Clergy/Hierarchy Abuse Scandal: UK Braced As English Cardinal Implicated

Extracts below from LifeSiteNews bombshell report:  Pope blocked investigation of abuse allegations against cardinal who helped elect him

Pope Francis embracing Cardinal, Murphy-O’Connor

September 24, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – Pope Francis told Cardinal Gerhard Müller in 2013 to stop investigating abuse allegations against British Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, according to a highly-placed Vatican source who spoke to Marco Tossati [well-known Italian journalist and Vatican expert.] Murphy-O’Connor, as a member of the “Sankt [St.] Gallen mafia,” played a pivotal role in getting Jorge Bergoglio elected Pope in 2013.

A source from England with inside knowledge of the case told LifeSiteNews that a woman alleges the cardinal had himself been involved in abusing her when she was 13 or 14 years old and that she was the reason for the investigation by the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF).

Tosatti had previously revealed what he learned in September 2013 from a high-ranking Vatican source – “an extremely good source, who was then in the government of the Curia,” and he adds that his source has “learned [it] from those directly concerned.” – that Cardinal Müller, then Prefect of the CDF, was interrupted by the Pope while saying Mass at the Church of Santa Monica (next to the CDF building) for a small group of German students. But now Tosatti reveals that the reason for the interruption was to demand that an investigation into Cardinal O’Connor be halted.

As Tosatti puts it in an article for First Things last year: His secretary joined him at the altar: “The pope wants to speak to you.” “Did you tell him I am celebrating Mass?” asked Müller. “Yes,” said the secretary, “but he says he does not mind—he wants to talk to you all the same.” The cardinal went to the sacristy. The pope, in a very bad mood, gave him some orders about a dossier concerning one of his friends, a cardinal.

After hearing this story as related by Marco Tosatti, LifeSiteNews reached out to a reliable source from England who is very well informed about exactly that same lady who had been accusing the English cardinal. According to this English source, the lady has never gone public with her charges. But she has been in contact with Church authorities for about 15 years now, without ever having received a thorough investigation of her claims. This lady is already an acknowledged abuse victim, having received a settlement from the Archdiocese. She had been abused, when she was 13 or 14 years of age, by Father Michael Hill.

The pedophile Father Hill was imprisoned for five years in 2002 for abusing three minor children between 10 and 14. He had previously been imprisoned, in 1997, also for abusing children. He is thought to have attacked about 30 boys between his ordination in 1960 and the late 1980s. As The Guardian put it at the time: “His case is particularly notorious because the church’s leader, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, gave him a post despite warnings that he had abused young boys.” Hill had been moved to different parishes, in spite of the ongoing complaints of parents. Finally he underwent therapy in the 1980s.

The lady who accused Murphy-O’Connor himself of abuse, claims that when Hill abused her in the late 1960s, there were several other priests present and involved. She claims that Murphy-O’Connor was among them. She, who then lived in what is now the Diocese of Arundel and Brighton, had entered in the early 2000s into an agreement with the Diocese and received £40,000 payment for the abuse of Father Hill.

Murphy-O’Connor had been the Bishop of Arundel and Brighton from 1977 until 2000, when he was appointed Archbishop of Westminster. He was also a member of the Sankt Gallen Group that tried to get Jorge Bergoglio elected, first in the 2005 conclave, and then again in 2013.

The story of the female victim of abuse is a story of delayed justice and denial of due process. Since she now lives in the Diocese of Portsmouth, she started to express her accusations to Church officials there. But sometime between 2009 and 2010, she also contacted the Archdiocese of Westminster with her allegations. Cardinal Vincent Nichols, who has been Archbishop of Westminster since 2009 – and thus the successor of Murphy-O’Connor – refused to investigate the matter.

When Murphy-O’Connor was asked, in 2010, by Pope Benedict XVI to be the head of the Apostolic Visitation to Ireland in order to examine the abuse crisis there, people in the Diocese of Portsmouth were concerned that the abuse allegations against Murphy-O’Connor would then come to light and destroy the credibility of the Apostolic Visitation.

