Models

For a long time, people thought our solar system revolved around the Earth. Copernicus (or Galileo to some) came around and proved the planets revolved around our Sun.

Models are important - they are the perspective of an individual's perception of any given event. Models are always biased, but the objective should be to choose a model with the least bias possible.

How is this achieved?

Scrutinize opposing aspects, think critically, and have an open mind.

"All Truth passes through three stages: First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as self-evident."

- Arthur Schopenhauer

Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn't.

- Mark Twain


These opinions below may be my own or may belong to the authors whom I reference. They are posted for the benefit of mankind, so that we may collectively achieve a common ground and transition into a new golden era as seamlessly as possible.


Thursday, February 28, 2013

Think You're Not Subliminally Influenced? Think Again.

Image from AtlanteanC

I know Wikipedia may not be the most reliable source of information, as people are free to edit and change information on a whim.  But, declassified information by the government is still declassified information -  Wikipedia just happens to be the channel for this knowledge.



Operation Mockingbird

"Operation Mockingbird was a secret Central Intelligence Agency campaign to influence media beginning in the 1950s.

The operation was first called Mockingbird in Deborah Davis' 1979 book, Katharine the Great: Katharine Graham and her Washington Post Empire. More evidence of Mockingbird's existence emerged in the 2007 memoir American Spy: My Secret History in the CIA, Watergate, and Beyond, by convicted Watergate "plumber" E. Howard Hunt and The Mighty Wurlitzer: How the CIA Played America by Hugh Wilford (2008).[1]"


Project MKUltra

"Project MKUltra was the code name of a U.S. government covert research operation experimenting in the behavioral engineering of humans (mind control) through the CIA's Scientific Intelligence Division. The program began in the early 1950s, was officially sanctioned in 1953, was reduced in scope in 1964, further curtailed in 1967 and "officially halted" in 1973.[1] 

The program engaged in many illegal activities;[2][3][4][5] in particular it used unwitting U.S. and Canadian citizens as its test subjects, which led to controversy regarding its legitimacy.[6][7][8][9] MKUltra involved the use of many methodologies to manipulate people's individual mental states and alter brain functions, including the surreptitious administration of drugs (especially LSD) and other chemicals, hypnosis, sensory deprivation, isolation, verbal and sexual abuse, as well as various forms of torture.[10]"


Do you honestly think these people starting feel bad, and stopped the programs altogether? Yea, right.

Once you understand what the word government really means, you can begin to remove the veil.

govern - gov·ern /ˈgəvərn/ Verb
Conduct the policy, actions, and affairs of (a state, organization, or people).
Control, influence, or regulate (a person, action, or course of events).

ment - mind - Latin - mens, mentis  /  demented, mentality

Government = Mind Control. The sooner you wake up, the sooner we all move to a more awakened state of being. There's light at the end of the tunnel.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Greek Former Mayor Gets Life for Embezzlement



Reposted from American Kabuki

Greek Former Mayor Gets Life for Embezzlement
By COSTAS KANTOURIS Associated Press
THESSALONIKI, Greece February 27, 2013 (AP)

The former mayor of Greece's second-largest city and two former top municipal officials were sentenced to life in prison Wednesday, after a court convicted them of embezzling more than €17 million ($22 million) in city funds.

The court ruled that Vassilis Papageorgopoulos, a former champion sprinter who was Thessaloniki's mayor from 1999-2010 and previously a conservative politician, was a key part of the scam. Papageorgopoulos, 65, denied any wrongdoing.

"I declare that I have nothing to do with this case," he told the Thessaloniki court, which convicted him of direct complicity in embezzlement. "Some people will go to their graves weighed down by remorse."

He claimed his trial had turned into a "political process," conducted "to satisfy the general mood that calls for politicians' blood."

Greece is in the throes of a major financial crisis after years of inept public financial stewardship. Popular sentiment runs hot against mainstream politicians seen as responsible for the crisis, which has led to repeated income cuts and tax hikes amid a six-year recession and record-high unemployment.

Papageorgopoulos, a dentist, was a lawmaker with the now-governing New Democracy party from 1981-2008, and served as a junior minister for sport in the early 1990s.



The municipality's former general secretary, Michalis Lemoussias, and former treasurer Panagiotis Saxonis were also given life sentences.

All three appealed their convictions. They were to be jailed later Wednesday.

Two former financial directors were sentenced to 10 and 15 years each, and were released pending their appeal.

Saxonis was responsible for forwarding to social security funds the contributions withheld from municipal employees' salaries. The court found that he allegedly kept that money and, after retaining a 10 percent cut for himself, forwarded the rest to Lemoussias — who allegedly split it with Papageorgopoulos.

The funds were allegedly initially banked in a joint account in the names of Papageorgopoulos and Lemoussias.

A judicial probe was ordered after one of the funds involved noticed that it had not been receiving contributions. Papageorgopoulos has also been charged with alleged money laundering and has been indicted to stand trial over another case of missing municipal funds.

Presiding judge Giorgos Apostolakis said that the former mayor was clearly involved in the embezzlement.

