Tag Archives: Vatican

St Peter’s Square, The Vatican

Last night.

Via Reuters:

Vatican police raided the offices of the Holy See’s Secretariat of State and its Financial Information Authority, or AIF, on Tuesday and took away documents and electronic devices as part of an investigation of suspected financial irregularities, a Vatican statement said.

…The Vatican statement gave no details except to say that the operation was a follow-up to complaints filed in the summer by the Vatican bank and the Office of the Auditor General and were related to “financial operations carried out over the course of time”.

A senior Vatican source said he believed the operation, which the statement said had been authorized by Vatican prosecutors, had to do with real estate transactions

Vatican police raid top offices in financial investigation (Reuters)

Meanwhile...

United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is in Rome, Italy

This morning.

Via The Daily Beast:

The Daily Beast has learned that [Attorney General] Bill Barr and [US attorney] John Durham were especially interested in what the Italian secret service knew about Joseph Mifsud, the erstwhile professor from Malta who had allegedly promised then candidate Donald Trump’s campaign aide George Papadopoulos he could deliver Russian “dirt” on Hillary Clinton

….The sources in Rome who confirmed that Barr and Durham came to learn more about Mifsud also told The Daily Beast that they expected Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to meet the same intelligence agencies on his state visit that began yesterday.

Pompeo is meeting the Italian president, the prime minister, and the Pope while in Rome. His official mandate is to discuss Libya, China trade, and sanctions on Russia, which Italy does not support. Pompeo will also be spending time with the U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican….

*popcorn*

Barr Went to Rome to Hear a Secret Tape from Joseph Mifsud, the Professor Who Helped Ignite the Russia Probe (Daily Beast)

Pics: Getty/AP

Pope Francis

The Vatican is refusing to co-operate with requests to provide witnesses and evidence about child abuse in the Roman Catholic Church to a British public inquiry, it emerged yesterday.

The independent inquiry into child sexual abuse was told that the Vatican considered the requests to be improper and claimed that its officials were protected by diplomatic immunity.

The response appears to be in stark contrast to Pope Francis’s declaration this year of an “all out battle” against child abuse, which he said was “utterly incompatible with [the church’s] moral authority and ethical credibility”

Vatican refuses requests for child abuse inquiry evidence (The Times)

Peter Fox writes:

Vatican refuses requests for child abuse inquiry evidence. Despite all the rhetoric the catholic church is changing, its action speak louder than words. It refused to release child abuse files to Irish, then Australian now UK inquiry.

Rollingnews

Pope Francis leads the opening session of the meeting on the protection of minors in the church at the Vatican on February 21

Notes from the Vatican summit on clerical child abuse…

Priest and canon lawyer Tom Doyle writes:

The so-called “summit” on the clergy sex abuse crisis was not a total failure. The process and the outcome of the Feb. 21-24 meeting of bishops at the Vatican were clearly a serious disappointment to the victim-survivors, their families and countless others who hoped for something concrete to happen.

The accomplishments can only be understood in the context of the totality of the event: the speeches, especially those of the three women, the bishops’ deliberations, the media reaction, and the presence and participation of the victims-survivors from at least 20 countries.

I have been directly involved in this nightmare since 1984, when the reality of sexual violation of the innocent by clerics, and the systemic lying and cover-up by the hierarchy (from the papacy on down) emerged from layers of ecclesiastical secrecy into the open.

By 1985, Pope John Paul II and several high-ranking Vatican clerics possessed detailed information about what was quickly turning into the church’s worst crisis since the Dark Ages.

From that time onward, bishops on various levels of church bureaucracy have been engaged in almost nonstop rhetoric about the issue that has been a mixture of denial, blame-shifting, minimization, explanations (the most bizarre, that it’s the work of the devil), apologies, expressions of regret, promises of change.

The rhetoric has been accompanied by procedures, policies, protocols and a few changes in canon law. The gathering in February was no exception.

There were no revelations, statements, speeches or promises from anyone involved in the meetings that were new…Everything that was said has already been proclaimed publicly by someone from within the church’s system, from among the victims and survivors or from their supporters.

The other element that fits right in with the bishops’ pattern of response over the past 35 years is that they made promises but did nothing.

People have been begging the bishops for years to stop talking about it. Stop the endless flow of empty platitudes and empty promises and do something.

Unfortunately, the hierarchy’s long-held belief that their words are sufficient to change reality has been completely useless…(more at link below)

Abuse summit achieved something, but not what Pope or bishops expected (National Catholic Reporter)

Pic: CNS/Vatican Media

Overnight.

Australian Chief judge Peter Kidd sentences former Bishop of Sydney and Vatican insider Cardinal George Pell to six years in prison, for the sexual abuse of two boys in the 1990s.

