The Disfigured Face of the Church: Pope’s Leaked Documents Show Real Vatican

Click here to read: “Pope Benedict XVI’s leaked documents show fractured Vatica full of rivalries,” by Jason Horowitz, The Washington Post, February 16, 2013.

Excerpt: “We can reveal the face of the church and how this face is, at times, disfigured,” Benedict said in his final homily on Ash Wednesday. “I am thinking in particular of the sins against the unity of the church, of the divisions in the body of the church.” He called for his ministry to overcome “individualism” and “rivalry,” saying they were only for those “who have distanced themselves from the faith.”

48 thoughts on “The Disfigured Face of the Church: Pope’s Leaked Documents Show Real Vatican

  1. Thanks, Susan. The leaks have only just begun. A tsunami of leaks from Cardinals can be expected for many weeks. The Pope and many Cardinals are afraid, as they really should be. Perhaps they may get a taste of the fear Billy had and still likely has on occasion.

    Cardinals have nightmares of Msgr. Lynn in his orange jump suit; I really believe that.

    I have observed up close how powerful people unravel when one of their clique is locked up. Their previous sense of arrogant invulnerability just crumbles as their high priced lawyers can’t tell them without hedging that the Cardinals are home free.

    Hold on to your seats for the next month! It will be wonderful.

    For more explanation. please see my, “New Gospel ? : Bad News For Popes? “Good News” For Catholics ?”, accessible at:

    1. Good, hopefully more leaks will be forthcoming exposing the miserable hierarchy who are trying to destroy the rcc !

  2. Isn’t it fascinating what one Pope’s resignation can do to a whole institution? One wonders if Pope JPII had an inkling about “apres moi le deluge”, ( King Louis XVI ?). If he had resigned, what would have really come out after his “reign”? Would he have gone down as someone who allowed predators to hide under papal protection of “do not tell”? How his “Rock Star” fame would have crumbled if truth would have come out. His death was a ‘blessing” in disquise. As long as Benedict remains in the confines of the Vatican, he will be protected from legal action as more and more suits are brought to the surface in countries like Germany, Austria, Ireland. So happy that a Pope had the intelligence to recognize his own physical incapacity. Let us hope that his presence in the Vatican will not put a pall over his successor.
    As is often said, a family living in an inlaw’s house may have serious problems.

    1. John, I would wait a few weeks before complimenting the pope on his resignation. If he follows his usual pattern, we should find out soon the real reason for his resignation has nothng to do with his stated reason.

      The man is a disgrace. He has no comprehension of children and no shame. He protected predatory monsters and deserve to pay the price for that.

      In a fairer world, he would be sharing Lynn’s cell. And he may yet anyways, God willing!

      1. I doubt very much all Catholics in Australia will accept any other reason other than what is given.
        It’s taken decades for them to accept what’s coming to light already.

        1. I understand. So many of us were so brainwashed as children. That said, communist nations fell in a very short period and the subsequent revelations overcame the brainwashing fairly quickly.

          That will happen with Catholics as well. They will always be diehards; some even occasionally blog here. But revelations make a difference as Lynn’s trial did. If you go back to early C4C postings and comments, you can see how facts have changed minds.

          1. Jerry, I don’t think that revelations will overcome the brainwashing. People can always distance themselves from it or deny it. The only thing that will overcome the brainwashing is change. When change becomes the “new brainwashing,” you’ll see the diehards come around or should I say, sheep around. The reality is that there are people who don’t trust themselves to think and moralize on their own.

        2. It’s been rather curious: my Catholic family has not said a word to me about the pope’s announcement. They went to mass today and I went out to lunch with them after, nothing was said. I am not going to broach the subject— by now I know better. My guess is that they are clueless on what is happening and know few facts. What really boggles MY mind is that they have been around long enough to know RC doctrine and are passively putting up with a certifiedly Universalist pastor at their parish.

  3. Yes C4C comments have changed much over the years. I really miss hearing form the many voices who often shared their thoughts. The comment section was full of a variety of people from different walks of life . I know they still visit, wish we would hear more from them. The comment section is for everyone.

