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Pope Francis Re-Appoints Cardinal Eijk as a Member of the Pontifical Academy for Life

Image: screenshot/YouTube.

A surprising piece of news comes to us today from Netherlands. Cardinal Willem Eijk, the Archbishop of Utrecht (Netherlands), announces on his diocese’s official website that he has been re-appointed to be a member of the Pontifical Academy for Life (PAL) which currently has (as of today) no official members except for the governing team under Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia. Cardinal Eijk’s announcement indicates that he has been appointed as a member of the PAL for a term of five years.

This recent appointment, therefore, is the first initiative taken by Pope Francis regarding the PAL since the end of 2016, when all active members were dismissed from their previous positions.

As we reported in November of 2016, the dismissal of all of the standing members of the PAL was then seen as a somewhat problematic development in the context of the change of atmosphere in Rome under Pope Francis. Among the PAL members dismissed, there had been several outspoken critics of Pope Francis’ laxer approach to the “remarried” divorcees and concerning other moral issues; among these members were:

  • Cardinal Willem Eijk. He signed the 13 Cardinals Letter and co-authored the Eleven Cardinals Book;
  • Cardinal Elio Sgreccia. He wrote a preface to a book written by Cardinal Ennio Antonelli defending the traditional Catholic teaching on marriage;
  • Professor Josef Seifert. He wrote a detailed critique of Amoris Laetitia and asked for its clarification;
  • Professor Robert Spaemann. He gave several interviews strongly opposing parts of Amoris Laetitia and supporting the Four Cardinals’ dubia;
  • Professor Wolfgang Waldstein. He signed the Declaration of Fidelity with regard to the Catholic teaching on marriage.
  • John Haas, President of the National Catholic Bioethics Center (NCBC) in Philadelphia. He was a governing member of the PAL and is now no longer even listed as a former member of that Academy. The NCBC, under Dr. Haas’ leadership, had issued, in February of 2016, a statement regarding the Zika virus which refutes the proposed and spreading idea of licitly using  artificial contraceptives in this context of a disease, or even to kill a baby in the womb with the help of an abortion. The NCBC statement was issued four days after Pope Francis himself had openly proposed considering the use of such contraceptives as a measure of prevention, blocking conception, in view of the seemingly spreading Zika virus. Though the NCBC document itself does not explicitly mention the pope by name, it was a clear response to the pope’s own statement on the matter.

The fact that Pope Francis now chose Cardinal Eijk himself to be a member of the PAL once again could also be a strategic decision in order to calm serious concerns about the papal decisions with regard to the PAL. Just today, Edward Pentin, of the National Catholic Register, published a longer article in which he discusses various problems relating to the PAL and its current controversial President, Archbishop Paglia. Pentin’s article is entitled “Former Pontifical Academy for Life Members Concerned Over Its Current Course,” and, among several critics, he refers to a founding member of the PAL, Christine Vollmer, president of the Latin American Alliance for the Family, and he comments, as follows:

Many see the ending of members’ terms as a purge aimed at precisely replacing them with those who are less rigorously protective of all human life and, according to Vollmer, without the experience of the “struggle ‘on the ground.’”

It is yet to be seen who else will be appointed by Pope Francis to be a member of the PAL. It is too early to conclude that Cardinal Eijk’s re-appointment is a signal that the pope intends to repopulate the PAL with staunch defenders of the Catholic Church’s moral teaching.

39 thoughts on “Pope Francis Re-Appoints Cardinal Eijk as a Member of the Pontifical Academy for Life”

  1. His Holiness Pope Francis may yet pull another “Congregation for Worship” trick, like he did rather disingenuously with His Eminence, Cardinal Sarah; make it look like continuity and orthodoxy while appointing “shadow officials” to undermine the normal functioning of the congregation under His Eminence, Cardinal Sarah. Unfortunately, and sadly, I wouldn’t put it past His Holiness.

  2. Church faces a collapse so evident in Europe most Notoriously low countries , Canada and even CT. USA etc……The failure of Francis to discipline wayward Jesuit like Ven. Alleged leader and promotion of sorry excuses for clerics like Paglia, Maradiaga, Belgium Bishops have the RC faith in a free fall……… More ab like Eijk are needed who reconize this collapse and deal with it. …. Something Francis, Forte and Cocopalmiero refuse to do at all.

