Sacked Bishop: So Much For Pope Francis’ Talk About “Mercy”…

Sacked Bishop: So Much For Pope Francis’ Talk About “Mercy”…

pope-francis1Ciudad del Este, Paraguay, Sep 26, 2014 / 03:44 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Bishop Rogelio Livieres Plano has accepted in obedience Pope Francis’ decision to remove him from governance of the Ciudad del Este diocese, though he says the action resulted from a flawed apostolic visitation and that his country is in vital need of Christian renewal.

“As an obedient son of the Church, I nevertheless accept this decision, despite considering it to be unfounded and arbitrary,” Bishop Livieres said in a Sept. 25 letter to Cardinal Marc Ouellet, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops. “Despite so much discourse about dialogue, mercy, openness, decentralization, and respect for local Churches, I haven’t have the opportunity to talk to Pope Francis, not even to clarify a doubt or a concern.”  (emphasis added).

On Sept. 25 the Holy See announced that Pope Francis has decided to remove the bishop from the Diocese of Ciudad del Este “for serious pastoral reasons and for the greater good of the unity of the Church in Ciudad del Este and the episcopal communion in Paraguay.” Bishop Ricardo Valenzuela Rios of Villarrica del Espiritu Santo has been appointed as apostolic administrator of the diocese while it is vacant. Bishop Livieres’ removal followed a five-day apostolic visitation of the diocese which took place in July. At the end of that month, it was announced that ordinations in the diocese were to be suspended.

Bishop Livieres, who had led the diocese since 2004, said he has still not seen the documents regarding the apostolic visitation and has not been able to “adequately respond to it.” He said the document removing him from his office “gives as justification for such a grave decision the tension in the ecclesial community between the bishops of Paraguay, and my person and diocese.”

Bishop Livieres opened a major seminary soon after his arrival in the diocese. He shortened its formation period to four years on the grounds that new priests were urgently needed. More than 60 graduates of the seminary have become priests in the last ten years. The diocese also opened a minor seminary and an institute for priestly formation. Before Bishop Livieres’ removal, a statement on the diocese’s website charged that the Paraguayan bishops “resisted” these seminaries because they would “break the monolithic scheme of priestly formation” in practice at Paraguay’s national seminary. Bishop Livieres defended the seminaries of his diocese, noting that the Congregation for Catholic Education found “defective formation” in Paraguay’s national seminary. “Our diocesan seminary has provided excellent fruits recognized by recent laudatory letters from the Holy See in at least three occasion during the previous pontificate, by the bishops who have visited us, and most recently, by the apostolic visitators. Every single suggestion made by the Holy See regarding how to improve the formation has been faithfully fulfilled.”  Read more


This latest attack on Catholic Tradition by Pope Francis seems to follow a determined pattern. I’m continually hearing people say that a formal schism is looming. Maybe – if the orthodox and/or “traditional leaning” priests and prelates make a stand. But will they? Or will they be afraid to follow the example of the cardinals who have opposed Cardinal Kasper’s plans for the forthcoming Synod on the Family in case they, too, “irritate” Pope Francis with their adherence to the authentic traditional Catholic Faith? 

Comments (106)

  • dominiemary

    This bishop also had Latin Mass in all his diocese. That is the real reason for his removal

    September 27, 2014 at 11:46 am
    • Margaret Mary


      Then that proves the “pattern” as it says in the “comment”. Any sign of traditionalism and punishment follows. I’m glad Bishop Rogelio Livieres Plano has mentioned the Pope’s talking about dialogue, decentralization and mercy while behaving like a tyrant.

      September 27, 2014 at 11:59 am
  • TLM

    ‘Despite so much discourse about mercy, openness, dialogue’……….(etc)

    Hmm…..why does this remind me of Obama? You know…….the guy that says one thing and then turns around and does the opposite? It was a red flag when Obama was so thrilled over the election of Bergoglio. I knew at the time that nothing ‘smelled right’ about all the praise. Very strange.

    September 27, 2014 at 12:32 pm
  • randy

    How could anyone believe that jp2 is a saint when he failed to deal with the bishops and cardinals who covered up the sex abuse of kids which ruined many lives?

    September 27, 2014 at 1:24 pm
    • TLM

      By the time the Priest scandal was brought out into the open (I believe this was in 2002 or 2003) John Paul was incapacitated, and already a pretty sick man. I remember watching him with the Cardinals when he called them all to the Vatican in regard to the crisis, and he looked even then to be at death’s door. I’m not sure we can know one way or the other what he tried to do and what he didn’t, in his condition, but I do remember watching him with his head in his hands crying over it. That said……it is anyone’s guess about his resolve in the matter. They said at the beginning he was in a state of complete shock, but ?????

      September 27, 2014 at 1:44 pm
      • editor


        Unfortunately, Pope John Paul II – whether in a state of shock or not – was extremely negligent in the matter of various scandals, including the child abuse scandals. Cardinal Ratzinger, for example, warned him over and over again about the scandal of Maciel and yet he ignored him. So, you are correct to conclude with “but…” Because no matter what, the buck always stops at the papal throne. He neglected to do his duty in all sorts of ways which is why his “canonisation” was and remains, such an almighty scandal. What was REALLY being canonised, of course, was Vatican II.

        September 27, 2014 at 3:09 pm
    • editor


      We have a number of blog discussions about the canonisations prior to the day itself, and then one on the day itself, entitled Canonisations? What Canonisations? If you’d like me to post the links to the previous discussions, I will do so, but there are over 300 comments on the linked thread, so I think all questions should be answered in there somewhere!

      September 27, 2014 at 2:50 pm
  • Graeme Taylor

    Gloria tv reports that the bishop was sacked by the Pope because the bishop exposed an arch bishop of being an active homosexual.
    That looks far more like the truth of this Pope, he does not want to carry out Our Lord’s will.
    Our Lady intercede for the Pope and for all those fake prelates. Almighty God have mercy on us all. Amen

    September 27, 2014 at 2:47 pm
    • editor

      Well said, Graeme. Spot on.

      September 27, 2014 at 3:11 pm
  • editor

    Well, folks, I’ve just had an email alerting me to the news that the Bishop of Arundel & Brighton, Bishop Kieran Conry has resigned due to breaking his priestly promises, speculated as being celibacy. Click here to read more

    Well, no surprise here at Catholic Truth, nor in the Christian Order office. Here’s an extract from a feature article in CO in 2002, which I’ve quoted many times. We knew there would be no threats to sue, and now The Telegraph has caught up – but note, this bishop criticised heavily the pontificate of Pope Benedict because any sign of sympathy for Catholic Tradition is a problem for modernists like Conry. I’m posting this news here because of the recent comments about “those canonisations” – clearly, Pope John Paul II was very negligent in permitting the appointment of Mgr Conry to go ahead. The indulgence enjoyed by Bishop Conry since then (rumours continued to circulate) contrasts starkly with the treatment of the Bishop in Paraguay, guilty of nothing more than “traditional leanings”. Anyway, for some background of Bishop Conry, read on…

    Extract from Christian Order …

    …Recently installed in Cardinal Murphy O’Connor’s former diocese of Arundel and Brighton (or what is left of it after his tenure), the former Mgr. Conry was earmarked for higher things by Cardinal Hume during his time as Director of the Catholic Media Office. Despite one priest’s assessment of his time there as being “by any objective standards a disaster,” Mgr Conry became one of the sponsored ‘untouchables’ – and acted accordingly. “For a period I saw quite a bit of Conry,” a deacon confided. “He seemed to live in a secular, corporate world rather than a priestly one. I never once saw him dressed as a priest. His point of view was unfailingly liberal.” In other words, he was left to do his own thing. And if that is considered par for the priestly course nowadays, I guess one could say the same about his ‘special friendship.’ “Kieran was often seen out and about with his female friend,” a London priest informed me. “Everyone knew about it in the same way that everyone, including the bishops, knew about the homosexual relationship between Martin Pendergast [ex-Carmelite priest] and Julian Filochowski [Director of CAFOD, the bishops’ overseas aid agency].”

