Article

BUSTED: Vatican Caught Trying To Modify Pope’s Interview

After nine months Pope Bergoglio has responded, in a certain sense, to the testimony of Archbishop Viganò on the McCarrick case. In the last post we saw how he responded: very weakly, entrenching himself behind an “I don’t remember.” Here are his exact words: “And when he [Viganò] says that he spoke to me on the day that he came – and I don’t remember if he spoke to me about this, whether it’s true or not. I have no idea.”

In response to this, Archbishop Viganò said to me, very simply, that if the Pope says something like this he is lying.

In order to understand why the Archbishop can make such an assertion, it will be good to reread his testimony concerning the days of June 20-23, 2013:

On the morning of Thursday, June 20, 2013, I went to the Domus Sanctae Marthae, to join my colleagues who were staying there. As soon as I entered the hall I met Cardinal McCarrick, who wore the red-trimmed cassock. I greeted him respectfully as I had always done. He immediately said to me, in a tone somewhere between ambiguous and triumphant: “The Pope received me yesterday, tomorrow I am going to China.”

At the time I knew nothing of his long friendship with Cardinal Bergoglio and of the important part he had played in his recent election, as McCarrick himself would later reveal in a lecture at Villanova University and in an interview with the National Catholic Reporter. Nor had I ever thought of the fact that he had participated in the preliminary meetings of the recent conclave, and of the role he had been able to have as a cardinal elector in the 2005 conclave. Therefore I did not immediately grasp the meaning of the encrypted message that McCarrick had communicated to me, but that would become clear to me in the days immediately following.

And here is Viganò’s account of the audience (which lasted forty minutes) on Sunday, June 23, 2013:

I began the conversation, asking the Pope what he intended to say to me with the words he had addressed to me when I greeted him the previous Friday. And the Pope, in a very different, friendly, almost affectionate tone, said to me: Yes, the Bishops in the United States must not be ideologized, they must not be right-wing like the Archbishop of Philadelphia, (the Pope did not give me the name of the Archbishop) they must be shepherds; and they must not be left-wing — and he added, raising both arms — and when I say left-wing I mean homosexual.” Of course, the logic of the correlation between being left-wing and being homosexual escaped me, but I added nothing else.

Immediately after, the Pope asked me in a deceitful way: “What is Cardinal McCarrick like?”  I answered him with complete frankness and, if you want, with great naiveté: “Holy Father, I don’t know if you know Cardinal McCarrick, but if you ask the Congregation for Bishops there is a dossier this thick about him. He corrupted generations of seminarians and priests and Pope Benedict ordered him to withdraw to a life of prayer and penance.” The Pope did not make the slightest comment about those very grave words of mine and did not show any expression of surprise on his face, as if he had already known the matter for some time, and he immediately changed the subject. But then, what was the Pope’s purpose in asking me that question: “What is Cardinal McCarrick like?” He clearly wanted to find out if I was an ally of McCarrick or not.

Thus it was Pope Bergoglio who asked Viganò about McCarrick. This detail, and the tone of Viganò’s response, which was so dramatic and serious, takes away credibility from the Pope’s present statement, “I don’t remember.” Besides, if this is so, he should have simply said so on August 26. But perhaps – and this is what many people think – he wanted to make sure that there wasn’t any documentation that would dramatically contradict what he said.

But is it possible that upon hearing such a dramatic denunciation of McCarrick, the Pope did not bat an eyelash (as Viganò asserts) and didn’t find out for himself? A person who has worked in the Vatican for a long time made this comment:

Upon hearing this, because of the high commission to which he was elected and his great moral responsibility to both the Church as well as God, he [the Pope] should have made inquiries [regarding McCarrick] in the appropriate offices, at the very least for the sake of prudence and verification. Did McCarrick do these things or not? And what answers would have been given to him if not the truth, of which the particulars are now known, as a result of which McCarrick has been reduced to the lay state?”

Thus, “I don’t remember” is certainly an unbelievable response, as well as an embarrassing one – so embarrassing that it was not reported in the FIRST version of the interview published by Vatican News. That sentence was expunged. Apparently somebody (and we can easily imagine who), apart from their ignorance of journalism, realized that that response was very difficult to defend, and thought it would be best to throw it out.

Except that then they published it, after Stilum Curiae noted the discrepancy with the original, which our outstanding colleague Valentina Alazraki kindly pointed out to us. Here are the two versions of the interview which prove what we are saying:

There are some who continue to think it is true and continue to ask whether you knew about McCarrick or not. In the press of course there are all sorts of things being said.

R: Concerning McCarrick I knew nothing, naturally, nothing. I have said it many different times, I did not know anything. You know that I knew nothing about McCarrick, otherwise I could not have kept silent. The motive of my silence was first of all because they proofs were there, as I said to you, “Judge for yourselves.” It was truly an act of trust. And then also, for the reason that I said to you about Jesus, that in moments of fury one cannot speak, because it’s worse. Everything is going against you. The Lord showed us this way and I follow it.

There are some who continue to think it is true and continue to ask whether you knew about McCarrick or not. In the press of course there are all sorts of things being said.

Concerning McCarrick I knew nothing, naturally, nothing. I have said it many different times, I did not know anything. And when he says that he spoke to me on the day that he came – and I don’t remember if he spoke to me about this, whether it’s true or not. I have no idea! You know that I knew nothing about McCarrick, otherwise I could not have kept silent. The motive of my silence was first of all because they proofs were there, as I said to you, “Judge for yourselves.” It was truly an act of trust. And then also, for the reason that I said to you about Jesus, that in moments of fury one cannot speak, because it’s worse. Everything is going against you. The Lord showed us this way and I follow it.

 

The text of the two versions of the interview: redacted at the top, original at bottom. The arrows indicate the point in the text where the additional language was removed. The red boxes highlight the text that was taken out until Tosatti got the Vatican to fix the omission.

Read more at One Peter Five