Rumours and Innuendos About a Meeting on Deposing Pope Francis are False

17th-century engraving of Pope John XXII. Image courtesy of Creative Commons

News journals which focus on important issues to the Catholic Church and society have an obligation to be factual.  However, even editors of these news sources can become biased to the point where their reporting twists facts to become untrue. This is the case of the reporting by Lifesite News and Church Militant, among others, that said a group of canon lawyers and cardinals  were having a “historic” meeting to discuss how to go about deposing Pope Francis from the Seat of Peter (as if that’s even possible – it’s not, it turns out).  The meeting was actually a group of university academics who gathered for a colloquium to discuss a book one of them, a professor, wrote.  They concluded that history has shown no procedure to depose a pope nor is there a Church authority above him except Jesus. According to the organizer of the two day conference, “Building an actual legal case against Pope Francis was never the point of the meeting anyway… this is just an academic examination of a disputed question.”

The article: “Paris conference on deposing a heretical pope looks to the past, not the present” by Tom Heneghan

Paris conference on deposing a heretical pope looks to the past, not the present

By Tom Heneghan

PARIS (RNS) Holding a colloquium to discuss dethroning an erring Roman Catholic pontiff sounds like a call to battle at a time when prominent cardinals say Pope Francis is leading the faithful astray.

Its title, “The Deposition of a Heretical Pope,” added a provocative touch after a rare challenge by four cardinals who last September urged Francis to clarify parts of “Amoris Laetitia” (The Joy of Love), a papal document they said wrongly opened the door to allowing divorced and remarried Catholics to receive the Eucharist.

So when plans for a conference were reported a few weeks ago, it created quite a buzz on the far right of the Catholic blogosphere.

As the original U.S. report was picked up and translated around Europe, it looked as if the two-day meeting in Paris could be the place where the next steps in the campaign against the pope were being worked out.

It turned out to be nothing of the sort.

The colloquium at the Law and Religious Societies center of the Université Paris-Sud brought together about 40 experts — mostly canon lawyers and legal historians — to discuss issues highlighted in a recent 1,200-page book on the issue by Laurent Fonbaustier, a professor of public law at the university.

Apart from two Dominicans in white robes and two priests in black cassocks with the wide waist sashes favored by traditionalists, the crowd seemed to be mostly lay academics.  Continue reading “Rumours and Innuendos About a Meeting on Deposing Pope Francis are False”


SSPX Expresses Gratitude to Pope Francis for Building a Bridge so Church Can Recognize Marriages by SSPX Priests

“The Society of Saint Pius X conveys its deep gratitude to the Holy Father for his pastoral solicitude as expressed in the letter from the Ecclesia Dei Commission, for the purpose of alleviating ‘any uncertainty regarding the validity of the sacrament of marriage’. Pope Francis clearly wishes that, as in the matter of confessions, all the faithful who want to marry in the presence of a priest of the Society of Saint Pius X can do so without any worries about the validity of the sacrament. It is to be hoped that all the bishops share this same pastoral solicitude.” Continue reading “SSPX Expresses Gratitude to Pope Francis for Building a Bridge so Church Can Recognize Marriages by SSPX Priests”

Lifesite News and Church Militant Wrong AGAIN about Pope Francis!

Pope Pius VII and Cardinal Caprara, by Jacques-Louis David

“Our friends at Church Dilettante were all jittery last month (not with coffee but anticipation) at the news that there would be a conference in Paris on how to depose a pope. Canon lawyers, the article by Christine Niles gushed, would be there! You know, actual canon lawyers, who might advise on how to get rid of that pesky Bergoglio. Two people scheduled to speak at the conference even signed a letter critiquing Amoris Laetitia! Another supported the dubia!   Turns out, it was nothing of the kind, so you can put another check in the overstuffed “wrong again” column for LSD (Lifesite News)  and Dilettante (Church Militant).” –Scott Eric Alt

Read full article here: “Oh, That Conference on Deposing a Pope: Church Militant Had It Wrong. And LifeSiteNews.” by Scott Eric Alt

The Opposition to Pope Francis is Not Really About ‘Amoris Laetitia’

Defend PF Pope Francis on Amoris Laetitia poster

“The opposition to Pope Francis is made up of different streams. There is a theological opposition nostalgic of the John Paul II-Benedict XVI paradigm. Then there is an institutional opposition that is trying to defend the ecclesiastical status quo. And, finally, there is a social-political opposition, which is concerned with the political-economic sustainability of the pontificate that is radically on the side of the poor… The opposition to Pope Francis did not begin with the Synod gathering of 2014-2015 or the post-synodal exhortation Amoris Laetitia. It began with the very first days of his pontificate.”