    1. I miss them too, Kathy, even if I may have pushed some of them away.
      The hierarchy is ruthless. I have dealt with their type many times before. It requires sometimes a firm response. To any old timers here I have offended, I apologize. My Brooklyn Irish genes sometimes predominate. It’s the only way I know how to defeat well funded and unscrupulous pedophile protectors.

      1. I like to think of the comment section as people sitting around a table talking,with everyone’s input being valuable and appreciated.

        1. From what I have experienced, it has been just that.
          And look what we have all learnt whether good or bad.

          1. Yes for the most part. I think that where people differ is their expectations and wanting everyone to have the same goals or expectations that they do which in some cases are very lofty and beyond anything that will ever happen by blogging. Blogs such as C4c are useful and necessary however I am a very realistic person by nature,commenting to like minded people really does not do much to change any situation other than feeling good that there are others who feel the same way. I think that the most important thing that C4c has accomplished is having a place for victims to “let their voice be heard” by those in the Church who are not victims. Also it had brought together a small group of people who off site, work everyday for the protection of children in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and the state of Pa.

            We are not responsible for bringing down Popes,indicting clergy or anything of that all. I measure success when a new person comments, when someone shares something they have learned with others, when a victim feels comforted, when a Catholic person who has been angered, turns that anger into energy to protect
            children. When people put aside their personal politics or current status in the church and focus on victims and
            children. I think success comes from leaving a situation better than you found it .

        2. Kathy, I was attracted to this site by Susan’s choice of titles–“4 Change”. If it had been “4 Feeling Good”, I never would have blogged here. Everyone talking has benefits, but it also can undercut change. It can lead to going in too many directions at once, which impedes effective change, and can lead to going nowhere.

          Everyone’s input should be appreciated. To suggest, as some may, that all inputs are all equally valuable is naive and counter-productive. It may be good therapy, but it is ineffective strategy. This is often predominantly a legal struggle. In my experience, you can’t develop an effective legal strategy by popular vote.

          If two opinions contradict each other, only one of them can be valuable, but both must be respected here. It is easy to agree with everyone, except that will not bring change.

          Obviously, a balance between debate and decisions is needed. And we can all agree on not being disagreeable. I try, but I am trained to find an optimum strategy that could work and pursue it vigorously. I don’t know how else one can expect to overcome the well funded and ruthless strategy of the Vatican and its subservient bishops. Talking is helpful, but not enough.

          I realize, Kathy, you do much more than talk. I just think it important that the ground rules be clear.

          Meanwhile, Chaput pushes forward and can only be stopped by a coherent and consistent counter-strategy.

          1. I think our comments crossed paths. We are catholics4change and we have already changed many things in the Archdiocese ,giving laity and victims a voice which did not exist before, The mere presence of this blog is part of the change that was needed. We are a blog, not a group, although of course we have gathered at times for vigils ,meetings,trips to Harrisburg etc..other than that we encourage all to make their efforts where they feel will be most valuable for the protection of children locally and nationally. We do not speak with one voice or one strategy. Susan and I at times share what we are involved in locally for the others who may wish to join in.

          2. “If two opinions contradict each other, only one of them can be valuable”

            May be this is true for facts, but two opnions can be valuable for different people.Maybe one is less valuable as less people find it is valuable. Even facts can be distorted – read some facts on factcheck. Been in several religions and they all have one thing in common they are the right religion and the other are” less right” or wrong. God only knows.

            Now I need to get off this site, my wife is still upset that I didn’t hear those young girls calling a priest a rapist. Usually I make sure people at DD knows my stance and the priests in Philly and up here know how I fell, so she is upset I didn’t say anything. Of course I have a different take, but its not important.

            .. A few times people have talked about their abuse or tell of family members that have been abused even at DD in public when the crowd dies down. So as my wife tells me. need to focus on those in front of me. I am sure that those that have stop writing are doing that and more.

            I believe that they have even signed your petition Gerry and probably are contacting their reps and helping other victims Again, this site compels them to act.

          3. Ed, I like the idea of needing to focus on those in front of you. I think sometimes when a situation is much that needs to be done..people “check out” and do nothing. I have seen some of the biggest change come from the smallest moments in the past two years, by people focusing on those in front of them..I love that sentiment.

