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Cardinal Óscar Rodríguez Maradiaga

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras, July 26, 2018, (LifeSiteNews) – One of the Vatican's most influential cardinals, already suspected of looking the other way while gay relationships were conducted in his personal residence, has now admonished fifty seminarians for speaking out against their seminary's rampant homosexual subculture.  

“Instead of praising the seminarians,” tweeted Ed Pentin, the National Catholic Register (NCR) who broke the story, Cardinal Óscar Rodríguez Maradiaga “accused them of being “gossipers” who wish to portray their fellow seminarians in a bad light.”

“When their letter was read out to bishops, the cardinal “immediately started attacking the letter’s authors,” he added.

Maradiaga is the leader of Pope Francis’ Council of Nine cardinals and was entrusted with the Pope’s Vatican reforms.

The concerned seminarians said in their joint letter that they could not “hide any more the magnitude of this problem in the seminary,” according to NCR, which obtained a copy of the letter.  

“We are living and experiencing a time of tension in our house because of gravely immoral situations, above all of an active homosexuality inside the seminary that has been a taboo all this time,” continued the young men’s letter, “and by covering up and penalizing this situation the problem has grown in strength, turning into, as one priest said not so long ago, an ‘epidemic in the seminary.’”

Their letter seeks systemic changes for the seminary, including demanding that the school’s formators follow magisterial teaching on homosexuality and that their seminarians who engage in gay romantic or sexual behavior be ousted.  

“Not everyone who wants to can be a priest!” they said. “The ministry is a gift that should be lived and received from the conviction of the Gospel and radical and jealous love.”

The NCR report offers other stunning glimpses inside the troubled Honduran seminary:

“Heterosexual seminarians are scandalized and really depressed,” one of the seminarians who drafted the letter told the Register.

“Many are thinking about leaving the seminary,” the seminarian said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of a fear of reprisals. “I fear that many will leave.”

The report continues:

Part of the impetus for the letter to bishops was that a seminarian from the Honduran Diocese of Santa Rosa de Copán tried but failed to take his own life in April, after he had discovered his male lover in the seminary was in another relationship.

The Register has obtained a copy of the seminarian’s suicide note. “I am going to my Father’s house,” the handwritten letter reads. “I never believed that my friend, my brother, the one that I trusted everything and which I gave too many things,” would have “betrayed me that way.”

The Register also obtained graphic photographic evidence of homosexual pornography, exchanged on WhatsApp between seminarians who did not sign the letter, as well as other obscene messages. The exchanges have been verified as authentic by computer specialists at the Catholic University of Honduras who searched computer memory and handed the exchanges to the country’s bishops.

Upon hearing the contents of the letter, both Cardinal Maradiaga and Honduran bishops’ conference president, Bishop Angel Garachana Pérez, reportedly lashed out against the letter’s authors.  

Cardinal Maradiaga “looks out for the guilty but doesn’t realize that over half the seminarians are homosexuals,” according to a source who spoke to NCR.

The developing archdiocesan seminary scandal comes on the heels of another homosexual scandal concerning one of Cardinal Maradiaga’s close colleagues, Auxiliary Bishop Juan José Pineda Fasquelle, which came to light last year.

Pineda was known to have a “string of intimate male friends” on whom he lavished gifts, going so far as to give his first assistant, a Mexican named Erick Cravioto Fajardo, a downtown apartment.

But for years, Cravioto lived in a room adjacent to the Cardinal’s quarters at the archbishop’s residence, Villa Iris, where Bishop Pineda also had living quarters.

“Cravioto’s room was ‘right next to the cardinal,’ who knew ‘perfectly well that Pineda spent hours and hours with him and never said anything, never did anything,’” according to an earlier Register report.

The cardinal reportedly dismissed Bishop Pineda’s relationship with Cravioto and “made excuses for it all,”  according to the Register’s Honduran source.

Pope Francis accepted Bishop Pineda’s resignation last week.  

Polish priest Fr. Dariusz Oko exposed in 2012 what he called a “huge homosexual underground in the Church” where actively homosexual seminarians, priests, and bishops “shield one another by offering mutual support.”

“They build informal relationships reminding of a clique or even mafia, aim at holding particularly those positions which offer power and money,” he wrote.

“When they achieve a decision-making position, they try to promote and advance mostly those whose nature is similar to theirs, or at least who are known to be too weak to oppose them. This way, leading positions in the Church may be held by people suffering from deep internal wounds,” he added.

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Doug Mainwaring is a journalist for LifeSiteNews, an author, and a marriage, family and children's rights activist.  He has testified before the United States Congress and state legislative bodies, originated and co-authored amicus briefs for the United States Supreme Court, and has been a guest on numerous TV and radio programs.  Doug and his family live in the Washington, DC suburbs.