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July 8, 2021 (Catholic Culture) – Another week, another display of ineptitude by the Vatican’s public-relations team. So what else is new?

On Sunday afternoon, the Vatican press office announced that Pope Francis had been admitted to the Gemelli Clinic that same day for “planned surgery” to relieve diverticular stenosis. Within a few hours, another statement confirmed that the “scheduled surgical operation” had been performed successfully.

If the surgery had been scheduled in advance — as obviously it was — why did the Vatican postpone an announcement until the Pope was already in the hospital?

Even a public figure like the Roman Pontiff deserves some personal privacy. He need not disclose every detail about his physical health. And frankly, no one wants to know the details about an intestinal complaint. But isn’t it common to let your family and friends know beforehand if you are having major surgery?

There are three good reasons why you might make a low-key announcement before having routine surgery.

  1. Sometimes things go wrong, and a “routine” hospital visit becomes an emergency. It’s an act of charity to ensure that, if an emergency occurs, your loved ones won’t be taken completely off guard.
  2. If you don’t let them know of your plans, some of your relatives and friends might learn that you are in the hospital, and — having had no prior notice — assume the worst. Again it’s an act of charity to spare them unnecessary fears.
  3. If they are believers, your loved ones will surely pray for a successful operation and a quick recovery — but only if they know that some extra prayers would be timely.

Catholics all around the world pray daily for the welfare of the Pope. They might have redoubled their prayers, if they had known he was headed for the hospital. Instead they were surprised — and naturally alarmed — to hear about his hospitalization. What harm could have been done by a simple announcement, a few days before the fact, saying:

Pope Francis will be checking into Gemelli Polyclinic this weekend for routine surgery to repair diverticular stenosis of the colon.

On the basis of such a simple announcement, anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of medicine (or with access to an internet search engine) would have quickly concluded that the Pope’s surgery was not a special cause for concern. But the Vatican, which only gives out information on a parsimonious, need-to-know basis, evidently thought that the news of a papal hospitalization would cause undue concern. So there was no announcement before the fact.

The net result — as usual with a first-class public-relations blunder — was precisely what the PR machinery had thought to avoid: undue concern. Sometime on Sunday, countless Catholics were shocked to hear that the Pope had been hospitalized, and feared the worst.

Three days later we are assured, by the same Vatican press office, that the Pontiff’s recovery is “regular and satisfactory.” Ordinarily there would be no reason to doubt that statement, since the operation is not regarded as risky and the Pope’s overall health is by all accounts good.

However, as the New York Times reports, there is “a lingering cloud of earned skepticism about the Pope’s actual condition.” Why? “The Vatican’s history of obfuscation, opaqueness and Pravda-like messaging is well established,” the Times explains.

The Times is no friend of the Vatican, but in this instance its report is accurate. The Vatican has a longstanding and amply justified reputation for concealing any adverse news about the Pope’s health. Remember back in October 1996, when the papal spokesman, Joaquin Navarro-Valls (who by the way was trained as a physician) earned a stiff rebuke from the Secretariat of State for disclosing what everyone already knew: that Pope John Paul II was suffering from Parkinson’s disease?

So the Vatican’s botched handling of a simple announcement has another negative effect: it undermines confidence in what almost certainly is an accurate report about the Pope’s successful recovery. The fundamental problem with the Vatican’s PR approach is the ingrown tendency to tell people what they should think (in the opinion of the Secretariat of State, which ultimately controls Vatican statements), rather than to deliver the unvarnished truth.

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In 2019, LifePetitions launched a similar petition on behalf of Jeff Younger (the father) and his son James, asking for support and for the Texas state authorities to intervene in a unbelievable case in which the Dallas courts keep flip-flopping over which parent has parental rights and, ultimately, whether or not James must be forced to live as a girl and suffer the trauma of so-called gender "transitioning," as his mom believes he is a girl.

Incredibly, we now seem to be back at square one.

Jeff Younger currently has a gag order put on him, which prohibits him to speak out in defense of his son. But, because he has recently decided to ignore that order, to save his son from irreversible surgery, this brave Dad now faces possible arrest.

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition which does two things: 1) Supports Jeff Younger (again, the Dad) in his fight to save his son, James, from so-called gender "transitioning;" and, 2) Calls on Texas' Attorney General to intervene in this case and quash the gag order against Mr. Younger.

CLICK HERE to WATCH the latest LifeSite interview with Jeff Younger. Hear about the latest developments with his son, as well as the real dangers of gender reassignment surgery and other “transititioning” methods.

