By Fred Martinez
The mother of all battles in the sex abuse wars was set for June 13-15, 2002 when the U.S. bishops were to meet in Dallas to enact measures to end the Catholic Church's sex scandal.
The media war had already begun, with Time magazine, in its Time Life Building at Rockefeller Center in New York City, looking down on its opponents, led by the Catholic World Report magazine (CWR), located in a small building in the enemy's heartland, San Francisco.
Time fired the first shot with its May 20 article "Inside the Church's Closet: Gay priests talk about their hidden lives, love of the church and fear of being scapegoated in the sex scandals." CWR shot back with its May issue piece, "Attitudes That Must Die: If the American bishops do not know how to respond to a public scandal, the laity must lead the way."
Time, in its alliance with the gay movement and Voice of the Faithful(VOTF), did a pre-emptive attack on what it called one of "the few concrete decisions the U.S. cardinals made following their meeting in Rome with the pope last month … to dispatch a team, called an apostolic visitation, to inspect all the nation's 220 seminaries and other preparatory institutions."
In what seemed an attempt to give marching orders on the strategic spin, Time almost immediately gave the rights to print the article to the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation Web site. The spin in the article was to call the apostolic visitation to the U.S. seminaries a "witch hunt."
According to the New York-based magazine's article, the inspection's purpose is "to determine whether the schools have been upholding orthodox moral doctrine in their applications process and in their classrooms. ... Details about the visitation won't be worked out until the June 13-15 meeting of U.S. bishops in Dallas, according to a spokesman for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops."
Time's solution to the Catholic Church's scandal was not "upholding orthodox moral doctrine" in the seminaries against sex abuse, but teaching "open dialogue." The director of St. Patrick's seminary in Menlo Park, Calif., the liberal Rev. Gerald Coleman, said that "psychosexual education and open dialogue are among the best ways to prevent inappropriate sexual behavior."
This open-dialogue approach to sex abuse prevention was even described. Time said, "At a recent meeting of Coleman's elective class, Homosexuality and the Church, words and phrases like penis, Freud, male rectum and 'Will & Grace' are bandied about without embarrassment."
(The Latin term rectum means the intestine ending in the anus, or opening at the lower end of the alimentary canal for excretion. It is strange that a sex prevention class would discuss the place where homosexual intercourse occurs.)
Time Promotes Open Dialogue on Sex Abuse
According to Bob Enyart, this is not the first time that Time has promoted open dialogue. Enyart said, "They [Time] printed a puff image piece on Peter Melzer, the editor of NAMBLA's journal. In the article 'For the Love of Kids' (Nov. 1, 93, page 51) the ACLU defended this pervert, arguing that if we condemn 'NAMBLA today, who is it tomorrow?' Melzer is also a New York City public school teacher (surprised?). He published an article 'In Praise of the Penises,' on 'how to make that special boy feel good.' As to a police report on Melzer's alleged sex with a Filipino boy, according to Time, there is no hard evidence that he abused this 'or any other boy in the U.S.' "
NAMBLA are the initials for the North American Man-Boy Love Association, whose slogan, according to Enyart, is "Sex by eight or it's too late."
The gay movement's foremost publication, "The Advocate," which interviewed Bill Clinton in 1996, also promoted NAMBLA's position in an article called "Getting Over It" on May 5, 1992, page 85. Enyart said, "Carl Maves wrote, 'How many gay men, I wonder, would have missed out on a valuable, liberating experience, one that initiated them into their sexuality, if it weren't for so-called molestation?' "
Both Time and the gays' foremost publication have had open dialogue on child molestation. With its own recent history of open dialogue with sex abuse, Time had the nerve to make a statement questioning the Church’s account of the reasons for the sex abuse scandal.
The New York-based magazine's statement was contradictory. The article said, "Since many [most] of the victims are teenage boys, the [Church's] thinking goes, the perpetrators [male priests] must be gay – and that must be the problem, not sexual repression, not leaders who ignore serious criminal allegations."
Time's logic can only lead to two conclusions it didn't intend – one ridiculous and the other to the point. Heterosexual priests are only pretending to be homosexuals when they commit homosexual acts on teenage boys, or homosexuality is an objective disorder like alcoholism, which can be treated, so even though one commits homosexual acts, one is not to be identified with a treatable disorder.
The logic gets even thinner when the article says that the reason for the sex abuse is sexual repression. The last thing Time magazine or anyone else could accuse Boston serial sex abuser Fr. Paul Shanley of is that he controlled, checked or suppressed his sexuality.