    Several years ago, around the time of the Roddy Wright scandal, I explored how British bishops turn a blind eye to the “occasion of sin” in which a priest “keeping company” places himself, tempting fate and grave scandal [“Six Bishops and a Funeral: Why The Common Good was Dead on Arrival,” CO, Jan. 1997]. At that time, in commenting on the routine breaking of vows of chastity acknowledged by the hierarchy in a message to the Pope, Mgr (now Bishop) Arthur Roche had assured The Times that “… the bishops of England and Wales are realists.” Just how “realistic” they are I indicated by relating, among other cases, the example of the London priest well known to be living with his Pastoral Assistant, who he took along to Deanery meetings at the Bishop’s house! In that context, Mgr Conry ‘merely’ keeping regular company in such public fashion is hardly surprising. Yet even if such increasingly common ‘relationships’ are purely platonic, the point is that scandal is given, above all to those of simple and delicate conscience who are offended by it and interpret it in a bad sense. St. Joseph Cafasso, a nineteenth century version of the Cure of Ars, called this kind of scandal “the scandal of the little ones.” A priest’s life is not his own, and so the Saint exhorts him to absolutely abstain from any behaviour which might give scandal, even if caused by appearance only and the result of the ignorance of others.

    One assumes that this is the case with Mgr Conry. But regardless, does it not leave the gravest questions about ecclesiastical propriety? Not to say about his prudential judgement and ability to offer wise moral leadership and counsel to others? Especially when shortly before his episcopal consecration Mass he is seen in Italy strolling hand in hand and enjoying leisurely outings with his lady friend at Palazzola, the residence on Lake Albano belonging to the English College. Again, it was the appearance of scandal that upset those who viewed the liaison, including one priest who was sufficiently disgusted to make representations to a Vatican Congregation. Word quickly spread and it is said that Church authorities may have queried Mgr Conry about the matter. Whatever the case, it is a measure of the unqualified protection afforded to Modernist cronies that not only did Mgr Conry’s less than discreet romantic entanglement not disqualify him from consideration for a bishopric in the first place, but that the Palazzola coup de grace did not even delay his elevation by a single day. It is especially shocking in light of the numerous sexual scandals in recent years which have caused such harm to the Church in general and episcopate in particular, and which, one might have thought, would have seen Rome acting swiftly to snuff out the slightest possibility of further tabloid headlines. Not on your life. Ensconced in a plum see, Bishop Conry is now fulfilling the standard expectations of his liberal patrons: Protestantising and bureaucratizing his diocese behind a welter of Modernist buzz-words about “community,” “renewal” and “change.” Source

    September 27, 2014 at 5:19 pm
    • Josephine

      Yes, the contrast between the treatment of the Paraguay bishop and + Kieran Conry is well noted.

      I thought this extract from the Telegraph report shows the loss of the sense of sin in the ex-bishop:

      “Bishop Conry was criticised by conservative churchgoers last year for meeting a group of Catholic homosexuals.

      He defended the meeting, stating at the time: “I am … troubled that some people seem to regard sexual morality as a priority and ignore the more basic demands of the gospel. The gospel has little to say about sexual behaviour and a lot more to say about justice and charity.”

      The sooner the modern clergy start to realise that sexual sins are MORE serious than other sins (St Paul teaches that, because sexual sins are against our own body) the sooner we’ll see an end to these scandals.

      September 27, 2014 at 9:03 pm
      • Graeme Taylor


        thank you for that. I bet he was “troubled” what was it Our Lord said about these pharisees “Everything they do is for show…….they love the seats of honour…” etc. etc.
        These prelates are fakes, dishonest men, speaking untruths and with such arrogance. Good riddance, if this fool has resigned.
        I hope the parishioners in Brighton realise they are paying for his middle class lifestyle ( as the liar he was – as bishop ) and now as he will ensure his pension plan is just cosy. What a lot of garbage we have as prelates.

        September 28, 2014 at 8:24 pm
      • Bradders

        Good riddance indeed to Conroy, Graeme. I wonder how many more of these modernists are abroad proclaiming “mercy,” “compassion,” “who and I to judge” etc., thereby softening up opinion before the truth comes out? Modernists are masters of conditioning minds insidiously by increments.

        September 29, 2014 at 2:56 pm
      • Graeme Taylor

        Bradders, indeed the lies they come out with, it is all too bad. I think Our Lord gave us the internet at these very difficult times to help expose these ministers and their arrogance.

        October 1, 2014 at 8:33 am
  • TLM

    We seem to be surrounded by modernists intent on permanently ‘revolutionizing’ the Church and as you say, in the name of ‘community, ‘renewal’ and ‘change’………oh wait ………… forgot one……………..’MERCY’. Gotta love that one, it covers a multitude of their ‘sins’, and allows for the Church to accept anything at all in the name of ‘MERCY’.

    September 27, 2014 at 8:29 pm
    • Josephine


      Agreed, as if it could be merciful to let someone go on sinning and end up in Hell.

      September 27, 2014 at 9:04 pm
      • TLM

        As our much beloved and much appreciated traditional Bishops have pointed out…..there is NOTHING merciful about leading someone into sin, or allowing someone to loose their eternal soul. Bishop Schneider has said: “It’s like force feeding sugar to a diabetic, it’s CRUEL.

        September 27, 2014 at 9:50 pm
      • Theresa Rose

        I agree with that. What the modernists conviently forget, is that mercy is also tempered with justice.

        September 28, 2014 at 12:34 pm
  • editor

    I stumbled across a blog discussion on the Bishop Conry scandal at the Spectator and couldn’t resist contributing. No wonder we get folk coming on here and breathing a sigh of relief. I am honestly and sincerely beginning to wonder if there is a Catholic mind left in the entire UK, apart from thee and me, and I’m not even sure about thee (as the old joke goes!)

    September 27, 2014 at 11:06 pm
  • randy

    Comment removed. Off topic

    September 27, 2014 at 11:07 pm
  • editor

    The Conry scandal is worse than any of us could have guessed. Click here to read more and then pray for all involved – not least the family now broken up thanks to the promiscuity of Kieran Conry.

    To vote in our poll, visit the website here

    September 27, 2014 at 11:52 pm
    • Andrew

      The position of the posters above is not exactly unexpected.

      The obsession with sex within certain parts of the Church means that a transgression in that area will trump whatever other contributions Bishop Kieran made (and these were in my view considerable). For the record he is (not just was) highly respected and liked by both priests and ordinary Catholics who met him, worked with him or attended Churches within the Diocese. It was with considerable sadness that we learned of this matter at Mass this morning and it seemed today’s Gospel reading was particularly appropriate. Also for the record, the issue was treated with great sensitivity, thought and wisdom by our priest in Woking, in stark contrast to the above posts and the commentator in the Spectator.

