REPOSTED REVIEW: THE ST. GALLEN MAFIA – Exposing the Secret Reformist Group Within the Church by Julia Meloni.

UPDATE 12 Nov:

More people should read this.  Soon.

Originally Published on: Oct 30, 2021

I’m reading

THE ST. GALLEN MAFIA – Exposing the Secret Reformist Group Within the Church by Julia Meloni.


It is published by TAN Books.

In a nutshell, a group of cardinals were meeting already in the 90’s with the purpose of undermining Joseph Card. Ratzinger and, later, Benedict XVI, while raising up a contrast Pope in the figure of Card. Martini and, later, Card. Bergoglio.

The group was active for while and then went dormant, to be revived at the time of the 2013 conclave that elected Bergoglio.

Meloni’s book connects a lot of data points, much as we do when we complete a jigsaw puzzle, looking for corners and straight edges, sorting for colors and filling in blanks.

She is quite thorough.

One section that caught my close attention was a later chapter on the patience of the machinations and the individuals, wherein there popped in an important name: Yves Congar, an powerful influence at the Second Vatican Council and part of the Concilium group.

Why does that name trigger me? Because when Francis opened the recent Synod (“walking together) about Synods (“walking together”) he quoted Congar, saying:

“We must not make another Church,we must make a different Church”(Vera e falsa riforma nella Chiesa,Milan 1994, 193). And that’s the challenge. For a “different Church”, open to the newness that God wants to suggest to her, let us invoke the Spirit with greater strength and frequency and humbly listen to him, walking together, as he, creator of communion and mission, desires, that is, with docility and courage.

As Meloni points out, Congar “was obsessed by time”.

Congar wanted a patient transformation of the Church without rushing, causing breaks or schisms, moving in stages, patiently waiting through delays.

For his part, Francis has several guiding principles that he laid out in Evangelii gaudium which he in turn took from an Argentinian caudillo.  One of those principles was “time is greater than space”.   It sounds vacuous, but it in essence means, “patience overcomes resistence”.

In this section, Meloni connects the influence of Card. Martini with the projects of Francis.  They line up.

I am reminded of the patience that certain groups such as Masons, Communists, and Homosexualists had over decades of slow but steady infiltration of the Church at many levels, keeping relatively quite until the “tipping point” was finally attained.  We are seeing the results now being played out before our horrified eyes.

I haven’t seen lib reactions to this book yet, but surely they will devolve into the usual sniffery about “conspiracy theorists”, as if that will automatically deny the veracity of the content.   The problem is that facts are stubborn.  Meloni provides citations.

This is a hard book to read, much as an autopsy is hard to watch.  They are simultaneously fascinating and repulsive.


As far as lib reactions are concerned, I tried something.  At the beginning of the book, Meloni describes Card. Martini watching Card. Ratzinger preach the famous homily before the conclave, how for a moment Martini glared at Ratzinger.  She provided the link to the video with the time point.

The video is now “unavailable”.

At least at that link.

It might be a good idea for people to gather onto their own hard disks some of the online references for future consultation.

BTW… the obvious companion to Meloni’s book is The Dictator Pope (revised and updated)(US HERE – UK HERE)highly critical of Pope Francis and those around him, originally was published under the pen name of “Marcantonio Colonna”.


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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  1. Amateur Scholastic says:

    There is a magnificent tool called youtube-dl. Anyone with a modicum of technical knowledge (very, very basic knowledge of the command line interface, which used to be called DOS) can use it to download videos from Youtube.

    It helps Orwell-proof this kind of thing.

  2. This site ( allows videos from any site to be saved.

  3. Gab says:

    The video link still works for me, Father.

  4. The Egyptian says:

    someone please post the link

  5. Rouxfus says:

    Another companion book might be Windswept House (1996) by Fr. Malachi Martin which describes the existence of a group of eminent clerics who met in a mountainous resort town, in this “factionalized” case, the French alpine city of Strasbourg. Their plotting involved how to maneuver the “Slavic Pope” to resign so that a New World Order-agenda friendly pope could be installed in his stead. [likely real names in brackets from an index published on the innerweb]:

    The second matter had to do with certain details about a strange sort of private meeting Cardinal Secretary Maestroianni [Casaroli] had arranged for the same date—May 13—in Strasbourg, just after the closing of the Annual Robert Schuman Memorial celebrations. As it happened, Damien Slattery had caught wind of the same affair. “A gathering of wolves and jackals,” he had called that private gathering.

    “They’re trotting in from all the obvious quarters.”

    The Pope had listened to the list of men Slattery [Composite of Cardinal Browned & Fr. Fiore] and Lucadamo [chief of papal security] recited as among Maestroianni’s probable guests. Archbishop Giacomo Graziani—soon to be Cardinal Graziani [Angelo Cardinal Sodano], when he stepped into the post of Secretary of State. Cardinal Leo Pensabene [Pio Cardinal Laghi], leader of the biggest group of Cardinals. Cardinal Silvio Aureatini [Achille Cardinal Silvestrini], one of Maestroianni’s most dedicated Vatican supporters. Cardinal Noah Palombo [Virgilio Cardinal Noe], the now aging but still reigning expert in charge of Roman Catholic ritual. The Father-General of the Jesuits. The Franciscan Father-General.

