Francis promotes a pervert - everyone just shrugs

As I reported at the time, one of the stand out moments of the Vatican cringe-a-thon Abuse Summit was a journalist from Crux (which tends to be more supportive of the Pope and his agenda) asked how can we believe that this is the end of cover-ups, "when at the end of the day, Pope Francis himself covered-up for a Bishop in Argentina who had gay porn on his phone", referring to Argentine Bishop Zanchetta, here's the video:
The journalist asking the question was Inés San Martín, an Argentinean journalist who covers the Vatican in Rome for Crux. I think her nationality has been the reason for her to be supportive of Pope Francis despite the obvious and myriad problems with his papacy.

Her disposition makes her question all the more brave and unusual in my estimation, and also all the more significant. Even those predisposed to supporting Francis are voicing grave concerns with his leadership and choices which consistently damages his credibility and raise serious questions about his judgement.

San Martin hasn't let it go either, she has followed up her question with at least two thorough reports. In this article she states that
few cases touch the pontiff quite as directly as that of Argentine Bishop Gustavo Zanchetta, who was brought to Rome at the pope’s personal initiative and who now stands accused of abuse.
Although she makes it clear that his sexual behaviour is improper for a cleric,  she does emphasise that it was not criminal in a secular sense.
Those featured in the pornographic images weren’t seminarians, and, though young, they weren’t minors.
So that's alright then??
San Martin makes it clear in this article that the only one who can really do anything about this is the Pope, and he doesn't seem to be in much of a rush, Zanchetta has just been on retreat with him.

In a new piece dated 18th March, San Martin says questions still remain over Zanchetta's move to the Vatican.

The fact that we have a bishop who's phone contains images which:
...included gay porn featuring young men, but not minors, as well as images of Zanchetta touching himself. They were allegedly sent to unknown third parties.
What sort of Church have we become where it is considered "acceptable" for a bishop to abuse men as long as they are not minors???? Papal apologist Austen Ivereigh seems convinced that everything is A - OK with Zanchetta being spirited away and given a top job in Rome:
It is worth noting that Ivereigh was a regular contributor to Crux until he used it as a vehicle to attack Catholic converts which provoked a rather embarrassing editorial apology and policy change from editor John Allen, who dropped Ivereigh from there. Ivereigh moved left, and now writes for extreme outlets like La Croix where lurk such reprobates as Bobby Mickens, suspended from the deeply progressive Tablet after he publicly referred to Benedict XVI as “the Rat” and anticipated his death.

Anyway, I digress. San Martin's report continues:
Local newspaper El Tribuno published documents from 2015 and 2016 that prove the Vatican, including the pope, knew about the bishop’s improper behavior. There were also allegations of financial wrongdoing. Zanchetta was not suspected of stealing money, but of failing to report diocesan income.
In the words of a priest in Oran, who requested to remain anonymous because of fear of retaliation, “it was obvious that something was wrong with him, but we had no knowledge of abuse.”
Pope Francis and the bishop have a long history, stemming from when Zanchetta was executive undersecretary of the Argentine bishops’ conference, headed by then-Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio from 2005 to 2011.

The pontiff named Zanchetta to Oran in 2013. It was one of the pope’s first episcopal appointments. San Martin, rather worryingly explains that the pope’s decision to move Zanchetta to Rome falls under a concept often heard around the Vatican: The nails come out from the top. Meaning, sometimes, the best way of making a problematic prelate disappear is by bringing him to the Vatican. She states:
A high-ranking Vatican official said that he “couldn’t deny this is what happened with Zanchetta, and with many others,” before adding that “hopefully, that wasn’t my case.”
The fact that no minors were involved meant that no crime had been committed according to Argentine law, meaning the only avenue was the Vatican.
Crikey! That's a bit worrying isn't it? Although given the current state of things it does make sense I suppose! Was this really "the only avenue"?? Shouldn't he have been put out to grass somewhere remote? His faculties removed? Laicise him even? It's hardly the sort of behaviour one expects from a bishop is it? (Gosh I feel like an extremist under this regime, suggesting that bishops should be moral leaders in practice as well as words!)

As Chris Altieri writes in Catholic World Report:
Both in Rome and in Argentina, the attitude of clerics seems to be of terrified shoulder-shrugging. The general consensus seems to be that, in the absence of actionable evidence of criminal wrongdoing against minors, the only thing to do with a bishop who also happens to be a pervert is to give him a cushy Vatican post.
Are you still wondering why everyone seems so dismayed and upset with Pope Francis? And the thing is, this is not an isolated case, as Deacon Nick Donnelly points out on Twitter:
And it's not just people concerned about Pope Francis that are happy to highlight this. Notorious homosexualist Father James Martin has publicly emphasised Pope Francis’s relationships with SSA & people who identify as Trans. He pointed out how the Pope has appointed bishops and cardinals who support the homosexual agenda expressly condemned by the CDF.

“He has gay friends. He’s talked about wanting gay people to feel welcome in the Church. That’s a big deal. He has also appointed gay-friendly bishops and archbishops and cardinals, like Cardinal Tobin, the archbishop of Newark who, for example, held a ‘Welcome Mass’ for LGBT people in his Cathedral… So that’s one trend,’ Martin said.

The Jesuit priest noted that Francis’ words and actions show the pope’s commitment to advancing homosexuality within the Church. “What Pope Francis says and does, right?” he said. “What he says about LGBT people and what he does in terms of who he appoints,” he added.

Martin’s statements about Pope Francis deliberately appointing “gay-friendly” bishops and cardinals — such as Joseph Tobin — become all the more significant when read alongside statements made by Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò in August about Pope Francis going around normal processes to make such appointments.

Deeply concerning.


Popular posts from this blog

Pope Francis: we planned it all before the conclave

Real Life Catholics on BBC TV defend Church Teaching on Contraception.

A Cardinal writes: “Roma loquitur. Confusio augetur.”