Bp. Morlino @MadisonDiocese on #TheViganòTestimony – “the criteria for credible allegations are more than fulfilled”

His Excellency, Most Rev. Robert C. Morlino had first written a letter for the faithful in the Diocese of Madison, entrusted by God and the Apostolic See to his care. He has been Bishop of Madison for 15 years. HERE

Bishop Morlino (aka The Extraordinary Ordinary) appeared on EWTN with Raymond Arroyo. HERE

Now, Bishop Morlino has climbed up again out of the trench and put himself in the line of fire to lead the faithful.

Bishop Morlino issued a statement in the wake of The Viganò Testimony (which you can find HERE).

Let’s see what he has to say.  My emphases.

Statement from Bishop Robert C. Morlino of August 27, 2018, regarding ongoing sexual abuse crisis in the Church

(Madison, WI)) In the first place, I would like to affirm my solidarity with Cardinal DiNardo and his statement on behalf of the USCCB, particularly in two respects: 1) In his statement, Cardinal DiNardo indicates that the recent letter of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganó, former Apostolic Nuncio to the United States, “brings particular focus and urgency” to the examination by the USCCB of the grave moral failings of bishops. “The questions raised,” Card. DiNardo says, “deserve answers that are conclusive and based on evidence. Without those answers, innocent men may be tainted by false accusations and the guilty may be left to repeat the sins of the past.” 2) And, Card. DiNardo continues, “we renew our fraternal affection for the Holy Father in these difficult days.”

With those convictions and sentiments, I find myself completely in solidarity.

However, I must confess my disappointment that in his remarks on the return flight from Dublin to Rome, the Holy Father chose a course of “no comment,” regarding any conclusions that might be drawn from Archbishop Viganò’s allegations. Pope Francis further said expressly that such conclusions should be left to the “professional maturity” of journalists. In the United States and elsewhere, in fact, very little is more questionable than the professional maturity of journalists. The bias in the mainstream media could not be clearer and is recognized almost universally. I would never ascribe professional maturity to the journalism of the National Catholic Reporter, for example. (And, predictably, they are leading the charge in a campaign of vilification against Archbishop Viganò.)

Having renewed my expression of respect and filial affection for the Holy Father, I must add that during his tenure as our Apostolic Nuncio, I came to know Archbishop Viganò both professionally and personally, and I remain deeply convinced of his honesty, loyalty to and love for the Church, and impeccable integrity. In fact, Arch. Viganò has offered a number of concrete, real allegations in his recent document, giving names, dates, places, and the location of supporting documentation – either at the Secretariat of State or at the Apostolic Nunciature. Thus, the criteria for credible allegations are more than fulfilled, and an investigation, according to proper canonical procedures, is certainly in order.

I might add that my faith in the Church is not shaken in the least by the present situation. Similar situations, and worse, have occurred in the past – though perhaps not in these United States. It is time for us to renew our conviction in that final article of the Nicene Creed: Credo… et unum, sanctam catolicam et apostolicam Ecclesiam, which literally translated means, I believe the Church, as one, holy, catholic and apostolic. The Church is the body of Christ and, as yesterday’s Gospel reading put the question, “Lord to whom shall we go, you alone have the words of eternal life?”

May our Blessed Mother, the Mother of the Church, and Mother of Bishops and Priests, intercede for us, along with St. Michael the Archangel, as we continue our battle against the ancient foe.


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  1. WVC says:

    Wow. Extraordinary Ordinary indeed! May he be given every grace according to his need! May God preserve and protect him!

  2. Elizabeth D says:

    I have been waiting for his comment since this came out. I even asked a seminarian on Sunday morning if he knew if the bishop had said anything about this. All well said. It is ridiculous that Bishop Morlino was just recently attacked for saying the nature of this crisis is not only child abuse but homosexuality.

    can I just say I really respect what has been done by whoever to get Vigano’s message out. I am amazed.

  3. jerome623 says:

    Father, you are truly blessed to have such a wonderful Shepherd. The number of bishops demanding the truth grows and grows each day.

    The truth will set us free.

  4. Thomas says:

    I was just looking at Bishop Robert Barron’s response. He seems to have a pathological aversion to saying the word homo***** (it’s like the N-word now). To him, it’s about abuse of power. This is a way of saying that if everything is between consenting adults, then really there is nothing morally blameworthy about the conduct. Note that the main steam media is comfortable with this line or argument.

  5. acardnal says:

    Thank you Bishop Morlino. God bless you.

