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Scott Schittl of LifeSiteNews delivers "Stop homosexual networks in the Catholic Church" petition along with all its signers to Congregation for the Clergy in Rome on Feb. 19, 2019.

ROME, February 21, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – A petition to stop homosexual networks in the Catholic Church signed by over 13,000 people was hand-delivered by LifeSiteNews this week to the office of the Congregation for the Clergy in Rome. 

Scott Schittl of LifeSiteNews delivered the petition along with all its signers on Feb. 19, just two days prior to the Vatican abuse summit where Pope Francis is meeting with the heads of bishops’ conferences from around the world to deal with the sexual abuse crisis within the Church. 

The petition, launched by LifeSiteNews and Pro Ecclesia, is addressed to “participants of the Meeting of Bishops on Sexual Abuse.” 

“The problem of homosexual networks in the Catholic Church has brought about the suffering of victims and a crisis for the Church,” the petition states. The “sex-abuse scandal in the Catholic Church is primarily one of homosexual predation, perpetrated by adult clergy (sometimes, senior clergy) against post-pubescent males,” it adds. The petition is offered in a “spirit of filial criticism,” asking bishops to take “drastic measures to deal firmly with, and eradicate, these homosexual networks” within the Church.

Schittl said in a video of the delivery that he would personally deliver the petition to the office of Cardinal Beniamino Stella, the current prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, which oversees matters relating to priests and deacons who do not belong to religious orders, such as the Jesuits and Franciscans. Schittl said he would ask that Cardinal Stella deliver the petition to bishops participating in the abuse summit.

The petition asks the assembled bishops to “look at the problem of homosexuality within the clergy and to take measures to eradicate homosexual networks that built up in the Church within the last few decades,” said Schittl.

The petition has been signed by more than 13,700 people on LifeSiteNews’ platform as of this writing. Pro Ecclesia of Switzerland announced that it has collected more than 2,000 signatures on its own. Pro Ecclesia said in a statement that more than 80 percent of the victims of clerical sexual abuse are male adolescents who are victims of homosexual abuse and not just pedophilia. 

Bishop Athanasius Schneider has stated that if the abuse summit does not “highlight the predominant role of homosexual behavior in the clerical sexual abuse cases,” then it “will be doomed to failure from the start” and thus manifest a “peculiar form of clericalism.”

Among those who have signed the petition are the following dignitaries:

John Smeaton, CEO of The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (UK)

Dr. Markus Büning (Germany)

Riccardo Cascioli, Editor of La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana (Italy)

Christian Spaemann, MD (Germany)

Pedro L. Llera (Spain)

Prof. Anna Silvas (Australia)

Prof. em. Hubert Windisch (Germany) 

Gabriele Kuby (Germany)

Infovaticana (Spain)

Aktion Kinder in Gefahr (DVCK e.V.) (Germany)

Donna F. Bethell, J.D. (U.S.)

Peter A. Kwasniewski, PhD (U.S.)

Editor's note: Pete Baklinski contributed to this report.