      No doubt a gift for those who love scandel, gossip and take pleasure in the difficulties of others. Those in the enviable position of being able to cast the first stone.

      It of course entirely suits the likes of the Mail (cited above), a newspaper with only very limited regard for either people’s feelings or the facts (and with a track record of simply making up stories). However, those of us who count ourselves as Catholic aim to give a more Christian response.

      September 28, 2014 at 8:37 pm
      • Josephine


        Bishop Conry is not at all universally respected in the diocese. I know people in that diocese and they are glad to be rid of him. Only the liberals liked him. You must be one of them to hold him in such high esteem when he is a known dissenter.

        However, what I really wanted to ask you is, do you see nothing wrong with him breaking up a family? Do you not feel any compassion for the children now being raised in a broken home?

        How do you think this will affect their view of the Church as they grow up and find out about their mother’s affair with a bishop, who had already admitted to another affair – at least one other one? I can’t see them feeling respect for the Church, can you?

        September 28, 2014 at 8:47 pm
      • Nicky


        Nobody made anything up, not the Mail or anyone else. Bishop Conry admitted to having had affairs and it was well known among the hierarchy and priests that he was unfaithful for years. Did you read the report about him walking around hand in hand with his then girlfriend, in Rome of all places, just before he was made a bishop? Talk about sheer nerve. You might respect such a hypocrite but no right thinking person does.

        September 28, 2014 at 8:58 pm
      • Andrew

        I have read the reports, in the Mail and elsewhere. The gossipers are out in force as might be expected.

        I suggest that rather than gloating in the gory details of the sins of others they have a closer look at themselves, have another careful read of the Gospels, assess their overall contribution (other than their undoubted purity in matters sexual) and consider whether they are in fact in a position to judge.

        September 28, 2014 at 9:47 pm
      • editor


        Unfortunately, you are unable to look objectively at this situation. Your overall position, according to the comments posted here so far today, appears to be that Bishop Conry’s sexual liaisons are really no big deal. This position seems to be based on the following:

        a) you liked him.

        Well, just about every one of his former patients “liked” (loved, even) Dr Harold Shipman, and that includes the almost 200 whom he murdered. So, let’s dismiss that for a reason not to believe the facts before us.

        b) he’s only committed sexual sins – no big deal (implied by your comment about “certain parts of the Church being obsessed with sex”)

        St Paul teaches that sexual sins are MORE serious than other sins because every other sin is committed outside the body. When we sin sexually, we sin against our own body. Goodbye, then, to that excuse for not attaching grave importance to the Conry scandal.

        c) it’s (mostly at least) gossip (i.e. implying lack of truth)

        Unless you can cite hard evidence of a massive conspiracy to defame Bishop Conry, I can’t see any rational person accepting that claim. If you recall, the Bishop’s last (threatening, I thought) words to the Mail journalist were to be careful what he published. I have a feeling they have done their research, got the photos, if not the T shirt and … er… what else? Oh yes, the admission straight from the horse’s mouth. Unless you’re calling +Kieran Conry an attention seeking liar?

        d) those reporting and commenting on this news are “gloating”

        None of us are gloating. So, unless you name names and offer some evidence for your allegation, that, too, is dismissed.

        e) it’s wrong to judge.

        No it’s not. I’m sorry you are still at the infantile (in terms of Catholic Theology) stage of thinking that making an observation or discussing facts is akin to the kind of judgment prohibited in the Gospel. You must live a truly quiet life if you never comment on current affairs, never offer a view about people or events in the news. Just think if every time someone expressed an opinion about the Prime Minister or other public figures, if some numpty jumped up and said ‘it’s wrong to judge’.

        We cannot say that +Kieran Conry will be damned, that he will go to Hell. He may. Let’s pray and hope not. But THAT is the judgment we cannot make. To argue that we cannot observe that – by his own admission – his behaviour as a priest has been scandalous without risking our own salvation for ‘judging’ him is ludicrous.

        Defending the indefensible is never a good idea. Never.

        + Conry is a hot off the press Modernist. He has done immense damage to the Church in his diocese and one of the first emails I received when this scandal broke, was from a catechist in his diocese who is relieved that he’s gone. He allowed an ‘heretical course’ in his schools, although she did add that so do all the rest of the bishops in E & W except Bishop Egan. So, nobody’s gloating, nobody is’judging’ his soul – but anyone who loves the Faith is glad to see the back of him. Our Lord said: ‘By their fruits shall ye know them…’ Those struggling to be faithful Catholics in that diocese, knew him only too well – by his words and actions – as an outright Modernist.

        Let’s keep him in our prayers, for the intention that he truly repents and converts to living a truly Catholic life without delay.

        September 28, 2014 at 10:56 pm
      • Athanasius


        This is not just about another bishop who has sacrificed his purity, it’s about a hierarchy today that has sacrificed the purity of the Faith by its adoption of a Reformation-like liturgy, illicit Extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion, illicit Communion in the hand, altar girls and all those other manifestations of treachery that have been embraced to facilitate false and condemned ecumenism.

        The fact is our bishops have been taking the Church down the road of Protestantism since the Second Vatican Council. They have wrecked the Church in the process and lost all sense of modesty for themselves and the faithful. Bishop Conry is but one of many episcopal haters of the true Mass and Traditions of the Church handed down; it’s logical then that his, and their, morals went out of the window along with the faith. Make no mistake, loss of purity is directly linked to loss of supernatural faith. That’s why there are more clerical sexual scandals in the Church today than at any other time in history.

        September 30, 2014 at 2:23 pm
      • editor


        Spot – absolutely – on. Well said. Agree – totally.

        September 30, 2014 at 9:45 pm
      • Therese


        On the contrary, it seems that it is the Bishop, and his ilk, who are obsessed with sex.

        September 29, 2014 at 9:25 am
      • Graeme Taylor

        Therese, well said!

        Andrew wake up and smell the coffee, for goodness sake. This bishop lived a double life for years , many of his “priests” do so too, so they congratulate one another in being “merciful”
        Andrew, it is very similar to the Edinburgh situation, many “priests” knew of Card. O’Brien’s double life, a life of crass hypocrisy, lies and deceit. The arrogance of these clergy, their egocentricity (particularly at Mass – where they consider themselves as having an entertainers role) is serving Satan himself. Andrew get yourself a big mug and add a couple of sugars.

        September 30, 2014 at 8:47 am
      • editor


        Game, set and match!

        September 30, 2014 at 9:46 pm
  • Margaret Mary

    I voted that the husband should sue the Bishops Conference because it was well known that Mgr Conry had affairs. It is absolutely shocking that he took advantage of a couple’s marriage problems and actually contributed to the break up of a family, with children now being raised in a broken home. This is a Catholic bishop no less.

    The only positive in all this is that the more this seedy behaviour is brought out into the light the quicker the majority of Catholics (and some of my own friends) will come to realise that opening the Church to the world, as happened at V2, has been a disaster because if you lie down with dogs, you will get fleas.

    September 28, 2014 at 8:31 am
    • TLM

      Love it Margaret Mary………’if you lie down with dogs, you will get fleas.’ Perfect. I like to say that the Church is so intent on becoming more relevant to the world, that they jump into the cesspool WITH the world.

