• RSS Queering the Church

    • “No Longer Aliens…… but Part of God’s Househousehold” (Ephesians 2:19-22) October 28, 2014
      Historically, LGBT Christians have been treated as aliens in the Church, unwelcome and often positively rejected. That is now changing in all denominations, as some adjust their rules on ordination and marriage, others are embarking on serious study and listening processes,…Read more →
      Terence Weldon
    • Pope Francis’ Catholicism: Are Those Rainbow Pigments? October 26, 2014
      During the question and answer session with the Schoenstatt pilgrims held in the Vatican’s Paul VI Audience Hall on Saturday, Pope Francis spoke particularly about the problems facing marriage in the modern world. For LGBT Catholics, it’s important once again…Read more →
      Terence Weldon
  • RSS Spirit of a Liberal

    • Gonna Stick My Sword in the Golden Sand September 15, 2014
      Gonna Stick My Sword in the Golden Sand: A Vietnam Soldier's Story has just been released. The title comes from a stanza of the gospel traditional, Down by the Riverside, with its refrain--"Ain't gonna study war no more." Golden Sand is a bold, dark, and intense retelling of the Vietnam experience through the eyes of an army scout that is […]
      Obie Holmen
    • Gay Games Symposium July 21, 2014
      I am pleased and honored that the UCC has asked me to moderate a symposium during the games entitled Queer Christians: Celebrating the Past, Shaping the Future. [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
      Obie Holmen
  • RSS There Will be Bread

    • Where Are You? October 26, 2011
      Greetings to all others who grace these pages! Thank you for stopping by. If you still have a reader pointed here, this blog no longer publishes in this location, but can be found at this new link. Please subscribe to the new feed, get the new blog via email or read us by liking us on Facebook or by following me on Twitter.If you want more, please feel free […]
      noreply@blogger.com (Fran)
  • RSS The Wild Reed

    • How the Pope's Recent Remarks on Evolution Highlight a Major Discrepancy in Church Teaching October 31, 2014
      There's been a lot of media attention focused on Pope Francis' recent comments about evolution. Reports the Washington Post:Delivering an address to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, Pope Francis continued his habit of making provocative, seemingly progressive statements. The pontiff appeared to endorse the theory of the Big Bang and told the gat […]
      noreply@blogger.com (Michael J. Bayly)
    • Aunt Peg Tells It Like It Is October 30, 2014
      I share this evening a clip from the Australian TV comedy series Please Like Me. It shows Aunt Peg (played by Judi Farr) standing up for her gay grandson Josh (Josh Thomas) during Mass. In describing this scene, Frank Minero writes at Addicting Info:In the ABC Australia situation comedy, Please Like Me, Aunt Peg finds out someone very dear to her is homosexu […]
      noreply@blogger.com (Michael J. Bayly)
  • RSS Bilgrimage

    • Mary Hunt on Synod on the Family: "No Substitute for Straightforward Acknowledgement of a New Reality" October 29, 2014
      As with everything theologian Mary Hunt writes, her take on the recent synod on the family is excellent. As she says, she understands why so many people both inside and outside the Catholic church had hoped that this event might show a willingness of the leaders of the church to be dragged "kicking and screaming into the 21st century."  But:As it t […]
      noreply@blogger.com (William D. Lindsey)
    • More News: Updates to Stories about Archbishop Nienstedt, Rev. Frank Schaefer, David Gushee, and LDS Church October 28, 2014
      And finally this morning, some odds and ends providing updates on stories we've discussed here in the past: For Minnesota NPR, Madeleine Baran reports that, for the second time since he testified this past April in abuse trials, the testimony of St. Paul-Minneapolis archbishop John Nienstedt has been called into question:Archbishop John Nienstedt gave a […]
      noreply@blogger.com (William D. Lindsey)
  • RSS Enlightened Catholicism

  • RSS Far From Rome

    • the way ahead March 23, 2013
      My current blog is called the way ahead.
      noreply@blogger.com (PrickliestPear)
  • RSS The Gay Mystic

    • Faith, Doubt and Sexual Abuse in Film and Fiction = Amended Reviews October 19, 2014
      This is an amendation and extension of my previous posting.In this posting, I deal with three cinematic and fictional treatments of practicing Catholic priests whose faith is profoundly challenged by the revelations of the sex abuse scandal in the Church. I haven't forgotten the Synod on the Family, just finished in Rome. I continue to believe the vacil […]
      noreply@blogger.com (Jayden Cameron )
    • Synecdotal Ruminations and Reviews October 16, 2014
      The Road Through the WildernessIt's been a month since my last posting at this blog, and I've been busy immersing myself in Czech culture on a deeper level, especially its past religiosity and its present seemingly atheistic present. I've been plowing through some classic films of the Czech New Wave and some more recent ones that deal with our […]
      noreply@blogger.com (Jayden Cameron )
  • RSS The Jesus Manifesto

