A shocking new piece of information comes to us from Germany, from the website Katholisches.info, which is principally run by the well-informed Vatican expert and loyal Catholic layman, Giuseppe Nardi. He reported on 18 November – the day before the controversial “non-existent” Consistory of Cardinals in Rome – that Pope Francis has decided to re-write the statutes of the Pontifical Academy for Life in a way which essentially re-makes this organization.
Relying on a 5 November 2016 report published by the German branch of Vatican Radio, called Radio Vatikan, Nardi has published the new statutes of the Academy. Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia was appointed as the new head of this Dicastery in August of 2016, which in itself signaled a change of direction for the Academy. Now, as Nardi reports, with these new statutes, all current members will be removed and a new set of up to seventy members will be installed.
As the new statutes say, these new members will be appointed independently of religious orientation. From the revised statutes:
§ 5 – Directions and Norms for Members
a) Academicians are selected, without any religious discrimination, from among well-known ecclesiastical, religious and lay persons of various nationalities, who are expert in the disciplines pertaining to human life… [my emphasis]
The new rules set forth that the members will be re-affirmed every five years which means that the life-long members of the Academy will need to be re-affirmed. The new rules will go into effect on 1 January 2017. As Nardi puts it: the new rules mean three things: “the purge of all members of the Academy, the elimination of the [Jerome] Lejeune Oath [similar to the Hippocratic Oath], and the exclusion of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.” An oath to defend the dignity of a person “from conception until (natural) death” is, according to Nardi, no longer to be required of members.
Nardi explains further:
With the end of the year 2016, all members of the Academy will lose their office, even if they had been originally called to office for a lifetime. On 1 January, 2017, Pope Francis is fully free to name a complete new set of names for the Academy. With it, there will be a breach of the continuity which was essential for the Academy since its foundation [in 1994].
Important in this context is that several members of the Pontifical Academy for Life have been strong defenders of Catholic Doctrine in the face of the Francis Revolution. No less prominent a Catholic figure than Professor Josef Seifert — who has written one of the most compelling, merciful and convincing rebukes of the post-synodal exhortation Amoris Laetita — has himself been a member of this papal institution, and will now most probably be replaced by someone more lenient with regard to the laxer “Francis Doctrine.”
It is also noteworthy that the word “genuine ‘human ecology’” appears in the new statutes of the Pontifical Academy for Life – whatever that means. “Mutual respect between the sexes” has now to be part of the new program, too, of course. As if that had anything to do with the defense of life.
In this context, it is also important to keep in mind that, under Pope Francis, the theme of the defense of the Unborn Child has diminished in importance. Only recently, Edward Pentin, the well-respected Vatican expert, published an article describing this very troubling fact by showing that, during the U.S. Election, the Vatican favored the Democratic Candidate Hilary Clinton, even though she is a staunch public defender of “abortion rights” – i.e., the purported “right” to kill one’s own innocent child. As Pentin put it:
However, Corriere della Sera reported Nov. 10 that, according to its research, most in the Vatican were backing Hillary Clinton as the “lesser evil.” [sic! itself a non-Catholic principle] Trump, on the other hand, was considered “unelectable” due to his “aggressive chauvinism,” in addition to his threats to deport 11 million illegal Mexican immigrants and ban Muslims from immigrating to the United States.
Moreover, Archbishop Paglia now stresses, according to the above-mentioned Radio Vatikan article, the importance of bringing in “new impulses” and of promoting a “renewal.” The Francis Revolution thus continues. When will Catholics around the world wake up and stand up to a man who is increasingly undermining the very foundations of our beloved and holy Catholic Faith?
Dr. Maike Hickson, born and raised in Germany, studied History and French Literature at the University of Hannover and lived for several years in Switzerland where she wrote her doctoral dissertation. She is married to Dr. Robert Hickson, and they have been blessed with two beautiful children. She is a happy housewife who likes to write articles when time permits.
Her articles have appeared in American and European journals such as Catholicism.org, LifeSiteNews, The Wanderer, Culture Wars, Catholic Family News, Christian Order, Apropos, and Zeit-Fragen.