          4. For a tactic, how about developing a list of things that Catholics do/don’t do that enable, empower and guarantee that the criminals hiding behind “Church” continue and go their “merry way”, as it were?
            I would suggest: 1. Indifference. 2. Lack of curiousity. 3. Lack of interest. 4. Fear.(not the biblical kind,) 5. I forget the word, but it is like — tending to stay PUT, and not move.
            Any others?

          5. Nichols1 – I think it might be more appropriate to say “some Catholics.” We all know where you stand on Catholicism, but this site is for Catholics.

  4. I agree with Kathy about wanting to hear from more people/perspectives. All are equally valuable in regard to my intent for this site. My mission was to offer information and discussion in a forum that be respectful to fellow Catholics. I believe change (protecting children from clergy sex abuse) begins with information. I hope this site can lead Catholics on to existing organized advocacy efforts or to create their own. But I still consider this site a success if someone only walks away with a better understanding of the issue. That understanding has an impact on personal lives and decisions.

    1. Think about how the concerns of C4C have expanded since its inception. The corruption in the Philly AD, the two Grand Jury reports, and justice for victims initially preoccupied the minds of posters. That expanded into posters commenting on Avery’s plea deal, the Lynn and Brennan trial, Lynn’s conviction, and its victory for victims. SOL and the protection of children legislation in PA emerged as a formidable effort. The list of priests removed from ministerial service in the Philly AD and Chaput’s long and still ongoing response garnered comments. The two recent convictions of a priest and Catholic school teacher attracted comments and perspectives as well. “Billy” and all victims won! If you think about it, much of what we have discussed here has been Philly AD and PA based. Sure, Finn got thrown in from time to time, yes, Dolan, and even Mahoney. But this site is homegrown, and has generally been about events at home. People came from afar to comment because they recognized the events at home to be similar to the ones where they call home. Indeed, I’ll venture to say that just a year ago a post about “The Disfigured Face of the Church” (about Vatican corruption and dysfunction) would never have appeared here. Indeed, commenters who went in that direction were often brought home to Philly AD and PA concerns.

      When a blog centers on issues at home, the people at home come out in droves to comment. Acutely, they feel and are affected by the issues. They speak strongly and frequently because the issues touch them first-hand. They know, first-hand, the churches, the clerics, the abusers, and the victims involved. The effect is compelling.

      Now, however, this site has evolved into including in its concerns the corruption in the Church at its highest level. Our Pope has resigned. The global Church faces an extraordinary juncture in its history. The events of today are daunting. But the Vatican is far away. The names and faces of prelates are not familiar. Indeed, it almost feels like we are wrapping our heads around some fantasy, some dream, a nightmare, perhaps, but it surely lacks concreteness. It’s just hard to bring it home, articulate what it means to us personally, to our families, to our parish churches, to our lives, and to our futures. It’s hard to comment on it. It’s hard to say what one thinks and feels.

      1. Kate, I completely agree except on one thing. The post on the Vatican would have appeared. The global clergy sex abuse crisis was the backdrop for Pope Benedict’s entire papacy. Everything I post here must meet that one criteria. It must be relevant to clergy child sex abuse.

        1. Another thing about C4C since its inception…

          Its moderators have never corrected a blogger’s comment unfairly.

          Thank you, Susan.

          1. Kate, I used to read your comments on clericalism and think that’s interesting but what does it have to do with what we are focusing…now it is all I think of when trying to comprehend how the abuse not just happened, but thrived in such a culture.

  5. Once again, the Catholic Church lies and refuses to stick to any kind of deal with me. This is just another reason why victims like myself do not trust the church at all. They make promises they have no intention on keeping.

    The are 100% complicit in ruining their own reputation. If I was as dishonest as they are, I could never live with myself. Apparently, their dishonesty breeds cash flow and if it aint broke, why fix it?

    I can only hope that many news articles to come will speak more openly about what a ruthless and corrupt man the Pope and his cronies are.

    The Devil “Doesn’t” Wear Prada. He’s dressed in a black suit with a white collar.

