Boston Globe Calls for Independent Investigation of St. Johns Seminary Sex Scandal

September 10, 2018

It’s rare that BCI finds ourselves in agreement with the Boston Globe, but here’s once where we do mostly agree: their editorial in today paper, Probe of St. Johns Seminary needs independence.

The editorial is excellent–it says the the allegations of “immoral unprofessional misconduct by faculty and students” and a “toxic culture” of bullying and threats need to be properly examined, but the group brought together by Cardinal O’Malley has conflicts of interest: it’s stacked with St. Johns Seminary board members, including Sr. Janet Eisner and Assumption College president Francesco Cesareo, and the other members of the group also have conflicts of interest.  Have you heard this same concern voiced elsewhere recently?  Check out BCI’s post of last Monday, September 3, “Is Cardinal O’Malley Whitewashing the Gay Scandal Investigation of St. Johns Seminary?” We raised the same concerns a week before the Globe’s editorial came out, plus more.  Alert readers who compare the two will notice some striking similarities. What a coincidence!

What the Globe carefully avoided saying was the word “homosexual,” and they also avoided mentioning the conflicts Sr. Eisner and Francesco Cesareo have over their colleges sponsoring groups that affirm homosexual activity is just fine and dandy.

Sr. Eisner’s quote in the article is lame. she said rather than there being a potential conflict in her board affiliation, it provides “insight into the seminary.”  Well, if she had insight into the seminary, then why did she miss knowing about a gay sex scandal there under her watchful eyes?  With Cardinal O’Malley’s blessing, she insists she’s fully committed to uncovering the truth in a timely manner, and if anything criminal in nature is found, they stop the investigation and give it to “the authorities.”

But what if you find out a bunch of seminarians have been admitted who have deeply rooted homosexual tendencies and they’re engaging in homosexual activity with each other or hitting on straight seminarians who want nothing to do with their immoral, unhealthy and gross behavior? And what if that behavior is the same behavior you’re sponsoring clubs on your campus to promote and encourage? Then what happens?

Attorney General Maura Healey, weighed in saying there needs to be a thorough investigation without conflicts of interest.  And Jack Connors, never one to miss a chance to get his name in print, said he’s “all in favor of opening windows, doors, and records. Investigate away.”

Here’s the spin the archdiocese put out internally over the weekend to let priests and staff know their take on the pending editorial.

BOSTON GLOBE EDITORIAL, EXPECTED MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 10, 2018 (or sooner)
The Boston Globe is preparing an editorial opposing the appointments of the panel that is conducting an inquiry into St. John’s Seminary. Cardinal Seán took the proactive step of announcing the inquiry when he learned of the social media posts by the two former seminarians. The Cardinal has appointed Sr. Janet Eisner, President of Emmanuel College, to chair the panel inquiry, which she has agreed. He has also appointed the Most Rev. Mark O’Connell, Auxiliary Bishop of Boston, Dr. Francesco C. Cesareo, President of Assumption College and President of the USCCB National Review Board and Ms. Kimberly Jones, CEO of Athena Legal Strategies Group to conduct the inquiry.

These individuals, who have agreed to serve, are people with impeccable reputations and distinguished in their fields and expertise.

This past Friday, Sr. Janet spoke with the journalist writing the editorial for the Globe regarding the inquiry. You may recall Sr. Janet was co-chair of the Meade-Eisner Committee that reviewed several reconfiguration decisions by the Cardinal, with recommendations.

BCI thinks the spin is poppy-cock and it’s time for a re-do on the investigation team. What reputation and experience do either of the college presidents have upholding Catholic teachings about the sin of homosexuality that cries out to Heaven for Vengeance? All of the people either work for the Archdiocese or are on RCAB boards. How “independent” is that?

Besides, we hear the fix is already in.  The rector and vice-rector will be out (for obvious reasons), as could be a professor of systematic theology (for sacrificial lamb reasons).

And we heard the team wants to use politically correct wording and phrasing, just like the Cardinal’s commentary, and avoid calling it what it is–a problem of admitting seminarians with deeply rooted homosexual tendencies and knowingly allowing them to engage in homosexual activity, and allowing the kind of culture described in this post.

We hope and pray the archdiocese heeds the advice of the Boston Globe, gets rid of everyone with conflicts of interest (namely, everyone), and starts over with at least a few people who are on-the-record supporting the Catholic Church’s teachings about homosexuality.