    I am grateful for the internet and social media in cases like this. Can you imagine how this scandal would have been swept under the rug in the pre-internet era?

    [EXACTLY. They cannot hide.]

    Fr. Z's Gold Star Award

  6. LeeGilbert says:

    Everything about this letter is magnificent, including the rapidity of response.

  7. Thomistica says:

    *If* Vigano’s allegations about the Pope prove true, anyone here know if there are any provisions in the law of the Vatican City State, or in Italian law, to handle cover-ups of abuse — by a Pope or high-ranking Vatician officials? At first glance, one might think: of course, civil procedures would naturally not be possible in the current formulation of the relevant laws in these places. So why even ask? On the other hand, the Wikipedia article about the law of Vatican City suggests that the issue might be much more complex than it might seem at first.
    The question is merely academic at this point, pending a good deal more journalistic investigation.
    Anyhow, it appears that no one has addressed this issue about the scope of civil law (in Vatican City or Italy). At least I have not seen any attempt to do so. Maybe everyone just *assumes* that a Pope (or high level clerics) enjoy immunity.
    Perhaps strengthening the relevant laws in one or both of these entities with respect to meting out punishments for hierarchical abuses can help deter high-level cover-ups. Plus it could play some role in motivating a guilty Pope to resign in such cases. Not to mention applying preemptive pressure on high ranking persons in the Vatican not to engage in cover-ups.
    This may be the only way to challenge the assumption of immunity that most likely pervades the highest levels of the hierarchy… which have to be held to the same standards as the rank and file priest, on pains of a sort of super-clericalism.
    Perhaps too there is need of a change in canon law, to faciliate or promote adjudication in civil law of hierarchical abuses.
    Again, though, the journalists must continue to do their work to establish the truth of Vigano’s allegations. Regardless the outcomes of investigations, a revision of positive and canon law (if necessary) as suggested above could be salutary.

  8. defenderofTruth says:

    His Excellency is most certainly correct: Archbishop Vigano more than exceeded any criteria simple credibility. I am of the opinion that Vigano wanted to remove all doubt anout these claims, and make them more than “allegations”.

  9. JesusFreak84 says:

    Bah, I should get out of Chicago and find a programmer job in THAT Diocese -.-

  10. Amerikaner says:

    Glad to see the courageous example of some of these bishops to speak out and want a proper investigation.
    Having said that, where are the other ‘conservative’ bishops and why are they silent?..
    – Bishop Conley
    – Archbishop Chaput
    – Archbishop Sample
    – Bishop Joseph Perry
    et al.

  11. Chris Garton-Zavesky says:

    “Let those who can, do what they must. The rest of us need to encourage them by words and prayer”

    I’m reminded of War of the Vendee (the movie) and The Hidden Rebellion (about the same events).

    Having heard Bishop Morlino speak at Thomas Aquinas College’s commencement ceremony in May, I can almost hear him pronouncing the letter posted at the beginning of this item.

  12. JARay says:

    When I read what Bishop Morlino has said then I too think along the lines of the Creed.
    The Church is One, Holy, Catholic and Apostelic.
    Praise be to Our Lord Jesus Christ!

  13. Gabriel Syme says:

    Good for Bishop Morlino. What a blessing he is for the faithful of his Diocese. The faithful must take great confidence and comfort from his leadership and care.

    May his example inspire his Brother Bishops in the USA and further afield.

    I expect the Bishops in my country (Scotland) are currently hiding under the table at some ecumenical tea-party, in case someone asks them for an official comment.

  14. jaykay says:

    ” I would never ascribe professional maturity to the journalism of the National Catholic Reporter, for example.”

    How refreshing to hear that said in such an upfront, public way. That it’ll surely cause some ladies to get their knick… ooops… knitting in a twist is even more of a bonus.

  15. Pingback: Viganò Watch: Tuesday Second Edition – Big Pulpit

  16. MaryW says:

    Amerikaner: Bishop Thomas Olmsted of Phoenix issued a letter of support, yesterday. Please pray for all the clergy who have the courage to attest to the good character of Archbishop Vigano.

  17. Amerikaner says:

    MaryW – Yes, I saw that. Great! We need more!

  18. maternalView says:

    Bishop Paprocki issued a statement today saying the Pope’s response was inadequate and called on the Vatican to make all pertinent files public.

    The bishop is from Chicago and a lawyer so he lacks the bluntness of Bishop Morlino but he’s sure isn’t trying to walk down the middle like Bishop Barron.

  19. Semper Gumby says:

    Outstanding statement by Bishop Morlino.

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