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Catholicism - The panzer pope and the crusaders...

Courtesy of Corbis
Courtesy of Corbis
In the beginning: Jewish legend holds that Temple Mount is Mt. Moriah, center of Garden of Eden.

Courtesy of Getty
Courtesy of Getty
c. 2000 BC: God commands Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac here. (Genesis 22:2)

Courtesy of Corbis
Courtesy of Corbis
c. 930 BC: Solomon completes First Temple to house Ark of the Covenant.

Courtesy of Mary Evans Picture Library
Courtesy of Mary Evans Picture Library
c. 586 BC: Nebuchadnezzar II, king of Babylon, destroys Temple. Ark disappears.

Courtesy of Mary Evans Picture Library
Courtesy of Mary Evans Picture Library
c. 515 BC: Zerubbabel, governor of Judea, builds Second Temple.

Courtesy of Corbis
Courtesy of Corbis
c. AD 6: As a boy, Jesus runs away from parents to visit Temple. (Luke 2:41-52) Courtesy of Getty
Courtesy of Getty
c. 28: Jesus casts money changers off Temple Mount. (Mark 11:15)

Courtesy of Corbis
Courtesy of Corbis
c. 70: Romans destroy Second Temple after Jewish rebellion.

Courtesy of Mary Evans Picture Library
Courtesy of Mary Evans Picture Library
c. 621: Mohammed ascends to heaven from Temple Mount to receive the Koran.

Courtesy of Mary Evans Picture Library
Courtesy of Mary Evans Picture Library
c. 638: Caliph Omar conquers Jerusalem and claims Temple Mount for Islam.

Courtesy of Corbis
Courtesy of Corbis
691: Dome of the Rock is completed.

Courtesy of Mary Evans Picture Library
Courtesy of Mary Evans Picture Library
1099: Crusaders capture Jerusalem and rededicate Dome of the Rock as a Catholic church.

Courtesy of Corbis
Courtesy of Corbis
1187: Saladin recaptures Temple Mount for Islam.

Courtesy of Corbis
Courtesy of Corbis
1917: British conquer Jerusalem and take control of Temple Mount.

Courtesy of Getty
Courtesy of Getty
1948: Israel declares statehood but loses battle for control of Temple Mount to Jordanians.

Courtesy of Getty
Courtesy of Getty
1967: During Six-Day War, Israel captures Temple Mount.

Courtesy of Corbis
Courtesy of Corbis
1982: US-born Jew barricades himself inside Dome of the Rock with an M-16, killing one Muslim.

Courtesy of Reuters
Courtesy of Reuters
2000: Ariel Sharon visits Temple Mount, sparking second intifada. Hayutman proposes holographic temple.
above from;
Apocalypse Now

"In 1095 AD, Urban II, bishop of Rome, made a call for a Holy Crusade in order to take Jerusalem from Jews and Muslims in the name of Christianity. When they captured Jerusalem, they embarked on a merciless killing spree.

They burned Jews alive within their Synagogues.

They slaughtered Muslims.

And to add insult to injury, they made their captive Muslims clean up all the blood and body parts that littered the streets.

Ninety-two years of decadence and savagery against Jews and Muslims followed, until Saladin and his Muslim armies sent the bastards packing on October 2, 1187, and freed the Holy Land from European occupation.

Unlike the genocide of the Crusaders a hundred years earlier, there were no scenes of senseless slaughter after the European surrender. Saladin even allowed Richard to take home the relics from the Church of the Sepulchre.

The Templars were divided into knights, chaplains, sergeants, and craftsmen, organized under a Grand Master and general council. Wearing a white cloak with a red eight-pointed cross on the left shoulder, they attracted many nobles and soon became an expert military force, which bravery in the field was unquestionable, and also a powerful and wealthy order, with branches throughout Europe. Order of the knights templar

In 1189, Pope Gregory VIII issued a Papal Bull that prompted the Third Crusade. The idea was to take back Jerusalem from Saladin's armies. During this Crusade, the man we know today as Richard the Lionhearted showed the true Lion's Heart of a Christian. Over a failed negotiation, Richard ordered the slaughter of all his Muslim prisoners 2700 men, women, and children, in full view of Saladin's army.

The fact that we still refer to him as "the Lionhearted" today says a whole lot about Western values, doesn't it? In any case, the Crusade was a failure. They never took Jerusalem.

Texas George And The Last Crusade By Hsing Lee

Vatican on a quest for the Crusaders

Richard Owen, Rome March 21, 2006

THE Vatican has moved to rehabilitate the Crusaders by sponsoring a conference that portrays the Crusades as wars fought with the "noble aim" of regaining the Holy Land for Christianity.

The Crusades are seen by many Muslims as acts of violence that have underpinned Western aggression towards the Arab world ever since. Followers of Osama bin Laden claim to be taking part in a latter-day "jihad against the Jews and Crusaders".

The late Pope John Paul II sought to achieve Muslim-Christian reconciliation by asking "pardon" for the Crusades during the 2000 millennium celebrations. But John Paul's apologies for the past "errors of the church" -- including the Inquisition and anti-semitism -- irritated some Vatican conservatives.

According to insiders, the dissenters included Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI. Pope Benedict reached out to Muslims and Jews after his election and called for dialogue. However, the Pope, due to visit Turkey in November, has in the past suggested that Turkey's Muslim culture is at variance with Europe's Christian roots.


HISTORIANS count eight Crusades, although dates are disputed:

The first, 1095 to 1101, was called by Pope Urban II; then came the 1145 to 1147 Crusade, led by Louis VII; Richard I led the 1188 to 1192 Crusade; the 1204 Crusade included the sacking of Constantinople; the 1217 Crusade led to the conquest of Damietta; the Crusade in 1228 and 1229 was led by Frederick II; Louise IX of France led two Crusades, from 1249 to 1252 and in 1270. Until the 11th century, Christians, Jews and Muslims coexisted in the Holy Land. But after ambushes of Christian pilgrims, Byzantine emperor Alexius appealed to Pope Urban II, who called on Christendom to take up arms to free the Holy Land from the "Muslim infidel"

At the conference, held at the Regina Apostolorum Pontifical University, Italian historian Roberto De Mattei recalled that the Crusades were "a response to the Muslim invasion of Christian lands and the Muslim devastation of the Holy Places".

Professor De Mattei noted that the desecration of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem by Muslim forces in 1009 helped provoke the first Crusade, called by Pope Urban II at the end of the 11th century. He said the Crusaders were "martyrs" who "sacrificed their lives for the faith".

He was backed by Jonathan Riley-Smith, Dixie Professor of Ecclesiastical History at Cambridge University, who said that those who sought forgiveness for the Crusades "do not know their history". He attacked Ridley Scott's recent film Kingdom of Heaven, starring Orlando Bloom, as "utter nonsense".

Professor Riley-Smith said the script, like much writing on the Crusades, was "historically inaccurate". "It depicts the Muslims as civilised and the Crusaders as barbarians. It has nothing to do with reality." It fuelled Islamic fundamentalism by propagating "bin Laden's version of history".

He said the Crusaders were at times undisciplined and capable of great cruelty but the same was true of Muslims and troops in "all ideological wars".

