Sep 252010

I just happened to catch the preview. WOW.

I am recording it tonight … at 8pm Eastern.

I heard that it will be shown again tomorrow, Sunday. This is probably MUST SEE.

The Pope is being sued, as an individual.

This will need discussion.

All the best.

  23 Responses to “‘What The Pope Knew’ — CNN Documentary Tonight (Repeated Sunday)”

  1. There are at least a hundred thousand victims of pedophile priests living as damaged adults in the USA today, yet CNN says they could not find victims to interview? New statistics are rising as documents are ordered released by Courts in the USA and Europe. Bishop Accountablity now says ten percent – 10% – of priests were pedophiles on average in American dioceses. The number of pedophile priests found so far in the USA is 10,969 and counting also per BA. I cover these crimes and find one reader at a time, get no support from the church or “advocacy groups” posting at as a victim of these crimes who is also a journalist. I reported on the new statistics, a case from 1999 settled in L.A., a brochure from a pedophile priest treatment center in the 1950s, and NONE of this information makes it to mainstream media.

  2. If you are still looking for someone to talk to I can introduce you to many survivors of clergy abuse who would like to take up the opportunity of speaking publicly.


    The following gives a present day view and understanding of the experience of survivors of clergy abuse and the continuing cover up.

    Be shocked by the global estimates of the numbers of those sexually abused by Catholic clergy.

  3. Thank YOU for all the comments today.
    It is 11:54pm and I just finished updating all the lists and posts across this website and PAPAM at WordPress. I still need to back up all my files.
    PLEASE feel free to use this blog as an OPEN FORUM to let survivors have their say. I will be honored. Not a problem.
    This has, from day one, been a forum open to all. I have no axes to grind (though with winter coming I will need to chop and split some wood, by hand, but I use a chain-saw and a custom, 16-pound maul. No axes. Actually I have two, but they are two light.)
    Thanks & Cheers,

  4. Two thoughts after watching the CNN documentary.

    1/ PLEASE read my post from May 23, 2010, as to my VIEW on the Role of the HOLY SPIRIT in the election of Cardinal Ratzinger. Much of the criticism leveled at the ‘pope,’ in the CNN documentary (which didn’t have many outright revelations that we hadn’t heard before) all applied to his tenure BEFORE becoming pope. As I have discussed, per Catholic belief, he would NOT have been elected pope without the explicit, albeit tacit (we think), approval and blessing of the Holy Spirit. ERGO. The Holy Spirit has to have been ‘A-OK’ with J. Ratzinger’s behavior and actions in the handling of the openly pedophile priests. SO WHAT IS THE PROBLEM? Why are they still picking on the pope. He has had the ULTIMATE vetting and approval. I don’t get it. Give him a break. Address all questions to the Holy Spirit … because in the end, the pope is also his VICAR on earth (handpicked at that). So here is my post:

    2/ This pope, who when 5 said he wanted to be a cardinal because he was so IMPRESSED with the attire of Cardinal Michael von Faulhaber is an unashamed, DANDY. Wow. I watched the documentary in 1080p High Definition (HD) on a 47″, 16:9 screen, with a very high quality signal from the Dish Network. I could see every gold thread in his get ups. WOW. I had already talked about his gold, jeweled encrusted pins on his pallium — to represent the rusted, iron nails used in the Crucifixion. You could see the pins quite clearly. One of them is on the back. It is ALL THAT GOLD THREAD that gets me. On one of his miters there was enough gold thread to circumvent the equator. MAN. You could feed 1,000 poor kids for a year with just the cost of that thread. Feed them for another year on the cost of the labor. Such ostentatious, unnecessary display’s of wealth, in my book is wrong. But, who am I to say.

    OK. That is it. Good documentary. I liked it. Thanks. Cheers.

  5. JohnB,
    I would LOVE to interact with the survivors. As a father of 4, I know what I would have felt like doing if any of my kids were molested. I know that the survivors have numerous forums to express their horror.
    I will OPEN the pages of this blog to them, unconditionally.
    I am a great advocate of free, open speech … as long as it is not annoyances. [I abhor the spineless clowns that want to have a say but don’t have the guts to say who they are. Yes, somebody called me an IDIOT the other day. Not the first time. Though I prefer the Irish, ‘ijut’. But, that idiot does so anonymously. It is like those that leave anonymous reviews of my books. Wow. I am so impressed.]
    So, PLEASE …. whatever I can do. Let me know.
    We can do daily interviews. I can set up special pages. I can provide links to CITYOFANGELS or Molested Catholics.
    You tell me, PLEASE.
    Thank you. I will read you links … today.
    All the best.