      September 28, 2014 at 12:01 pm
    • Graeme Taylor

      Margaret Mary,
      I will use that, it is priceless, “if you lie down with dogs, you will get fleas.”

      Thank you!

      September 30, 2014 at 8:50 am
  • westminsterfly

    I’m not 100% sure this issue is quite so straight-forward as ‘liberal Pope sacks traditional bishop’. The presence of the notorious Fr Carlos Urritigoity of the Society of St John, present in the bishops’ diocese as Vicar General, was a grave concern to many, and surely couldn’t have helped matters. Further info here, please see links in that article as well.

    September 28, 2014 at 1:06 pm
    • Athanasius


      I agree that the presence of Fr. Urrutigoity in the diocese complicates this issue and makes things much less clear. I was not aware that Fr. Urrutigoity was in Bishop Plano’s diocese.

      September 28, 2014 at 3:34 pm
    • Michaela

      Westminster Fly,

      Sorry, but I don’t think that’s good enough. Yes, the Bishop shouldn’t have protected that awful Urritigoity but I don’t believe that would shake up the pope too much, given his liberal beliefs and the way he mixes with the most dubious characters. The gay activist priest for one thing – he concelebrated Mass with him and kissed his hand!

      So, yes, the Bishop was wrong to allow the predator priest to work in his diocese, there is no question about that and he should have been told off and the priest dismissed. But the action taken by the Vatican is way over the top, given that this is a one-off situation whereas in other dioceses it is like a plague and goes unpunished.

      The Rorate report itself was OTT but even they admitted that the question remains why was the Pope so quick to deal with this one-off situation but ignores others?

      So (and maybe editor will disagree when she comes on here) but I think the issue is quite straightforward as “liberal Pope sacks traditional bishop”. It’s just that there is one more reason, a very serious reason, why the Vatican acted but to be frank, reading the Rorate report I got the impression that this predator priest was all the excuse they needed to slam that diocese. The punishment doesn’t fit the crime IMHO but is way OTT.

      September 28, 2014 at 4:01 pm
    • editor


      Thank you for this update. However, while the news of Bishop Livieres’ toleration of Fr Urritigoity is a huge disappointment – and absolutely scandalous – I’m inclined to agree with Margaret Mary that the key point and principle remains: that is, why is it that Pope Francis takes a very different, speedy and harsh line with priests and bishops considered to be ‘traditional leaning’ to the way he treats (or, more accurately, ignores) the dissenters?

      That’s not to play down the shock horror of Bishop Livieres protecting the scandalous Fr Urritigoity of the Society of St John – not for a second.

      I hope the distinction is clear – the headline remains an accurate expression of our concern; that Pope Francis blethers on about mercy at every turn but shows little to no mercy to those regarded or reputed to be ‘traditionalists’ or even merely with a ‘leaning’ towards tradition, whereas mercy abounds for everyone else.

      Of course, if there is, on the record, a clear history of Pope Francis acting speedily and decisively with every other predator priest and his protecting bishop, that will be a different kettle of ‘mercy’ altogether. Right now I’m afraid, rightly or wrongly, I consider the Fr Urritigoity situation to be the smoking gun that allowed the Pope to effectively trash what had been a flourishing ‘traditional leaning’ diocese.

      September 28, 2014 at 5:52 pm
      • editor

        I have just received an email from a French reader who sent me a report on the Paraguay situation. Here’s an extract:

        “There was no reference in the Vatican statement that Livieres’ removal had anything to do with Urrutigoity. Rather, the Vatican spoke of the need to maintain unity among Paraguay’s bishops, suggesting that political and ideological issues were of far greater concern to Rome and that Urrutigoity’s past was a secondary factor…

        He called the decision to remove him ‘unfounded and arbitrary’ and based purely on ideological grounds, with the decks stacked against him from the start by fellow bishops jealous that his seminary was attracting new priests while theirs in Asuncion withered…

        He even took a slight dig at Francis, complaining that while there is much talk under Francis about mercy, dialogue, decentralization of the church and respect for the authority of local church leaders, ‘I never got the chance to speak to Pope Francis, not even to clarify any doubts or concerns.'” Click here to read the entire report…

        September 29, 2014 at 8:51 am
      • TLM

        LOL…..’Unity’……………yet another modernist buzz word for lowering the boom on true Catholicism. For the sake of ‘Unity’. And they really think people can’t see through this?

        September 29, 2014 at 11:59 am
      • jobstears

        I don’t think the “Urritigoity factor” has anything to do with the ridiculous punishment meted out to the bishop. It also looks like Pope Francis the humble and merciful, is getting bolder about letting his modernist agenda show!

        It doesn’t look like there were any incidents of abuse reported while Fr. Urrigoity was in the diocese, under Bishop Livieres ( I’m assuming it would have made the headlines if there were any). So why would the Vatican move so efficiently to remove a good bishop under whom seminaries were thriving, without giving him a chance to defend himself?

        September 29, 2014 at 2:22 pm
  • JARay

    I am utterly disgusted with this bishop. Which of the saints was it that said that the road to hell was lined by the skulls of bishops? I happen to like Palazzola. I have been there a couple of times but now I wonder if I should avoid the place because of the open scandal which was enacted there. I have often heard speak of a “magic circle” centering on Eccleston Square. It certainly is high time that this cabal was broken up and the Faithful could count on good, solid, faithful clergy. I see that Leeds has finally had a new candidate promoted after two years. Unfortunately it seems that the new appointee just may be tainted by close association with that establishment.

    September 28, 2014 at 1:13 pm
    • Michaela


      Nobody who isn’t associated with the establishment would stand a chance of being promoted to the Bishops Conference. I think that’s been obvious for years now. We can expect more of the same from Leeds, IMHO.

      September 28, 2014 at 4:03 pm
  • Peter McKay

    This is to say the very least a bad business.

    I too have been familiar with the rumours which have been circulating about this prelate for more than a decade. To my mind, it is mind-bogglingly strange that in the wake of the Roddie Wright and Keith Patrick O’Brien scandals no one from on high moved to verify what were some pretty strong rumours. Or did they, only to be assured by the man himself that all was well? I too remember about the Palazzola episode, and I seem to remember a Roman contact telling me that assurances had been sought and were given.

    Part of the problem could be that since the election of Pope Francis, the Nuncio to the Court of St James has been seriously weakened. To understand how, it is enought to join up the following dots: 2005 conclave, Villa Nazareth, Cormac Murphy-O’Connor (in seeing Francis the other day–now we know why), Vincent Nichols. But don’t let us rush to blame the Nuncio. Illicit relationships like these cannot be kept hidden for any length of time. If I were a priest or a layman in the Diocese of Arundel, I would want to know who knew what and when.

    But any failure of the custodians cannot justify the living of a lie by this bishop over many years. For example, Bishop Conry had the temerity to turn up in Rome in 2012, at the Synod on the new evangelization, and profer his answer to the various crises of faith facing the Church. How can anyone, let alone a bishop, live such a double life for so long?

    I hate to sound overly simplistic, but I would bet my bottom dollar that Conry’s downfall is rooted in all or some of the following: the abandonment of daily Mass and/or Breviary; a spiritual coldness towards the Virgin Mother; a self-justification of sexual sin; a theology of creation and of mankind which takes little account of the Devil, the Fall, and concupiscence.

    There but for the grace of God go we all.