Similar to McCarrick, Murphy-O’Connor is known to have later speciously shown himself to the public as being a hardliner with regard to abuse cases. “Roman Catholic (sic)  bishops found to be flouting the new guidelines on child protection will be held to account, or expected to resign,” is the headline of a 2003 article quoting Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor. However, as with the McCarrick case in the U.S., the truth is now gaining upon the Church’s hierarchy that has been evasively looking the other way.

In England, there is currently a government-commissioned independent investigation into all sex abuse cases in society, to include those in the Catholic Church. This investigation has the legal power to compel the production of evidence. For this investigation, a so-called “Truth Project” has been set up, whereby victims of sexual abuse of minors may now come and relate their story.

Our source tells us this female victim may have contacted that same Truth Project, since several weeks ago, the investigators requested the Archdiocese of Westminster the release of all the files pertaining to allegations against Cardinal Murphy-O’Connor.

It would be important now that four dioceses release their files to the Truth Project concerning this woman’s case: Arundel and Brighton; Westminster; Portsmouth, and Northampton (which submitted the case to the CDF, together with Portsmouth). Bishop John Arnold (now of Salford), who was at the time involved in refusing to investigate the case in Westminster, should also release his files.

Thus, as it seems, the Catholic Church is now sitting upon a ticking time bomb. And on top of that time bomb sits Pope Francis.

This report was consciously published on September 24, the Feast of Our Lady of Walsingham – Patroness of the Catholic Church in England – and on the day of the beginning of the English bishops’ Ad Limina visit to Rome.  [Emphases added].   Source – to read entire report click here

Comment: 

There’s really nothing to add to the above report except to note that, as we have said for years in our newsletter, when bishops cover up or make excuses for  priests causing scandal, in various ways – as did our Cardinal O’Brien RIP in response to our reports and letters about dissident Edinburgh clergy attacking the Faith and morals in newspapers and through the broadcasting media – there has to be a reason. And the reason – we frequently hinted – has to be something very serious.

So, nobody should be surprised at these latest revelations. I’ve never written to Cardinal Murphy-O’Connor but I have written to other members of the English (Scottish and Irish) Hierarchy, all to no avail.  We’re watching, therefore, with interest as this latest scandal unfolds, and can’t help but wonder if our observations will prove accurate in other cases… both north and south of the border and across the Irish Sea.  Will we find even more chickens coming home to roost?  Let’s watch and pray, especially for the Consecration of Russia, because, until that happens, these scandals will continue and worsen.  Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us!  

Cardinal Keith Patrick O’Brien RIP

Cardinal Keith Patrick O’Brien

From Scottish Catholic Media Office – press release…

His Eminence Archbishop Vincent Cardinal Nichols of Westminster used his homily during the Requiem Mass for the Cardinal Keith Patrick O’Brien RIP (1938-2018) to urge those present to pray for the repose of his soul and also for those he offended during his life…

The Requiem Mass was held at 1pm at St Michael’s Church in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, just yards from the home for the elderly where Cardinal O’Brien resided until recently. The 80-year-old cleric died on 19 March at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle. The subsequent funeral arrangements were drawn up between the executor of his will, the O’Brien family and the Holy See as represented by Cardinal Nichols. Cardinal O’Brien will be buried at Mount Vernon Cemetery, Edinburgh, on Friday 6 April where he will be laid to rest with his mother and father. Cardinal Nichol’s homily is reproduced in full below:

Homily of Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster
(Catholic Truth Editorial comment in bold)