  6. Kay,
    Many thanks for this comment. I just spent a VERY ENJOYABLE time on your blog. BRAVO. I loved one of your earlier posts. Was there ANY DOUBT? <> I just referred to him as a dandy after seeing, in detail, his sartorial splendor. I just adored that white, very fluffy smock he was shown in with the golden lanyard. Wow. Anyway … I am happy to help in anyway … but it would appear that YOU are in very good shape. You have a nice blog and a good following. You even get donations! Better than I do. All I get is brickbats from those that admit to watching Fox News.
    That CNN used John Allen as their Vatican Expert, told me right up front, that the Vatican would get some cover. Monsignor Allen would see to that. It cracked me up when he talked about the apologists for the pope. I also nearly chocked on my red wine. My wife hates when I do that. we have wine stains all over the house. Monsignor Allen is THE APOLOGISTS APOLOGIST for the pope. He is about as objective when it comes to the pope as I am of my extremely cute, very intelligent, beautifully groomed, well educated, highly refined, vegetarian Golden. What a joke. Yes, CNN could have gone further. It was like the ‘joke’ about eating Chinese. I was hungry for more even before the show was over. Since I watched it, after I had taped it … I could skip over the commercial. [I rarely watch ANYTHING live other than MSNBC or CNBC — but even then using split screen with a third information window … because I am rather a Type A person.] I think the content itself … without … the COMING UP … and promos … was about 39 minutes.
    Kay, YOUR blog is doing great. People will see it.
    The mainstream media doesn’t, on the whole, get it.
    Don’t despair. Keep up the great work. Your blog made my day.
    Thanks. All the best.

  7. The issue here is about leadership and a systemic complacency to call a spade a spade. While Benedict shows more wisdom on the issue now than he did while Cardinal Ratzinger, he WILL NOT explore church structures, priesthood formation and issues of sexuality and celibacy, nor will he delegate authority to local bishops on matters they are more apt to deal with locally and swiftly.

    As a side, I think the Holy Spirit is well past the age of 80 and no longer has a vote in the conclave. AND, the Pope is the Vicar of Christ, not the Vicar of the Holy Spirit – that would be Glenn Beck!! LOL

  8. The other day I read about a state-run “children home” in a Croatian town with a population of some 100.000, the “home” comprising both an orphanotrophy and a correctional institution for youth aged between cca 10 and 18. Twelve-year-old girls sleeping with 40-year-old men (including some local city coucellors) for a cola, some alcohol and a package of cigarets. The police and the attorneys keep quite. Every now and then newspaper articles about this “home” and then silence. At least no possibility for shark lawyers to take a percentage of money obtained from some rich diocese.
    It is good that we started discovering the filth within the Church and its structures. But aren’t most of us pharisees? Pedophiles are some men in black, not us. Or most of them wear black, and there is only a handful (or less than handful) of us. Remember msgr. Georg Ratzinger slapping some boy’s face some 40 years ago? My grandfather’s hands were beaten by willow stick at school, my father (born 1950) was slapped (chronologicaly corresponding to msgr. Ratzinger’s slapping) and even when I (born 1980) was 10 old teachers sometimes slapped pupils. Fifty years ago philical punishment was considered “normal”. Even twenty years ago covering pedophilia was normal. People did not notice it or pretended not to notice it in family, at school, at church.
    I have personal experience with my neighbor who was probably abused by some member of his family and who molested other children. Luckily, I was a year older and physically stronger. We were 7-8 years old at that time and I knew that women get pregnant through sexual intercourse. Of course, I new nothing about oral or anal sex. The boy often took his clothes and the often asked the other of us for oral sex or (some simulation of) anal sex. Thanks to Heaven, I was a stupid little boy who told him that my willy and my ass are both dirty things that smell and that I don’t want this. However, when I told my parents that he wanted to have my willy in his mouth, they didn’t take it seriously! Good Heavens! I was still allowed to play with him. I was probably 25 when I realized (complted the mosaic) that another family moved away from the neighborhood because their younger son was molested by that boy. And the poor molester boy himself did probably not understand what he did… How could my parents be so blind? And I can even say I was not molested by him because he didn’t cause me any pain nor could I understand that something very dirty was going one. I never tried to talk to my parents about these events, but I told everything my wife. We have a 2-year-old son and a 2-month-old daughter. Will I be blind as my parents were? God’s Providence helps where people fail.