    “More plotting.” The Pontiff had been wearied to hear the same names [p.88] coming up yet again. One way or another, in fact, in this or that anti-papal context, the same men always figured as prominent. “More networking. More talk. Don’t they ever get tired?”

    “The fire never says, it is enough, Holiness.” Damien quoted Scripture. But he and Lucadamo both expressed concern that there was a notable difference in this gathering, at least on the Vatican side of the Schuman Day roster. “The will of each of those men separately is as strong as death,” Slattery had underlined his worry. “They work at it twenty-four hours a day. But normally you won’t find the likes of those self-styled servants of God in the same room at the same time.”

  6. Rouxfus says:

    Here is the YouTube link from footnote #3 in chapter 1 of the book. Perhaps someone miscopied it from a printed edition of the book?

    «How many winds of doctrine have we known in recent decades, how many ideological currents, how many ways of thinking,” Ratzinger continued. As he spoke, Martini, the retired archbishop of Milan, looked downward, blinking, as if thinking hard about some insoluble equation. Then he raised his piercing blue eyes and appeared to glare, for just a moment, at Ratzinger. Then he closed his eyes, fiddled with his cane, and clasped it tightly.»

    Omelia Santa Messa Pro Pontifice Eligendo 18-04-2005

    [From The St. Gallen Mafia by Julia Meloni]

  7. Rouxfus says:

    The book author’s interpretation seems to be a stretch. The excerpt in question starts at 6:53 in the video I linked above. Other views of Cdl. Martini show similar glances up at Cdl. Ratzinger as he speaks. His raptor’s expression seems to be in the nature of a “resting bitch face” rather than an evil-eye glare. He looks up, holding his cane in his right hand, and shifts it to a light grip (not really a tight grasp as described) and continues to listen. I do not see anything overtly telling about this gesture.

  8. Philliesgirl says:

    One of the St Gallen mafia was Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor. He was my bishop before he was promoted to be Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster. I met him two or three times, on the first occasion he shook hands with me and it was like shaking hands with a wet fish. I have never experienced such a poor handshake either before or since. My grandmother always told me that you could not trust anyone who couldn’t give you a decent handshake-they were capable of anything.

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  11. acardnal says:

    My copy arriving today!

  12. kurtmasur says:

    After seeing the video, I suppose Martini’s look *could* be considered a little *different*, especially when I compare his look with that of the surrounding cardinals next to him. I wouldn’t say Martini looked angry per se…he definitely looked calm. He just seemed to have a touch of scorn in his look while glaring at Ratzinger during the reference to the wind of doctrines, ideologies, etc. Perhaps he felt called out by Ratzinger during those words and interpreted the message as a provocation, lol.. Perhaps by divine providence, the camera happened to show us a close-up of one of these bad guys at just the right time.

  13. samwise says:

    Yves Congar was a solid Dominican who, much like Msgr Schuler, was an eyewitness at VCII and interpreted it in continuity instead of rupture. I’ve read Congar’s 3 volume work on the Holy Spirit and found him, like Ralph Martin, to be a stable & vituous voice in the study of the Charismatic renewal

  14. Chrisc says:

    Kurt seems to be correct. Sometimes the devil hides well, sometimes he’s obvious. This I don’t think is a look of anger but steely resolve.

  15. Lurker 59 says:

    On the video, some points.

    1. Body language is partially cultural. If one does not understand the particulars of a culture’s body language, they are not well suited to make observations. I’ll pass on making observations.

    2. Boy, hearing that voice, do I miss B16.

    3. TV producers, if provided with the text of a speech, cue their cameras cuts based on where THEY think they are going to get reaction shots.

    4. 16:57 is the same look by Cdl. Martini.

    5. Ratzinger’s interlocular opponents know when he is referencing them — they have been going at it obliquely for decades at the point of the video. Same reason why the camera is zoomed in on Cdl. Martini here IF the producer has a copy of the speech.

  16. Clare says:

    Why did they set their cap on Bergoglio? In the beginning, he was thought to have ties to the right wing in Argentina. Also, (I’ve heard) he’s not the most intellectually brilliant Jesuit. What did they see in him?

  17. Johann says:

    To Clare, Bergoglio/Francis has a lot of skeletons in his closet, notably his protection of abusers like Grassi and Zanchetta, as well as his friendship with Gustavo Vera, who is a very corrupt individual. All these leave Francis open to blackmail and manipulation, making him a perfect candidate for corrupt cliques.

  18. Gregg the Obscure says:

    my copy of the book arrived yesterday. looking forward to reading it, though it may have to wait until after my December 7 eye surgery

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  20. Charles E Flynn says:
  21. Liz says:

    The poor saint…having his name associated with such diabolical stuff is awful. St. Gall(en?) pray for us.

  22. teomatteo says:

    Johann, why hasnt the man visited Argentina? Glaring.

  23. monstrance says:

    Forward by Timothy Gordon.
    Former regular on the Dr Marshall channel ?

  24. Mojoron says:

    Destroying the Church within is easy, even the “New Order” priests are pathetic teachers with their catechesis.

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