Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger tried to persuade Pope John Paul II to mount a full investigation into a cardinal who abused boys and young monks, one of the Church’s most senior figures revealed yesterday. But Ratzinger’s opponents in the Vatican managed to block the inquiry. As the future Benedict XVI put it: “The other side won.”
The pervert cardinal was the late Hans Hermann Groer, removed as Archbishop of Vienna in 1995 following sex allegations. The source for the story is Groer’s successor in Vienna, Cardinal Christoph Schoenborn, an intellectual whom some commentators have tipped as a possible future Pope.
That’s quite a revelation, in my book – but it doesn’t fit the script that the Benedict-hating media have written, so we’re not hearing too much about it. Also, I suspect that former advisers to John Paul would rather not remind us that the late Pope didn’t do enough to curb sex abuse and cover-ups. Safer to blame Benedict, eh?
Here’s the quote from a report by Philip Pullella of Reuters:Vienna’s Cardinal Christoph Schoenborn, in defence of the pope, told ORF Austrian television on Sunday that Benedict wanted a full probe when former Vienna Cardinal Hans Hermann Groer was removed in 1995 for alleged sexual abuse of a boy.The other side. I suspect he was referring to a Vatican old boys’ club that Cardinal Ratzinger never joined, and which didn’t want sex abuse cases to “damage the good name of the Church” (ie, disturb their back-slapping suppers in favoured trattorie).
But other Curia officials persuaded the then Pope John Paul that the media had exaggerated the case and an inquiry would only create more bad publicity.
“[Ratzinger] told me, ‘the other side won’,” Schoenborn said.
And the irony is that the journalists who have written lazy and hate-filled articles about Benedict XVI – such as this dreadful piece by India Knight, someone I’d previously admired – are unwittingly providing protection to the really compromised figures in the Vatican and bishops’ conferences. [...]
He’s facing a terrible situation, no doubt about it; and no doubt also he made mistakes himself: the fact that he was far more vigilant than other cardinals doesn’t mean he was vigilant enough.
But history will show that it was Benedict XVI, not John Paul II, who initiated the “purification” of the Church to remove its “filth” – his words, and uttered long before this current crisis arose.
Fair. Balanced. American.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Elements of right wing media ready to throw John Paul II under the bus?
If that's what it takes to save Benedict's papacy, they'll do it. Note this piece from The Telegraph.