American writer Robert Spencer, author of A Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam, told the conference that the mistaken view had taken hold in the West, as well as the Arab world, that the Crusades were "an unprovoked attack by Europe on the Islamic world". In reality, Christians had been persecuted after the Muslim conquest of Jerusalem. the australian.news.com.au/



Overview. About residential schools

The arrival of Europeans to North and South America marked a major change in Native society. Millions died due to sickness, programs of slavery, and extermination. 1 Europeans and their missionaries generally looked upon Native Spirituality as worthless superstition inspired by the Christian devil, Satan.

"During the colonial period, the 650 aboriginal nations in Canada were relegated to reserves, usually in isolated, unproductive regions of the country. Native populations declined drastically until the 1940s, languages were lost, and traditional ceremonies were outlawed." 2

Native spirituality was actively suppressed by the U.S. and Canadian governments. Spiritual leaders ran the risk of jail sentences of up to 30 years for simply practicing their religious rituals. This came to an end in the U.S. when the American Indian Religious Freedom Act of 1978 was passed (later amended in 1994). 3,4 Canadian Natives obtained a guarantee of religious freedom with the rest of Canadians in 1982 when the Canadian Charter of rights and Freedoms was passed.

During the late 19th century and much of the 20th century, the Canadian and American governments goal for their Native populations was assimilation. Sometimes this is referred to contemptuously as "Making apples" -- changing the culture and religion of Native peoples so that they become "white" on the inside, even as their skin remained red. The goal was to force Natives to disappear within the larger, predominately white, society. A key component of this policy were the residential schools, which were operated for over a century, from 1879 -- shortly after Confederation -- to 1986. About 160,000 Native students passed through the school system. About 91,000 claim that they were physically and/or sexually abused. 5

The end result of various assimilation processes can be seen in the current mental health of First Nations people. A rough indication of this is mirrored in their suicide rates. Canada's overall suicide rate is typically about 14 per 100,000 people -- a little higher than the U.S. Suicide rates in the First Nations populations are two or three times higher. 6 An extremely high rate of 80.2 has been observed among 10 to 19 year-old Native males living on the northern coast of Labrador.

According to Glen Coulthard of the University of Alberta, The Canadian government's policies included the destruction of much of Native culture, values and religion. 7 With the help of the Christian churches, these traditions were largely replaced with versions of western Christianity. The main players were the Roman Catholic Church, the Anglican Church of Canada, the United Church of Canada, and the Presbyterian Church in Canada. The government financed residential school systems; religious institutions ran them. Sometimes, children were kidnapped and taken long distances from their communities in order to attend school. Once there, they were held captive, isolated from their families of origin, and forcibly stripped of their language, religion, traditions and culture. Many native children grew up with little knowledge of their original culture.

Not mentioned in Coulthard's essay was the extremely high level of physical and sexual abuse suffered by Native children at the religious schools. The result has been that, as adults, many suffer with depression, have difficulty in parenting, and live with a loss of culture. Some commit suicide.

The residential schools:

They were operated over the period 1879 to 1986. "Department of Indian Affairs reports...show that between 1890 and 1965 an average of 7,100 native students attended residential schools compared to 11,400 who attended day schools in the same period." 8

Author Jim Miller has commented: "Writing about the 'Basic Concepts and Objectives' of Canada's Indian policy in 1945, an official of the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs put his finger squarely on the motivation behind residential schools. Noting Ottawa's desire to promote self-sufficiency among the indigenous population, and rightly zeroing in on Canada's systematic attack on traditional Indian religion and cultural practices, the observer concluded that the dominion's purpose was assimilation. As important as the push for self-support and Christianization [sic] among the Indians was in its own right, it was 'also means to another end: full citizenship and absorption into the body politic.' Clearly, Canada chose to eliminate Indians by assimilating them, unlike the Americans, who had sought to exterminate them physically. 'In other words, the extinction of the Indians as Indians is the ultimate end' of Canadian Indian policy, noted the American official." 8 Some definitions of the term "Genocide" would encompass such assimilation. 9

Students were often beaten if they spoke their native language, or practiced their faith's rituals. There are allegations that the students were often poorly fed and clothed. Sexual and physical abuse was widespread. Individual natives and native communities continue to suffer the after-effects of students' brutal and criminal treatment in these schools.


"Unbelievers deserve not only to be separated from the Church, but also... to be exterminated from the World by death." - Thomas Aquinas (Summa Theologica, 1271).

Christian civilization, by virtue of its exclusivist heresy and monotheism, became the self-justifying destroyer of all non-Christian culture. 5 part lecture series, delivered in New Westminster, BC, based on two books written by Reverend Kevin Annett, Hidden From History: The Canadian Genocide and Love and Death in the Valley. Click on lecture links below to listen. - webpage

Canada and its Churches are Accused of Genocide by Major Guatemalan Indigenous Organizations

Vancouver, May 23:

On Thursday, May 20, 2004, a representative of three major indigenous groups in Guatemala presented a formal protest letter or "denuncia" to Monica Izaguire of the Canadian Embassy in Guatemala City.

This protest letter accused Canada and its mainline churches of committing and concealing acts of Genocide against its native populations for more than a century, in their Indian Residential Schools and hospitals.

The letter called for the Canadian government to support an international investigation into these allegations of Genocide by Canada and its churches. The letter was endorsed and signed by the Defensoria Indigena, the Consejo de Esperanza of San Andres Itzapa, and the Consejo Asesor Indigena of San Andres Itzapa.

To quote the letter,

"To the Government and Prime Minister of Canada,

"We are deeply alarmed and concerned by the fact that crimes of Genocide are alleged to have been committed against the indigenous peoples of Canada by your government and by the Roman Catholic, Anglican, Presbyterian and United Church of Canada.

"According to eyewitnesses and official documentation, these crimes are alleged to include murder, torture, rape, involuntary sexual sterilization, forced labour, biological warfare, medical experimentation, land theft, cultural eradication, pedophilia, and the conducting of a prolonged war of extermination against non-Christian aboriginal people.

"These crimes are alleged to have occured for more than a century in the state-sponsored and church-run Indian Residential Schools which legally interned every Indian child across Canada between the years 1890 and 1984. During this period, more than 50,000 children died in these schools, according to the statistics of your own Department of Indian Affairs. Most of the bodies of these dead children have never been located or recovered.

"According to the evidence before us, paid employees and officials of these Indian Residential Schools perpetrated, condoned and concealed every act defined as Genocide by the United Nations Convention on the Prevention of Genocide, which was passed by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948, and ratified by Canada in 1952.

"The same evidence indicates that the highest officials of church and state in Canada knew of these crimes and continually approved them as a matter of policy. As such, your government and the churches in question appear to be responsible for having committed and concealed intentional Genocide, as defined by the United Nations.

"We understand that your government and the churches in question have only acknowledged the physical and sexual attacks on native children in these schools, and have refused to take responsibility for any of the other crimes attested to by eyewitness survivors. In this way, your institutions can be considered to be openly violating international law, and holding yourselves unaccountable for crimes against humanity committed by your employees and accountable officials.

