Fr. Charles Murr is one of the last living witnesses to Vatican corruption who is both orthodox and courageous. We have many clerics out there – dare I opine “many”! – who are orthodox, but do not have the courage – or perhaps the opportunity? – to speak the truth come what may.
Today, we thank God for Fr. Charles Murr who continues to show that he has both, setting an example for all clerics everywhere.
In an interview with Kevin Symonds back in 2020, Fr. Murr confirmed himself as an independent witness to the Masonic membership of Annibale Bugnini, leading Rorate to conclude that “it is fair to say that there is no longer any reasonable doubt that the moving force in the Consilium was, indeed, a Freemason” (on Symonds’ evidence on this point, see also his review of Infiltration here).
Fr. Murr’s first book on this was The Godmother about that holy woman of God, secretary to Ven. Pius XII, the great Madre Pascalina. We have already promoted this text more than once to readers, especially in our discussion of the Third Pornocacy.
I cannot recommend this book enough to Trads because it truly cuts to the heart of the matter in a truly edifying book which is both hilarious and galvanizing at the same time.
Now Fr. Murr has done it again. Murder in the 33rd Degree: The Gagnon Investigation into Vatican Freemasonry.
In this new book, Fr. Murr has given a pious testament to the great man who stood against the Vatican corruption under Paul VI: the great French Canadian Cardinal, Édouard Cardinal Gagnon “Faithful Servant of Jesus Christ, Priest, Bishop, Loyal Son and Prince of the Church, Philosopher, Theologian, Lawyer, Teacher, Linguist, Mentor, Guide, Friend” (book dedication).
Perhaps, like Fr. Murr’s Madre Pascalina and the venerable Papa Pacelli, the good Cardinal is another not-yet-canonised saint.
Gagnon: Trusted Man of God
When Pope Paul VI realized that the “smoke of Satan” had entered the Church, and he was presented with substantial evidence that the architect of the new Mass was a Freemason, the most trusted man at the Vatican was this French Canadian Cardinal.
Paul VI turned to Gagnon to initiate a complete investigation into Vatican corruption in 1975. He spent three years interviewing every single person in the Vatican and collecting a massive stack of documentation that fully detailed the Third Pornocracy that the Church was suffering under at that time.
It was a massive dossier, foreshadowing the Vati-Leaks dossier in 2012 (which probably told about the same story of corruption) under Benedict XVI shortly before his resignation.
Fr. Murr’s new book tells the story of that dossier and his personal friendship with Cardinal Gagnon and the other good men he knew in and around Rome: Monsignor Mario Marini and Cardinal Giovanni Benelli.
These were the men fighting against corruption decades ago, while the nefarious forces of Masonic intrigue sought to tighten their grip on the Church, by means of wicked men like Secretary of State Cardinal Jean-Marie Villot and Cardinal Sebastiano Baggio.
The Murder of John Paul I
But wait – there’s more.
Fr. Murr also tells the story of the year of three popes, 1978, when the “smiling pope,” soon to be beatified John Paul I, Papa Luciani (whom Murr confirms actually surpassed Paul VI and John Paul II in an important way) died suddenly after only 33 days in office.
Here I must refrain from going into more details so that you will buy this book and support Fr. Charles Murr. Suffice it to say: this book is a historical witness from a rare living voice who was present with the “insiders” of the Vatican in that fateful year. Murr’s evidence from his contact with these good men should be taken into the debate about John Paul I’s death and the call for Catholics of a full investigation, besides the release of Gagnon’s dossier. The title of the book should give a clue about what is discussed therein.
John Paul II and Archbishop Lefebvre
There’s another connection here that I need to mention as well, which is partially covered in The Godmother and partly by my own conversation with Fr. Murr. First, in the final pages of Murder in the Thirty-Third Degree, Murr relates a critical juncture in the pontificate of Papa Wojtyła:
In early 1981, the Italian Secret Police informed Pope John Paul II that in a raid on the Grand Masonic Lodge [Propaganda Due (P2)], they uncovered a Masonic plot to bankrupt the Vatican. In May of that same year, a would-be assassin’s bullets left the pontiff fighting for his life in the Gemelli Hospital. When John Paul II regained consciousness and the power of speech, it was said that the first two words out of his mouth were: “F-i-n-d G-a-g-n-o-n…” (182).
Cardinal Gagnon helped John Paul II turn his pontificate around and start dealing with Vatican corruption. If only Papa Wojtyła would have listened more to Gagnon and done more of what he said (besides removing Baggio and finally removing Marcinkus from the Vatican Bank).
Nevertheless, John Paul II trusted Gagnon for a very important task: the apostolate visitation of the SSPX seminary at Écône completed in January, 1988 (before the SSPX episcopal consecrations later that year). Fr. Murr confirmed to me concerning this visitation that Gagnon thought that Écône was a “model seminary” and that Archbishop Lefebvre was a “holy and pious man of God” who was doing the right thing. He told John Paul II about the seminary personally.
So the most trusted man in the Vatican under Paul VI, who became the most trusted man in the Vatican under John Paul II, tasked to investigate the vilified Archbishop Lefebvre and his seminary… had that to say about the Archbishop.
As I said before about our SSPX Debate, we can admire Archbishop Lefebvre, we can be his ally, and we can even say he was a holy man… without saying he was infallible or impeccable on every point. Those who vilify the man or his fraternity of priests fail to see this, and fail to take into account witnesses to the contrary.
At OnePeterFive, we can’t ignore the witness of Cardinal Gagnon, the man whom John Paul II trusted to give the judgment about the SSPX and the Archbishop Lefebvre.
We hope that through Fr. Murr’s book, greater knowledge may be spread about the great French Canadian prelate, and his life’s work may be more appreciated and honoured. Most especially, we hope and pray that more clerics will seek the truth that Cardinal Gagnon sought – at the risk of his life – and fight for the cleansing of the Mystical Body of Christ from the Third Pornocracy, according to God’s good time in the mystery of His Providence.
For now, please support Fr. Charles Murr and buy his book. Buy two, and give one to a priest! And especially for priests, this will soon be an audio book read by our contributing editor, Kennedy Hall.
T. S. Flanders
Feria Quarta post Dom. Passionis
This article has been updated.
 Fr. Charles Murr, private interviews conducted by T. S. Flanders (April 24th, 2020, March 31st, 2021).
 Ibid. (April 5th, 2022).
Timothy Flanders is the editor of OnePeterFive. He is the author of City of God versus City of Man: The Battles of the Church from Antiquity to the Present and Introduction to the Holy Bible for Traditional Catholics. His writings have appeared at OnePeterFive and Crisis, as well as in Catholic Family News. In 2019 he founded The Meaning of Catholic, a lay apostolate dedicated to uniting Catholics against the enemies of Holy Church. He holds a degree in classical languages from Grand Valley State University and has done graduate work with the Catholic University of Ukraine. He lives in Michigan with his wife and five children.