    • 借入しすぎを防ぎたい February 26, 2014
      自分でこれ以上借りないと思っていても、ついつい借りてしまう浪費癖が治らないそれならいっそのこと、借りれなくしてしまえばいいのです。日本貸金業協会の貸付自粛制度とは貸付自粛制度とは、資金需要者が、自らに浪費の習癖があることその他の理由により、自らを自粛対象者とする旨又は親族のうち一定の範囲の者が、金銭貸付による債務者を自粛対象者とする旨を日本貸金業協会に対して申告することにより、日本貸金業協会が、これに対応する情報を個人信用情報機関に登録し、一定期間、当該個人信用情報機関の会員に対して提供する制度です。登録手数料等の費用はかかりません。貸付自粛情報の登録内容氏名 性別 生年月日 住所 自宅電話番号(または携帯電話番号) 勤務先名 勤務先電話番号 貸付自粛情報の登録内容 氏名 性別 生年月日 住所 自宅電話番号(ま […]
  • RSS John McNeill: Spiritual Transformations

  • RSS Perspective

    • Some links October 30, 2014
      - Good for Creighton University, the Jesuit school that hosts the online version of the 19th annotation of the Spiritual Exercises retreat that I once made .... they have decided to give benefits to same-sex spouses of employees- Andrew Brown thinks the church could schism. I only wish ;) but I doubt it will happen ... A Catholic church schism under Pope Fra […]
      noreply@blogger.com (crystal)

Vatican Financial Transparency – Don’t Believe It

Outrage against the Catholic Church’s global and systemic torture of children peaked in 2010. There were reports that Pope Benedict XVI failed to act against pedophiles while he was archbishop of Munich and Freising and as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa gave a Good Friday sermon with the pope in attendance comparing the anger at sexual abuse scandals to persecution of the Jews. On Easter Sunday, Cardinal Angelo Sodano told Benedict among others that the news reports were “petty gossip.” World opinion of the Catholic Church plummeted even further after damning government reports were issued by a Philadelphia grand jury report and in Ireland. 

The Vatican stated in May 2011 it was taking action. A letter was written to bishops’ conferences around the world which didn’t already have a “coordinated and effective program” in place “to prepare policies and guidelines for dealing with cases of clerical sexual abuse of children” and to have them drafted by May 2012. In November, the Vatican issued guidelines to the bishops encouraging them to develop “effective, quick, articulated, complete and decisive plans for the protection of children, bringing perpetrators to justice and assisting victims.” The Vatican claimed the guidelines represented a “very important new step” towards regaining “full credibility.”  

On July 11, 2012, Msgr. Charles Scicluna, the Vatican’s top investigator of clerical sex abuse, said “most of the bishops’ conferences around the world have missed a Vatican deadline on drawing up anti-abuse guidelines….that all those who did not send in their proposed guidelines would be getting ‘a letter of reminder.’” Furthermore, “evaluating each country’s proposed policies and guidelines for dealing with cases of clerical sexual abuse of minors will take ‘at least a year,’ and that process will not begin until after the summer.”  

As regards Vatican finances, Vaticano S.p.A. (Vatican Inc.), a best-selling book in Italy by Gianluigi Nuzzi published in 2009, revealed internal documents given to Nuzzi by a whistleblower showing the Vatican Bank to be “a unique ‘off shore’ corridor for politicians around the world who want to keep their money away from legal controls….The IOR [the Italian acronym for the bank] is like a credit card that ensures privileges to be granted in exchange for political backing, legal provisions and business support.”  

 His Holiness: The Secret Papers of Pope Benedict XVI, also by Gianluigi Nuzzi and published this past spring, contains a new set of Vatican documents turned over to Nuzzi by Paolo Gabriele, the pope’s valet, and others. “The problem of child molestation in America is described in the documents as a simple financial issue: all the money to be paid to the accusers to avert humiliating public trials public.” In addition to “the array of details about smear campaigns, corruption, intrigue, ungodly ambition, ties with the underworld, and sexual scandal” among the Vatican hierarchs. the documents also expose “money laundering and threats.”  

IOR president Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, after being ousted on May 24, 2012, said he was fired “because he got too close to the truth about the bank’s shady dealings.” Gotti Tedeschi, who was personally selected by Pope Benedict for this position, further explained that “he found the bank’s record much worse than he could have imagined, and that he spent the last two years struggling endlessly against the Vatican’s powerful forces whom he says blocked his every attempt at transparency.”   

This time in a “very important new step” towards regaining “full credibility,” the Vatican requested that the Council of Europe’ Moneyval committee of financial experts audit its internal controls. A week after Scicluna’s admission of non-compliance with no consequences, the committee issued its report evaluating the measures put in place to prohibit money-laundering and terrorist financing. “Those findings undercut conspiracy theories,” declared National Catholic Reporter senior correspondent John L. Allen Jr. although the Moneyval committee clearly stated that no action had actually yet been taken by the Vatican to discover criminal financial transactions and that these internal regulations would have no independent oversight since the Vatican is a sovereign state.  

Yesterday it was reported that the Vatican hired a Swiss anti-money-laundering expert, Rene Brülhart, as a consultant “to strengthen the Holy See’s framework to fight financial crimes.”  “One of the areas where Brülhart will have to focus his attention is the Vatican’s new Financial Intelligence Authority which received a failing grade [from the Moneyval committee]”  

Brülhart’s credentials are impressive. But like the Moneyval committee, the man cannot evaluate what he cannot see. Even as a “consultant” you can be sure he will not have access to whatever the Vatican doesn’t want him to look at. Just like the Vatican’s pretense of a response to its worldwide aiding and abetting child torture, it’s difficult to believe that this pretense of a response to financial crimes is anything but another PR move.

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