"As representatives of indigenous organizations throughout the Americas, we therefore call upon your government and the churches in question to abide by morality and international law, and do the following:

"1. Support a motion before the United Nations General Assembly and the International Criminal Court to establish an International War Crimes Tribunal into Genocide in Canada.

"2. Surrender to this Tribunal all evidence held by your government and the churches in question pertaining to any and all crimes committed against indigenous people and their land, including murder and Genocide.

"3. Surrender to this Tribunal the names of all persons who are guilty of such crimes in the Indian Residential Schools.

"4. Respond publicly to the allegations of Genocide made against your government and the churches in question by survivors of the residential schools.

"5. Revoke the charitable, tax free status of the churches in question on the grounds that they are accused of having committed and concealed crimes against humanity, and should therefore not be subsidized and aided by the public until these allegations are proved or disproved.

"We are communicating this appeal to the world community and its media, prior to further public action on this matter."

This statement has been delivered to the world press, as the first in a series of further denuncias anticipated by the Guatemalan indigenous groups, which are working with The Truth Commission into Genocide in Canada to make these facts known. - hiddenfromhistory.org

Deja Vu? Hey! Remember those Nazis?

Read what the press of the Spanish dictator, Franco, published on the 3rd of May, 1945, the day of Hitler's death. It said, "Adolf Hitler, son of the Catholic Church, died while defending Christianity." It goes on to say, "Over his mortal remains stands his victorious moral figure. With the palm of the martyr, God gives Hitler the laurels of Victory."

Hitler himself stated, "I learned much from the Order of the Jesuits. Until now, there has never been anything more grandiose, on the earth, than the hierarchical organization of the Catholic church. I transferred much of this organization into my own party." - A 20th Century Inquisition

flashback Pope John Paul II

In the early 1940's, a young Polish salesman, employed by I.G. Farben Chemical Company (manufacturer of cyanide gas)* sold cyanide to the Nazis, for use in Auschwitz. He also worked as a chemist manufacturing the cyanide gas that exterminated millions of Jews and other peoples in the very heart of the Auschwitz extermination camp. Fearing for his life after the war, he took refuge in the Catholic church (cult) and was ordained a priest in late 1946. In 1958, he was ordained Poland's youngest bishop. After the 30-day reign and assassination of his predecessor, he assumed the papacy as Pope John Paul II THE FUGITIVE POPE

PANZERPOPE ALERT! Ratzinger is 'elected' as new pope

St Peter's Square is now full of people eager to greet the new pope

Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger has been elected as the pope - the head of the world's 1.1 billion Roman Catholics.

Taking the name Pope Benedict XVI, the 78-year-old German has appeared on the balcony of the Vatican palace.

His arrival was greeted by cheers from the many thousands of pilgrims who had packed St Peter's Square as news of his election spread.

He was chosen on the third round of votes by the 115 cardinals meeting to select Pope John Paul II's successor. bbc


HARDLINE new pope Joseph Ratzinger meekly described himself yesterday as a "simple, humble worker in the vineyard of the Lord".

The 78-year-old German - a former Hitler Youth member who is dubbed "God's Rottweiler" - emerged as leader of the world's 1.1billion Catholics after one of the fastest elections in 100 years.

As the 265th pontiff he took the name Benedict XVI, possibly signalling his intention to be a peacemaker after Pope Benedict XV early in the last century.

The Catholic Archbishop of Liverpool, the Most Rev Patrick Kelly, called him "wise and profound". The Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams said: "He is a theologian of great stature."

But Benedict's zeal for Catholic orthodoxy, which has won him the nicknames of "The Enforcer" and the "Panzer Cardinal", worries those seeking a softer church line on contraception, abortion, women priests and homosexuality. - mirror

Ratzinger the Panzerkardinal ?

John Paul II appointed him Prefect for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) – an organisation once known as the Inquisition – which has allowed him to stamp his theological conservatism on the Church over a period of more than 20 years.

His role and hard-line views saw opponents nickname him the "Panzerkardinal" but he also has many supporters and is the ultimate Vatican insider.

In the corridors of the Vatican his other nicknames include 'vice pope' and 'John Paul III'.

Cardinal Ratzinger has seen his mission as defending Catholic teaching following liberal moves after the Second Vatican Council in the 1960s. He has criticised the introduction of the non-Latin Mass as a 'tragic breach'. In the 1980s he described homosexuality as an 'intrinsic moral evil' and said rock music could be a 'vehicle of anti-religion'. To some he is a saviour to the Church in an increasingly secular world, to others he is an authoritarian who punishes liberal thought. Scotsman

Church's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith

"...the Inquisition. You history buffs will remember the Inquisition: those Catholic zealots who in the Middle Ages couldn't abide apostates and doubters of the One True Faith. They perfected the use of thumbscrews and the rack to force Jews, Muslims and other dissenters to adopt the Vatican's more ‘accurate' understanding of Christianity...." Kathy Mcmahon, BreakForNews.com

"I wasn't a Nazi - I had a bad finger!!?

Ratzinger's past includes brief membership of the Hitler Youth movement and wartime service with a German anti-aircraft unit. However, he was never involved in Nazi atrocities, and joined the Hitler Youth only after membership was made compulsory in 1941. Two years later he was enrolled in an anti-aircraft battalion that protected a BMW factory whose workforce included slave labourers from Dachau concentration camp.

The pontiff has insisted he never took part in combat and said he never fired a shot because one of his fingers was badly infected. He was later sent to Hungary where he was obliged to set up tank traps. While there he saw Jews being deported to the death camps. - independent

Traunstein was also where Ratzinger went through the harrowing years of Nazi rule and World War II.

In his memoirs, Ratzinger wrote he was enrolled in the Nazi youth movement against his will when he was 14 in 1941, when membership was compulsory. He said he was soon let out because of his studies for the priesthood.

Two years later he was drafted into a Nazi anti-aircraft unit as a helper, a common task for teenage boys too young to be soldiers. A year later he was released, only to be sent to the Austrian-Hungarian border to construct tank barriers.

He deserted the Germany army in May 1945 and returned to Traunstein - a risky move, since deserters were shot on the spot if caught or publicly hanged as examples to others.

When he arrived home, U.S. soldiers took him prisoner and held him in a POW camp for several weeks. Upon his release, he re-entered the seminary.

Ratzinger was ordained, along with his brother, in 1951. He then spent several years teaching theology. In 1977, he was appointed bishop of Munich and elevated to cardinal three months later by Pope Paul VI. - Albuquerque tribune

Alperin v. Vatican Bank was originally filed in Federal Court in San Francisco in November 1999. The plaintiffs are concentration camp survivors of Serb, Jewish, and Ukrainian background and their relatives as well as organizations representing over 300,000 Holocaust victims.

The plaintiffs seek an accounting and restitution of the Nazi Croatian Treasury that according to the US State Department was illicitly transferred to the Vatican bank and other banks after the end of the war.

Name defendants currently include the Vatican Bank, Franciscan Order, and the Croatian Liberation Movement. These defendants combined to conceal assets looted by the Croatian Nazis from concentration camp victims, Serbs, Jews, Roma and others between 1941-1945.