The Worcester Telegram & Gazette on April 9 published an article by the Associated Press which said, "In 1977, a woman from Rochester, N.Y., sent a letter to [then bishop of Boston] Medeiros with a summary of a meeting about homosexuality that Shanley attended. The summary quoted Shanley as saying he could 'think of no sexual act that causes psychic damage – not even incest or bestiality.' "
Time’s One Valid Statement
Shanley is an example of the one valid statement in Time's explanation of the reasons for the scandal. The fact is that Church leaders did "ignore serious criminal allegations."
Lawyer Roderick MacLeish said that documents proved Law knew of Shanley's sex abuse and rape behavior since 1985, but the cardinal paid tribute to him in a 1996 letter for his "years of generous and zealous care" and said "you are truly appreciated." MacLeish said there had been 10 detailed complaints in Church documents and at least 26 complaints altogether filed against Shanley.
The orthodox Catholic editor of the Catholic World Report (CWR), Phillip Lawler, agreed with Time magazine that Church leaders ignored sex abuse. In the editorial "Attitudes that Must Die," he said, "... many bishops behave as if clerics had special rights. Far too often, Church leaders and chancery aides defended the interest of the clerical fraternity rather than the Christian community."
The CWR and Time also agreed that there are a high percentage of homosexuals in the priesthood. Time said "the proportion [estimates of 15 percent to more than 50 percent] is higher than that of gay men in the male population at large," while CWR contended that even the lowest estimates of no higher than "the population in society at large" is a "profound crisis."
On page 40, CWR addressed "An Open Letter" on this crisis to the U.S. bishops who will meet in Dallas. The letter said: "In many ways the tepid response [of Church leaders] has been more scandalous than the abuse itself. ... [E]vidence makes it impossible to ignore the widespread acceptance of homosexual activity among American priests. ... [This] is a grave problem in itself because it causes disdain for Catholic doctrine and fosters a climate of hypocrisy among those who are the official representatives of Church teaching."
Time's Spin Is Opposite of Truth
Time, at the beginning of its article, made sure to use words such as "hate" and "scapegoat" to color faithful Catholics and the Church's attempt to uphold its 20-century-old moral teachings in its own seminaries. At one point the piece made sure to quote an active homosexual priest saying, "We're all sort of like Anne Frank's family, up in the attic, waiting for the Nazis to come."
According to Father John Trigilio of the Harrisburg diocese, the opposite is true. The Nazi- or Stalinist-like totalitarian gay subculture in the seminary that included the faculty made his 12 years in the schools something out of Alexsandr Solzhenitsyn's "Gulag Archipelago."
A priest in the diocese of Austin, in reference to the pro-homosexual seminaries, said: "... the dynamic paralleled the brain-washing strategies of the Communist re-education camps. Even the connotations of the terms 'rigid,' 'pre-conciliar,' 'anti-community' resonated with Communist terms like 'Capitalist,' 'bourgeois,' and 'anti-democratic.' "
Both of these priests spoke to Michael Rose, author of "Goodbye! Good Men: How Catholic Seminaries Turned Away Two Generations of Vocations From the Priesthood." According to the book, Fr. Andrew Walter "began assembling a lawsuit" against St. Mary's Seminary because he was "subjected to a Church-run psychiatric gulag, usually operated by theological liberals, often by men who are openly and actively homosexual."
For his book, Rose interviewed 125 seminarians from 50 dioceses and 22 major seminaries, dozens of whom were "recently ordained priests, seminary faculty and vocation directors." His book (without his intention) makes the case that the next group to sue the U.S. bishops for sex abuse may be former seminarians.
In a chapter called "Gay Subculture," Rose recounts seminary cases where:
Heterosexual seminarians had to get "restraining orders" to stop homosexual advances.
Heterosexual seminarians were expelled for refusing homosexual "intimate relations."
Heterosexual seminarians experienced months of 'gay rage' by senior seminarians.
Heterosexual seminarians were forced to be trained by homosexuals obsessed with them.
Orthodox Catholic faculty members were spat on in the face.
Orthodox Catholic faculty members were threatened.
Heterosexual seminarians were threatened to be put out in a "very bad neighborhood" unless they submitted to a superior's sexual advances.
Heterosexual seminarians were constantly being told they were "latent homosexuals."
A novice was attacked and homosexually raped.
"Homosexuals were well organized and since they had the support of the seminary authorities, they openly intimidated us heterosexuals," according to Father Norman Weslin.
Bishop's Spin Opposite of Truth
Liberal and so-called moderate bishops sometimes say they can't mandate that orthodox Catholic moral doctrine be taught, let alone be practiced, in the seminaries. But Rose recounts how Cardinal Egan of New York, just after being installed, "asked for and accepted the resignations of a great number of faculty members at St. Joseph's Seminary."
