I first asked the question, “Where Does Pope Francis Really Stand on Clerical Sex Abuse?” in October of 2015. One of the two cases I cited was that of his episcopal appointment to Osorno, Chile, Bishop Juan Barros. At the time, despite serious evidence that something was very much amiss in the pope’s promised “zero tolerance” policy on clerical abusers, it seemed almost nobody else was interested in the answer.
That is no longer the case.
In an exclusive report from the Associated Press this morning, it has been revealed that Pope Francis received a letter from clerical abuse victim Juan Carlos Cruz in 2015 — one of the victims of Chilean priest Fr. Fernando Karadima — accusing Barros of witnessing and ignoring the abuse of Karadima. Despite recent, highly controversial denials from the pope that anyone had come forward against Barros, both Cruz and the pope’s own sex-abuse commission have confirmed that the letter was given to Francis, and a photo has been released showing Marie Collins, the member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors who resigned last year in frustration, handing the letter to Cardinal Sean O’Malley, the commission’s prefect. Collins was one of the members of the commission who was also a victim of clerical abuse.
From the AP story:
“When we gave him (O’Malley) the letter for the pope, he assured us he would give it to the pope and speak of the concerns,” then-commission member Marie Collins told the AP. “And at a later date, he assured us that that had been done.”
Cruz, who now lives and works in Philadelphia, heard the same later that year.
“Cardinal O’Malley called me after the pope’s visit here in Philadelphia and he told me, among other things, that he had given the letter to the pope — in his hands,” he said in an interview at his home Sunday.
Neither the Vatican nor O’Malley responded to multiple requests for comment.
It is telling that on a matter this significant, the Vatican remains silent.
Cruz makes uncomfortable claims in the eight-page letter, a copy of which was obtained by the AP, saying that Karadima and Barros would engage in “homo-eroticized” acts, and that Karadima would also extend this behavior to younger males:
He described how Karadima would kiss Barros and fondle his genitals, and do the same with younger priests and teens, and how young priests and seminarians would fight to sit next to Karadima at the table to receive his affections.
“More difficult and tough was when we were in Karadima’s room and Juan Barros — if he wasn’t kissing Karadima — would watch when Karadima would touch us — the minors — and make us kiss him, saying: ‘Put your mouth near mine and stick out your tongue.’ He would stick his out and kiss us with his tongue,” Cruz told the pope. “Juan Barros was a witness to all this innumerable times, not just with me but with others as well.”
“Juan Barros covered up everything that I have told you,” he added.
Last week, it was announced that Pope Francis had assigned Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta to investigate the Barros case. Scicluna, considered to be a top expert on such matters, spent nearly two decades working on abuse cases for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) as the congregation’s promoter of justice. In 2015, he was picked by Pope Francis to lead a team handling appeals filed by members of the clergy accused of abuse.
With the revelation of the 2015 letter following the pope’s denials that anyone had come forward, an increasing number of voices are now being raised in question of his commitment to helping victims of abuse. The information that has come to light in this matter should also cast doubt on whether the pope is a man of his word at all.
Steve Skojec is the Founding Publisher of OnePeterFive.com. He received his BA in Communications and Theology from Franciscan University of Steubenville in 2001. His commentary has appeared in The New York Times, USA Today, The Washington Post, The Washington Times, Crisis Magazine, EWTN, Huffington Post Live, The Fox News Channel, Foreign Policy, and the BBC. Steve and his wife Jamie have eight children. You can find more of his writing at his Substack, The Skojec File.
The hits just keep on coming. Not only can we not go a week without scandal, we can hardly go even a day! Yes, the false church and the destroyers keep on keeping on…until the Lord intervenes.
“The hits just keep on coming. Not only can we not go a week without scandal, we can hardly go even a day!”
So well put, and so true!
So THIS is what it feels like to vomit, suffer a mental fit of barely controlled anger, and be physically numb with shock
all at the same time. What a pukefest of scandal and madness! https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/fc1c008b05d3e29b05fce277ea3c9a06afdd5aef6987f790bf74ee7e1b8db523.jpg
I must say I am not feeling angry at this stage. Rather it seems to me that a watershed moment has arrived, with the world finally waking up to the truth about Bergoglio. Read through the comments on yahoo and other sites “I thought he was different but he is just a liar” and so on. There’s the “Francis Effect” for ya. Bergoglio is not going to recover from this one.
He must be under pressure now. +Barros has some damning info on him and sooner or later it will get out. Why else would Jorge risk everything to defend him?
Perhaps we need another Spotlight!
“Barros has some damning info on him and sooner or later it will get out.”
INDEED!!! ……Gustavo Vera!!!!! I am hoping this will come to the forefront.
So what’s the deal? I read about this guy often when you mention him. Locally he is suspected of human trafficking. He was best pals w/Bergoglio and visited him monthly but was abruptly rebuffed from the Vatican and sent away recently. So the suspicion is that this Vera is about to be busted for unspeakable crimes involving human trafficking, of young boys? And Bergoglio is preemptively getting some distance? Am I jumping to conclusions or is this the gist?