Levy v. CIA is a lawsuit filed under the Freedom of Information Act seeking release of US Intelligence agency files regarding the notorius Vatican spymaster, Fr. Krunoslav Draganovic. New records on Draganovic were released as a result of that lawsuit in 2001. - vaticanbankclaims

Opus dei?

On becoming pope in October 1978 - he celebrated his silver jubilee in 2003 - he chose to be called John Paul II. That was partly in deference to his predecessor, John Paul I, who had died after only 33 days in office. It was also a tribute to John XXIII (1958-63), the first of the contemporary popes to understand the need to modernise the Church, laying down a more liberal role in the historic Vatican Council II.

However, those who hoped that John Paul II would continue the liberal tradition of the Vatican Council II were disappointed. Paradoxically for someone so internationally adventurous and innovative, his spiritual and pastoral legacy was that of a conservative.

While still a cardinal, he defined the task of a theologian within narrow confines: namely, to "guard, defend, and teach the sacred body of revelation in strict subordination to the Pope and his bishops". This intolerance of dissent remained throughout his reign and led him into conflict with Hans Kung, the German theologian, over papal infallibility.

He refused to endorse the message of liberation theology coming from Latin America, where radical priests, influenced by Marxist ideology, sought to combat social injustice by establishing a "church of the poor". Priests who joined the Sandinista government in Nicaragua were excommunicated.

The conservative in John Paul led him to give less weight to the traditionally influential counsels of the Jesuits. Instead he turned to the Opus Dei movement, making it one of the most powerful forces in the politics of contemporary Catholicism. He beatified in an almost unseemly hurry Monsignor Josemara Escrivá de Balaguer, Opus Dei's Spanish founder.

On ethical matters he was uncompromising - especially where they concerned the family and birth control. With age, he became more dogmatic, and his 10th encyclical, Veritas Splendor, published in 1993, sealed his unwavering opposition to non-natural methods of birth control. ft.com

The term ``Fascist'' has created some confusion. The ideology of Opus Dei has all the features commonly found in the abstract political category of ``fascism'' even though it is a very special form of this ideology, since it is mixed with elements of the Christian religion. Reading Escriva's book ``The Way'' with the above definition of fascism in mind, it is evident that he is the perfect Fascist.

On 05 Sept 2000, the Vatican issued a major document (authored by Cardinal Radzinger, fundmentalist head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (formerly the Inquisition) re-affirmed that salvation is possible only with the Catholic faith. Among those present at the news conference was Msgr Fernando Ocariz, Vicar General of Opus Dei.

The document (called Dominus Jesus) declared that

- other religions are defective,
- sacred writings of other religions are not inspired by God like the Christian ones
- prayers and rituals of other religions do not have a 'divine origin' and contain 'some superstitions or errors'.

The document was branded by progressives as fundamentalist and racist but the Opus Dei had endorsed its arrogant sentiments.

excerpts from: The Unofficial Opus Dei FAQ

Th[e] rigid anti-Communist stance fits very much in line with Ratzinger's involvement also in the Fatima mysteries. If you'll recall, the Virgin Mary herself supposedly appeared to peasant children in Portugal during the first World War to warn of the rise of Communist Russia. The so-called 'Second Secret' she revealed at Fatima went:
'Russia will spread its errors throughout the world, raising up wars and persecutions against the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will suffer much and various nations will be annihilated.'

for more analysis see: Tim Boucher Cardinal Ratzinger - Could the Next Pope Be a Nazi?

Pope blasts gay marriage, abortion

June 07, 2005 - POPE Benedict XVI has condemned homosexual marriage, abortion and genetic engineering, just days before Italy is to vote in a referendum aimed at relaxing the country's stringent fertility legislation.

In his first clear pronouncement on gay marriages since his election, he branded same-sex unions fake and expressions of "anarchic freedom" that threatened the future of the family.

The Pope also condemned divorce, artificial birth control, trial marriages and free-style unions, saying all of those practices were dangerous for the family.

"Today's various forms of dissolution of marriage, free unions, trial marriages as well as the pseudo-matrimonies between people of the same sex are instead expressions of anarchic freedom which falsely tries to pass itself off as the true liberation of man," he said in Rome.

Speaking to families at St John's Cathedral, he said "pseudo freedoms" such as gay marriages were based on what he called the "banalisation of the human body" and of man himself. - From correspondents in Rome - The Australian

Did Ratzinger help Bush with the Election in 2004?

Did that many Catholics really listen to the panzer Cardinal?

President Bush treated his final visit with Pope John Paul II in Vatican City on June 4, 2004, as a campaign stop. After enduring a public rebuke from the pope about the Iraq war, Bush lobbied Vatican officials to help him win the election. "Not all the American bishops are with me," he complained, according to the National Catholic Reporter. He pleaded with the Vatican to pressure the bishops to step up their activism against abortion and gay marriage in the states during the campaign season.

About a week later, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger sent a letter to the U.S. bishops, pronouncing that those Catholics who were pro-choice on abortion were committing a "grave sin" and must be denied Communion. He pointedly mentioned "the case of a Catholic politician consistently campaigning and voting for permissive abortion and euthanasia laws" -- an obvious reference to John Kerry, the Democratic candidate and a Roman Catholic. If such a Catholic politician sought Communion, Ratzinger wrote, priests must be ordered to "refuse to distribute it." Any Catholic who voted for this "Catholic politician," he continued, "would be guilty of formal cooperation in evil and so unworthy to present himself for Holy Communion." During the closing weeks of the campaign, a pastoral letter was read from pulpits in Catholic churches repeating the ominous suggestion of excommunication. Voting for the Democrat was nothing less than consorting with the forces of Satan, collaboration with "evil." -

by Sidney Blumenthal, a former assistant and senior advisor to President Clinton [who has a vested interest in covering up VOTE FRAUD which would make Bonesman Kerry look very complicit]

Benedict calls for "new world order" to correct economic imbalances

Sun Dec 25, 2005 By Philip Pullella

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - Pope Benedict, in his first Christmas address, on Sunday urged humanity to unite against terrorism, poverty and environmental blight and called for a "new world order" to correct economic imbalances.

The Pope made his comments to tens of thousands of pilgrims gathered under umbrellas in a rainy St Peter square for his "Urbi et Orbi" (to the city and the world) message and blessing. In his address, telecast live from the central balcony of St Peter's Basilica to tens of millions of people in nearly 40 countries, he also urged his listeners not to let technological achievements blind them to true human values. He said humanity should look to the Christ child for encouragement in times of difficulty and fear.

"A united humanity will be able to confront the many troubling problems of the present time: from the menace of terrorism to the humiliating poverty in which millions of human beings live, from the proliferation of weapons to the pandemics and the environmental destruction which threatens the future of our planet," he said. "Do not fear; put your trust in him! The life-giving power of his light is an incentive for building a new world order based on just ethical and economic relationships," he said, speaking in Italian.

Marching bands of the Swiss Guard and Italian police played for the crowd near a larger-than-life nativity scene, making for a festive atmosphere despite the rain. The address by the leader of the world's some 1.1 billion Roman Catholics was different in style than those of his predecessor John Paul, who died last April. John Paul wrote his Christmas addresses in free-style verse and resembled poetry, whereas Benedict's was in prose like a normal homily or speech.

