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Vatican Life Academy tells Catholics to ‘stop gossip, trust Holy See’ on abuse crisis

Lisa Bourne Lisa Bourne Follow Lisa

October 10, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – The gutted and repurposed Vatican Academy for Life admonished Catholics over the weekend to cut the “gossip” on the Church’s sexual abuse scandal and trust the Vatican’s handling of the crisis.

Responding via Twitter to the October 6 Vatican Press Office Communiqué saying Pope Francis is and has been taking care of the Archbishop Theodore McCarrick sexual predation scandal, the Pontifical Academy for Life gave assurances by way of a three-year-old quote from the pope that the truth of the McCarrick scandal would indeed be attained.

“McCarrick: @HolySeePress: “We will follow the path of truth wherever it may lead,” the PAV said, then emphatically stating: “Now STOP gossip, TRUST Holy See.” 

Catholics continue to call for accountability in the sexual abuse crisis among Church hierarchy at all levels in the wake of months of abuse revelations, between the McCarrick crisis – first breaking June 20 with credible substantiate allegations McCarrick abused a male minor decades ago, followed by numerous subsequent accusations against the disgraced cardinal, and with the Pennsylvania grand jury report released August 14 detailing 70 years of sexual abuse by some 300 priests in six dioceses there.

Gossip” in various forms has been criticized during the Francis papacy by the pope and his close collaborators.

The Vatican statement comes 108 days after McCarrick’s removal from public ministry and says Francis had first ordered the Archdiocese of New York to conduct an investigation of accused abuser McCarrick in September of last year. 

The results of this “preliminary” investigation would be combined with “a further thorough study” of the documentation on McCarrick in the Holy See’s possession, the statement said, and “the Holy See will, in due course, make known the conclusion in the matter.”  

The “path of truth” remark in the Vatican Communiqué and Pontifical Academy for Life tweet refers to a statement Francis made to abuse survivors while in Philadelphia for the 2015 World Meeting of Families.

Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, the archbishop who commissioned a homoerotic mural for his cathedral, heads the Pontifical Academy for Life (La Pontificia Accademia per la Vita/the PAV).

Paglia paid a homosexual artist to paint a homoerotic mural in his cathedral church of the Diocese of Terni-Narni-Amelia in 2007. The mural includes an image of a half-naked Paglia himself. It portrays Jesus carrying nets to heaven filled with naked and semi-nude homosexuals, transsexuals, prostitutes and drug dealers, tangled together in erotic interactions. Paglia, then diocesan bishop, is one of the tangled, netted figures. The image of Christ is painted with the face of a local male hairdresser, with his private parts visible through his translucent clothing.

The October 6 Vatican Communiqué about which Paglia’s PAV tweeted, and in which Francis promises to follow the path of truth to a thorough look into Vatican documents on McCarrick comes 42 days after former U.S. papal nuncio Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò’s explosive testimony implicating the pope and other senior Church prelates with covering up for McCarrick.

Francis initially said he would not say “a word” about Viganò’s bombshell testimony, then continually took repeated apparent shots at the former apostolic nuncio via his daily Mass homilies, referencing a “Great Accuser” – another moniker for Satan – who attacked bishops and aimed to divide the Church.

Paglia is named in Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò’s testimony, along with Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio, as part of the Vatican’s “homosexual current in favor of subverting Catholic doctrine on homosexuality.”

Coccopalmerio, former head of the Pontifical Council for the Interpretation of Legal Texts and a close collaborator of the pope, is tied through his then-secretary to a cocaine-fueled gay orgy in a Vatican apartment that was broken up in a raid by Vatican police last year. Pope Francis obtained the privileged apartment for Monsignor Luigi Capozzi, despite his having been warned about Luigi’s grave problems. Francis saw to it that Cocopalmerio’s secretary got the apartment, even after then Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) Cardinal Gerhard Müller had tried to get the apartment for one of his secretaries, because of its proximity to the CDF.

Coccopalmerio said in a 2014 interview that Catholic leaders must “emphasize” the “positive realities” that he said are present in homosexual relationships

Paglia was appointed by Pope Francis to attend the Synod on Youth taking place currently in Rome, along with a number of other bishops who have either been accused by Vigano of covering for clergy sex abusers or are otherwise suspected of mishandling abuse claims. 

The October 6 Communiqué, which is attributed to Francis, has him also again attributing clergy sexual abuse and its cover-up to clericalism. 

The pope has in the past blamed the clerical sex abuse crisis on clericalism as well – though it’s not clear just how inordinate deference to clergy prompts priestly sexual abuse or homosexual predation among clergy. It is also not clear how abuse of clerical power adequately explains rampant abuse or its cover-up. This diagnosis of the sex abuse crisis has netted consistent criticism.

In earlier times the PAV had for a mandate the preservation of the sanctity of human life, and required its members to sign a declaration that they uphold the Catholic Church’s teaching on life.

Pope Francis, however, gutted the Academy last year of its members who were appointed by Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI. These were appointed because of their pro-life and family credentials. The new academy has dropped the requirement for members to pledge fidelity to the Church’s pro-life teaching. 

He also added new members who do not support the Church’s teaching on birth control and abortion, and altered the Academy’s mandate to include immigration, the environment and arms control.

Paglia has defended appointing pro-abortion members to the Academy for Life.

Pope St. John Paul II and Professor Jerome Lejeune founded the PAV in 1994 to promote and defend life in the particular areas of bioethics and Catholic moral theology. Its founding mission had encompassed the areas of procreation, in vitro fertilization, gene therapy, euthanasia and abortion.

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