 


Cardinal O’Malley’s Coddling of Homosexual Priests: Part 1

August 29, 2018

In the wake of the Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report, Cardinal McCarrick scandal, explosive disclosure by former U.S. Papal Nuncio Archbishop Carlo Vigano about Pope Francis and “gay networks” in the Catholic Church, and the reported sexuaRainbow-Flagl harassment at St. Johns Seminary, it seems appropriate to highlight the evidence of homosexual activity and open promotion of the gay agenda by ordained clergy that’s been allowed and condoned by the Boston Archdiocesan leadership up to Cardinal O’Malley.

The big question here in Boston is why does Cardinal O’Malley coddle priests who promote homosexuality or even come out that they are “gay”? Here are a few examples of the gay clergy network and/or promotion of homosexuality by clergy in open view in Boston:

St. Cecilia Church in Boston, led by pastor, Fr. John Unni

The church has an active “Rainbow Ministry” for LGBT Catholics that participates in the annual Boston Pride festival, brings in speakers who advance the homosexual agenda, and even tried in 2011 to offer a “liturgy to commemorate Boston Pride”, before a public outcry by faithful Catholics prompted the archdiocese to intervene and order the Mass cancelled. (It was turned into a prayer service and a Mass at a later date). What did the archdiocese say about the pastor who was to celebrate the Gay Pride Mass and who allows the active Rainbow Ministry at his church?  “Fr. Unni has the full confidence and support of the Cardinal and the archdiocese” and “is a great pastor.

Two years after the 2011 scandal, the St. Cecilia Parish bulletin announced “PFLAG-Save the Date!”–the executive director of greater Boston PFLAG would be speaking at the 6pm Mass on Nov. 24, 2013.  PFLAG advocates for accepting homosexual activity as a positive good act, and PFLAG rejects and vilifies the work of Courage, the Catholic way of helping people who have fallen into same-sex sexual activity to live in a chaste manner according to Catholic Church teachings. Faithful Catholic, Alice Slattery, wrote to Cardinal O’Malley to ask him to intervene and prevent the scandalous act during Mass.  Alice recounted what happened:

“I received a letter dated Dec. 23, 2013 from the Cardinal’s Office stating that “Cardinal O’Malley recently celebrated the 125th Anniversary Mass at St. Cecilia’s Parish in Boston. The Church was filled to capacity that day and it is evident that all programs and activities offered at the parish are in accord with the teaching and practice of the Roman Catholic Church.”

The Rainbow Ministry is still going strong today, as evidenced by their recent presence at the 2018 Boston Pride Festival. Recent or frequent speakers at the parish include “married” gay BC prof. John McDargh, Stonehill College’s George Piggford and others who advocate for the homosexual lifestyle and homosexual activity.  They have never promoted a speaker to discuss chastity for those with homosexual attractions.

Fr. Austin Fleming, pastor of Holy Family in Concord

A few years ago, a self-described “happy porn-writing sodomite” wrote a tell-all  book entitled, “Since My Last Confession: A Gay Catholic Memoir.” detailing homosexual debauchery taking place within a Franciscan order and with diocesan priests.  The book includes commentary from interviews with diocesan and religious priests who acknowledge they are gay.  A then-60-year-old diocesan priest, nicknamed “Fr. Butterballino” in the book, admits he’d come out to other priests and parishioners and had attended and blessed four “gay unions.”  A simple Google search revealed the diocesan priest was Fr. Fleming.  BCI posted about this and sent information to the archdiocese along with other faithful Catholics. Here are a few passages from the book

“[Father Butterballino] admitted, “I’ve been to four civil weddings of gay people. It scares the s#(t out of me because those are very public situations. After the rite is over, I do some kind of prayer or blessing. If I’m called on it, I can say I was there and I performed a prayer. I didn’t perform a wedding.”

“When the Brown Bag (Cardinal O’Malley) started issuing statements concerning same-sex marriage and adoption, Fr. Butterballino addressed them directly in his parish bulletins. For example, he wrote that to call gay adoptions “gravely immoral” and a form of violence proved only that those issuing such statements had never spend a second with gay adoptive families.”  (This same passage appeared in the November 5, 2005 letter from Fr. Fleming to parishioners at Holy Family, Concord)

“Trapped in inarticulate yearning, he entered the seminary and was ordained.  ‘We were sexually repressed.  When I committed myself to celibacy I might as well have been committing myself to go to the moon.’  Years after ordination, his sexual feelings emerged. Occasionally he was tempted to act out….Yeah, I’m gay.  He came out to a small circle of fellow priests after the sex abuse scandal.”