After the address, Benedict wished the world a Happy Christmas in 33 languages, including Arabic, Hebrew, Swahili, Japanese and Latin. His predecessor sometimes used twice as many languages on Christmas.


Since his election, the Pope has repeatedly reminded Catholics not to give in to an "ethical relativism" where circumstances can be used to justify actions that should be considered wrong in all cases. The Pope, wearing a gold cape and with a gold mitre, continued in that line on Sunday address by focussing on the dangers of technology and progress.

"Today we can dispose of vast material resources. But the men and women in our technological age risk becoming victims of their own intellectual and technical achievements, ending up in spiritual barrenness and emptiness of heart," he said. "That is why it is so important for us to open our minds and hearts to the birth of Christ, this event of salvation which can give new hope to the life of each human being," he said.

He also urged respect for the rights of people suffering in the Darfur region of Sudan, made another appeal for peace in the Holy Land and called for "actions inspired by fairness and wisdom" in Iraq and Lebanon.

The Pope asked God to favour dialogue on the Korean peninsula so that "dangerous disputes" there and elsewhere in Asia can be solved peacefully. The Sunday Urbi et Orbi followed a Christmas eve midnight mass attended by a congregation that packed St Peter's Basilica. In his homily at that mass he urged the world's Catholics to be beacons of peace in a troubled world. The next major event on the Pope's Christmas season calendar is a mass on the Feast of the Epiphany on January 6. In early January, the Pope is due to publish his first encyclical, a major writing addressed to all Church members. The encyclical deals with the individual's personal relationship with God. - reuters

Peres Says Pope Hopes to Visit Israel in '07 - Both Condemn All Terrorist Attacks

VATICAN CITY, APRIL 6, 2006 (Zenit.org).- Former Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres said that Benedict XVI had told him he hoped he would be able to visit the Holy Land in 2007.

During a papal audience today, Peres, a senior Kadima party politician and Nobel Peace Prize winner, transmitted to the Holy Father the invitation presented by interim Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

Vatican spokesman Joaquín Navarro Valls published a statement after the audience, confirming the invitation but making no mention of a date for the trip.

"In the talks there was an exchange of opinions on the topic of peace in the Holy Land, in respect of the United Nations resolutions and agreements reached to date," the Vatican spokesman said.

"In this context, all forms of terrorism, regardless of any pretext to justify them, were unanimously condemned," Navarro Valls noted.

He added: "Relations between the state of Israel and the Holy See were also examined -- in the light of agreements endorsed in 1993 and 1997 -- as well as the relations of Israeli authorities with the country's Christian communities."

After being received by the Bishop of Rome, Peres met with Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Angelo Sodano.

On hand were Oded Ben-Hur, the Israeli ambassador to the Holy See, and Monsignor Pietro Parolin, undersecretary of the Vatican section for relations with states. - zenit.org

HK's cardinal: Vatican, China discussing relations

2006/4/10 - By William Foreman HONG KONG, AP

Hong Kong's new cardinal said the Vatican and China are holding "real talks" in Rome about normalizing formal relations that were cut off more than five decades ago when the communists took over the mainland.

Cardinal Joseph Zen's comments on the Sunday TV talkshow "Newsline" on Hong Kong's ATV World were among the most detailed he has made about the nature of the meetings between the Beijing and Catholic leaders in Rome.

The show's host, veteran journalist Frank Ching, noted that a senior Chinese religious official, Ye Xiaowen, recently said Beijing and the Vatican have only been in "contact" about the issue of forging new relations. But the outspoken Zen insisted the meetings were much more substantial than mere contacts.

"My impression is that they've entered into real talks," Zen said, adding that negotiators were meeting in Rome.

Zen said one sticking point has been who would have the authority to appoint bishops. He said the Vatican would be willing to show China a list of candidates and allow Beijing to share its opinion, but that the Vatican should have the final say.

"The final word should not be exclusively on the side of an atheist government," said Zen, who was appointed cardinal last month.

Since Beijing cut formal ties with the Vatican in 1951, the Communist government has only allowed the faithful to worship in churches run by the state-sanctioned Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association.

Zen said one of the Vatican's conditions for re-establishing relations was that there must be religious freedom in China. But he said the Vatican wasn't insisting on absolute religious freedom.

When asked whether the Vatican was satisfied with the level of religious freedom now, Zen did not directly answer the question.

"I think we can hope that the cage will become bigger and bigger, and we hope at the end they'll let the birds fly," the cardinal said.

Zen recently hosted a reception celebrating his new appointment, and officials from China's liaison office in Hong Kong were invited but didn't attend. Zen said they declined the invitations because they had other engagements or were traveling.

"I would not make a big issue of that," he said about the no-shows. But he added that Beijing was still unsure about his new role. "They are watching and they have not made up their mind yet about how to treat me. I'm a troublemaker," he said. - chinapost.com

Child Sex Ring in Italy

Source: Boston Globe, November 7, 1997


MILAN - Magistrate Pietro Forno said at a news conference that children were bought by mobsters in China and flown to the United States via a number of European airports, including Milan's Linate Airport.

''This is the biggest such trade ever discovered in Italy and perhaps in Europe,'' Forno said.

Customs police at Linate discovered the child sex ring, when a Japanese man and Chinese woman, accompanying a 12-year-old girl, were arrested after arriving on a flight from Bangkok with false passports.

The couple claimed to be the girl's relatives, but the child told police she had been taken from her parents in China and forced to work as a prostitute in Thailand.

The girl is being held in a child-care center in Italy while the couple is due to be charged with a number of crimes, including extortion, organized-crime association, and forcing people into slavery.

According to Milan, ''We have opened the first chapter in a book which has yet to be written, one which deals with the trade in children from east to west," prevent-abuse-now.com


Today Hubbard's minions continue to wreak global havoc, costing governments considerable effort and money to try to stop them. In Italy a two-year trial of 76 Scientologists, among them the former leader of the church's Italian operations, is nearing completion in Milan. Two weeks ago, prosecutor Pietro Forno requested jail terms for all the defendants who are accused of extortion, cheating "mentally incapacitated" people and evading as much as $50 million in taxes. "All of the trial's victims went to Scientology in search of a cure or a better life," said Forno, "But the Scientologists were amateur psychiatrists who practiced psychological terrorism". For some victims, he added, "the intervention of the Scientologists was devastating."

The Milan case was triggered by parents complaining to officials that Scientology had a financial stranglehold on their children, who had joined the church or entered Narconon, its drug rehabilitation unit. In 1986 Treasury and paramilitary police conducted raids in 20 cities across Italy shutting down 27 Scientology centers and seizing 100,000 documents. To defend itself in the trial, the cult has retained some of Italy's most famous lawyers. source

Scaremongering: Climate of fear?

The following, clarifying interview with Roberto Bui (a.k.a. Wu Ming 1, formerly a member of the "Luther Blissett Project") was published on January 18th, 2002, on the local leftist magazine Zero in Condotta . Questions by Marco Trotta, a well-known human rights hacktivist and animator of the Bologna Social Forum.


A: Will you tell us about the legal troubles related to the book?