    September 28, 2014 at 4:22 pm
    • editor


      Well said. I fully agree with your assessment. I have said often that for priests and bishops, and anyone else, really, to be so far from the truths of the Faith that they are preaching errors routinely, as Bp Conry did, there has to be something seriously wrong in their personal lives.

      It’s very sad indeed, but they won’t be telt, will they? And if they keep on doing what they’re doing (dissenting from the Faith and denying its basic tenets) then they’ll keep on getting what they’re getting – temptations which they just cannot resist. It’s interesting that one of the things +Kieran Conry said in an interview in the so called Catholic press was that it was not a good thing to keep repeating the same sins in Confession – in his illogical mind, that suggested a lack of contrition, whereas it really represents a determination to keep fighting the temptation.

      He’s learned the hard way, it seems, what happens when we stop fighting the temptations!

      We should pray for him, of course …

      September 28, 2014 at 6:05 pm
    • sarto2010

      Peter McKay: “I would want to know who knew what and when.”

      I agree absolutely.

      In the wake of the O’Brien affair and the re-constituted (read re-hashed) diocesan curia under Leo Cushley, the question is, “Who knew?”.

      Who knew about Cardinal O’Brien and did nothing, sat on their hands, kept stumm and in doing so scandalised Scottish Catholics for decades.

      These same faces appear in their old roles on the StA&E website … of course, this may largely be down to the fact that there are so few diocesan priests in StA&E, but the lack of vocations and the closure of any Scottish seminary is down to the stewardship of Cardinal O’Brien too …

      September 30, 2014 at 12:26 pm
      • editor


        I’ve replaced “Mr O’Brien” with “Cardinal O’Brien” in your post at 12.26pm , because to call him “Mr” is to reduce his responsibility. He will stand before His Judge as a Cardinal, a prince of the Church who caused immense scandal. Let’s not minimise that truth, at any level.

        September 30, 2014 at 1:51 pm
  • Margaret Mary

    I have just read the Bishop’s statement read at Masses today and I am appalled to think that young people will have heard that read out. I copied it:

    Statement by Bishop Kieran Conry

    “I am sorry to confess that, going back some years, I have been unfaithful to my promises as a Catholic priest. I would like to reassure you that my actions were not illegal and did not involve minors.

    As a result, however, I have decided to offer my resignation as bishop with immediate effect and will now take some time to consider my future.

    I want to apologise first of all to the individuals hurt by my actions and then to all of those inside and outside the diocese who will be shocked, hurt and saddened to hear this.

    I am sorry for the shame that I have brought on the diocese and the Church and I ask for your prayers and forgiveness.”

    Was it really necessary to read this out at Masses and let young people and others who might have a very weak faith, hear about his scandalous behaviour and also hear that he thinks it’s not so serious as if it was illegal or involved minors? He broke God’s law but makes no mention of that.

    I know we live in an age of transparency etc. but am I the only person here who thinks this should not have been read out at Mass? Surely there must have been a more discreet way of giving the news?

    September 28, 2014 at 9:08 pm
    • jobstears

      Margaret Mary,

      I don’t think that letter of ‘apology’ should have been read publicly, least of all at Mass. As for the age of transparency, I think that has become an excuse to lift whatever restraints there might have been, so that now anything and everything can be talked about anywhere! There is no sense of delicacy or even common decency left.

      September 29, 2014 at 1:56 pm
    • Constantine the Great

      He had no option, otherwise everyone would have thought the worse. My immediate thought was the worst followed by a gay scenario. However, his affairs with two women, one married is nothing akin to the Noddy Wright , or Austen Inverleigh scandals involving women. It seems tame in comparison to them.

      September 29, 2014 at 9:49 pm
      • Margaret Mary

        Sorry, I disagree. He could do what unfaithful priests have always done before Vatican II – disappeared in shame, often to a monastery for a spell of penance.

        September 29, 2014 at 10:33 pm
  • Confitebor Domino

    I see that in his interview to the Daily Mail (couldn’t he have found a real newspaper to talk to!) Bp Conry said:

    I have been very careful not to make sexual morality a priority [in his sermons]. I don’t think it got in the way of my job

    Well, there you have it – to a modernist being a bishop is just a job.

    Sadly, I suspect this is how most of them think. It explains a lot.

    September 29, 2014 at 11:06 am
    • Josephine

      I’ve just been reading that interview and he really is a disgrace, feeling “liberated” now that his secret is out in the open.

      September 29, 2014 at 1:34 pm
  • TLM

    I was just reading the ‘messages’ to Pedro Regis (of Brazil). I usually don’t give a lot of credence to ‘messages’ from Heaven that haven’t been approved by the Church, nor should any of us. That said, his Bishop has at least given a positive initial statement of them. When I looked at the messages especially from 2008 and 2009, I was flabbergasted. The Blessed Mother talks about the ‘great confusion’ coming to the Church. She talks about a man that is ‘apparently good that comes from the Southern Hemisphere’. She talks about ‘two Popes that only one is the true Bark of Peter’. She talks about the Church suffering Calvary, and the faithful ones being persecuted. To me anyway, this is amazing because this was all years ago when none of this was even on the horizon. Discernment of course is always called for, but if anyone is interested you can go to ‘Two Hearts Press’ or I can possibly post with a link to the exact page. To me anyway, you cannot just ignore these messages, they are exactly spot on from 5 and 6 years ago.

    September 29, 2014 at 1:20 pm
    • Margaret Mary


      I know unapproved apparitions are discouraged here and if this one is suggesting that Pope Francis is “a man that is apparently good coming from the Southern Hemisphere” then I don’t see this one being an exception!

      I would not lay too much confidence on the “two popes” claim being made in recent years because that is a “prophecy” that has been bandied about for a very long time, more than 6 years. All the rest of the things you quote have been said at Akita (approved) and Quito (approved) and of course Fatima (approved).

      September 29, 2014 at 1:32 pm
    • westminsterfly

      I just went into the Two Hearts Press website, which appears to be run by a Kelly Bowring. One of the books he has written, on sale on the site, is called “Dear Children: The Messages of Our Lady of Medjugorje”. Enough said. Steer clear of this site, folks.

      September 29, 2014 at 2:13 pm
      • TLM

        As far as the so called ‘messages’ of Medjugorje’ goes (or any yet unapproved messages) I take the stance of ‘neither to believe nor disbelieve’, until they are approved or condemned concretely from the Church. I have not read many of the messages from Medjugorje or really any messages that have not yet been approved. That said, these messages have not yet been fully ‘disapproved’ or ‘condemned’ by the Church from my understanding. They are now in Rome awaiting a decision from Pope Francis, but they were also considered by Benedict. I have seen years ago that Medjugorje was hotly contested between the advocates and the naysayers, but I would not definitively on my own ‘condemn’ them either.
        No Catholic has any kind of an obligation to believe or not believe any private revelation even from Fatima, but I do believe Heaven has been urging us to get serious about our prayer life and our fervency in the faith. As far as I have read, and I do not follow any of them intently by any means, there seems to be a common thread of prayer, penance, the sacraments and the rosary. Common sense for Catholics really, but the intensity of this particular message (prayer, penance…etc) in my opinion should be headed now more than ever in the times we are living. That part of ANY MESSAGE should be believed, taken to heart, and put into practice. But then again, even that is an individual choice. I myself would HIGHLY recommend it.

