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Pope's abuse comments align him with Chilean Cardinals

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In December 2013, Pope Francis sparked hope that the Catholic Church was taking the scandal of clerical sexual abuse seriously as he created a group to advise him and future popes on how the church worldwide could protect children, appointing experts on the issue and even survivors of abuse to a new Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors.

Four years later that commission has lapsed into an inactive state. Its members' terms of office, as set by the group's Vatican-approved statutes, expired last December (2017). Neither the pope nor the Vatican have made known when or if the current members will be reappointed or new members found.

That Francis has allowed this lapse to occur has been broadly criticised from all quarters of the Catholic Church as deeply troubling. A commission without validly appointed members ceases to be a commission; its members may carry on their work but if they do, they do so as individuals without legal standing or vested authority to back …

Failing to Address Abuse: The Real Legacy of the Pope's Visit to Chile

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Bishop Juan Barros Madrid, centre, during a Mass celebrated by Pope Francis, far right, on Thursday near Iquique, Chile. The Pope said there was "not one single piece of evidence" that Bishop Barros had protected a peadophile priest. Credit Vincenzo Pinto/Agence France Presse - Getty Images
The papal plane stunt provided a great smoke-screen from the Pope awarding a extremist lgbt / pro-abortion politician a Knighthood in the Pontifical Equestrian Order of St. Gregory the Great (although this was pretty well hidden among a plethora of awful ecclesial developments over the last week as I noted in this post). But there was another, much bigger issue which this PR stunt was perhaps designed to cover up, as Robert Mickens (not the most traddy journalist on the planet) points out in thisLa Croix article: Pope Francis has been away in South America this past week and, while in Chile, he drew only modest crowds of supporters. It was the frostiest reception he’s received on any of hi…

Pope Contradicts Amoris Laetitia

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So, in a P.R. master-stroke, no one is talking about the extreme pro-lgbt, pro-abortion politician the Pope awarded a knight in the Pontifical Equestrian Order of St. Gregory the Great.

Now everyone is talking about a spontaneous marriage ceremony for a Catholic couple living in a civil, non-sacramental marriage for at least seven years it seems, during a flight in Chile today.

The fact that unqualified Vatican PR staff immediately had to assure everyone the marriage was perfectly licit is practically a guarantee that it wasn't:
Pope Francis performed on Thursday the first-ever papal marriage ceremony aboard the plane bound for Iquique, the final day of his Apostolic Visit to Chile!
Greg Burke, Director of the Holy See Press Office, said the marriage was "totally legit" and "doctrinally OK". pic.twitter.com/F9KKzE4Omr — Vatican News (@VaticanNews) January 18, 2018 It is interesting to note, however, the couple’s account seems to contradict the director of the …

Scratching my head

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Fr. Longnecker has posted this review of Pope Francis’ speech at Chile’s pontifical university.

It shows just how polarised things are between (in my opinion) those of us who are faithful to the Church and honest about the present situation and those who are sycophants with an agenda. What agenda? Well, some clearly want to change the Church; modernise it. Faggioli belongs to the Bologna School. He literally believes Vatican II was a second Pentecost, that subsequently founded a new religion pic.twitter.com/9AM5d5yw6z — Catholic Sat (@CatholicSat) July 28, 2017 Some have invested so much time and effort into refuting criticisms of this papacy, to show any crack of acknowledgement at this stage would constitute a totally collapse in credibility:
Pope cathedral speech a fine example of a spiritual master leading a Church prone to temptations in desolation. #FranciscoEnChile — Austen Ivereigh (@austeni) January 16, 2018It is Austen Ivereigh who draws Fr. Longnecker's attention in hi…

A Litany of Papal Errors

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Pope Francis routinely honours, welcomes, greets, and entertains public sinners. No doubt many see in this imitation of Christ:
When the Pharisees saw this, they asked His disciples, “Why does your Teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” ~Matthew 9:11 This makes anyone criticising things like his honouring of Dutch abortion activist Elisabeth Ploumen seem like the Pharisees in the Gospel. But St. Paul commands that the worst sinners are driven out of the community  “But now I have written to you, not to keep company, if any man that is named a brother, be a fornicator, or covetous, or a server of idols, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner: with such a one, not so much as to eat” ~1 Cor 5:11 It is true that Christ ate with sinners, but He called them to repentance, something Pope Francis never does. Instead, he ignores their grave public sins and pretends all is well, saving his rebukes for those faithful to the Church.

John Allen Jr at Cruxoffers this interesting an…

Pope appoints dodgy elector special envoy.

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Yesterday's Vatican Bollitino announced the
“Appointment of special envoy to the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the erection of the diocese of Scranton, United States of America. The Pope has appointed Cardinal Roger Michael Mahony, archbishop emeritus of Los Angeles, as his special envoy at the celebration of the 150 th anniversary of the erection of the diocese of Scranton, United States of America, to take place on 4 March 2018.” The fact that Mahony’s successor has forbidden him from public ministry in the LA archdiocese due to his woeful handling of abuse cases appears not to matter.

According to Wikipedia, Mahoney has been an instrumental figure in working to cover up sexual abuse in the sexual abuse scandal, relocating dozens of priests in order to avoid prosecution and aspersions being cast on the Catholic Church.

So how has Pope Francis come to the decision that Mahony should be given this honour? Well it is interesting to note that Mahony was one of the cardina…

On This Rock

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When I look back at the person I was before entering five years of formal study in Catholic theology at Maryvale I recognise just how different I am now. I see those five years very much as a period of preparation orchestrated by God to help me through the challenges I would soon endure.

Before beginning, I was pretty laissez faire, not really my fault, I just did not know why I was Catholic, other than it was what my family had always been and it seemed to make some sense. I did not know what the Church taught, or how that might effect my life, death or possibility of salvation. I could not articulate the Good News. I could not pass on the faith to anyone else.

The first thing I realised about studying the Catholic faith was how coherent it was and how it addressed all my concerns and all the shortcomings in my knowledge quite confidently. I came to be confident that, no matter how convoluted or complicated my question, someone, somewhere in the Catholic world had thought carefully …