  9. You are right Fr. John. I think time is ripe for a 3rd Vatican Council (or maybe a different city, maybe in Asia, Latin America or Africa to signal Church opening into these areas) where issues of sexual morality would be front and center, and open to debate without taboo (i.e. things like celibacy or birth control should not be declared off limits). Among other things that should be on agenda are, of course, Church governance and reform of the College of Cardinals.

    I do not buy the “Holy Spirit selected him” argument. Was that the same Holy Spirit behind the papacies of Sergius III and Alexander VI? The argument you advanced was used to justify bad behavior and outright atrocities by kings of medieval Europe.

    I also have a comment on anonymous posts. I do not care for my real name to be accessible all over the Internet on the sites and fora I post on. I do try to be courteous and friendly to people I discuss things with but I prefer to use an assumed moniker when doing so.

  10. There was a 93 year gap between Vatican I & II. Time may be ripe, but this pope is not game. Please see Stefano’s comments, today, about what appears to be a lame duck pope. Yes, you may be eager for social issues to be revisited, but YOU genuinely think this pope will do anything to change the status quo? If you do, please let me know, I have a really good deal on a bridge that you may be interested in buying.

    As for the NOT buying the Holy Spirit argument — I am puzzled. Are YOU saying that you do NOT BELIEVE that the Holy Spirit has any influence in the election of popes? I noticed that Fr. John was also rather flippant about that — but, I assume, he, as a priest, has a different take on this. All I know is that John Paul II, who I assume knew a thing or two about these matters (and PROBABLY had a better grasp of the H.S.) says in paragraph #10 of Universi Dominici Gregis: ‘to accept the interior movements of the Holy Spirit.’ But, then Fr. John, points out that the H.S. is definitely over the age of 80 — though I thought ‘he’ was supposed to be ageless. Again, I trust Fr. John’s understanding. He, unlike I, has been to a seminary. I have never even visited one (and PLEASE NO JOKES.)

    So … what is it. Holy Spirit in or out? I can only go by accepted norms. If you and Fr. John claim that the Holy Spirit is a myth then I will update my inconsistencies of UDG posting to say that per fr. John and this guy, whose name we don’t know (and could be Cardinal Re for all we know), there is no involvement of the Holy Spirit at conclaves … so John Paul II was in error. Fine.

    Yes, your posts are very courteous and polite. Thank YOU. But, they are still anonymous which puts all of us at a disadvantage. And in case you are wondering, I do know who Stefano, Marko B, Fr. John, Kenny, Glenn etc. are. They have at various times e-mailed me with their identity. I ‘chat’ with Stefano, and today, Marko B, outside of these Comments. Given that I have always led a very public life it is VERY ALIEN to me when people are afraid to say their piece in public. But, I am the first to admit. I am VERY STRANGE.

    Anyway … you want to buy a bridge?

    Thanks. Cheers.

  11. You are absolutely right about B16 not being game. So you might hold off drafting that bill of sale (for the bridge) just yet. ūüôā But he is 83 and his successor would probably be more open to it. I think we will see the next ecumenical council announced by the end of decade.
    As to the gap being only 50 years, and not almost 100, Church councils have been held at very irregular intervals in the past. And you can certainly argue that as far as culture there has been a more profound change in the last 50 years than in the 100 years before that.

    The main reason I do not buy the Holy Spirit argument is the fact that the Church has had some very – let’s say -“questionable” popes. Was the HS busy when these popes were elected?

    I understand your objections but I am certainly not comfortable putting my real name on my Internet postings. You never know who will search for them ( prospective employers for example) in the future. But I can certainly email you if you wish.