        September 29, 2014 at 3:48 pm
      • editor


        When – in her two thousand years history – has the Church ever had to create a special commission to deal with a claimed private revelation? Answer: NEVER. The legitimate authority in these matters has always rested with the local Bishop. Successive local bishops have denounced Medjugorje which is a patent fraud. Even a cursory glance at the facts reveals this. The “seers” were caught lying on tape very early in the investigation. The only reason why there is a commission in Rome is because of the disobedience of all involved, who refuse to accept the decision of successive diocesan Bishops.

        You can read the original documents on the matter of the Medjugorje phenomenon here – and I suggest you study them without delay.

        Finally, Fatima is not merely a private revelation. It is a public prophetic revelation. There is an important message here addressed to the whole world, and a very public miracle performed to confirm that this is no mere private revelation (not to minimise the importance of those, but Fatima is in an entirely different – and superior – category.)

        Hope this helps clarify things.

        September 29, 2014 at 4:08 pm
  • TLM

    I agree, I have never been one to hang on to private revelations that were not approved by the Church, I know that some people do, but it’s not very wise (in my opinion). I had never seen these, but they struck me as accurate to what is going on in the Church. That said, what is very obvious to me (never mind any of the ‘revelations) is that the Church indeed is beginning her Calvary. That is beyond question. As you said, all of the approved messages have pointed exactly to this time. We, I do believe, are in the midst (and have been for some time, but escalating) of the ‘Diabolical Disorientation’ that is an approved message. For our part, what is needed is only to hang on to the true Church. The Blessed Mother has given us the tools: Confession and Communion regularly, the daily Rosary, prayer and penance. This is of course what Catholic Christians should be practicing on a regular basis anyway, but needed now more than ever before.

    September 29, 2014 at 2:06 pm
  • westminsterfly

    And especially the First Five Saturday devotion!

    September 29, 2014 at 3:27 pm
  • sarto2010

    Beware priests/presbyters in woolly jumpers or who unfailingly wear street garb.

    These are the ones who will change the words of the Mass to make Mass more inclusive.

    These are the ones who can say Mass in 15 minutes and never genuflect once.

    They will be on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and SnapChat and have a legion of followers/”friends”—mostly parish women.

    They will have befriended teenagers on Facebook and will have their mobile numbers and text them (the youngsters) at odd hours.

    They will invite 16-year-olds for coffee and make them ad hoc communion ministers at school “masses”.

    They will be “nice guys”, “a good laugh”, “cool”.

    I have had personal experience … just beware—
    attendite a falsis prophetis, qui veniunt ad vos in vestimentis ovium … or in woolly jumpers.

    September 29, 2014 at 5:02 pm
    • Confitebor Domino

      The real problem is not so much their woolly jumpers as their woolly thinking!

      September 29, 2014 at 8:20 pm
      • Margaret Mary

        That is so true – woolly thinking indeed!

        September 29, 2014 at 10:36 pm
    • Santiago

      “These are the ones who can say Mass in 15 minutes and never genuflect once.”

      How right you are!! I was on business in Midlothian recently and attended Mass at St David’s, Dalkeith. Its a beautiful church but I was appalled at the speed at which the Mass was offered – by a Monsignor, no less!! The total lack of respect made me cringe and the speed of the elevation of the Blessed Sacrament was a downright insult to Our Lord. I couldn’t help but wonder how this guy ever came to be appointed a Monsignor in the first place!!

      September 29, 2014 at 11:31 pm
      • Graeme Taylor

        he is one of Card. O’Briens wee pals. Why do you think?

        September 30, 2014 at 8:57 am
      • editor


        Careful now. We all have friends who may do things of which we disapprove and we wouldn’t like to be found guilty by association. Let’s say no more on that subject, please and thank you!

        September 30, 2014 at 10:44 am
      • Graeme Taylor

        Card. O;Brien as the then arch bishop, as soon as bishop monaghan retired was quick to work with his like minded pals, ensuring that the priests convince their sheep to stand and take communion in the hand standing, he then set about the introduction of the dreadful lie of the use of extra ordinary eucharistic ministers ( as if this was northern Sudan and there wasnt a priest in 400 miles). He gathered around himself men of likewise lack of faith and bad behaviour and example in the presence of God in the tabernacle.
        The Mons at St Davids behaves as if he is in Waverly station before Mass talking up and down the central isle in a very loud way. He is dreadful, I have seen it myself recently when I went into the church on a saturday eve and soon the church began to fill ( Sat vigil Mass) and the noise was so loud it was dreadful. As I turned to leave the loudest was that priest, laughing and joking with people. There is no association, that priest is a danger to the faith all by himself.
        card. O’Brien “promoted” like minded men, so that his fantasy Gillis non sense could spread the “childrens liturgy” all over the arch diocese. Oh my wasnt that disgrace successful.
        These actions ,Editor, were all part of a plan to change the church. The arrogance astounds me.

        October 1, 2014 at 8:51 am
      • Michaela

        Graeme Taylor,

        I used to have a PP who preached walking up and down the middle aisle – they don’t seem to be aware of how arrogantly they come across, how full of self-importance.

        Cardinal O’Brien has a lot to answer for the damage he’s done to the Church in Scotland. I couldn’t agree with you more.

        October 1, 2014 at 9:14 am
      • Graeme Taylor


        indeed! I was in the Cathedral for a Sunday night Mass approx 3 months ago and the priest tried to use quotes from a protestant “bishop”. The coughing that erupted throughout his “sermon” was heartening.
        The priests we have are in the main are so messed up, it is frightening. All heresy comes from clergy.

        October 2, 2014 at 9:03 am
  • Michaela

    Here’s more proof that Pope Francis is treating the Paraguay Bishop differently.

    Bishop Finn has actually been convicted of a crime and yet is not dismissed, despite local Catholics petitioning the Pope.

    September 29, 2014 at 10:42 pm
  • Therese

    Tut tut Michaela. Remember, we must not be judgemental of others’ sexual sins. They’re not that important, don’tcha know? Show some mercy and compassion and get with the programme, for Heaven’s(?) sake!

    What’s that you say? The Ten what?

    September 30, 2014 at 12:03 pm
    • Michaela

      “Commandments” Therese! LOL!

      October 1, 2014 at 9:15 am
  • editor

    One aspect of the Bishop Conry affair(s) that seems to be overlooked (as is commonplace in these situations) is the role of the women. They are not without blame. Indeed, it is arguably true to say that they are MORE to blame than the priest.

    Now, where did I put my dark glasses and raincoat?

    September 30, 2014 at 12:04 pm
  • laguna2002


    You’ve never said a truer word! These women who become involved with priests KNOW that they are not available, yet they persist and, in some cases, engineer occasions to be alone and cry on the priests shoulder. Priests are often targeted in this way because of their ‘aloneness’. Satan is not idle in all of this.
    Perhaps the Church should sue HER for the same amount as the husband is seeking from the Church! Daft? Maybe, but if he claims the ‘institutional’ Church is liable for the damage caused to the marriage, is it so far fetched to say that the parties joined in the ‘institution’ of marriage are equally (or more!) liable for the damage caused to the priesthood?

    September 30, 2014 at 3:51 pm
    • Athanasius


      I agree with you but wonder what all this suing of the Church is about. It wasn’t the Church that broke this man’s marriage up. The Church is as much a victim of betrayal in this matter as the jilted husband. It just goes to show how bitterness can make human beings very blind.