Currently, even though he shares 50/50 parental rights to James, which has allowed him to stop the chemical castration of his son, Jeff’s ex-wife recently sued to have full parental rights and to "give her sole medical and psychological decision making."

Jeff is also being threatened with jail time from the gag order, which he believes was intentionally done to stop him from helping pass legislation in Texas to ban sex-change surgeries for minors.

Jeff says that the gag order "prohibits me from speaking on all manner of political topics. And I’m not even allowed to tell you in that gag order whether my son’s a boy or girl."

But Jeff is speaking out, no matter what, because of the real danger that his son is in if he undergoes "transition" surgery.

Indeed, so-called gender "transitions" present many unsafe effects, some desired, some undesired, though all dangerous for one's physical and mental health.

Puberty-blocking drugs and cross-sex hormones have not been proven safe. For example, the FDA has NOT approved Lupron and GnRH analogues for use in blocking puberty.

Risks associated with these pharmaceuticals include: low bone density, high blood pressure, weight gain, abnormal glucose tolerance, breast cancer, liver disease, thrombosis, and cardiovascular disease.

And, additional risks and potential harms include: 

For Males: Stunting of penile and testicular growth, sexual dysfunction, prevention of spermatogenesis, and disruption of normal brain and bone development.

For Females: A menopause-like state, blockade of normal breast development, decreased blood flow to vagina and vulva, sexual dysfunction, thinning of vaginal epithelium, vaginal atrophy, prevention of menses/ovulation, and disruption of normal brain and bone development.

In other words, these medications can sterilize and cause medical harm to vulnerable, confused children.

And, the stunning part about this: studies show that 85% of gender confused children eventually become comfortable with the sex of their bodies.

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition which supports Jeff Younger, a Texas Dad, who is fighting to prevent his son, James, from being "turned into a girl." At the same time, we appeal to Texas State Attorney General, to intervene in this case and quash the gag order against Jeff.

Thank you!


'Save James: Father risks arrest to save 9-year-old son from forced gender-transition': https://www.lifesitenews.com/blogs/save-james-father-risks-arrest-to-save-9-year-old-son-from-forced-gender-transition




Many eminent psychiatrists are now speaking against the faulty notion that sex is fluid and a matter of choice. In particular, they are concerned about the welfare of children and young people in this regard.

Dr Paul McHugh, former psychiatrist-in-chief at Johns Hopkins University, who has researched the occurrence of gender dysphoria for 40 years, has stated that the notion of gender fluidity "is doing much damage to families, adolescents, and children and should be confronted as an opinion without biological foundation wherever it emerges". [See more below.]

And, the American College of Pediatricians (ACP) is definite about the promotion of transgenderism as being harmful public policy:

"Human sexuality is an objective biological binary trait: 'XY' and 'XX' are genetic markers of health – not genetic markers of a disorder. The norm for human design is to be conceived, either male or female…Conditioning children into believing that a lifetime of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex is normal and healthful is child abuse. Endorsing gender discordance as normal via public education and legal policies will confuse children and parents…” [Read more below.]

Here is what Dr Paul McHugh said on this topic: https://www.cnsnews.com/blog/michael-w-chapman/johns-hopkins-psychiatrist-transgendered-men-dont-become-women-they-become

This is the ACP statement on Gender Ideology: http://www.acpeds.org/the-college-speaks/position-statements/gender-ideology-harms-children

About the medical risks associated with medical interventions to attempt to change the sex of the body: https://www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2020/01/59422/

About some of the unconscionable practices some medical professionals are engaged in:



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On the same weekend that saw the unexpected announcement of the Pope’s surgery, the Vatican released another important story, about plans to prosecute ten people for financial misconduct. One of the accused, Tommaso Di Ruzza, has confidently stated that he will be fully cleared when the charges are weighed before a Vatican tribunal, in proceedings scheduled to begin later this month. Perhaps he is right. But if he is exonerated, will the Secretariat of State allow the proceedings of that Vatican tribunal to be made public, to vindicate those who were wrongfully accused?

That question is a crucial one, for the withered credibility of the Vatican. Because while the charges that were made public this past weekend involve ten different individuals, nearly all of the alleged financial crimes involve the cooperation, and sometimes the explicit approval, of the very agency that controls the flow of information from the Vatican: the Secretariat of State.

Reprinted with permission from Catholic Culture


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