Rose said, "If Egan's actions proved nothing else – some critics say he 'pruned the wrong faculty' – it demonstrates that the local bishop has the authority and opportunity to quickly 're-form' his seminary."
CWR (Catholic World Report) knows it is true that Church leaders can act with authority, because their publisher, Fr. Joseph Fessio, S. J., was exiled by the Jesuit order. He was exiled after he criticized immoral and liberal teachings at University of San Francisco (USF), including a play promoting sex abuse.
In the middle of the sex abuse scandal coverage on April 23, the San Jose Mercury News reported that Fessio, despite being America's top orthodox publisher of Roman Catholic literature, "has been forced into an obscure chaplain's job in Los Angeles after he criticized the University of San Francisco as too liberal and sought to open his own orthodox college."
Even though Fessio, 61 years old, has close ties with Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, one of the pope's chief advisers, he was unable to stop the move, which took place in May. He said: "They are trying to get me out of the way. Why else would they exile me? I am highly educated. I'm in the prime of my life. I have so much more to contribute than to minister to the sick.''
The California Province of the Society of Jesus in Los Gatos – which was in the middle of its own sex scandal – refused to comment on the rationale for his displacement. But, according to the Mercury News, a former Catholic seminarian said, "They see him as a great threat to their agenda, which is to basically change the Church into another world order concept, a much more liberal one.''
The forced exile has moral "implications" for faithful Catholics, which have been ironically "overshadowed" by the sexual abuse scandal. The Mercury News mentioned that one of the main reasons for the exile was a "long-running criticism" of USF, a Jesuit-run school, by Fessio, the head of Ignatius Press.
One criticism he made in February – just before the enforced exiled happened – was about the USF establishment's plan to allowed students to enact a production of a played called "The Vagina Monologues.''
USF spokesman Gary McDonald, in defense of the production and open dialogue, said: "It is part of the job of a university to allow students to explore a range of issues and ideas. ... It's not against the faith.''
Fessio responded: "If UC-Berkeley wants to put on 'Vagina Monologues,' that's OK. But a Catholic university doing that during Lent, the holy season, that's not a Catholic thing to do.''
E. Michael Jones said in Culture War magazine that "The Vagina Monologues" is a sex abuse play. Commenting on the play when it ran at Notre Dame University, he said, "It also features a graphic description of the lesbian seduction of a minor, which is excused precisely because a lesbian is doing the molesting.
"Notre Dame University defended the performance precisely on the grounds of academic freedom; the bishop does nothing to contradict this undermining of morals," Jones said, "and in fact, in a scenario which has by now become familiar, those who attempt to defend the moral standard get punished."
Jones contends that liberals as well as those who cooperate with them in the Church are "culpable" because of "ineffective resistance to the dominant culture," while Fessio just wants to be left alone to teach the orthodox moral and faith teachings of the Church, including those against sex abuse.
"I don't think they're trying to make me suffer,'' Fessio said of his superiors. "But what I was trying to do with Campion College was offensive. They probably saw it as an implicit indictment of them. I just wish they would really allow a diversity of voices, including ours.''
In the May issue of Fessio's CWR, Theron C. Bowers Jr., M.D., said, "As a psychiatrist, I have a not-so-tongue-in-cheek strategy for clearing up the scandal. We could hypnotize the bishops into believing that these sexual offenders are orthodox, pre-Vatican II troglodytes."
Catholics Losing Faith in Liberal Bishops
Bowers hits on a truth that the U.S. bishops seem to not be getting. Faithful Catholics are losing faith in their bishops. The CWR open letter to the American bishops puts this loss of faith in question form: "How many people have been turned away from the Catholic faith by this scandal?"
This writer knows of an admittedly lukewarm Catholic who said she is afraid to look at any priest's face because of the scandal. Another person who has strong faith and works in a Catholic diocese said she had a crisis of faith because of the scandal.
The Dallas meeting on June 13-15 is the mother of all battles in the sex abuse wars. The question is whether the U.S. bishops will enact measures to end the Church's sex scandal or cave in to the gay-media axis.
In an attempt to end the scandal, CWR said in the open letter, "The willingness to tackle difficult problems, and impose necessary discipline, should be recognized as a sign of capacity for leadership. ... Effective pastoral leadership entails not only addressing moral problems, but also encouraging the practice of virtues."
The Catholic World Report asks faithful Catholics to copy its open letter or make their own and send it to their diocesan bishop. Catholics and others who want the bishops to end sex abuse and clean up the seminaries can find their local bishop's address (and phone number if they only have time to make a phone call) in their local phone books or online at www.rc.net/org/ccita.
You must act now. Save our youth from the gay-media axis and the sex abusers.