Well maybe Bergoglio is not interested in “recovering from this one” and this is part of the plan to
completely discredit the image of The Church.
To “completely discredit the image of The Church” is not the real goal of the Evil One. Rather, if the various prophecies are accurate, the goal is to take the Church over and turn it into a secular institution with a religious patina. If Bergoglio should fall on account of this scandal, he simply would be replaced by a variation of himself. How would that either discredit the Church or transform it into a secular organization? Therefore, I rather doubt this fumble on the Pope’s part if part of some master plan of his; it’s just a fumble. It may be one from which he cannot recover, but that does not mean he planned it.
Oh, I think rank arrogance on Frankie’s part would explain his willingness to defend Barros.
Holy crap. The mental image here is more like a bathhouse than a religious order.
I wonder how much money is being put into stifling these international reports of Francis lying. I wonder if this is going to be the issue that ends the revolutionaries’ honeymoon with ol’ Frankie.
I fail to see how it is good that Pope Francis is discovered to be a liar and the world sees and also sees that our seminaries are like bathhouses. I mean yeah, truth will out is wonderful but this truth is not good. Is the world going to fire the Pope and clean up our seminaries? No, but the Catholic Religion can finally reach for the infamy of Scientology and maybe the enemies of Christ wouldn’t consider this such a bad thing. This is negative because I have a pretty negative opinion of Bergoglio; I think it’s a win win, whether he’s adored by the world or despised, it hurts the Church. The sodomy was always a win win because the homos got to play in the club and if they ever got caught out, it hurts the Church and the Church says they have a disordered inclination so repent or hell. Maybe they don’t like that and maybe they like to hurt the Church. To me, this seems obvious. Obvious even without the actual testimony of Bella Dodd, which is on record.
Isn’t that the endgame of all of this? The entire false structure built up since VII has to fall somehow. Only what is authentic will stand.
I’m so sorry but I don’t think I follow. Are you saying that people have built a false structure in our Church with the goal of purifying her, so that everything false would crumble and only what was authentic would remain? That their endgame was beneficent? Whose playing the game here? I’m pretty sure you must be saying something that makes sense but I’m missing your idea, I think.
I think he’s saying that there have been apostates trying to build a false structure around the Church and now it’s crumbling.
I just don’t get that. If someone with a grudge against me went around, say online, creating a terrible reputation for me perhaps culminating in a terrible crime that I would pay for, than…I don’t see any upside in that scenario for me.
What if somebody’s whole aim was to destroy you without an self-regard? What if that person knew that he/she couldn’t assail you in the open and so instead wanted to rot you from the inside out because he/she had seen others try to destroy you from without but they had failed.
What would such a person do?
Sorry I should’ve been more clear. I was saying that the church of the past fifty years after the Council has been built up as a false church, manifested greater in Francis. Those like the Masons who were behind this work intend on the whole thing collapsing leaving nothing but a discredited smoldering hole.
OK, that I get. But that’s very bad and it’s a little apocalyptic, which hey, it is what it is.
Well if the Church is indeed the Body of Christ, which it is, then it must follow in His passion.
Betrayal, scourging, humiliation, via Dolorosa, crucifixion, apparent death, then glorious resurrection.
I think we’re somewhere on the way of the cross.
Yes. I’ve said I think the Church is ascending Calvary.
BINGO!! Absolutely THIS is what is happening in real time. The Church is suffering Her own crucifixion figuratively. And yes you are correct, she will rise again.
Don’t get discouraged, Melanie. The Church is not the Churchmen or the buildings. As it’s recorded in the Book of Revelation:
“I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple.”
Now those words are discussing Heaven but it’s as true for us on Earth.
That’s exactly it. Then they will “re-build” (in the image of Satan) a worldly “humanitarian church” of
a brave new world. During all of this the true faithful get hunted down like rats, despised, and treated as
public outcasts who are evil.
I’m sorry, but I could never agree with those who fear that the Catholic Church will bear the terrible stigma of this in perpetuity. On the contrary, it is my firm belief that future generations will have the knowledge and wisdom to see this in its proper perspective; that this is the final, all-out satanic attack to forever destroy the Catholic Church. Many have foreseen that this is inevitable, desirable, indeed vitally necessary, (“vitally” as in life-preserving, life-giving), and must take place in the latter part of this current era in salvation history. As Pope St. John Paul II wisely stated while still Cardinal Archbishop of Cracow; “this all lies within the plans of Divine Providence, and as such, it is a challenge which the Church must take up and face courageously.” And as he also exhorted us on numerous occasions: “Be not afraid.”
He has no business being declared a saint in public.
If that continues to stand, the Catholic Church belongs in Hell!