Continue reading: The opposition to Pope Francis is not really about ‘Amoris Laetitia’ by Massimo Faggioli

Benedict endorses Pope Francis in unprecedented Vatican ceremony

Benedict XVI has endorsed Pope Francis’s ministry in an unprecedented Vatican ceremony featuring a reigning pontiff honouring a retired one on the 65th anniversary of his ordination as a priest.

The ceremony in the Clementine Hall of the Apostolic Palace served in part to show continuity from Benedict to Francis amid continued nostalgia from some conservatives for the former’s tradition-minded papacy.

Francis had invited the entire Vatican Curia, or bureaucracy, to celebrate Benedict’s anniversary, and prelates turned out in force for the rare occasion of being able to greet each man in white.

While Francis presided, it was Benedict who stole the show with an off-the-cuff mini theology lesson sprinkled with Greek and Latin that showed that the mind of the German theologian is still going strong at 89.

In it, Benedict thanked Francis for letting him live out his final years in the beauty of the Vatican gardens, where he said he felt protected.

Benedict’s vote of confidence may help quell conservative criticism of the current pope’s loose theology, lack of attention to liturgy and emphasis on mercy over morals.

Francis has recently dismissed new questions about the implications of Benedict’s resignation by insisting that there is only one pope – him – and that Benedict had pledged his obedience to him on the day he resigned.

He told reporters this weekend he felt Benedict “had my back” and was continuing to help the church through his prayers. He added he had heard that Benedict had even chastised some nostalgic faithful who were complaining about the “new pope”.

During Tuesday’s ceremony, Francis entered the Clementine Hall to applause from the gathered cardinals and went straight to embrace Benedict, who stood up and removed his white skullcap in a sign of deference. They embraced several more times during the ceremony.

Benedict listened intently as Francis addressed him as “Your Holiness”, lauding his 65 years of service to the church and saying his decision to retire to a life of quiet prayer in a small monastery in the Vatican gardens was a very “Franciscan” thing to do.

The monastery “is nothing like those forgotten corners where today’s ‘throwaway culture’ tends to put those who lose their strength with age,” Francis said. “Quite the contrary.”

The monastery, the pope said, is similar to the Porziuncola, the small chapel in Assisi where his namesake Saint Francis founded his order and then spent his dying days.

False Accusations against Pope Francis.

Horacio Verbitsky, the man who publicly and repeatedly accused Jorge Mario Bergoglio of complicity with Argentina’s military rulers when he was Provincial of the Jesuits in the second half of the 1970s, actually worked for the country’s military dictators from 1978 to 1981 and was on their payroll. 

This is the explosive claim published today, May 18, in Argentina, in the blogwww.plazademayo, under the headline “Verbitsky: Con Dios y Con el Diabolo” (“Verbitsky: With God and With the Devil”). 

The article is written by two investigative reporters – Gabriel Levinas and Sergio Serrichio, who have spent more than fourteen months researching the whole affair.  It gives a preview of the book that will soon be published.  In it, they draw on important documentary evidence which they discovered and on testimonies given by people who knew what actually happened.

In today’s article, they provide evidence which shows that Verbitsky, a former member of the Intelligence branch of the Monteneros – a left-wing armed guerilla group that carried out terrorist attacks in Buenos Aires in the mid-1970s, was one of the speech ‘ghost writers’ for the head of the country’s Military Junta, Brigadier Omar Domingo Rubens Graffigna.  They claim that Verbitsky, along with Commodore Juan José Guiraldes and another collaborator named Pedrerol, wrote the speeches of the top commanders of the Armed Forces during the dictatorship.  

They describe Guiraldes as ‘an organic intellectual’ of the Armed Forces, who had influence with the junta’s leadership.  And based on the testimony of three independent witnesses they claim that Guiraldes provided protection to Verbitsky in the weeks immediately after the military coup on 24 March 1976 at a ranch – the Estancia ‘La Santa Maria’, in San Antonio de Areco, near Buenos Aires.   Guiraldes died in 2003.