      As Judas Iscariot amply demonstrates, bishops are weak and fallible creatures like everyone else; they can fall from grace and they can give great scandal. But never the Church, which is the spotless Bride of Christ! The sins of men, even clergymen, should never be levied against Our Lord, which is exactly what takes place when people sue the Church, His Mystical Body. What they actually do is sue Our Lord Himself for the failings of His disciples. This is unthinkable!

      September 30, 2014 at 7:21 pm
      • editor


        It’s not – in fact – “the Church” the man is threatening to sue but the Bishops’ Conference – “the Church” is just a shorthand way of saying that.

        And I say “good luck to him” – big time. These are worldlings who only understand worldly ways – maybe once their coffers are hit hard they’ll begin to think again about exactly what it is they should be doing. They bear huge responsibility for the marriage break-up – no question about it. They should be thankful the man is only threatening legal action. There are those in our neck of the woods up here who’d be organising a lynch mob!

        If only some parents would get together and sue their local bishop(s) for failing to oversee the teaching of the Faith in so called Catholic schools. That just might get their attention, since asking nicely hasn’t worked, nor has seeing their churches emptying by the nano-second brought them to their senses. The possibility of standing in the dock just might do the trick. But I digress…

        I have to say that I really don’t buy this “there but for the grace of God go I” and its associated sentiments. That may be interpreted as implying that God’s grace is somehow lacking to particular sinners or in the case of particular sins when the fact is that lax clergy are leaving themselves open to all sorts of occasions of sin and apparently deliberately indulging themselves sexually – as appears to have been the case with Bishop Conry who seems to have made a profession out of having affairs. Catholics should know that all the grace they need is available for the asking, and if they sin and repent using the Sacrament of Penance, they will remain in the state of grace, despite temptations, personal faults and imperfections (which the rest of you can’t help having… 😀 ) We don’t say “there but for the grace of God go I” when we hear of a murder or robbery on the news. We wouldn’t dream of committing those crimes/sins because we know that they are gravely wrong No special grace from God is required to avoid those sins, and no special grace should be required for priests to remain faithful to their promise of celibacy, beyond the graces provided by virtue of their vocation.

        By suing “the Church” – as you rightly say if that were the case – Our Lord would be sued, and what an insult to think of that, but a too indulgent attitude towards the prevailing sexual laxity may be interpreted as, in a sense, blaming Him for the sins of his decadent clergy. He has made all the grace anyone will ever need available to us, and it is only if we obstinately refuse to co-operate with that grace that we risk losing our souls for all eternity.

        So, of course nobody can sue “the Church” but when a bunch of bishops have deliberately tolerated (and boasted of it) priests having affairs (See Christian Order, January 2002 or Catholic Truth, October 2013 which quotes that CO feature) then they should be held to account in this world, as they will be in the next. But for the negligence of the Bishops of England in the form of a shockingly indulgent attitude towards priests having girlfriends, this family may still be intact.

        In that husband’s shoes, I’d sue the socks off them. Did I just type a mixed metaphor? 😀

        September 30, 2014 at 9:38 pm
      • Therese


        I absolutely agree. They are, as you say, wordlings, so let them face the consequences of the world in which they so revel. They want the best of both worlds; time they were forced to face the fact that as they have chosen this one, they should play by its rules. Sue them for every penny, I say.

        September 30, 2014 at 9:49 pm
      • editor


        Remind me never to get on your wrong side!

        Seriously, I agree with you agreeing with me 😀

        September 30, 2014 at 9:51 pm
      • Therese

        Right back atcha, Ed!

        September 30, 2014 at 9:54 pm
  • john kearney

    The sad thing is that the Bishops affairs were well known. But this was the great time when the modernists were denouncing celibacy and a blind eye was turned. I saw a woman having an affair with the priest in my own parish and then they both ran off. Nobody seemed to care. At least now there is a movement away from all this.

    September 30, 2014 at 5:40 pm
    • westminsterfly

      ‘At least now there is a movement away from all this’. If only John, if only . . .

      October 1, 2014 at 8:46 am
  • laguna2002

    Athanasius, I agree. I wonder where personal responsibility has gone? Whilst it’s no excuse for the behaviour of anyone else, I understand that this woman had already left her husband, so perhaps he would now be better served looking at his own conduct and asking whether it contributed to the breakdown of his marriage, rather than try and blame the Church. I guess it’s always easier to point the finger and blame others – it’s harder to be honest and take a good, hard look at ourselves. Specks and planks in the eye come to mind.
    And this brings us full circle back to the point that Editor made earlier – this woman knew that KC wasn’t free to enter into any kind of relationship, but she nevertheless went ahead. And where has it all ended up? Ruin. And the only winner is Satan who is laughing all the way to the Tabloids.

    September 30, 2014 at 9:26 pm
  • Therese


    We have no evidence that the husband’s conduct in any way led to the breakdown of his marriage, so I think your remarks are rather unfair.

    September 30, 2014 at 9:53 pm
  • laguna2002


    I didn’t say that his conduct DID lead to the breakdown – but simply said he should ask himself if it did. The letter seen by the Mail (what a rag!) sent by KC to this woman suggest a lack of love at the heart of the marriage, and I think it reasonable to ask what his contribution to this state of affairs was. If (and I stress IF) that were true then he would have questions to ask himself.

    But I still feel questions need to be asked of the woman involved.

    September 30, 2014 at 10:31 pm
    • editor


      Whether or not he is worthy of a Husband of the Year trophy is neither here nor there. When approached for help with marriage difficulties, any clergyman who feels an attraction to the wife should decline involvement. The Bishop was in a position of trust which he breached – with the help of the wife, let it not be forgotten. The two of THEM are to blame for this scandal, not the husband. The husband may be to blame for some or most of the difficulties within the marriage (they nearly always ARE 😀 ) but not for the choices, good or bad, which his wife makes in exercising her free will. Otherwise, we’d have to give him the credit if she’d chosen to give all her worldly goods to charity and enter a convent for the rest of her life!

      I can never understand, anyway, why any woman would go to a priest for “counselling” in any matter, especially marriage problems. I’ve never understood that. Priests are there to dispense the Sacraments and preach
      but not to act as marriage counsellors. As we have seen in more than one instance, that sort of “relationship” is dangerous. If a married couple feel a need to speak with a priest, they should always attend together, and so, I hope, say all of us 😀

      September 30, 2014 at 11:49 pm
  • Athanasius

    At any rate, I think we all agree that the husband has no business suing the Church, which is the same as suing Our Lord. The Church cannot be held responsible for bad clerics who fail in their vows. So at the very least, this jilted husband has allowed his resentment to blind his judgment.

    October 1, 2014 at 12:46 am
    • Michaela


      I think Editor explained very clearly how suing the bishops of England is not the same as “suing the Church” as “the Church” cannot be held responsible for bad clerics, as you say, but surely the bishops who knew about his affairs, can be held responsible.

      Do you see the difference?

      October 1, 2014 at 8:57 am
      • Athanasius


        No, it’s “the Church” he’s suing, not the bishops of England. It won’t be the bishops of England named as individuals on any legal writ, it will be the Catholic Church. And it will be the Church that will have to pay legal costs and any awarded damages, not the bishops of England.