There is a truth, deep in our Catholic tradition, often forgotten in our days, yet very relevant to this moment. It is this: that every funeral Mass is above all else a prayer for God’s mercy for the one who has died.  So often services after a death are seen to be a time for celebrating a life, for recognising the great achievements of a life now ended and for treasuring happy memories. Yet the emphasis of our tradition is somewhat different. Always, we gather to ask God’s mercy for the one who has died, today for Cardinal Keith O’Brien. We do so with trust and love, knowing that God’s promise of mercy is enduring and that our prayers, entering into the presence of the Father through, with and in Jesus, the beloved Son, will be heard.
[Ed: well, that’s a first. First in the long time that that, elementary Catholicism, has been said at any funeral, to best of my knowledge, since the onset of the modernist take-over of the Church. Alleluia! Difficult to explain, really, though, because we’ve “celebrated the life” of those who have committed suicide, who have cohabited, lived in same-sex partnerships – interesting that the life of Cardinal O’Brien has been singled out as one requiring the ancient tradition of praying for the salvation of the soul. Very interesting. A cynic might wonder about this.]

In recent days, the life of Cardinal Keith has been laid bare. We all know its lights and its darkness; we need not spend time talking about them even more for he has given us the key words. In his last will and testament he wrote: ‘I ask forgiveness of all I have offended in this life. I thank God for the many graces and blessings he has given me especially the Sacrament of Holy Orders.’ Today, as we prayer for the repose of his soul, we also pray for all those he offended and ask God to strengthen them at this time.

Cardinal Vincent Nichols

In seeking the mercy of God, Cardinal Keith follows in the footsteps laid out for us in our faith. St Patrick, whose name Keith Patrick O’Brien was proud to bear, wrote in his Confessions these words:

‘It is with fear and trembling that I should be awaiting the verdict that’s coming to me on that (judgement) day, when none of us can go absent or run for cover; and when every last one of us will have to answer for even our smallest sins at the court of Christ the Lord.’ (8) This is, indeed, the pathway we all have to trace.
Pondering on the mercy of God is what we should do today. You will recall the Year of Mercy. During it, Pope Francis encouraged us to ‘rediscover the infinite mercy of the Father who welcomes everyone and goes out personally to encounter each of them.’ The Pope also explained to us that ‘Jesus Christ is the face of the Father’s mercy’, adding, ‘Jesus of Nazareth, by his words, his actions, and his entire person reveals the mercy of God.’

Now this is what we have heard in this morning’s Gospel passage taken from St Luke. The two disciples are making their sad journey away from Jerusalem, a name that [is] used to represent the Church, the presence of God among His people. The two disciples, then, are walking away from the Church, disappointed in all their hopes, disillusioned by what they have seen and heard. But, see what the Risen Jesus does: he goes to walk with them, continuing their journey in the direction that they are going, away from Jerusalem. He does [not] simply tell them to turn back. No, he walks with them. He accompanies them. He listens fully to their dismay and their sense of being let down. Only gradually does he invite them to see beyond that dismay and begin to speak to their hearts. Even when he sits at table, he does not tell them to return to Jerusalem. He simply shows himself to them. The decision to return is one that they make, moved by the compassion they have found in him.
[Ed: this is a misinterpretation of the Gospel, whether mischevious or not one can only guess, to fit the new “theology of accompaniment”, but even a cursory examination of the passage shows that it doesn’t work, Cardinal Nichols, take note. For one thing, the two disciples were NOT “walking away from the Church” because they were guilty of no public sin – they were merely pondering the events surrounding the Passion and Death of Christ, downcast, at his death. It is preposterous to suggest that Christ would walk in the same direction – i.e.  actively tolerate sin – without “telling them to turn back from sin”. Indeed, as they recounted the story of the events in Jerusalem, Christ rebuked the pair:  “Oh, how foolish you are! How slow of heart to believe all that the prophets spoke!”   You left that bit out, Cardinal Nichols!
The tortuous attempt by Cardinal Nichols to link this Gospel account with the heresy in Amoris Laetitia  is underlined by the claim that “Even when he sits at table, he does not tell them to return to Jerusalem. He simply shows himself to them.” The implication is clear: Holy Communion for public sinners, adulterers et al, no problem. That’s what Our Lord did/would do.  Outrageous. And this is supposed to help the deceased Cardinal O’Brien … how?  Leaving his family and friends thinking that, well, he’s met with the God of Mercy, so let’s not worry about satisfying God’s justice?] 