  12. Not sure where that ’50’ is coming from.
    I said 93 years between Vatican I and II; 1869 and 1962. The one prior to Vatican I, RECOGNIZED by the Catholic Church, was in 1545!
    Not sure whether his successor will be game either.
    Per my thoughts this is out it played out. Paul VI was not 100% pro-V II, but was not going to scuttle it and did what he had to do to fulfill J23’s expectations. Some say he dragged his heels.
    We are not sure what JP I would have done.
    We know that JP II was NOT a great fan of VII.
    We know that B16 has admitted that while he was pro, during and after the council, he changed his mind after the 1968 uprisings in Europe.
    See his
    Summorum Pontificum decree, of July 2007, that basically makes it easier for priests to adopt pre-V II norms.
    All of the current cardinals, under 80, are the creations of JP II and B16. Not sure about B16, but JP II required prospective bishops and cardinals to go through a vetting process and then sign a declaration that they believed in ‘traditional’ Church values! Yes, some could have said they did … though deep down they were nascent liberals.
    Most of the current papabili share the same views as JP II and B16. Ouellet certainly would not hold another council.
    Plus there is the cost. Unless Fr. John can get one of his friends to fund it, I don’t think the Vatican currently has the bucks, money laundering or no money laundering, to hold a council that will need to be attended by upwards of 4,000 bishops. Maybe I should really try and sell that bridge.
    Another council will just rock the boat. Unleash a can of worms.
    I could be wrong, as ever. But, I don’t see a council in the next 10 years.
    WOW. Questionable popes. WOW.
    So you are asking the same question as me. Was the HS busy when the popes were being elected? I don’t know.
    But, aren’t you now treading on heretical grounds? 400 years ago wouldn’t they have BBQed you for saying such a thing? < < smile >>
    If the HS is not aware who is being elected pope … Houston, we have a problem … or should I say, Jerusalem, we have a problem.
    As they say in school … please discuss further.

    I am OK … about the anonymous posts. I guess yesterday me screed to Marko made me realize why being so much in the public doesn’t bother me. My first 14 years … or at least from when I could remember … I could not go anywhere in Colombo without somebody knowing who I was. E-mail me. I am always more comfortable if I know who I am talking to. Always worry that I could be chatting with a cardinal … if so … I need to be a tad more serious than I tend to me.

    Thanks. Cheers,

  13. The Holy Spirit is asked to present by prayers that evoke it’s presence. But the nun’s used to claim to high school students dancing to closely to leave room for the Holy Spirit also and I am sure that some of those girls got pregnant after the dance. We believe that God has a plan. We believe that in the end, all things balance out. The theology of the Spirit’s presence at a papal election would does not say that the Holy Spirit chooses the next Pope, but that the individual electors pray that they will be guided by the Spirit to elect the best candidate and remove from them any prejudice that who have them elect someone for personal gain, political power, or oppositional resentments. It is a matter of faith. The Spirit goes where the Spirit wills. I think the Spirit also has a sense of humor, great patience, and a fondness to make the study of history VERY interesting.

  14. Dear Father,
    Your second sentence is rather open ended and open to very different interpretations. Can YOU please clarify. One could, especially if English is their second language (as it is in my case), walk away thinking that YOU, a man of the cloth, is stating that the Holy Spirit had a ‘hand’ (and lets PLEASE leave it at ‘hand’) in these High School girls getting pregnant. WOW.
    Yes, I have read, as no doubt you have too, of one of the other ‘personas’ of the Holy Spirit having something to do with a young girl getting pregnant. But, I don’t think they had High School per se in those days or whether she had been to a dance that night (though she might have).
    So, dear father, please elucidate. (It is amazing the vocabulary they force down our throats at these ESL (English as a Second Language) classes (though, of late, I am going MAINLY because of the bi-monthly dances, that are supposed to help us further improve our conversational English … though, from what I have seen, much sign language seems to get used, as in letting the fingers do the talking). I guess it is too much to ask whether you speak any Sinhalese?
    Father, your portrayal of the Holy Spirit as joker of sorts definitely has some appeal.
    I wish I was close enough to come listen to your sermons.
    Your characterization of the Holy Spirit is very comforting, especially since I too have a rather warped, British sense of humor. So I can relate better to those that have a healthy, or even unhealthy, sense of humor.
    Did I ever tell you that I have been HUGGED, warmly, by John Cleese?
    All the very best.

