Several Catholic outlets around the world – including Infovaticana and Chiesa e postconsilio – have reported that Cardinal Óscar Rodríguez Maradiaga, coordinator of the pope’s “council of nine“, has made some condescending and disrespectful remarks about the four dubia cardinals. The moderate and characteristically gentle Italian journalist and Vatican specialist Marco Tosatti went so far as to say that the elderly Honduran cardinal and papal adviser “attacked” these faithful cardinals “with great violence”.
On 25 March, Maradiaga gave an interview on the Swiss-Italian Radio Television Station RSI’s “Strada Regina” program in which he said the following (translation courtesy of Mr. Andrew Guernsey):
I think, in the first place, that they [the four cardinals] have not read Amoris Laetitia, because, unfortunately, this is the case! I know the four and I say that they are already in retirement. How come they have not said anything about those who manufacture weapons? Some are in countries that manufacture and sell weapons for all the genocide that is happening in Syria, for example. Why? I would not want to put it – shall we say – too strongly; only God knows people’s consciences and inner motivations; but, from the outside it seems to me to be a new pharisaism. They are wrong; they should do something else [in their retirement?]. [emphasis added]
Marco Tosatti has made the following comments about this quote: “It is singular that a cardinal uses such offensive terms about other cardinals.” Maradiaga – who himself is already 74 years old (born 29 December 1942) and thus very close to the official age of retirement – also claimed the following during that same interview:
I think the car of the Church has no gear to go in reverse. It pulls itself forward because the Holy Spirit is not accustomed to go backwards. He always brings us forward. I am not afraid because I know it is not Francis, it is the Holy Spirit who guides the Church, and that, if He has allowed this Pontiff to come, it is for some reason, and we certainly ought to look to the future with hope because, more and more, the Church is God’s, it is not our own. We are only servants.
Infovaticana rightly points out, moreover, that it was this Cardinal Rodríguez Maradiaga himself who made headlines for having worked out easier access to the Vatican for variously progressivist-activist groups, such as PICO (People Improving Communities through Organizing); and this group is openly in connection with further funding from George Soros. As we reported recently, Pope Francis now endorses publicly this same leftist organization PICO. As Infovaticana puts it, Soros also tried – with the help of Cardinal Rodríguez Maradiaga – to influence the pope during his U.S. visit in 2015, advising the pope to be silent on issues such as abortion and to stress, instead, themes such as economic and racial injustice.
OnePeterFive has previously reported on Maradiaga’s dubious track record:
Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga, who is the Coordinator of Pope Francis’ Council of Cardinal Advisors, has claimed that the Second Vatican Council made peace with the formally-condemned heresy of Modernism; headed up Caritas Internationalis while it held a seat on the governing board of a pro-communist, pro-abortion, pro-homosexual organization; has publicly chastised Cardinal Gerhard Müller for being insufficiently “flexible” when it comes to communion for the divorced and remarried; and has said that we are heading towards a “deep and global renovation” of the Church which will “encompass all of the historical dimensions of the Church” and include “transformation of the institutions” – and further claims that his friend, “The Pope wants to take this Church renovation to the point where it becomes irreversible.”
There is perhaps no more potent example than Maradiaga of how how certain social issues — with a decidedly progressive approach — are being given a priority over moral issues in the current leadership of the Catholic Church. In October of 2013, the cardinal also gave talks in Dallas, Texas and Miami, Florida, where he had the following to say:
This situation demands, the cardinal [Rodríguez Maradiaga] insisted, that the Church must “proclaim and testify, as a criterion of sociopolitical organization and education, that all men are brothers; and that, if we are brothers, we must fight for establishing relations of equality and to eliminate [sic] their greatest obstacles: money and power. We have to establish as a priority that those majorities who suffer poverty and exclusion (the last) will be the first. […] If a passion for the last becomes a mobilizing idea and moral force, we will then have the possibility of creating international politics of solidarity, of economic democracy, the assumption of evangelical poverty, attaining the creation of new social subjects, with a new set of anthropological values and a new purpose for both collective and personal life, all inspired in Christ and His Beatitudes. [As quoted from The Wanderer, 11 July 2013 – emphasis added]
It seems that in this new Vatican-driven socio-political reform, the salvation of souls at risk is not, as it were, on the tip of the mind of this professedly progressive cardinal. Moral issues are now often said to have to give way to economic and social issues, or so it now seems. The four cardinals, however, have tried to defend the abused Laws of God about marriage which indispensably help souls, under Grace, to attain to Eternal Beatitude. Cardinal Rodríguez Maradiaga implicitly rebukes them for such zeal and dedication, however, and he does it with contumely and harsh language.
As Professor Roberto de Mattei just recently reiterated his own concern on the Italian website Corrispondenza Romana, the greatest forms of scandal today are: “the advertisements, the fashions, the apologetics of immorality and of perversion, both through the media, as well as through the laws that approve such a violation of Divine Laws as in the legalization of abortion and of same-sex partnerships.” De Mattei has these additional words to say: “The moral opposition between good and evil is being replaced by the sociological opposition between wealth and poverty.”
It would be fitting now if the four dubia cardinals were to request an apology from the haughty and reckless Cardinal Rodríguez Maradiaga. Publicly.
EDITOR’S UPDATE: Andrew Guernsey, our translator for this piece, writes that after viewing the full interview in Italian, he identified another scolding from Maradiaga to the Four Cardinals, which occurs at roughly the 14-15 minute mark:
“…Let us look above all at reality, because to see also if there aren’t many cases of those who are in a second union–we will not enter there because there are many reasons– but that they in a healthy conscience [feel] that their first marriage was not valid and that they have found a new family, they are living in conformity to the law of God, why throw stones? why? Instead of saying, “How are we doing with the new generation because they could prepare themselves better to have a good family. And this is Amoris Laetitia…”
“It happens that so many times the methods that these four brothers [the four cardinals] only look at, [they] who think that they are the bosses of the doctrine of the faith [pensano che sono i capi della dottrina della fede], they don’t look at the very great majority of the faithful who are happy with Amoris Laetitia.” [emphasis added]
Andrew indicates that the bolded section above could also be translated: “who think that they are masters of the doctrine of the faith” or “who think they are in charge of the doctrine of the faith.”
We’ll just let the irony of that accusation sink in.
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.