client would appeal the verdict. Barbarin said he intended to meet with Pope Francis and resign as Archbishop of Lyon. Barbarin was reported to have planned to resign for the good of the Archdiocese no matter what the verdict.

    Barbarin submitted his resignation to Pope Francis in person on 18 March 2019. Francis, “invoking the presumption of innocence”, refused the resignation and asked Barbarin to take whatever action he thought appropriate. Barbarin announced on 19 March that Yves Baumgarten, vicar general of the Archdiocese, would replace him temporarily…”

    • Athanasius,

      Thank you for checking that out – just shows, things are so bad now that there is a tendency (on my part) to presume guilt once convicted. As you say, this may well be another case similar to that of Cardinal Pell.

      I agree – on balance it is, more likely than not, that this is another apparent case of injustice.

      • Editor

        I absolutely agree that these are very confusing times. I think we tend now to just assume that when Pope Francis backs someone there’s got to be something dubious about it. On this 1% of occasions, however, I think he got it right.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: