Fr. Blake on fake news, filthy lies, nasty people, anonymity, vilification and bile

Medieval Gossips

Medieval gossips

From my friend Fr. Ray Blake, the great PP of Brighton:

Did you believe the story about the Pope submitting his five dubia to Cardinal Mueller? No nor did I, I just don’t believe the stories that begin Monsignor A told Bishop B that Cardinal C had said the Pope has said or done Y. I do my best not to listen to gossip, and not to report it. If we can’t try to speak the truth we are unlikely to be faithful witnesses to Christ, we have an obligation to speak the truth even if it costs us dearly in order to be credible. [The cost… some of you might not know what the cost is.]

I certainly don’t trust Monsignori or anyone who is willing to back up a damaging statement about the Pope without being willing to put his name to it, especially as in this case it was also about someone like Cardinal Mueller who is quite able to state frankly his own case and has a certain reputation of being honourable. Passing on this kind of ‘fake news’ is trading in filth, I find it as scandalous as stories about sexual deviants having parties in the Vatican.

Poor Pope Francis has to battle as much against with his friends as against his enemies, many of the more vociferous on both side are pretty unpleasant, they contaminate with their filthy lies those who listen to them and pass on in all innocence what they have heard. Simply, the Gospel allow it and threatens judgement against those who do it!

Medieval torture

Medieval Torture Rabbits

There is a very good podcast by Damien Thompson and Fr Ed Conlon at the end of this piece in the Spectator. Fr Ed hits the nail by saying that invariably liberal commentators misinterpret the Pope, it is not just journalists but as is discussed even revamped the Academy for Life came out with a statement regarding not keeping little Charlie Gard alive by extending his treatment, whilst the Pope, the very next day invited the family to Rome for further treatment.

One of the great problems with every court is that courtiers tend to fail to understand the thinking of the Prince, which means of course one moment you can be by his side giving advice and the next in a cage on the roof Castel Sant’Angelo exposed to the elements. The other thing about courtiers is they are often very nasty people, they put their trust in princes and not in the Lord. To see this today one only has to look at Twitter to see the abusive or gloating comments of those who claim to be close to the Pope today. If they judge a man to be an enemy of Francis there is no end to the vilification and bile.

The more unpredictable or incoherent a prince becomes the more violent and malevolent become those who surround him, of course they wish to control him, in the case of the current Pope this probably impossible, in the words of Cardinal Pell, ‘he is unique’.


Little black antichrist Devils posting poorly thought through comments in a blog combox.

Little black antichrist Devils
posting poorly thought through comments
in a blog combox.

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  1. John UK says:

    Never sure how British humour stands up to the journey across the Pond, but Eccles has a sideways swipe, here:

  2. Basilius says:

    Thank you for this, Father. The market for unconfirmed, anonymous reports about what conversations are happening in the Vatican seems to be growing, and I’m glad people are being cautious.

  3. yatzer says:

    Eccles makes some good points with humor, easily understood by me on the Western side of the Atlantic. I can hardly read about this stuff otherwise; it raises the anxiety level too much.

  4. Benedict Joseph says:

    Ah yes, “…we need not listen too much to the Africans…”
    Despite Cardinal Kasper’s denial he did say it, and we have it on film.
    And Cardinal Danneels never conspired to silence a victim of abuse although it was caught on a recording devise by the victim. And Ivereigh’s “The Great Reformer” never alluded to team Bergoglo or Cardinal Bergoglio’s agreement to acquiesce to election – in its first “pulled” edition. Thank you, Cardinals Murphy-O’Connor, Danneels and company. And multiple times a day over sixty years the contrivance of “the” council was not poured down our throats with the honey of mendacity.
    That is the tip of the iceberg.
    Credibility so wantonly expended is not easily recovered. When those who are on your side, and want to continue to offer support but find unflattering accusations believable their is a serious problem. Nothing is happening in Rome to alleviate this unfortunate circumstance.
    This is itself the great tragedy — for it undermines not merely individuals, but the Faith, and that is what we all need to be about. The Faith given us by Jesus Christ.
    But I seem to hear little about Him at all.

  5. Absit invidia says:

    There’s nothing more eternally hellish than having the soles of your feet tickled by furry rabbits.

  6. mysticalrose says:

    This is a good reminder.

    One of the problems with this papacy is that things are so bad that I really am inclined to believe anything bad about the Pope that is reported. Who would have ever thought that animals would be projected on St Peters, that Veritatis Splendor would be undermined in an apostolic exhortation, that actual orgies would be going on, etc.??? These real things make pretty much any fake news believable. Which is why I must keep my head down and spend far more time on my own family than on Pope gossip.

  7. dbonneville says:

    And then suddenly:

    The question is actually on the table in some Jesuitical way:

    “This possibility of papal approval is rendered even stronger by the Pope’s strong commendation of the editorial staff of Civilta Cattolica immediately following the publication of the article which questioned the permanence of the Church’s teaching that women cannot be priests. Among other things, Francis told the staff that their journal “continues courageously to navigate open waters”, counseling that Catholics should “never be afraid of open waters, and must never seek the shelter of safe harbors.” The Pope deliberately emphasized this point: “You above all, as Jesuits: avoid clinging to certainties and security.””

    I’m not sure if it’s fair to equate the reporting done on the Muller exit interview to “scandalous… stories about sexual deviants having parties in the Vatican”. Something is off kilter there.

  8. Jann says:

    And now I read on Catholic World News/Catholic Culure in a story dated 7/10 that Cardinal Mueller told the daily Passauer Neue Presse that the notification of his dismissal “came in a brief phone call”. Who knows? You’d think that such basic facts could be established before being printed. If Cardinal Mueller was notified only by a phone call that makes the manner of dismissal even worse but also does away with the whole scenario of the Cardinal waiting for the Holy Father to return after he had walked out and of being informed it was time to leave…

    Again, recently there have been articles on different Catholic websites regarding Marcello Pero’s comments on the Pope Francis. One website describes him as an atheist, another as a Catholic (which would leave one assuming he is currently a practicing Catholic, not one who left the Church in his youth.) These are simple enough facts to check out.

    So, in reading anything, one has to reserve judgment or criticism or at least be keeping in mind “if this is true, then…”

  9. PostCatholic says:

    “The more unpredictable or incoherent a prince becomes the more violent and malevolent become those who surround him, of course they wish to control him,”

    Does the church have any sort of analogue to a Special Counsel?

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