Tag Archives | Catholic Church

The First Jesuit Pope: Criminal? Bringer of End Times?

You just knew that the first Jesuit to become pope had to have some juicy scandals somewhere in his past. To start with, Salem-News.com reports:

Former Cardinal and Pope-elect “Francis I”, Jorge Mario Bergoglio, is accused of helping kidnap opponents of Argentina’s military junta during the 1970′s “Dirty War”, and of baby trafficking, by lawyers and members of the Plaza de Mayo human rights group. (Los Angeles Times, April 17, 2005, “Argentine Cardinal Named in Kidnapping Lawsuit.”

Then there are the “Black Pope” end times theories, rounded up by IBTimes.com:

The 2013 papal conclave may have escaped the precise election of a black-skinned pope, but conspiracy theorists among netizens remain adamant the selection of Pope Francis has indeed heralded the end of days for the people on planet Earth.

…The former Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio is the leader of the Jesuits, who traditionally wear black cassocks. When he got elected to become spiritual leader of the Catholic church, he became the first Jesuit Pope.

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Theology vs. Physics, Round MMMMCMXCIX: Church Finds Pope, Science Finds God (Particle)

Photo: Aibdescalzo (CC)

A great, topical headline from VF Dailyas Juli Weiner wraps the new Pope story around the God Particle confirmation:

Science is not going to lose the news cycle to religion so easily! Barely a day after the Catholic Church announced it had found its new Pope (hello there, Francis I!), nuclear physicists at CERN revealed that they have indeed found the God Particle. No, like, for real this time. Swear to. . . science.

What is the God Particle? Is it. . . a one-lunged Argentine with a passion for social justice? No? CBS News clarifies that the body in question is a:

subatomic particle predicted nearly a half-century ago, which will go a long way toward explaining what gives electrons and all matter in the universe size and shape. The elusive particle, called a Higgs boson, was predicted in 1964 to help fill in our understanding of the creation of the universe, which many theorize occurred in a massive explosion known as the Big Bang.

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Canadian Researchers Demolish The Myth Of Mother Teresa’s Goodness

First exposed as a fraud by Christopher Hitchens, renowned twentieth-century saint Mother Teresa now appears to have been more of a monster. Via EurekAlert!:

The myth of altruism and generosity surrounding Mother Teresa is dispelled in a paper by Serge Larivée and Genevieve Chenard of University of Montreal’s Department of Psychoeducation and Carole Sénéchal of the University of Ottawa. The three researchers collected and analyzed 502 documents on the life and work of Mother Teresa.

At the time of her death, Mother Teresa had opened 517 missions welcoming the poor and sick in more than 100 countries. Two-thirds of the people coming to these missions hoped to a find a doctor to treat them, while the other third lay dying without receiving appropriate care.  [There was] a significant lack of hygiene, even unfit conditions, as well as a shortage of actual care, inadequate food, and no painkillers. The problem is not a lack of money—the Foundation created by Mother Teresa has raised hundreds of millions of dollars—but rather a particular conception of suffering and death: “There is something beautiful in seeing the poor accept their lot, to suffer it like Christ’s Passion.

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VatiLeaks: The Inside Story

Disinfonauts who have been following the rise and fall of Pope Benedict XVI may be interested in “The Pope and the Spy Who Loved Him“, a recent story from GQ featuring characters and intrigues that could rival any novel by Dan Brown or his ilk. The popular media has painted the Pope’s former butler Paolo Gabriele as a simpleton and common thief, but the portrait painted in the GQ article is of a faithful Catholic driven to betrayal by his conscience.

In the narrative of the Vatican leaks, Gabriele has been cast as the punch-line villain (the butler did it!), a possibly delusional simpleton who betrayed the Church and the Holy Father, albeit out of misguided altruism. Yet he is also an unlikely villain.

Gabriele grew up in a middle-class neighborhood three metro stops west of Vatican City, but his eventual employment there was a matter of either happenstance or divinity, depending on the degree of one’s faith.

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Pope’s Retirement Linked To The Blackmailing Of A Circle Of Gay Vatican Officials, Reports Italian Press

I’m guessing the Vatican’s secret circle of gay cardinals are also superheroes. The Guardian reports:

A potentially explosive report has linked the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI to the discovery of a network of gay [high-ranking clergy] in the Vatican, some of whom were being blackmailed by outsiders. The pope’s spokesman declined to confirm or deny the report by the Italian daily newspaper La Repubblica.

