CNA Staff, Dec 8, 2020 / 09:20 am (CNA).- St. John Paul II’s “highest priority” was combating clerical abuse and protecting young people, a Catholic archbishop said Monday in response to what he called “unprecedented attacks” on the Polish pope.
In a Dec. 7 statement, Archbishop Stanisław Gądecki, president of the Polish bishops’ conference, defended John Paul II’s legacy in the wake of the McCarrick Report, which unleashed criticism of the pope who appointed McCarrick as archbishop of Washington in 2000 and made him a cardinal a year later.
“On the 100th anniversary of the birth of St. John Paul II, we are witnessing unprecedented attacks on his person. The pretext is the alleged failure of the Pope to disclose and punish the clergy — perpetrators of sexual abuse against minors,” Gądecki said.
“People who thoroughly research the history of the pontificate of the Holy Father know very well that the issues of protecting children and youth and counteracting any abuses by the clergy were the Holy Father’s highest priority.”
“It was he who saw the future of the Church in the young, and therefore he was the first to introduce the Church’s legal regulations to protect the weakest, and thus initiated the process of detecting sexual crimes and punishing clergymen who perpetrate them.”
The archbishop of Poznań reiterated points that he had made in a statement days after the publication of the McCarrick Report, arguing that the disgraced ex-cardinal “cynically deceived” the pope and that American bishops had passed incomplete information about McCarrick to the Vatican.
He thanked Pope Francis for publishing the report and for his comment in the document that “John Paul II was a man so morally strict, of such moral rectitude, that he would never have permitted a rotten candidacy to move forward.”
Gądecki said that the Church in Poland’s response to the report was summed up by Pope Francis’ comment at his general audience the day after its publication.
“Yesterday, the report on the sad case of former cardinal Theodore McCarrick was published. I renew my closeness to the victims of sexual abuse and the Church’s commitment to eradicate this evil,” the pope said Nov. 11.
Last month, a Polish Catholic university also rejected claims that St. John Paul II had failed to combat clerical abuse.
The rector’s college of the John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin said Nov. 14 that the assertions had no factual basis and lamented the “fallacious accusations, calumnies, and slander directed recently against our patron saint.”
In his statement, Gądecki chronicled John Paul II’s actions against clerical abuse.
He cited the pope’s 1993 letter to U.S. bishops, in which he recalled Jesus’ words that “for him who gives scandal it would be better to have a great millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.”
The archbishop also said that John Paul II issued a special indult for the U.S. Church in 1994 and two years later for the Irish Church, emphasizing that there would be no tolerance for sexual abuse.
He noted that in 2002 the Polish pope urged U.S. cardinals to promptly address the crime of abuse, saying: “People need to know that there is no place in the priesthood and religious life for those who would harm the young.”
In addition, he referred to John Paul II’s 2001 motu proprio “Sacramentorum sanctitatis tutela,” requiring clerical abuse cases worldwide to be reported to Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
“It must be clearly stated that the present state of awareness on these issues and the subsequent guidelines and instructions for proceeding largely result from the decisions and actions of St. John Paul II,” said Gądecki, the vice-president of the Council of the Bishops’ Conferences of Europe (CCEE).
“These decisions inspired further steps to protect children and young people and help those who have been harmed in the Church.”
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JPII’s apologists like Archbishop Gadecki here or JPII’s hagiographer George Weigel got it wrong. JPII should never have been hastily made a saint. While he did many great consequential deeds for the church and the world, he had that blind spot in his mindset about and theology of the presbyterate (priesthood) and of human sexuality that prevented him from directly confronting the then emerging clergy homosexual predation sex abuse scandal during his reign. He hyper idealized both into mystical proportions leaving them delusional and out of touch with reality. See his Theology of the Body and Pastores Dabo Vobis, as example. That is why we now have this global scandal that greatly stained the church. An icon of this episode is the congenial but hyper homosexual predator Ted McCarrick who was promoted by JPII five times: Auxiliary Bishop of New York, Bishop of Metuchen, Archbishop of Newark, Archbishop of Washington, and Cardinal. Another one is Marcial Maciel Degollado, founder of the Legionaries of Christ and of Regnum Christi, who was a serial sexual predator of his own seminarians and priests and sired children with different women. JPII gave him a special preferential treatment and even exalted him as “a model of heroic priesthood.” Today, it is but right that all church institutions, facilities and schools named after JPII should be renamed.
I guess you didn’t read the article, “Lan.” John Paul was deceived by officials of the American hierarchy. When you have a church of a billion on the books, that can happen.
Absolutely right. JPII’s canonization was recklessly accelerated to such a degree that it ignored his catastrophic failures to recognize Maciel and McCarrick for the monstrous degenerates that they were as well as his horrendous episcopal appointments and promotions, including Daneels, Maradiaga, Errazuriz, Law, Schoenborn, McCarrick himself, and especially Bergoglio. It is absurd and offensive to claim that this is a “model” of sanctity and pope and chief shepherd.