  15. Anura,

    50 years is the gap between 1960s (Vatican II) and 2010s (possible Vatican III). I know that the gap between Trent and Vatican I was over 300 years and also that 5th Lateran council was only 40 or so years before Trent and that 1st through 4th Lateran councils all took place within 100 years (12th and early 13th centuries. That’s why I wrote that the Catholic Church held its councils at very irregular intervals. Which means that there being only 50 years since Vatican II should be no obstacle to holding another council soon.

    You make good points about reluctance of popes after J23 concerning the overall meek reforms of Vatican 2. And of course all cardinal electors have been appointed by the last two popes, who were/are very conservative.
    So you may well be right that a new council may be doomed in any foreseeable future, I admit that.

    However, a moderately conservative pope would probably decide that further reforms are needed to preserve the church and that a council is the way to do it.
    I think generational differences will play a role. JP2 and B16 were both born in the 20s and belong to the same generation. The next pope will most likely have been born in mid- to late 60s, leading edge of the baby boomers. Now there are reactionaries among that generation, like Oullet, but I think the cardinals will be more inclined to go with a moderate, more open-minded candidate to replace the conservative theologian, following the maxim “Always follow a fat pope with a skinny pope”.

    But my biggest reason why a council is likely despite the cost (maybe the new pope can sell B16’s jewel encrusted gold pins to pay for it) is that the church does need reform.
    People are dying in Africa of AIDS in part because of Church’s rigid views on condoms. Conversely in the developed world Catholic are ignoring the Church teachings on sexual morality. Both of these undermine church’s authority in the long run, and the same goes for many other social issues the Church has dug its heels on, like priestly celibacy which causes big problems both with priests living out their sexual urges in unhealthy ways (i.e. with kids) and young men staying away from priestly vocations.

  16. Thank you. OK, I now understand the 50 years.
    Glad we agree on some key issues. Great relief.
    You make valid points.
    Not sure that we can ASSUME that the next pope will be moderate. That, in my book, is a BIG ‘IF.’
    Plus, don’t forget … this pope … as far as we know … is in good health (despite a stroke etc. in the past) … and with today’s medical care and drugs … could EASILY be around for another 5 years or MORE.
    I am 100% in agreement with YOU that there is URGENT need for Church reform — but, to be fair, there has been an URGENT need for the last 30 years!
    You are ahead of the game. After MY last response to you … I too started thinking … if they could sell the jewel encrusted pins, the ermine stoles, the gold thread … we could be well on the way to paying for a Council.
    But they won’t.
    Sell a few statues or tapestries. How much do you think an US museum will pay for the Pieta? $300M? The Laocoon? The Laocoon should NOT be at the Vatican! It is heathen. They should sell it. I would suspect you could get at least $100M for that.
    Thanks & Cheers.
    P.S., must go circus and Dwarf Planets beckon. Soon … I will have to let this blog and my work on popes go … as I ramp up work on a book on Dwarf Planets.

  17. @ Citizen of Dis

    People in Africa (and elsewhere) aren’t dying because of Church‚Äôs rigid views on condoms, but because of their promiscuity. I will not go into further details about some truly bad cultural habits in some parts of the world. I even wont’t counter your qualification of the Church teaching as rigid. But accusing the Church of the death of promiscuous people is something I often hear as a biased leftist argument.