The paper said the pope had decided on December 17th that he was going to resign – the day he received a dossier compiled on the so-called “Vatileaks” affair. Pope Benedict’s butler, Paolo Gabriele, was arrested and charged with having stolen and leaked papal correspondence.

A quotation said some Vatican officials had been subject to “external influence” from laymen with whom they had links of a “worldly nature” — a reference to blackmail. La Repubblica‘s report was the latest in a string of claims that a gay network exists in the Vatican.

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Vatican Gay Priest Network Linked To Pope’s Resignation

Second Vatican Council by Lothar Wolleh 008More and more intrigue plagues the Vatican since the shock resignation of Pope Benedict. John Hooper reports on the discovery of ‘blackmailed gay clergy’ in the Guardian:

A potentially explosive report has linked the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI to the discovery of a network of gay prelates in the Vatican, some of whom – the report said – were being blackmailed by outsiders.

The pope’s spokesman declined to confirm or deny the report, which was carried by the Italian daily newspaper La Repubblica.

The paper said the pope had taken the decision on 17 December that he was going to resign – the day he received a dossier compiled by three cardinals delegated to look into the so-called “Vatileaks” affair.

Last May Pope Benedict’s butler, Paolo Gabriele, was arrested and charged with having stolen and leaked papal correspondence that depicted the Vatican as a seething hotbed of intrigue and infighting.

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Pope Seeks Immunity From Child Molestation Crimes

Well we all knew there was a secret scandal behind the resignation of Pope Benedict, right? From Reuters:
Pope Benedict's decision to live in the Vatican after he resigns will provide him with security and privacy. It will also offer legal protection from any attempt to prosecute him in connection with sexual abuse cases around the world, Church sources and legal experts say. "His continued presence in the Vatican is necessary, otherwise he might be defenseless. He wouldn't have his immunity, his prerogatives, his security, if he is anywhere else," said one Vatican official, speaking on condition of anonymity. "It is absolutely necessary" that he stays in the Vatican, said...
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Ratzinger Resigns – First Pope To Quit Since 1415

Nearly 600 years have elapsed since a sitting Roman Catholic Pope last resigned. As accustomed as we are to Vatican intrigue, one wonders if the official story of Pope Benedict’s deteriorating health is the real reason that the man formerly known as Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger is on his way out. From Sky News:

Pope Benedict XVI is to resign on February 28 due to his “deteriorating” health.

He will be the first head of the Roman Catholic Church to resign in almost 600 years, with his departure expected to leave the post vacant for around three weeks.

The 85-year-old German’s resignation letter said: “After having repeatedly examined my conscience before God, I have come to the certainty that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry.

“I am well aware that this ministry, due to its essential spiritual nature, must be carried out not only with words and deeds, but no less with prayer and suffering.

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Report: Thousands Of Irish Women Were Enslaved In Catholic Laundries Which Ended In 1996

They were being punished for being orphans or single mothers, for committing petty crimes, or being perceived as rebellious in some way. Via ABC News:

Ireland’s government oversaw workhouses run by Catholic nuns that once held thousands of women and teenage girls in unpaid labor and usually against their will, a fact-finding report concluded Tuesday, establishing state involvement in the country’s infamous Magdalene Laundries for the first time.

Opposition leaders demanded that Prime Minister Enda Kenny offer an official apology for the state’s failure to enforce labor laws and human rights standards in the 10 Magdalene Laundries, and to pledge to establish a taxpayer-funded compensation program for survivors. The report found that 10,012 women were committed to the workhouses from 1922 to the closure of the last two laundries in 1996.

The government since 2002 has paid more than $1.3 billion to more than 13,000 people who suffered abuse in other Catholic-run workhouses and orphanages but explicitly excluded former Magdalene residents, contending these were privately run institutions with negligible state involvement.

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Cross-Dressing Priest Who Led Meth-Dealing Gang Arrested In Connecticut

A reminder never to take religious authorities too seriously when they admonish you to behave properly. Via the Daily Mail:

A Connecticut priest at the center of a meth drug-dealing gang has been suspended over allegations he had sex in his rectory. Monsignor Kevin Wallin was relieved of his duties in May last year after complaints were made by staff at his residence in Bridgeport.

The priest also faces charges of helping run a cross-country methamphetamine distribution ring. According to his indictment he was selling around $9,000 of meth a week at one stage.

Msgr Wallin, 61, is alleged to have bought an ‘adult entertainment store’ which investigators believe helped him launder thousands of dollars in weekly profits. Rectory staff are believed to have notified the local diocese after the priest allegedly ‘dressed as a woman and engaged in ‘sex acts.’

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