Q: A wide range of literary techniques, including cut-up, were used to write Lasciate che i bimbi. The book gives an account of the three year period that turned Europe into a big atrocity show-room, from 1996 to the end of 1998. In those days "pedophilia" was described as the most serious problem in the world. It sounded like "pedophiles" were everywhere, a very powerful clandestine organization, practically the occult masters of the Internet, whose agents were on the prowl in all public spaces of every town. It was an "emergency", indeed, a collective psychosis whose main consequences have been a general retreat from the field of individual liberties: several national parliaments passed laws based on censorship and the authorities destroyed the lives of hundreds of individuals who were mistaken for "monsters", innocent people whose names and faces would suddenly end up in the TV news or in the press below sensational headlines.

In Italy Lasciate che i bimbi pioneered counterinformation on such a disturbing issue as child abuse. From then on, alternative investigations have proved that real abuse was often committed by the authorities for the alleged purpose of "protecting the children". Even the National Council of Magistrates is investigating the conduct of the notorious Pietro Forno, the deputy district attorney who coordinates the activities of an "anti-pedophilia team" in Milan, after Appeal Courts acquitted virtually every person he had prosecuted! - source

The "Luther Blissett Project" is a NEOIST art cult which, in it's British form, at least, has proven to contain members of top level clandestine intelligence, with rosicrusian/masonic influences / pretensions

The Vatican abuse ring?

POLICE HAVE raided a seminary near Vienna, confiscated computer kit and arrested a priest they think was involved in a child porn ring.

They are believed to have uncovered some 40,000 pornographic photos and numerous videos on the computers.

Some church officials are also concerned that some of the photos show candidates for the priesthood kissing, fondling each other and playing sex games with their instructors.
Police seize church computers

Vatican "ordered cover-up"

August 19, 2003 - A 40-year-old document instructing senior Catholics to cover up cases of sexual abuse or face excommunication has been unearthed in America, it has emerged.

The order, written in Latin, was sent out from the Vatican in 1962 and is marked with the seal of Pope John XXIII.

Texan lawyer Daniel Shea uncovered the secret document through a letter he found on the internet, in Latin, which referred to the "Crimen sollicitationis" or "Crime of Solicitation".

The letter, by Cardinal Ratzinger, dated May 18, 2001, was proof to Mr Shea that the Catholic Church adhered to the document at that time. He said "Crime of Solicitation" gave instructions to clergy on proceeding in cases of solicitation.

These included sexual abuse initiated as part of the confessional relationship between a penitent and priest and "obscene acts" by clergymen with young members of the congregation of either sex or with animals.

Mr Shea said the document was "like a nuclear weapon" as it exposed the conspiracy of silence surrounding sex abuse in the Catholic Church.

"It's got conspiracy written all over it. They are trying to protect their power and their intellectual arrogance," he said. "That's why this behaviour is so widespread. It gives the green light for priests to abuse in the first place by letting them know that if they do abuse, mother church will be there to cover up with their secret processes."

The 69-page document instructs bishops to refer cases to the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith for instruction. The victims and witnesses are made to take an oath of secrecy at the time of registering the complaint which is carefully stored away in church archives. Offending priests are then sent on a pilgrimage to recover their faith and say special prayers as punishment, according to Mr Shea. Mr Shea has handed the documents to the American authorities for investigation.

The document states that: "matters (should) be pursued in a most secretive way... they are to be restrained by a perpetual silence... and everyone pertaining to the tribunal in any way... is to observe the strictest secret, which is commonly regarded as a secret of the Holy Office... under the penalty of excommunication."

A Catholic Church spokesman said a second document - dealing with the same subject - was drawn up in 1983 for bishops in England and Wales, and would supersede the 1962 version. - SMH via this source

Catholic clergy sex abuse data released

By BRIAN LEWIS - Staff Writer

Nashville Diocese says seven of 378 priests 'credibly accused' since 1950. Just under 2% of the Catholic priests who served in the Diocese of Nashville over the past 50 years are believed to have sexually abused children, according to the local diocese.

The figures, reported in the Feb. 13 edition of the diocesan newspaper, The Tennessee Register, are part of a study being released by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice on Feb. 27. According to the diocese, seven of the 378 priests who served in the diocese between 1950 and 2002 were ''credibly accused,'' and 30 victims have contacted the diocese. Also, it said the diocese had paid more than $200,000 for counseling and charitable assistance of victims, and that it had not agreed to any settlements. Many dioceses around the country have paid multimillion-dollar settlements to victims.

The Diocese of Nashville, which included all of Tennessee during at least part of the 52-year period studied, is not aware of any incidents of abuse since 1985, officials said.

''We cannot change what happened 20, 30, 40 or even 10 years ago,'' Bishop Edward Kmiec wrote in a letter to area Catholics. ''However we can devote our time and resources to developing good programs such as background checks, screening, checking applications, checking references and developing good training programs for everyone, including children, to detect, prevent and report child sexual abuse.''

The John Jay study is the second of two that the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops commissioned in the wake of a national child sexual abuse scandal in 2002. The first study, released last month, detailed the policies implemented to prevent abuse and to facilitate the reporting of allegations of abuse. It found Nashville in complete compliance with the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, a document created in 2002 by the bishops.

The local diocese created policies in 1985 and put them in written form in 1992. Those policies were revised after the charter was passed in 2002.

Michael Coode, who claims he was abused by a priest in Nashville in the 1950s, says he thinks the reported numbers could be low. Coode, a member of a support group for victims, sent the bishop a letter last summer with the initials of 14 Tennessee priests who he said had abused 150 people.

Coode said he wished the bishop would be more specific about the priests who have abused children. ''He should name these people because when I get through with my list and his list, there could be 21,'' Coode said. ''This idea of self-reporting is itself questionable. I think much work has to be done to restore faith in the hierarchy, and I have my doubts this can even begin without new, strong leadership in the church.''

Other local Catholics praised the local diocese's decision to release the information, especially because it wasn't required to do so.

''I think that part of the healing process is to let the truth be known,'' said Dan McCormick, president of the local chapter of Voice of the Faithful, a group formed in response to the sexual abuse scandal. ''That's certainly a way to get it behind us is when all the facts and all the truth is forthcoming. I certainly commend the bishop in doing that.''

Jim Zralek, another member of the group, also applauded the release of the information but said the diocese should have included how much money was spent on legal fees. ''I think Catholics would love to know … whether that involved any of the money they put in the collection,'' he said.

The group also is holding a prayer service for all victims of sexual abuse March 7 at the St. Ann Catholic Church's family life center to help with the healing process.

In his letter to Catholics, Kmiec said he hoped the information would help in healing.

''I reiterate our profound sorrow and apology to the victims of past abuse and to their families, especially as it has occurred here in our diocese,'' Kmiec wrote. ''I pray for their healing and for their forgiveness, and I repeat my continuing concern for their well-being.''