The authors of the article reveal that at the end of April 2014, one of Guiraldes sons, found a 34 page manuscript at the ranch, in Verbitsky’s handwriting (as was subsequently confirmed by expert calligraphy tests).  They say that various documents found there prove that Verbitsky signed a six-month contract on 5 October 1978, for which he received a monthly payment of 700,000 pesos.   They also found evidence of that he collaborated in writing a book for an institute of the Armed Forces that was published in May 1979 – “El Poder Aereo de los Argentinos.”

Later documents show that he signed a new contract in March 1981, and that his collaboration with the Armed Forces lasted at least four years, from 1978 to 1982.  

The authors of the article say Verbitsky ended his collaboration with the Armed Forces immediately after Argentina’s military defeat in the Malvinas.  Later he began to appear in public as a reporter and, in the 1990s, went on to become an implacable denouncer of the violations of human rights committed during the years of the military dictatorship, and of the corruption that took place during President Carlos Menem’s administration.     

In 2003, Verbitsky published the book “El Silencio” on the silence of the Catholic Church in Argentina during the years of military rule. In it, he accused Bergoglio of complicity with the military Junta when he was Provincial of the Jesuits in the country.  In particular, he charged that by withdrawing his order’s protection from two fellow Jesuit priests – Orlando Yorio and Francisco Jalics, Bergoglio effectively gave the green light for their abduction by Navy officers in May 1976, after which the two were tortured. Bergoglio, then cardinal archbishop of Buenos Aires denied this accusation as slander.  In actual fact, the evidence available today shows that he not only managed to secure their release that same year, but also saved and helped very many people during the years of the military dictatorship. 

Verbitsky, however, confirmed his allegations immediately after Bergoglio was elected  Pope on 13 March 2013, but this time leading Argentinean human rights activists, including the Nobel Peace Laureate, Adolfo Perez Esquivel, flatly denied the charges.   Around that time too, an American journalist, Martin Edwin Andersen, a former friend of Verbitsky, claimed in an article that in actual fact Verbitsky had worked as “ghostwriter” for one of the military regime’s leading apologists, who praised him by name in the book mentioned earlier (“El Poder Aereo de los Argentinos”), for his indispensable collaboration in that work.

For more than a decade Verbitsky has been very close to the governments of both Nestor Kirchner and his wife, Cristina Fernandez who is now President. He is currently head of the Center for Legal and Social Studies (CELS), an Argentine human-rights organization, and also writes for Pagina 12, a left-wing Argentine newspaper that is considered the mouthpiece of the government.

According to Levinas, one of the authors of today’s article, Verbitsky refused his requests for a face-to-face interview for the book, and would only answer some questions through his secretary by email.


Pope Emeritus: “Among you there is the future pope…”

We are being asked to believe that Pope Emeritus didn’t have any say in his resignation!  He’s a “virtual prisoner” who has been “carefully removed!”   Was he lying when he told the faithful.  “I will continue to be close to you in prayer, especially in the next few days, so that you are fully accepting of the action of the Holy Spirit in the election of the new pope” He continued with “May the Lord show you what he wants. Among you there is the future pope, to whom I today declare my unconditional reverence and obedience.”

Excerpts of a letter from Benedict XVI, who wrote to affirm the existence of only one Pope, Francis…..“There is absolutely no doubt regarding the validity of my resignation from the Petrine ministry,” wrote Benedict XVI in a letter published on Feb. 26.

Vatican City, Feb 26, 2014 / 03:47 am (CNA).

His letter was a response to La Stampa’s inquiries regarding “various interpretations that have been circulating in the press and on the web regarding his gesture,” the article noted. Some have questioned whether or not Benedict XVI’s resignation was valid, a speculation the retired Pontiff roundly rejected.

“The only condition for the validity of my resignation is the complete freedom of my decision. Speculations regarding its validity are simply absurd,” he wrote.

According to the article, the Italian newspaper had also queried Benedict XVI about a letter he had written to Swiss theologian Hans Kung regarding Pope Francis.

Kung had quoted a passage of Benedict XVI’s letter as reading, “I’m grateful to be bound by a great identity of views and a heartfelt friendship with Pope Francis. Today, I see my last and final job to support his pontificate with prayer.”

Benedict  responded to La Stampa’s question about the accuracy of such a quote by writing, “Professor Kung quoted the content of my letter to him word-for-word and correctly.”