        Since there is no public distinction made between the Church and the bishops, and since the bishops will not be forking out of their own pockets, we may be assured that for all intents and purposes it is the Church herself that is being sued for something she had no part in. The man who is suing hasn’t made any distinction, nor will the general public and the press. If they did, then it would be individuals being named as defendants, not the divine institution.

        October 1, 2014 at 10:40 am
      • Michaela


        I would need to check out which name would appear on any writ because I don’t know that for a fact, but that is a legal technicality and the ignorance of the public in making the distinction between “the Church” and the bishops is not a good argument, with respect. Most people don’t believe that the Church is a “divine institution” and those of us who do, know the difference between the guilt of the bishops and the “innocent” Church.

        I guess we’ll have to just agree to disagree on this. I think the husband is right to sue the bishops.

        October 1, 2014 at 11:46 am
      • Athanasius


        I don’t think we’re a million miles apart in the matter of who is and who is not being sued. It is a bit of a distraction to the main subject, though, so we will agree to disagree on the wee technicalities.

        Where I take definite issue with you is in your assertion that the bishops should be sued.

        No Michaela, the bishops should not be sued because it means that Catholics are suing Catholics in secular courts for no other reason than revenge. Such litigation is absent of charity and can only result in further public disgrace being brought on the Church. True Catholics leave these matters of injustice to God.

        October 1, 2014 at 6:45 pm
      • editor


        We really cannot say what the husband’s motive for suing might be – and there is a very fine line between “revenge” and a perfectly legitimate desire to call those whom he regards as bearing responsibility, to account. In normal times, nobody would want to see Catholics using the secular courts but we’re not living in normal times – not remotely. In any case, as pointed out above, there is no legal basis for court action, so that won’t happen.

        One more point on the legal threat – we really cannot read the husband’s mind or soul, so we ought to leave aside attempting to judge any possible motivation and appreciate that his family has been broken up with quite a bit of help, it seems, from a Catholic bishop with, apparently, the knowledge of other members of the hierarchy. Any husband who wouldn’t be righteously angry about that and desire some form of justice being seen to be done, wouldn’t be human. If the thought “let those who caused this scandal worry about the public disgrace being brought on the Church” passed through his mind then I, for one, would have no problem sympathising with him.

        And it’s always, with respect, wiser to avoid terms such as “true Catholics”. But then I’m probably biased since I know full well that I am very far indeed from being one.

        I think we could leave this matter now – as you say yourself it’s a bit of a distraction to the main subject.

        October 1, 2014 at 6:56 pm
      • Athanasius


        You’re quite right, “true Catholic” was not the right term for me to use and it’s not actually what I meant to say.

        Still, all this business of Catholics suing their bishops in secular courts, regardless of reasons, is just absolutely horrible. It’s hard to imagine the parties reminiscing in heaven one day about how they faced each other in court.

        I’m reminded of Our Lord’s words: “And all men will know that you are my disciples by your love one for another.” My goodness, how remiss the bishops have become in this regard!

        October 1, 2014 at 9:24 pm
      • editor

        You kidding me, Athanasius? You think I’m gonna be reminiscing in heaven with bishops one day – about anything? You kidding me? The minute I see a bishop, I’ll be huddled in a corner polishing my halo to death, so to speak, and if the bishops have any sense they’ll stay well outa my way…

        Yes, as you say, the bishops are SO remiss in charity but see how charitable I’m gonna be, by keeping well outa their road to avoid an argument?

        No, don’t praise me. It’s just all part of being humble. I know my limitations and sweet talking bishops – whether on earth or in heaven – is way outa my league. 😀 😀

        October 1, 2014 at 10:25 pm
      • Michaela


        I tried to find out about the legal technicalities and found this

        Also Cardinal Pell has said abuse victims “should be able to sue the Catholic Church” and I presume he means the diocese.

        October 1, 2014 at 12:27 pm
      • editor


        A reader in England emailed the following comment on the subject of legal action in the Conry case, which makes sense to me:

        “The wronged husband’s claims are all bluster. This man can’t sue anyone, he doesn’t have a case in law at all. Even if the other bishops did know. What Conry did was immoral, but not illegal. The fact that the bishops covered it up is also immoral but not illegal, as both were consenting adults. If the person involved had been a minor or a vulnerable adult, he would have a case, but as it stands, we have to assume this woman was mentally competent (despite her poor taste in men!) had free will, and made her own choices. That’s the way I see it.”

        That sorts that out – more’s the pity – as a very VERY wicked woman, the thought of seeing Cardinal Vincent Nichols in the dock had been brightening up my day, but … well … a gal can’t have everything 😀

        October 1, 2014 at 2:17 pm
      • Athanasius


        Yes, that does make sense. Thanks for that.

        October 1, 2014 at 6:49 pm
      • Athanasius

        They may sue if they wish, it’s their choice, but I don’t see how money can ever repair the damage done in these cases. For me, it’s just a case of people no longer leaving things in God’s hands, who alone will repay.

        October 1, 2014 at 6:47 pm
      • editor

        O, Athanasius, I wouldn’t want any money. I’d do it just for the sheer fun of it all! Imagine hearing the bishops swearing to tell the truth – WOW! Worth it for that experience alone 😀

        October 1, 2014 at 10:29 pm
      • Athanasius


        Yes, but would they swear on a Bible, and if so what Christian “faith tradition” Bible would they use?

        I think all ecumenically acceptable versions would have to be stacked together with the Torah, the Koran and any number of Eastern esoteric religious scripts. And let’s not exclude the Human Rights Charter.

        It would certainly be entertaining to see the bishop ascending a set of step ladders in the dock just to place his hand on the pile. Mind you, I hear that certain bishops have a reputation as good ladder climbers these days!

        October 1, 2014 at 11:24 pm
      • Margaret Mary



        October 2, 2014 at 8:26 pm
  • josephhannley

    From Gourock, we have we have 8 Church’s within easy travelling distance. When the Schism arrives in full force, I wonder how which Church if any, decide enough is enough?

    October 1, 2014 at 4:42 pm
    • editor


      Be sure to let us know 😀

      October 1, 2014 at 10:30 pm
  • editor

    This report is very interesting indeed in terms of the Pope’s aversion to “traditionally minded” (I’m beginning to think, even faintly orthodox) bishops. As the title of the article (and image) suggest, it really is “Open Season”…

    I’ll be closing the September threads very soon so anyone who wishes to comment on Bishop Finn, needs to do so in double quick time…

    October 2, 2014 at 10:08 am
  • jobstears


    I just read the report on Bishop Finn, thank you for posting the link. It looks like the humble Pope is not even making an attempt to mask his intention of purging the Church of real bishops. The speed with which he is attempting to stamp out the growth or even the slightest inclination toward tradition, whether it be in a religious order or diocese, is nothing short of wicked.

    October 2, 2014 at 2:50 pm
    • Michaela


      I agree with every single word of your comment about the Pope V Bishop Finn. It is definitely wicked the way Pope Francis is trampling all over Catholic Tradition. It really is diabolical. There is no other way to explain it.

      October 2, 2014 at 6:45 pm
    • Margaret Mary


      “It looks like the humble Pope is not even making an attempt to mask his intention of purging the Church of real bishops”

      I fully concur, and I am totally shocked at this pope’s vengefulness towards anyone who is not liberal. I can’t believe what he’s doing to good and faithful bishops.

      October 2, 2014 at 8:25 pm

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