In this account, we see the mercy of God at work, in the person of Jesus, coming to us in our dismay, in the prison of sin which we construct around ourselves, and opening for us to door through which we can retrace our steps back to him.
[Ed: well, as already said, there is no “sin” in this passage, just human disappointment.]

In the life of Cardinal O’Brien, as well as his failings, there was goodness, courage and many acts of simple kindness. Not least was his determination to serve the poor of the world. But when we come to stand before God we do so best when we come empty-handed. No matter how great or slight our achievements might be, we cannot depend on them. No, we come before God empty-handed so that we can receive the one thing necessary: a full measure of Gods’ mercy.

Only in this way can we hope to enter into the promise that was proclaimed in the first Reading of the Mass. ‘On this mountain the Lord of hosts will make for all people a feast of rich food! A feast of well-aged wines, strained clear.’ This is an image we can all understand and one for which we long, notwithstanding our unworthiness.

But then we are consoled with the next words: ‘Then the Lord God will wipe away the tears from all faces and the disgrace of his people.’ This too is the promise of the Lord. The healing of the wounds we have inflicted and the wounds we ourselves bear, is his work. It is a work that cannot be accomplished without Him. Yet as His work, it is a task in which we are to be his active servants and never simply sit on our hands. The promise of the heavenly banquet is for all; the task of healing and finding forgiveness is also for all.
[Ed: The heavenly banquet for most of us will, more likely than not, follow a period in Purgatory.  Why not mention that?  There’s no better time to drive home the four last things, Death, Judgment, Heaven & Hell, those key truths of the Faith, than at a funeral, any funeral. A reminder that Purgatory is evidence of God’s great mercy, gives hope to the faithful and to family members of the deceased, not least in a case such as that of the much publicised disgrace of Cardinal O’Brien. ]

I started with words from the Confession of St Patrick. So let me end with some more. Here is St Patrick’s faith, loud and clear. Let us make it ours today. He wrote:

‘I haven’t a doubt in the world that, on the day appointed, we shall rise up again in the brightness of the sun; that is to say in the glory of Jesus Christ Our Redeemer…since it is from him and through him and in him that we are going to reign. But the sun he bids to rise, morning by morning, for our benefit, will never reign, nor will its glory last. Christ is the true sun whose glory shall not fade. We who believe in him, and worship him – in fact anyone who does his will – shall live forever, because Christ lives forever, reigning with God the Father Almighty and with the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be. Amen.’ (59-60)

This is our prayer today, especially for Cardinal Keith Patrick O’Brien. May his soul and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen
+Vincent Nichols

Comments invited…

Cardinal O’Brien Scandal: Update…

Report into Cardinal O’Brien is with the Pope and ‘hot enough to burn the varnish off his desk’  Cardinal O'Brien2 16 March 2015 10:52 by Brian Morton

The Church in Scotland has responded to media reports suggesting that the Church is “sitting on” a report on allegations regarding Cardinal Keith O’Brien, the former Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh who stood down in 2013 after admitting sexual misconduct.

A spokesman for the Archdiocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh said that Pope Francis had “tried his very best to handle the case of Cardinal O’Brien with great justice and compassion” and was now considering the report. “We hope and trust that he will reach a decision that is fair and just to everybody involved,” the spokesman said.

Following public accusations by a number of priests and one former priest, and following the cardinal’s resignation, the Pope appointed Bishop – now Archbishop – Scicluna, to speak to all those involved and report back to the Vatican.

One of the men who have accused Cardinal O’Brien of inappropriate sexual conduct said that despite Archbishop Scicluna’s report being “hot enough to burn the varnish” off the Pope’s desk, the Church was moving with “glacial” speed when it came to making public its findings.