    • The sole responsibility belongs to Jorge Bergoglio. He was willingly elected illegally by the St Gallen Mafia – Daneels admitted it. His sole purpose has been to demolish the Church; denigrate God the Father, Jesus, Our Blessed Lady and GOOD Catholics, particularly those “rabbits” with more than 2 children at every
      opportunity. He has persecuted any Order with money so that he could grab it; disbanded where he can ; and re-arranged others like the Knights of Malta illegally and given their funds to the already filthy rich German contingent. He bragged that he would go down in history as the “Pope who split the Church, may God forgive him and the rabble with which he has surrounded himself.

  3. Unfortunately, I am so far gone, I only see this appointment as Pope Francis messing with our minds.

    Cardinal Ejik is one of my heroes due to the essay he wrote in the book of the eleven cardinals. Here is one what one priest blogger, who had permission from Ignatius Press in 2016 to print the essay on his blog, said.

    Unfortunately, there were no priest bloggers who took him up on his offer to publish Cardinal Ejik’s essay and I don’t know why Fr Byers did not print Cardinal Ejik’s essay.

    Mr. Sokjec, I will contact you to provide further information on this. Please read my message on ‘ contact us’ …it will start with ” From MSDOTT”.

    Thank you

    • “Messing with our minds” would seem to describe it pretty accurately. It is no doubt nothing but a cynical move to allay our fears and induce us to suppose that the status quo had never been abandoned. But the obvious question is: Why, therefore, did he so ruthlessly purge the Pontifical Academy for Life? It was not just a ‘warning shot’ but an entire artillery barrage designed to underline the Bergoglian ‘ethic’ that toeing the party line is demanded of all. Little wonder that he scolds those who, so he maintains, are sowing the seeds of division by their ‘rigidity’. We are currently suffering the worst pope in many centuries, but he is there for a reason. This vile, festering, toxic, malignant boil has so debilitated the Body of Christ that it must be completely excised.

      • See Pentin’s article referred to in the article.

        “This vile, festering, toxic, malignant boil has so debilitated the Body of Christ that it must be completely excised.”

        Spot on. And that HAS to mean the formal condemnation of Vatican II and absolutely everything touched by it. I myself would:

        1. Condemn Vatican II as a false Council;
        2. Conditionally ordain all priests ordained since 1968-69. Laicise those who refuse;
        3. Delete from the Acta Sedis all documents and decisions of all the Popes post-Pius XII including John XXIII as unsafe. This includes Encyclicals, canonisations, everything.
        4. Condemn Bergoglio as a formal and pertinacious public heretic;
        5. Sack all Cardinals and at the same moment appoint Traditionalists only to the College (this would actually be my first act).
        6. Cull the Bishops. Laicise those who put up any opposition.
        7. Abrogate the Novus Ordo and restore all the Sacraments to their pre-1956 form;

        The rest of the Pontificate would be devoted to re-teaching the integral Catholic Faith.

        Vote for Sophronius IV. You know it makes sense!

          • I can well understand your reaction, in that you can scarcely believe it. Sadly, though, I suspect that, like myself and many others, you really are not greatly surprised. We know that this shyster is by no means unique, but they have only been emboldened to declare themselves for what they are within the last four years. Maybe it’s this cretin’s personal interpretation of Bergolio’s exhortation to “go to the peripheries”? (The “periphery being the edge of the abyss).

          • Speaking of red hats…is the price for a red hat at 12 million euros
            in Mali ? Is that too cynical?

          • O you rigor mortis-afflicted Traditionalist tyrants! Go easy on Bishop Wreck-It Ralph. He’s merely following in the footsteps of his boss, Cardinal Vincent (Nichols) who visited a Hindu temple in 2009 during ‘Interfaith Week’ and prayed for world peace and harmony in the “sanctum sanctorum” (and that description is directly from the diocesan website) before Shri Nilkanth Varni, a Hindu deity. He involved himself in various other wacky actions while he was there whose details escape me but they may have involved rose petals, curry powder and an idol of a man with an elephant’s head and a pot-belly. Definitely papabile.

            Oh, and just to pour salt on the festering sore, Wreck-It Ralph is a Redemptorist.

