EP 2074-9AM Trump Declared “An Instrument Of Divine Providence” In Open Letter By Former Vatican Secretary-General Carlo Vigano
His Excellency has written another open letter to President Trump about the ‘global conspiracy against God and humanity.’ ‘It is you, dear President, who are ‘the one who opposes’ the deep state, the final assault of the children of darkness,’ His Excellency writes. ‘Place your trust in the Lord.’
Abp. Viganò warns Trump about ‘Great Reset’ plot to ‘subdue humanity,’ destroy freedom
Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano is the former Vatican ambassador to the US. Last week, Vigano published an explosive letter claiming that Pope Francis had known about the sexual abuse allegations against Cardinal Theodore McCarrick years ago. Vigano said that Pope Francis effectively helped to cover up for Cardinal McCarrick. Vigano is calling for Pope Francis to resign.
The letter from Vigano has caused deep divisions in the already-troubled Catholic Church. When reporters confronted him during his visit to Ireland, Pope Francis himself was dismissive of the letter, saying that it “speaks for itself” and telling journalists, “I will not say a single word on this. “I think this statement speaks for itself, and you have the sufficient journalistic capacity to draw conclusions.”
Here’s what you need to know about Carlo Maria Vigano:
1. Vigano Wrote that Pope Francis ‘Did Not Respond’ After He Personally Warned Him About McCarrick Back in 2013
In his 11-page letter calling for Pope Francis to resign, Vigano wrote that he had personally spoken to the pontiff about Cardinal McCarrrick five years earlier. He said he told the pope, “Holy Father, I don’t know if you know Cardinal McCarrick, but if you ask the Congregation for Bishops there is a dossier this thick about him. He corrupted generations of seminarians and priests and Pope Benedict ordered him to withdraw to a life of prayer and penance.”
But, Vigano says, he got absolutely no response from the pope. McCarrick continued to have a public role in the church until his resgination last month.
Vigano charges that McCarrick’s replacement, Donald Wuerl, who took over as the Archbishop of Washington DC, also knew all about McCarrick’s lleged sexual misconduct. Vigano wrote, “His [Wuerl’s] recent statements that he knew nothing about it … are absolutely laughable. The cardinal lies shamelessly.”
2. Vigano Claimed that Pope Francis’s Predecessor, Pope Benedict, Had Informally Punished McCarrick, but Pope Francis Didn’t Follow His Lead
In the same 11 page letter, Vigano said that Pope Benedict XVI had quietly placed certain restrictions on Cardinal McCarrick, presumably because he knew about the allegations against the cardinal. Vigano says that Benedict forbade McCarrick from celebrating Mass publicly or from traveling. The former pope also ordered McCarrick to a life of prayer and penance, according to Vigano.
However, it’s not clear whether Vigano is fabricating these claims. The Catholic Reporter says that under Pope Benedict, McCarrick performed Mass in public and traveled. There was no evidence that the cardinal was observing a life of prayer and penance, either.
3. Vigano Has Called Attention to Other Vatican Scandals — But His Detractors Say He is Just an ‘Extremely Disgruntled Archbishop’ Who Resents Not Being Promoted to Cardinal
Vigano has been involved in controversies within the Church hierarchy before. So the question is — is he a whistleblower, or just a malcontent? or, perhaps, is he a little bit of both?
In 2012, an Italian television station published a series of letter written by Vigano claiming that high-ranking Vatican officials were involved in corruption and misconduct. The letters, written to Pope Benedict, claimed that contracts were being awarded unfairly, and that a group of Italian banks was mishandling Vatican money. The letters were leaked to an Italian TV program known as “The Untouchable” and have been referred to as “Vatileaks.”
Conservatives within the church have applauded Vigano for exposing scandals within the hierarchy. But others say he simply resents never being promoted to the rank of cardinal. “It’s really not about McCarrick; it’s about an old story that begins seven or eight years ago. He became an extremely disgruntled archbishop,” Massimo Faggioli, a historian at Villanova, told the National Catholic Reporter.
4. Vigano is Part of a Group of Conservative Prelates Who Have Been Angered by Francis’s Stance on Homosexuality and Cultural Issues
Either Vigano is telling the truth or not. Everything else—his motives, his theology, his failures as nuncio—is noise.
My column in tomorrow’s NY Post. https://t.co/cvRx5BXG19
— Sohrab Ahmari (@SohrabAhmari) August 27, 2018
Vigano wrote that the “homosexual network” in the Vatican is responsible for the abuse which has been allegedly carried out within the church. Other conservative church officials have echoed his views. Cardinal Wilfrid Napier of South Africa has reportedly said homosexuality is to blame for the abuses. And Cardinal Raymond Burke, a high-ranking Vatican conservative and a leading critic of the pope, says there is “a very grave problem of a homosexual culture in the church, even within the hierarchy, which needs to be purified at the root.”
Pope Francis has won friends and created enemies with his relatively liberal views on social issues, including homosexuality. “Who am I to judge?” the pope once said, when asked for his views on homosexuality. This was in contrast to his predecessor, the famously conservative Pope Benedict, who once said that even celibate homosexuals should not be allowed to enter the priesthood.
5. Vigano Was Forced to Retire in 2016 After He Allegedly Mishandled Pope Francis’s Trip to America
In 2016, Pope Francis visited the United States and Vigano, who was the Vatican’s ambassador to the US, was instrumental in organizing the pope’s trip. He came under fire after he organized a secret meeting between Francis and Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who refused to sign same-sex marriage certificates. Then, after Vigano’s contract ran out, the Vatican opted not to renew it, and he was replaced. Officially, Vigano left his job because he was 75, the age when Vatican officials normally retire. But media reports say that in most cases, the retirement requirement is waived, and that Vigano was actually ordered to resign because of fall-out from Pope Francis’s meeting with Davis.
Vigano had already been criticized by American activists for his position on LGBT issues. In 2015, Human Rights Watch sent a letter to Pope Francis asking him to stop Vigano from speaking at a rally against same-sex marriage. You can read that letter here.
“There is absolutely no room for an emissary of one of the world’s great religions at an event that will espouse hate and bigotry and promote outright discrimination against LGBT Americans and their families,” said HRC Vice President of Communications Fred Sainz. “Pope Francis has continually emphasized love and acceptance in his tenure, but this event stands for anything but.”