  18. Dear Marko,
    Whoa, Whoa, Whoa.
    Oh, dear. Promiscuity is a ‘touchy’ subject. One man’s or woman’s promiscuity is another person’s envy.
    Marko, just for the record …
    Marko, with your wonderful grasp of English, you must have heard the old adage: ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away.’
    Well, for YEARS, I have been advocating a variant of that (with the blessing of some doctors, who would even go as far as calling me their ‘son’): ‘an “O” a day keeps you healthy, happy and productive’ — where the “O” is not about oranges but about orgasms (for adults).
    With men it is NOW a proven fact. You are young (30 right?) … but you better start taking care of your prostate. An “O” a day is the BEST medicine for your prostate — which, like the heart, is a muscle. Ideally, you need to aim for a ‘better than 1’ batting average over YOUR WHOLE life. You are a scientist. You can work it out. I won’t even go into the benefits for women. It releases so many hormones.
    So, I get ‘upset’ when promiscuity is bandied about. Yes, yes, yes … I understand … and I appreciate.
    We did not get TV in Ceylon … until I think 1982. [We left in 1967.]
    But my father, the Ambassador and politician, always openly said … the explosive population growth of Ceylon … “what other entertainment do these folks have?” I think the same applies to China and India. [In an earlier comment you had mentioned the declining birthrate in Croatia. Maybe you guys should ban TV and hire me to come and preach my an “O” a day message.]
    Anyway … I am going to leave at that. I think you all get where I am coming from and going. [NO JOKES, please. This is a serious blog.]
    To me celibacy is an abomination. It is NOT natural.
    We just watched a new movie on Saint (Father) Damien (of Molokai) — who worked with lepers in Hawaii. There was a very interesting insight as to celibacy, abstinence and human needs.
    I cannot for the world of me UNDERSTAND how a 18 to 20 year old MAN … can even pretend to take a vow of celibacy (unless they have, at a MINIMUM, a hormone problem). Don’t jump on me. Car. Schonborn is saying the same thing … but more watered down … because … he too took the vow.
    So … PLEASE.
    Let us all be friends. Promiscuity, desire, lust … are all different shades of a very BASIC human need. Without that NEED we would NOT be here.
    Please … now that you know my creed … an “O” a day (for all adults) and a glass of red wine.

  19. Some things are better said in a private email.

  20. @Citizen of Dis

    I think you meant to say the next Pope will most likely have been born in the mid to late 40’s (rather than the 60’s). Presently, there are no Cardinals made who were born in the 60’s and only a handful of Bishops. However, I agree that a council should be within our lifetime. I would like to see one when there is an openness to change. I think our ever changing culture needs a church that speaks to it, but one that speaks to it with ageless wisdom. I was thinking the 50th anniversary of the opening or closing of VII would be opportune times, but maybe the 60th even better. I JUST HOPE I GET AN INVITE!

  21. Well, well, well. I think Anura’s arguments actually miss my points. Having an “O” daily is one (good) thing. Promiscuity is just another. And celibacy a third. Considering celibacy, I can only say that I chose another way of life: with a wife. Yes, there is a basic human need, but after all, we are humans, not animals. If I could not control my BASIC needs (Freud would say that the basic needs are Eros and Thanatos), I would probably kill a few people each day while driving the car to my working office (I don’t like the way they drive). You can have twelve children with one woman, or with twelve different women. You can have your glass of red wine (my late grandfather also used to have one a day and I try to follow both of you) but you can also have two bottles in one hour. And you know that two bottles won’t make you happpier.
    Better to start creating the list of 19 cardinals.

  22. OK. Lets wrap that thread for awhile. [[ smile ]] I kind of knew what the response would be. [[ smile ]]

    Yes, yes. We should (but not me since this is NOT my areas of expertise) work on that list of 19. I am making up other charts.

    Father John?

    Cheers & Thanks.

  23. Yes, Fr. John,
    I meant the 40s. B16 would certainly have to prove very long lived indeed if the next pope is to be born in mid to late 60s. ūüôā

    you are right that I can only hope the next pope will be more moderate. And you are also right B16 could live for another 5 years or more. But mentioning his future life span, I had a morbid thought: what would happen if the Pope suffers a similar fate as Ariel Sharon, who is still alive, but unconscious (not sure if PVS or a coma) 5 years after his stroke and subsequent brain hemorrhage. Could an medically incapacitated pope be relieved of his duties and if so how? With people leading longer lives and medical technology’s abilities to keep people alive it is far from an academic question.

    I agree with you on celibacy, except that prostate is a gland, not a muscle. But no matter! I also think “promiscuity” is a very subjective term – and I guess to each his own – but it is an undeniable fact that condoms work very well to prevent both pregnancy (although hormonal means work better) and STDs. Being against condoms because it might promote promiscuity is like being against seat belts and air bags because that would promote speeding.

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