I don’t think the poster prelate for the American sodomite scandals, Bernie Law, ever had an accusation made against him that even approached what Cruz says here about Barros. I saw a lot during the Boston Archdiocese scandals and know it’s wise to withhold judgment till all the facts are known. I saw some bogus charges made back then that prospered only because they were made in a shitestorm of accurate accusations. Considered on their merit alone, they would have been quickly dismissed by fair minds. In the case of Barros, we should wait for corroborating testimony from other victims who do not know Cruz. This was the kind of evidence that surfaced against Marcial Maciel, the founder of the Legion, and that merited serious attention that it did not initially get at the Vatican. But the charge against the pope here, namely that he did not tell the truth about his knowledge of accusers and accusations against Barros, seems to be airtight. No wonder the usually voluble Vatican press jockeys are silent tonight.
My heart and soul grieve for all.
God will not be mocked. First and foremost any sexual abuse of children by clergy cannot be tolerated period. Any priest or prelate accused should face an immediate inquire with the intention of getting to the bottom of the matter. If guilty the priest or prelate should be defrocked immediately.
Also, the vicar of Christ should not lie. Satan is the father of lies. The vicar of Christ should not offend victims and protect predators. I hope that Pope Francis is pressured to resign the Petrine office.
Let’s hope and pray for this.
“…an increasing number of voices are now being raised in question of his commitment to helping victims of abuse.”
Hopefully an increasing number of voices will now be raised in question of his commitment to the integrity of the office he holds, to Holy Scripture, the Apostolic Tradition and the perennial Magisterium.
What is operative here? Cretinism? Geriatric dementia? Mendacity? Apostasy?
Something is radically wrong and it requires remedy.
My disgust is so great that I appeal to those with more grace than I to take this man of evil out of his office and jail him.
He loves the guy in his mirror more than anyone.
Se llama “setback” para nuestra iglesia.
Of course, Jorge is a total fraud
A zero tolerance policy would find Pope Francis abdicating as an accessory to a sexual abuse cover-up. PF was clearly given a letter outlining specific incidents involving sexual abuse before publicly stating no one came forward and made their case known to him in the matter. It was a cover up, and he’s been caught red handed as an accessory after the fact. Zero tolerance means he needs to step down.
That would certainly be an…interesting way for this pontificate to end
Mr Cruz has made serious allegations in his letter. Was his letter ever replied to? Was he ever called to give oral evidence to those in the Church responsible for dealing with these matters? Was any serious attempt made to test his credibility? If not why not?
I was once told by someone in the curia that if you write with such allegations make sure you write on some material that will jam the shredder. However they seem quite good at pulverising matters written on stone.
This scandal was broadly known in Chile and more widely in South America long before it hit the news here. Pope Bergoglio knew all about it. He chose to stick his finger out at victims, at world opinion, and do what “his wisdom” compelled him to do. Given his knowledge of the scandal before it became broadly known, why would he subject the Church to further scandal by stirring this pot? If Barros is innocent why subject him to this publicity?
This merely scratches the surface. This man minimally has poor reasoning skills. Surely it goes far beyond that. He is not suited for pastoring at all, at any level.
Despite the dog collars the lot of them are off the leash.
I see what you did there…
Yeh, right. The Barros case will be “investigated” just like the Vatican Bank has been “investigated”. If the investigator finds incriminating evidence against Barros, the investigator will be the one punished and Barros will remain untouched.
Seriously, did we ever imagine a time when reading about the goings on in the Church would make us want to vomit? How much more will our Lord permit before He lets loose His wrath?
The only thing missing here, is an evidence that Mr Bergoglio is of the same condition as Karadima and Barros.
I am pretty sure he is.
Check out the name Gustavo Vera.
Hunch: The name of Gustavo Vera will appear in all future histories of the papacy.
The demon promoting homosexuality had the Aztec name of Xochipilli. That translates as Flower Prince. Interesting that so many centuries later homosexuals were referred to as pansies and fruits. Seriously, it seems the demon “likes what he knows” and keeps a certain method of operation (MO) over the eons.
The Vatican II Church has clearly, in the worship of Xochipilli and all its other sick manias — deeply, profoundly perverse manias, such as the insistence on a liturgy that is so banal and simply Protestant that it has driven away millions of Catholics (“Grace of Ba’al Bugnini said: “We must strip from our Catholic prayers and our Catholic liturgies everything which can be the shadow of a stumbling block for our separated brethern, that is, Protestants.” L’Osseratore Romano, 19 March 1965, quoted in Michael Davies http://www.catholicapologetics.info/modernproblems/newmass/bugnini.html)
— the Vat2 Church seems devoid of any self-criticism, and consciousness that it is a parody of the decomposing Anglican Church.
But this is the scandal of scandals, the Sex Abuse Scandal. It’s the worse thing that’s happened to the Catholic Church since the French paid the Swedes to invade Germany in the middle of the Thirty Years’ War (and probably the Reformation thrown in). And it is the gift that keeps on giving.
[…] over the assignment. The appointment was met with riotous protests by locals. Francis, who received a letter from the victim that same year, nevertheless went on to say in reaction that the community in Osorno “is […]