    1. “They are 100% complicit in ruining their own reputation. If I was as dishonest as they are, I could never live with myself. Apparently, their dishonesty breeds cash flow and if it ain’t broke, why fix it?” (Victums4Justice).

      Have you seen the CNBC TV series “AMERICAN GREED – scams, scoundrels & suckers”? The RCC has simply taken that show to the global level. Oh how I love our Church leaders.

  6. This reads like a really bad mystery novel. Each step is worse than the one before. Secrecy, clandestine workings, money laundering, etc. Did they really think they would keep it all a secret. I hate it when people think I am stupid! Come, Holy Spirit!

  7. I hope Jerry posts the link to his newest piece regarding the public accusation made by a body of the United Nation’s concerned with the welfare of children that the Obama administration has not been effective in addressing the sexual abuse of children in U.S. religious institutions and, especially, in the Catholic Church.

    1. Kate this from a related article
      “The committee is deeply concerned at information of sexual abuse committed by clerics and leading members of certain faith-based organizations and religious institutions on a massive and long-term scale,” said the report, which gave no details.

      It said it also found a “lack of measures taken by (U.S. legal authorities) to properly investigate cases and prosecute those accused” and urged them to order law enforcement officials to step up efforts to uncover and bring charges against abusers.”

      There are two things I notice when dealing with abuse within religious institutions. First is the money and power that can intimidate/influence politicians,law enforcement …but second and just as important is that they are going against “men of God” whether that is the abuse in the Hasidic community or Catholic church. I have read some of the documents in cases where police were involved and the case seemed to go by the formal charges. I tried to put myself in their place and what I would have done 30 years ago if I was a cop who had a report that a priest hurt a child..Would I have believed it? Would I have followed through? Would I have not been able to wrap my brain around the thought of a man of God hurting a child..if I answer honestly I would say I probably would have failed the child also. So many free passes because of power and intimidation but also because of simply being who they were,a priest, a rabbi.

    2. Every year I read an article about this

      “Greenlee, a former sex trafficking victim who was abducted and raped by her captors at 12, told the Times-Picayune that she was shuttled around cities in the South to work as a prostitute at large-scale events. The 53-year-old, who now works as an advocate for sex trafficking victims in Louisiana, said there was immense pressure to meet her traffickers’ demands at events like the Super Bowl. ”

      Are our kids important? How many kids were affected by Sandy, left by their pimps. The RCC needs to be investigate as well the many who exploit child sexual victims.Where are those priests, getting pensions that have been acused? Where are the young men that told me they would mind sleeping with 14 to 17 years olds?

      1. ed, thank you.

        The day after I read that article in The Huffington Post, I marched into ALL of my college classes and informed my students that NO other event in the U.S. is saturated with more sex trafficking than the Super Bowl. There is more prostitution going on in whatever city is hosting the Super Bowl and over the weekend it entails, than at any other event, or at any other time, or in any other place in the U.S. The statistic is shocking!

        To think that when we think about the Super Bowl we think about two teams, half-time performances, TV ads, food, libations, parties, and the like, without acknowledging and addressing the fact that the annual event is infused and imbued with sex trafficking is immoral. In the Huffington piece, I read that it was not uncommon for prostitutes to turn 25-50 tricks per day over the course of Super Bowl weekend. Many of these prostitutes are children and run-aways… “the least among us.”

        I told my students that never, ever, again were they permitted to hear, say, think, or read the words Super Bowl without first associating them with sex trafficking. I told them that on every test from that day forward, there would be a question that asks: When I hear, say, think or read “Super Bowl,” what do I immediately think? So far the question has been on seven tests. Not a single student has gotten it wrong.

        On my final exams I will ask: Now, what do you intend to do about the problem of sex trafficking at the Super Bowl?

        (I might also ask: Do you intend to tell the professor’s boss that she indoctrinated you over the semester?)

        (I might also ask: Might telling on the professor affect your final grade?)

        1. Kate Thank Crystal and Understanding the Vatican Mindset. Her link and discussion of a “complex problem”(cultural ?) –

          makes me sick. Simple, kids are not to be abused. “The least among us” is so appropriate , so many have gone to a priest for loss of parent, being bullied, getting closer to God while living in a high crime area and other reasons and then are abused.What culture did the pope protect?What culture is our society protecting?