Prayer service

The Voice of the Faithful, a Catholic group formed to support victims of abuse, is holding a prayer service called ''A service of hope'' at 5 p.m. March 7 at the St. Ann Catholic Church Family Life Center, 5105 Charlotte Ave., for all victims of sexual abuse. Catholic clergy sex abuse data released

Nebraska bishop refuses full cooperation with sex abuse prevention measures

By: JOE RUFF - Associated Press

LINCOLN, Neb. ---- At a time when Roman Catholic bishops are submitting their dioceses to unprecedented scrutiny because of the clerical sex abuse crisis, the leader of about 90,000 faithful in Nebraska is among the hierarchy's few public dissenters. Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz of Lincoln won't require background checks of all current employees and volunteers who have regular contact with children. Nor will Bruskewitz let his diocese participate in a study designed to tally every priestly abuse case in the country since 1950.

For these actions, Bruskewitz' diocese was recently declared out of compliance with the toughened sex abuse policy that American bishops approved overwhelmingly in 2002.

"Every diocesan bishop does not have to follow the (new abuse policy) to be in compliance with what the church is asking," said the Rev. Mark Huber, a spokesman for the bishop.

Huber was noting that the Vatican approved the bishops' new plan for handling abuse accusations against priests, making it church law for the United States. But Rome didn't act on other sections of the bishops' policy, such as conducting background checks or researching abuse.

So, even though nearly all the other dioceses are following the policy, there's nothing forcing Bruskewitz to do likewise.

Bruskewitz, 68, declined to be interviewed. But in a statement explaining his reasons for not participating in the church abuse study, the bishop said it was likely to be slanderous. Also, he said, "the reporting of the study does not promise to place into context the number of priests who did not commit sexual abuse of minors."

The first public rumblings of Bruskewitz's refusal to cooperate with the national bishops' group came on Jan. 6.

An internal church audit, overseen by the bishops' new Office of Child and Youth Protection, showed the Lincoln Diocese was among only 10 percent of the country's 195 dioceses that had not fully complied with the bishops' recommendations. The audit faulted the diocese for failing to conduct background checks on all employees and for not cooperating with the sex abuse study. The audit also suggested that the diocese provide more guidance to its sexual abuse review board, and involve the board at the initial stages after a molestation claim is received. The audit did credit the diocese with making a videotape on sexual abuse available to all personnel who have regular contact with children, and for publicizing its standards of conduct for diocesan employees and volunteers.

Soon after the audit was released, Bruskewitz said he would not cooperate with the tally of abuse cases nationwide, set for release Feb. 27.

The bishop contends the study will be flawed because it relies on self-reporting by dioceses. Bruskewitz also fears the report will include inconclusive and anonymous allegations, and he noted many of the accused are dead and cannot defend themselves, Huber said. The bishop blames divergence from Catholic moral teaching for the abuse crisis.

Lincoln is one of only a few dioceses in the country that may not take part in the study. A spokesman for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Monsignor Francis Maniscalco, said Lincoln's input will not be essential.

"The study will be very valid and able to say what was the nature and scope of the problem, which is what it set out to do," Maniscalco said.

Huber said parishes within the Lincoln Diocese can voluntarily conduct background checks of employees and volunteers if they choose, but pastors could decide some people who have worked for years without complaint do not need a background check. However, all new workers and volunteers who work with children will undergo a review of their background.

The diocese has long been known for its conservative bent. Girls, for example, are not allowed to serve at the altar, a practice that has become common around the country. Bruskewitz believes that having boys serve at the altar encourages vocations to the priesthood, Huber said.

Bruskewitz also welcomed to the diocese the U.S. branch of the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter, which built a seminary and began classes in 2000. The fraternity emphasizes the Latin rite Mass ---- the standard before the Second Vatican Council ---- in which the priest speaks Latin and faces away from the congregation.

In 1996, Bruskewitz threatened to excommunicate Lincoln Catholics who belong to certain groups that he considered perilous to the faith, including the Masons and church reform advocates Call to Action.

Jim McShane, a Call to Action member who was targeted by the bishop's excommunication threats, said Bruskewitz's noncompliance with the audit and survey are typical.

"The American bishops are trying very hard to alleviate any concerns people may have about the safety of their children, and this bishop has decided 'nobody can make me do it,"' McShane said.

David Clohessy, national director of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, said Bruskewitz's stance lacks compassion for abuse victims and people who are concerned about the issue.

"How on earth could a victim feel comfortable reporting to a person like Bruskewitz, who so vigorously resists even these baby steps?" Clohessy said.

But the Rev. Paul Witt, pastor at St. Mary's, said the diocese has not had a case of church sexual abuse in at least 20 years, and he trusts the bishop to protect children.

"The general feeling is, stay on it," Witt said. "We certainly don't want even one iota of one more incident happening." - source

On 22 September 2005, Philadelphia's CBS affilitate KYW reported:

The leaders of the Philadelphia Archdiocese, including two former archbishops, actively concealed sexual abuse by priests for decades, but no criminal charges can be brought against the church or its priests because of the constraints of state law, according to grand jury findings released Wednesday.

Following the nation's longest-running grand jury probe into priest abuse, the scathing report documents assaults on minors by more than 60 priests since 1967, and alleges that former archbishops Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua and Cardinal John Krol covered up the abuse.

"To protect themselves from negative publicity or expensive lawsuits-while keeping abusive priests active-the cardinals and their aides hid the priests' crimes from parishioners, police and the general public," the report stated.

State laws, including legal time limits, prevented prosecutors from filing charges, the report said. The grand jury also explored the possibility of charges against the archdiocese, but said the organization could not be prosecuted because it is an unincorporated association rather than a corporation.

[read the full article and watch the video report here]

The entire 418-page report is available at the Philadelphia District Attorney's website here. MemoryHole are mirroring it and providing excerpts

Vatican entitled to foreign immunity, judge rules

08/10/2005 - A judge in Kentucky has ruled that the Holy See is a foreign state that enjoys certain immunity protections, in an action by three men who claim the Vatican covered up the sexual abuse of children by priests.

Judge John Heyburn of the US District Court in Louisville rejected the victims' argument that the Holy See was an international religious organisation and ruled that it was a foreign state subject to provisions of the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act.

The 1976 act restricts when foreign states can be sued in American courts, although it provides exceptions, such as when the states engage in commercial or certain harmful activities in the US.

The act also requires that service of a lawsuit follow strict protocols. In this case, it required documents to be translated into Latin and served to the Vatican foreign minister, Archbishop Giovanni Lajolo.

In his ruling, Heyburn said the suit had actually been sent to Lajolo's boss, Cardinal Angelo Sodano, and that "strict compliance" with the act was necessary.

"That compliance is admittedly difficult and is made moreso by the absence of any accomodation from the Holy See," Heyburn wrote.

But because the victims made "good faith efforts", the judge gave them 60 days to properly serve Lajolo with the documents.

William McMurry, lawyer for the plaintiffs, said he was encouraged that Heyburn had not dismissed the suit outright, and had only found a technical problem with the way the papers were served.

"We have 60 days to correct a technical error, after which we can get to the merit of the case, and ultimately a court will determine that the Vatican can be held accountable in American courts for the sexual abuse of children by Roman Catholic priests in this country," he said.