Pell was convicted last month on five charges of child sexual assault, following a committal hearing, a mistrial and a trial. He has lodged an appeal, which will be heard in June.

Pell, who was until recently the third most powerful Catholic in the world, will serve a minimum of at least three years and eight months in prison.

George Pell’s jailing defies the might of Rome but his fall is too appalling for celebration (David Marr, The Guardian)

Yesterday: Did You Like It?

Meanwhile

Cardinal George Pell (right), Archbishop of Sydney at a conference in Cork in 2011

“I am not going to talk about the Church in Ireland but I am going to talk about what I am trying to do in Australia, as an archbishop, and you can draw your own conclusions on what might, or what might not, be adaptable to here in Ireland.

Despite my English Protestant name (and I am proud of my English heritage) I have plenty of Irish blood, most of it Catholic, and so I think that entitles me to make the first point, and that is that we Irish Australians, and I suspect the Irish, enjoy bad news. It’s like the Englishman whose face will light up when he says, ‘Isn’t the weather terrible?’

This, then, is my question: has all the good Irish blood gone overseas into the colonies? The Irish that I grew up with were fighters: they were people who had convictions and went and battled for them.”

Cardinal George Pell, Archbishop of Sydney on ‘Authentic Catholicism vs Cafeteria Catholicism’ at the Catholic Voice Annual Dinner in Cork in July, 2011.

Meanwhile

Cardinal George Pell has been found guilty of sexual offences in Australia, making him the highest-ranking Catholic figure to receive such a conviction.

Pell abused two choir boys in the rooms of a Melbourne cathedral in 1996, a jury found. He had pleaded not guilty.

His trial was heard twice last year because a first jury failed to reach a verdict. The verdict was handed down in December, but it could not be reported until now for legal reasons.

A second jury unanimously convicted him of one charge of sexually penetrating a child under 16, and four counts of committing an indecent act on a child under 16.

Cardinal Pell on ‘Authentic Catholicism vs Cafeteria Catholicism’

Cardinal Pell guilty: Vatican treasurer convicted on child sexual abuse charges – live (The Guardian)

Previously: I Do Not Like Thee Dr Pell

Thanks Mark Geary

Yesterday,

Clerical abuse survivor Marie Collins discusses on American Catholic cable channel EWTN her hopes for the Papal summit on child sexual abuse which began this morning in Vatican city.

Meanwhile

This morning.

So far at pope’s anti-abuse summit, survivors are stealing the show (CruxNow)

Pope vows ‘concrete’ measures at child sexual abuse summit (The Guardian)

This morning.

Meanwhile

This morning.

Former Fianna Fáil TD and former Minister for Foreign Affairs Dermot Ahern; Former Fianna Fáil Minister Michael Woods ,who brokered the indemnity deal with the religious.

“I spoke to him in no uncertain terms about the separation of powers in Ireland and how the Irish State was a Republic and about the redress board [set up to compensate people who had been in religious-run institutions as children].” (Dermot Ahern, “Vatican proposed State indemnify it against clerical abuse claims”)

Was it not Mr Ahern’s FF colleague Michael Woods who passed on the compensation bill of a cool billion for clerical child abuse to the innocent taxpayer; and the same paragon of republican secularism, himself, who blessed us with our current theocratic blasphemy law? In no uncertain terms.

D Flinter,
Headford,
Co Galway.

No uncertain terms? (Irish Times letters page)

Vatican proposed Irish State indemnify it against clerical abuse claims (Patsy McGarry, Irish Times, August 8, 2018)

Previously: Spotting The Woods For The Trees

Pic: Jadedisle

From top: Theodore McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington DC, stripped off his rank as cardinal and ordered him to live in seclusion; Australian Archbishop Philip Wilson, the most senior Catholic cleric to have been found guilty of concealing child sex abuse.

The Vatican has announced the resignation of the Australian Archbishop Philip Wilson, the most senior Catholic cleric to have been found guilty of concealing child sex abuse….

….The resignation came two days after the Vatican announced that the pope had stripped Theodore McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington DC, of his rank as cardinal and ordered him to live in seclusion.

Previously: Couldn’t Happen Here

 

Cardinal George Pell will be the most senior Vatican figure ever to face a criminal trial

Cardinal George Pell, Australia’s most senior Catholic and the controller of the Vatican’s finances in Rome, has pleaded not guilty after he was ordered to stand trial over historical sexual offence allegations.

Pell has always denied the allegations against him, but it was the first time he had been required to enter a formal plea.

The decision came after a dramatic four-week committal hearing in March in which the Cardinal’s lead barrister, Robert Richter, said the accusers were lying and had a vendetta against Cardinal Pell.

Who is Cardinal George Pell and what is he accused of? (Guardian)

Pic: Getty