          Thank you, your students are informed.

    3. Thanks, Kate. It’s OK for you to post it. My adopted Philly daughters, Susan and Kathy, will give you a pass as my friend lol.

      The link is

      The Wash Post picked up the story, which gave me a chance to press Obama in my comments thereto.

      While I preferred Obama, he is not beyond needing pressure and correction. I say that for the benefit of my FOX News friends here !

  8. Of great significance is the Declaration on Authority statement put forth by, to date, 166 formidable theologians and scholars from around the world in the last few days. It articulates “a new system of authority for the Catholic Church.” OMG! Praise God! Bring it on! Thank you, scholars and theologians, for doing this important work.

    You can read the Declaration, and read about the scholars and theologians (their countries of origin, their educations, their fields of study, their areas of interest, their published works, their thoughts on the matter of authority in the RCC, etc.) on the following website:

    Their scholarly input should be seriously examined BEFORE a new pope is installed in an authoritative system that is broken, dysfunctional, corrupt, and evil.

    1. Enjoy it, Kate. I have been bugging their leaders for three years. And you and my adopted Philly “daughters” know, nobody bugs better than the pain in the as* from Long Island. lol

  9. Thanks Kate for that link. It should be important reading. I posted it on my site and intend to examine it closely soon. I have one reservation though: Frequently we see references to how the laity are far more “educated” than they have been in the past, and we hear a lot about how “educated” the clergy are, and that in prior times they had so much more “education” than the laity. The point I want to make is that “education” gives no one a leg up on spirituality or necessarily helps a person have faith. The majority of men I have known about who could understand and teach the bible were farmers, or cattle-men, business men etc. They are able to pass on knowledge of the scriptures to small and great. I think the whole idea of learning and education boosting a person to know more about God is a fallacy. Thanks for the chance to post.

    1. I have always thought that the laity now being better educated is more in reference to the fact that in many instances of our immigrant nation,the parish priest was held in high regard because he was more educated than his congregation. The parish priest was the most educated person that some immigrants interacted..which fed into the clericalism and the reverence of the clergy. Not in reference to Bible teaching or spirituality, but the priest was looked at as the authority on many matters because of his education.

    2. Nichols, for once, I agree with you completely. The few key Catholic truths are accepted on faith, a gift to all, and not based on a Ph.D.

      You can’t prove Jesus was God and His Divinity is what we profess in a nutshell.

      Thank you for your astute observation so boldly stated.

        1. On a tad more serious note; I get the feeling that in your war on certain of the RCC leadership, you will throw at them almost anything around that is loose.

          1. Nichols, the RCC leadership spends hundreds of millions on lawyers to bully people who want to curtail sexual predators with Roman collars. I will gladly throw whatever I can back at them for free.

            I always try to be truthful; but I realize the truth can hurt sometimes.

            If they stop abusing kids, I will go back to playing golf, where I am a friendly guy. I didn’t start this war, but hope to help finish it.

            It is difficult for me to maintain civility with men who hurt innocent children, then thereafter continue to disrespect abuse survivors forever, and yet want me to kiss their rings. FUGEDABOUTIT !!

            We now see Cardinals Mahony and Dolan this week hurrying through their latest child abuse cover-up depositions so they can rush to join Cardinal Rigali in Rome to elect a new “Cover-up King”. Meanwhile, Lynn stews in jail for following Cardinals’ orders.

            I should be nice to them? Why? Do they have any real idea about what Jesus mandated about protecting children?

            They neither have any comprehension of how precious and vulnerable children are, nor do they care to learn anything about this. The do not, however, want to share Lynn’s cell, which is my goal for those of them who deserve it.

            I lack some of the gifts of empathy and patience that so many here have; but I know well how to handle clerical creeps. So that’s my contribution to kids and survivors and hope it helps them.

          2. It is interesting how things tend to be other than what they seem. Mahony and Dolan being in the conclave can seem disgusting to many of us; on the other hand, to some of us the conclave is disgusting in itself.

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