          • I used to think that the kindest thing I could think of saying about Cormac Murphy O’Connor was that he is a waste of space. I don’t know if Nichols is as bad, or worse. You are probably ‘closer to the action’ than I am. What is your assessment?

          • Well, Stewart, you could write the Church of England’s thirty-nine Articles on a length of cigarette paper and not be able to slip it between the two of them.

            I will say this though on behalf of Cardinal Vincent – at least he’s not a member of the St.Gallen mafia like his predecessor…but that might have more to do with the fact that cosy cabal’s services are not currently needed. Come the next conclave, Mk.II may emerge from the shadows.

          • Wasn’t it Murphy O’Connor who introduced Bergoglio to Martini? But we shouldn’t be too hard on good ol’ Cormac; he received Tony Blair into the Church. As for which Church; that is still to be determined.

          • Judging by the shenanigans of the last four years, I think Murphy-O’Connor might also have introduced him to Mr.Jack Daniels.

            (That Tony Blair IS clever, though. He becomes a Catholic less than 6 months after leaving a government that sanctioned the slaughter of 180,000 of its children during each of his 10 years in power. That’ll fool God).

          • Only 180,000? Surely that’s a conservative estimate? BTW: I think you should commend your most descriptive expression; “rigor mortis-afflicted” to our beloved Holy Father. He could be looking for an eloquent alternative to “rigid” and it sure would be a worthy addition to The Pope Francis Little Book of Insults.I have no doubt that “coprophagia” must be there by now.

        • While I agree with most of what you stated Comrade, I do have some questions. The first of which is, must we nullify all canonizations? There are indeed many canonized in the post VII era such as Padre Pio (2002) and my patron Saint José Luis Sánchez del Río (2014) Who truly deserve this. The second relates to the sacraments, unless I am mistaken (and, in all likelihood I am given my youthful inexperience) I believe that the current Tridentine Latin Mass is the 1962 mass, so would this change render it invalid as well?

          • I see, it’s a fortunate thing that we have individuals like yourself Comrade who are so knowledgeable about our faith, as most of those who call themselves Catholic are fairly ignorant on the deeper aspects of faith (myself clearly included)

          • “I feel that I am growing in what little knowledge I have.”

            Absolutely every one of us is in that position, DV. The only thing I know for sure is that my ignorance is vast. Just done a lot of reading over the years, it does help. I also have a St. Joseph Missal, given to me by my mother 🙂

      • In many centuries? Maybe 20? I don’t know, but we all need to ramp up our Rosaries, penance, and fasting even more!

        • We need to make or otherwise renew our Total Consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary; to give ourselves completely, all that we are, and all that we have, including our past. We can’t pretend it is easy, but if it was, it would be worthless. The spirit is willing, but the flesh ….. that’s an entirely different matter. Our Blessed Lady told Fr. Gobbi what is meant by total consecration. “Total consecration to my Immaculate Heart does not mean giving Me one thing, and keeping another back for yourself; or one day, ‘yes’ and another day, ‘no’; or for a period of time, as you yourselves would have it; but everything, and for all time.”

  4. “The fact that Pope Francis now chose Cardinal Eijk himself to be a
    member of the PAL once again could also be a strategic decision in order
    to calm serious concerns about the papal decisions
    with regard to the

    Ding, ding, ding……no more calls please…………we have a winner!!!

    Yes, indeed. Eijk’s appointment is simply window dressing. Boob bait for the Bubbas. He’ll be isolated and alone. This operation is run by Archbishop Paglia, the amazing nude homo-hunk.

    • Scandal upon scandal has caused so much harm for the Church, that even “if” this appointment was to be genuine, who would believe. Pope Francis has lost all credibility.
      I do not trust him, or those who are surrounded by him. Such a very, very sad state of affairs for the Church and the laity.
      In fact, i trust very, very little these days, and that includes any priest or bishop or cardinal who will not refute the heresies that are within our Church. Maybe they are just weak, or afraid or whatever.
      I don’t really care for any excuses. None are acceptable.

      Let’s just get this charade over with.

  5. I would say, ‘without the smell of sheep in the battle on the ground’… someone looking to replace those with the smell of the Shepherd with those with the smell of the goats perhaps???


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