McMurry filed the suit last year on behalf of three men who say they were abused as far back as 1928. The lawsuit alleges a cover-up by the Vatican to protect priests who molested American children. - IOL

Catholic bishops report 783 sex abuse claims in 2005

Cathy J. Potter at 6:52 AM ET
[JURIST] Over 780 new allegations of clergy sex abuse [JURIST news archive] were reported to the US Catholic Church in 2005, though a majority of the claims relate to incidents which occurred in past decades, according to a new audit released Thursday by the US Conference of Catholic Bishops [official website]. The report [PDF text; press release] is the third annual audit released by the church to monitor compliance with the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People [text], drafted in 2002 in response to widespread reports of sexual abuse committed by clergymen. In addition to the new abuse allegations, the report also notes that only 88.5 percent of dioceses were in full compliance with the charter, down from 95 percent in 2004. The 2005 report has come under some criticism as the review was not conducted according to the same methods as previous audits [JURIST report]. In 2003 and 2004, all 195 dioceses were visited on-site, but in 2005, 104 dioceses filled out questionnaires while the remainder were visited by auditors.

The church has received over 12,000 abuse claims since 1950, including the 783 new accusations raised in 2005. Catholic dioceses have spent over $1 billion since 1950 to deal with the problem, and almost $467 million in 2005 which includes a $22 million settlement [JURIST report] by the Hartford Archdiocese and a $56 million settlement [JURIST report] by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Oakland in California.

Catholic Church Gets 783 New Abuse Claims

Mar 30, By RACHEL ZOll WASHINGTON (AP) - The nation's Roman Catholic leaders received 783 new claims of sex abuse by clergy in 2005, with most of the allegations involving cases that are decades old.

The new claims, reported Thursday, bring the total number of accusations against Catholic clergy to more than 12,000 since 1950.

The latest figures were released as part of the third audit the bishops have conducted to restore trust in their leadership after abuse allegations soared in 2002. Church leaders, however, drew criticism for changing how this latest review was conducted.

In the first two annual audits, all 195 dioceses received an onsite visit. During the most recent review, 104 dioceses were allowed to fill out a questionnaire instead while auditors visited the others.

All three audits were conducted by the Gavin Group, a private firm that employed teams comprised mainly of former FBI agents.

Prior to the new audit, the abuse problem was known to have cost dioceses more than $1 billion since 1950. But new figures released by the church greatly expanded the figure: The bishops said the total cost of abuse in 2005 alone was nearly $467 million, including settlements, therapy for victims, support for offenders and attorneys' fees, among other things.

The new audit also found a slight decline in compliance with all of the provisions of the toughened sex abuse policy that the bishops adopted four years ago. The latest audit found 88.5 percent of dioceses were fully compliant compared with more than 95 percent last year.

The audit said several dioceses don't have full safe environment training where children learn to keep themselves safe from abusers and four have not fully complied with the call for background checks on employees. - apnews.myway.com

Italian priest accused of sexually abusing 20 boys

05/04/2006 - Italian authorities arrested a priest today and accused him of repeatedly abusing about 20 children from his parish south of Rome over more than a decade. Officers picked up Father Marco Agostini at a youth hostel in the Umbrian town of Assisi where he had been transferred last year after spending a decade in the small town of Pomezia, said Alberto Intini, head of the crime squad at Rome's police headquarters.

Prosecutors have collected testimony on "hundreds" of abuse cases from about 20 boys who claim they were sexually molested by Agostini between 1993-2004, Intini said. The children were 13 or older at the time and were part of a congregation at the San Benedetto church in Pomezia, he said.

Agostini, 43, was arrested for the crime of sexual abuse against minors.

Two other priests from Pomezia are accused of knowing about the abuse and covering it up. They are being investigated for aiding and abetting a crime. - Ireland online

Vatican Defrocks 3 Philadelphia Priests For Alleged Sex Abuse

Friday, April 07, 2006 PHILADELPHIA -

Three more priests accused of sexually abusing children have been defrocked, bringing to 17 the number of priests in the Philadelphia Archdiocese who have been defrocked since the clergy abuse scandal broke four years ago.

The Vatican defrocked Edward V. Avery, Stanley M. Gana and James E. McGuire over credible allegations of abuse, the archdiocese announced in a notice Thursday inside its weekly newspaper, the Catholic Standard & Times.

None of the 17 priests faces criminal charges because of Pennsylvania's statute of limitations for prosecuting sex crimes. Avery, Gana and McGuire were named in a grand jury report released in September that identified 63 archdiocesan priests as abusers.

"This does nothing to address the broader issue that they broke the law and they escaped prosecution because the statute of limitations is so short," said John Salveson, a leader of the national advocacy group Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests and Other Clergy.

Avery, Gana and McGuire were stripped of their ministries in 2002 and 2003. They could not be located for comment.

According to the grand jury report, McGuire was found to have molested at least three boys, starting from when he was a seminarian in 1966. Avery allegedly abused a 12-year-old boy in the late 1970s. Gana, at one time a chaplain for the Boy Scouts of America, allegedly had so many victims that the grand jury could characterize the number only as "countless." - foxnews.com

Catholic priest convicted over satanic ritual murder of nun By JAMES EWINGER

13 may 06 - The advertiser

A U.S. jury yesterday found a Roman Catholic priest guilty of the satanic ritual-style murder of a 71-year-old nun which went unsolved for more than 25 years.

Father Gerald Robinson, above, was sentenced to a mandatory jail term of between 15 years and life.

There were gasps in the court after the verdict, but the 68-year-old priest remained impassive.

Sister Margaret Ann Pahl was found murdered on a chapel floor in April, 1980. She had been strangled, covered in an altar cloth and stabbed 31 times in the shape of an upturned holy cross.

She had been grabbed from behind and choked so violently that the blood vessels in her eyes burst and two bones in her neck broke. Prosecutor Dean Mantros said that Robinson pushed up the nun's robe and pulled down her underwear.

Robinson was an early suspect but was only arrested in 2004, after a woman came forward with claims that she had been sexually abused by a group of priests who performed satanic rituals and held sadomasochistic orgies.

A spot of blood on the priest's letter opener was found to match a bloodstain on the altar cloth that had covered Sister Pahl's body.

Pope Benedict receives Tony Blair

Press Association - Saturday June 3, 2006 guardian.co.uk

Pope Benedict XVI has received Prime Minister Tony Blair and his wife, Cherie, in an audience.

It was the first time the pontiff has met privately with Mr Blair since Benedict's election last year, but the second time he has met Mrs Blair.

The Vatican gave no details of the meeting, which it described as a private audience.

Mr Blair a day earlier held talks in Rome with Italy's new prime minister, Romano Prodi, about the Italian troop withdrawal from Iraq, which Prodi has said will be completed this year.

Mrs Blair met the Pope in April, when she took part in a Vatican conference on children, which he addressed.

Mr Blair was expected to tell the Pope that moderate religious leaders must work together to tackle extremism and terrorism.

A Downing Street spokesman earlier said the two men had "lots to discuss".

"The Vatican is an influential player on the world stage and, through all the Catholic communities around the world, has a significant influence on international opinion," he said. "The Prime Minister will be interested in the Pope's views on key foreign policy issues. "In particular he will want to discuss with the Pope inter-faith relations and how best inter-faith dialogue can help with conflict resolution and how the moderate voices of the world's main religions need to work together to tackle and confront extremism and terrorism."

Captain Wardrobes

Down with Murder inc.