The cardinal’s alleged victim expressed disgust that while a parish in Edinburgh was being closed, the Archdiocese had reportedly spent £200,000 on a retirement home for Cardinal O’Brien, in Northumberland.

The statement explained that the decision to buy a property for Cardinal O’Brien was made by the Archdiocese’s trustees “in accordance with their obligations to make provision for elderly clergy in line with similar provision in place with other retired clergy and after taking appropriate professional advice.” The archdiocese retains deeds on the property bought for Cardinal O’Brien and it is understood that funds from any future sale of the house will be returned to the Archdiocese’s accounts.  Source

Comment

To the best of my knowledge, the identities of the Cardinal’s accusers are still not officially in the public domain, although just about everyone knows someone who knows who they are, so maybe “hot enough to burn the varnish off [the Pope’s] desk” signals disclosure, in full, at last. Then, we can make a judgement about the credibility (or otherwise) of the Cardinal’s accusers, who have been treated, to date, as victims.  Be that as it may, we ought to pray now for all involved, as we prepare to celebrate the Feast of St Patrick tomorrow. Cardinal Keith Patrick O’Brien is – unsurprisingly with a name like that! – Irish-born, so if even more publicity is looming on publication of the “hot” report on the pontiff’s desk, we ought to ask the great Saint Patrick to intercede for him.   

Update

Friday, 20th March

Click here to read statement from Scottish Catholic Media Office

Click here to read statement from Cardinal Keith Patrick O’Brien

Cardinal O’Brien Doing Penance in a Monastery? Yeah Right…

Cardinal O'Brien2

[C]ardinal  Keith O’Brien is enjoying a quiet retirement in a comfortable home provided by the Catholic Church.

It had been believed O’Brien was doing penance at a monastery in England after admitting he had “fallen beneath the standards” expected of him.

But the UK’s former senior Catholic is staying in a £208,750 bungalow – bought by Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh Leo Cushley – in a Northumberland village.

O’Brien, 76, refused to explain his situation yesterday, saying only: “I’m not speaking to anyone at the moment.”

The disgraced churchman has been staying in the former pit village of Ellington, Northumberland, since January.

The house was purchased in the same month by Cushley – who succeeded O’Brien as Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh – and two other leading churchmen in their capacity as trustees of the archdiocese.

O’Brien would not answer questions yesterday about why he was living on the other side of England from Cumbria, where he was understood to be undertaking a religious retreat.

When pressed on the house ownership, he replied: “You’ll need to check that with the diocese. I’m not talking about it, I’m not allowed to talk about it.”

Despite his self-imposed exile from Scotland, O’Brien’s new home is just 50 miles across the Border.

Neighbours, unaware of his identity, spoke of regular groups of visitors with Scottish accents.

Asked about his guests and whether villagers knew he was a cardinal, O’Brien answered: “I’m not saying anything. Just leave it at that, the diocese will deal with it.”

O’Brien was brought down after being accused of hypocrisy over his continual condemnation of homosexuality.

He called it a “moral degradation” and described gay marriage as “harmful”.

Three serving Catholic Fathers and one former priest then came forward to accuse him of inappropriate sexual contact with them dating back decades.

One claimed O’Brien made an approach to him in 1980, after night prayers, when he was a seminarian at St Andrew’s College, Drygrange.

Another complainant said he had been living in a parish when he was visited by the cardinal and inappropriate contact had taken place between them.

A third complainant alleged he had faced what he described as “unwanted behaviour” by the cardinal in the 1980s after some late-night drinking.

A fourth complainant claimed that the cardinal had used night prayers as an excuse for inappropriate contact with him.

O’Brien stepped down from his role in February last year and and remains under investigation by the Vatican, who ordered him to undertake an unspecified period of “prayer and penance”. Read more

Comment

Yet they want to evict Fr Despard? All very “justice and peace” – NOT.