And for those reasons you know he can’t be in heaven? Please provide us with your corrected list.
Lan Baode, Are you by any chance among the Traditionalists that have an evil hatred of of St. John Paul ll. I myself am a Traditionalist and I hear so much false information generated against Our Saint. There is no gratitude for the fact that St. John Paul ll worked feverishly to restore the Tridentine Mass. The Pope who through his Angelus talks and General Audiences crushed every Modernist Heresy. The Pope who called for the “Reform of the Reforms”, for the sole purpose of eradicating all Modernist heresies and errors the Modernists instilled in Christ’s Church after the Council. There are those who only search for fables that will distort the person of His Holiness. What ungrateful children of their father of lies. Magnum Subito!!!
A fashionable error is still and error, and you are in error.
Lawrence Mack Hall, I followed the Pontificate of St. John Paul The Great, from the moment he stepped out on the Loggia of St. Peter’s Basilica, till his final moments. I was not a calumniator against the Supreme Pontiff but one who pleaded with others to Hear Him in whom God is well pleased. The Holy Father was a perfect Alter Christus. His enemies are those who seek nothing but fables without truth about St. John Paul Magnus, I ask, what did I say that is an error of errors? Please answer!
Phil Lawler, editor of Catholic World News, is reported as remarking that “the question regarding whether McCarrick is protected by a homosexual network is one of two key unanswered questions in the [McCarrick] Report, the other being how he shaped Vatican policy and the U.S. hierarchy” (National Catholic Register, Dec. 6-19, pp. 7-8, NCR text).
Is the McCarrick Report yet another act of broad self-exoneration? Perspective is given by Fr. Rev. Enrique T. Rueda’s, THE HOMOSEXUAL NETWORK: Private Lives & Public Policy (1982!, some 680 richly-documented pages), which remains systematically unnoticed after nearly four decades–not even a footnote in the USCCB’s 2004 Dallas Charter.
The McCarrick Report short-story also comes in two parts: the dead make great scapegoats, and the king’s camp followers literally wear no clothes.
‘ Mary The Greek / The Crowned Lady ‘ – is after whom the parish church of
S.G .Luisa of the Divine Will revelations is said to be the named ..how apt too , since for many , the concept of the Will of God as the mercy of God can be rather like Greek ..
St.John Paul 11 is the one whom God chose to help make the Divine Mercy devotion known world over as a very needed aspect for our times ; was surprised to find through the booklet below as to how the Diary of St.Faustina is also about living in the Divine Will , similar truths mentioned in the writings and exhortations of St. John Paul 11 as well as that of his God appointed successors who have been leading us in the Divine Will –
Hope the attacks / fears about the issues can be well used to bring more focus and light to the Divine Will revelations as being a needed complement to help bring deeper trust that the paths of sanctity and its peace are not beyond the reach for the ordinary .
I see no real defense here. Just umbrage. No more convincing than Trump’s lawyers.
The Pontiff-Idolator-Bergoglio is the Protector and Liberator of homosexual predators.
As Archbishop of Buenos Aries and President of The Argentina Bishops Conference, he spent millions in Church funds orchestrating a legal defense for his friend “Rev.” Julio Grassi, the most notorious homosexual predator in modern history in Argentina, found guilty by the Argentina Supreme Court, and now serving 15 years in jail.
That’s just one big reason why the Pontiff-Idolator-Bergoglio has not visited Argentina, his very own country.
Bergoglio was twice a candidate for Pope in campaigns run by Cardinal Daneels and Cardinal McCarrick, both of whom publicly bragged about it.
In 2013, Bergoglio got his election won, and he restored Daneels to power in the Church, just 3 years after Daneels has retired in disgrace in 2010, after the Vangelhuwe family of Belgium exposed him in an audio recording trying to coverup the homosexual predation of their own uncle, Bishop Roger Vangelhuwe, “the Belgian McCarrick,” a man who raped his own little nephew.
Add to the Pontiff-Idolator-Bergoglio his liberation of the convicted and defrocked (2012) serial pedophile “Rev.” Mauro Inzoli, Who Bergoglio restored to priestly faculties in 2014.
Add to Pontiff-Idolator-Bergoglio his promotion and protection of sex abusing Bishops Zanchetta of Argentina and Barros of Chile.
And of course, Pontiff-Idolator-Francis liberated and promoted and restored to power McCarrick, who like Daneels, got him elected.
The men running Rome and it seems many Archdioceses in South America, Europe and North America are homosexual-ist frauds, running a counterfeit cult as parasite inside the Catholic Church.
They are to be opposed and exposed and held to justice and prayed for. They are not to be trusted or tolerated.
They profane the Brude of Christ Our Redeemer.
“John Paul II was a man so morally strict, of such moral rectitude, that he would never have permitted a rotten candidacy to move forward.”
But – he did. He made a terrible mistake – this is obvious, and attacking out of hand those who point it out does no good at all – better to admit it and move on.