“Since the incident with the petitions [in support of a MA constitutional amendment that would have banned same-sex marriage], Fr. Butterballino…came out to a member of his parish staff who had learned her son was gay. He had triumphant comings-out to select acquaintances.  He even learned to be open with his parishioners that he was spending his summer vacation in Provincetown, MA, the gay beach mecca.”

Indeed, here is an article where Fr. Fleming talks about his vacation at Herring Cove beach in Provincetown.  Multiple Yelp reviews indicate the beach is “nudity-tolerant” and “gay-accepting.”  “they are at play and not for the straight people to bother… Nudity and cruising and sex in the dunes.”

Why would a chaste priest, even one with an attraction to other men, label himself “gay”?  And why would a chaste priest or one struggling with a same-sex attraction vacation in a gay hotspot and go to a beach known for gay cruising?  And why would Cardinal O’Malley ignore complaints, coddle the priest and do nothing about it?

Msgr. Paul Garrity, currently pastor at Sacred Heart and St. Brigid’s in Lexington

He has been praised by Cardinal O’Malley.  Yet he also put homosexual couples on par with the Holy Family.  At his previous assignment at St. Catherine in Norwood, on the Feast of the Holy Family, Garrity wrote in his parish bulletin:

It is very easy to forget that Mary would have been an unwed mother were it not for Joseph. It is also easy to forget that Joseph was not the natural father of Jesus but became his foster father and protector, along with his new bride Mary…Taken all together, the first family of Christianity reminds us that there is no such thing as normal. Every family is different and this means that we need to broaden our understanding of family life beyond TV sitcoms and applaud the virtues of family living wherever we find them: two parent families, single parent families, blended families, families with two mommies or two daddies and adoptive families.  What is most important is that we continually hold up the family as the instrument that God has chosen to communicate God’s unconditional love to the youngest and most vulnerable members of our society.

What did the archdiocese do in response to complaints about this?  Nothing.  When complaints were lodged with his regional bishop, faithful Catholics were told he had tried to escalate this and get action by Cardinal O’Malley and his concerns were dismissed. In his blog months earlier, Cardinal O’Malley said of Msgr. Garrity, saying he did an extraordinary job at St. Mary’s in Lynn, and “is very focused on promoting Catholic education in Norwood.”

These are just a few examples–we will share more in our next post.  This passage from  a report written between the time when Cardinal Law resigned and Sean O’Malley was appointed archbishop in June of 2003 gives even more perspective:

The sketch of life in the Archdiocese of Boston which follows is based largely on anecdotal evidence and the trustworthy testimony of faithful priests and laymen. While this description is necessarily unscientific, it is offered in good faith in the service of understanding the nature and range of the problems the next Archbishop of Boston must confront.

The Present Situation

Clerical Unchastity

The sexual crimes of the priests accused of molesting minors are but a small token of widespread unchastity among the presbyterate. A significant number of priests, both secular and religious, are engaged in regular sexual behavior (most of it homosexual), either with stable sexual partners or in anonymous encounters with strangers met in bars, parks, or through the Internet. Acceptance of such behavior, excused either with a wink and a nudge on the grounds of human weakness or because of rejection of the Church’s teaching on chastity, encourages further unchastity.

Clerical Homosexuality

Many priests in the Archdiocese, certainly a large minority of the presbyterate and perhaps a slight majority of those between 40 and 60, are homosexual men, and many of those have come to understand themselves by reference to their sexual identity as the gay subculture defines it. The open secret of their homosexuality is closely guarded by the silence of a solid clerical “black wall”, behind which some priests have surrendered completely to the pagan culture of “gay” identity and behavior. Many priests socialize only with other active homosexuals, and in this way loose networks of sexually active priests are formed to protect each other from scrutiny.

The big questions are obvious.  Why does Cardinal O’Malley allow this and coddle priests who encourage or promote homosexual behavior or have “come out” themselves? And how can he claim he is trying to clean-up homosexual activity in St. Johns Seminary when he is allowing it in his presbyterate?  And given that the John Jay report and other studies show the vast majority of the sexual abuse crisis was homosexual activity with teenagers, why isn’t he concerned and talking about the problem of homosexual activity in the clergy? What do you think?

More next post.


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