"Papageorgopoulos was in charge, and without his approval Lemoussias could have done nothing," he said. "His silent stance on the sidelines showed that he knew everything."

Papageorgopoulos was a Greek 100-meter sprint champion in the 1970s, holding the national record in the discipline for 21 years, and took part in the 1972 and 1976 Olympics.

60 Lab Studies Now Confirm Cancer Link to a Vaccine You Probably Had as a Child





Dr. Maurice Hilleman made astounding revelations in an interview that was cut from The Health Century -- the admission that Merck drug company vaccines had been injecting dangerous viruses into people worldwide.

Bear in mind that Dr. Hilleman was the developer of Merck's vaccine program. He developed over three dozen vaccines, more than any other scientist in history. He was a member of the U.S. National Academy of Science, the Institute of Medicine, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society. He received a special lifetime achievement award from the World Health Organization. Hilleman was one of the early vaccine pioneers to warn about the possibility that simian viruses might contaminate vaccines.



Dr. Mercola's Comments:
   
The video above has circulated for awhile, and some of you may already have seen it. But I think it's important to revisit and remember history when it comes to vaccines, especially in light of current developments.

For starters, the HPV vaccine Gardasil, which is being vigorously pushed on unsuspecting young girls and women to theoretically guard against cervical cancer still has never been proven to actually prevent cancer. On the contrary, evidence suggests that under certain circumstances the vaccine increases your risk of precancerous lesions by nearly 45 percent, and an ever increasing number of girls are being seriously injured by this unnecessary vaccine.

As of December 13, 2010, 20,915 adverse reactions had been reported in the United States alone, including 89 deaths, 297 miscarriages or stillbirths, and 370 reports of abnormal pap smears post vaccination.

All of this from a vaccine that has only been on the market for four years!

Making matters worse, as of 2009 the US FDA approved Gardasil for use on young boys as well, and the first male death has also been reported. In September of last year, a young boy died just eight days after being vaccinated with Gardasil.

So what's going on here?

Is it possible that vaccines sold by drugmakers like Merck are causing lethal disease? Judging by history, the answer may be yes.

Contaminated Polio Vaccine Responsible for Human Cancer Cases

In 2002, the journal Lancet published compelling evidence that contaminated polio vaccine was responsible for up to half of the 55,000 non-Hodgkin's lymphoma cases that were occurring each year.

What was it contaminated with?

SV40, a cancer-causing monkey virus. The puzzle began in 1994, when Dr. Michele Carbone, a Loyola University researcher, found the virus SV40, which had never before been detected in humans, in half of the human lung tumors he was studying. Since then, 60 different lab studies have confirmed the results, and SV40 has been found in a variety of human cancers, including lung-, brain-, bone-, and lymphatic cancer.

At first no one could fathom how the virus had been transmitted into the human population.

But in the censored interview with Dr. Maurice Hilleman above, Hilleman admits Merck's responsibility in unleashing this virus via their polio vaccine, as well as the likelihood that there was an importing and spreading the AIDS virus in the same manner.

Just Who is Dr. Maurice Hilleman?

Now, for those of you who may think Dr. Hilleman was just another crackpot (he passed away in 2005), think again. He was, and still is, the leading vaccine pioneer in the history of vaccines. He developed more than three dozen vaccines—more than any other scientist in history—and was the developer of Merck's vaccine program.

He was a member of the U.S. National Academy of Science, the Institute of Medicine, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society, and received a special lifetime achievement award from the World Health Organization.

When he was chief of the Department of Respiratory Diseases with what's now the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, he discovered the genetic changes that occur when the influenza virus mutates, known as shift and drift. He was also one of the early vaccine pioneers to warn about the possibility that simian viruses might contaminate vaccines.So Dr. Hilleman knew what he was talking about. And in his own words, "vaccines have to be considered the bargain basement technology for the 20th Century."

Vaccines Can Cause the Very Disease They're Meant to Prevent, and Worse

For years, researchers suggested that millions of vials of polio vaccine, contaminated with SV40, infected individuals between 1953 and 1963 and caused human tumors, and by 1999, molecular evidence of SV40 infections were showing up in children born after 1982. Some experts now suggest the virus may have remained in the polio vaccine until as late as 1999.

Still, the FDA and health authorities turned a blind eye.

In addition, just like Gardasil may well increase your risk of cervical cancer rather than reduce it, the live polio vaccine has also been found to cause polio. And, in rare instances the virus in the vaccine has even been known to mutate into a much deadlier version.  As reported by MSN News in 2009, genetic analysis has proven such mutated viruses have caused at least seven separate outbreaks in Nigeria.

According to the CDC the last case of wild polio in the US—meaning polio caused naturally and not due to the live polio vaccine—occurred in 1979. From 1980 through 1999, there were NO wild polio cases in the US. Instead we had 144 cases of vaccine-associated paralytic polio (VAPP) caused by live oral polio vaccine.

Polio outbreaks in Haiti and the Dominican Republic in 2002 were also traced back to a strain of oral polio vaccine (OPV) that mutated back to virulence.

According to a report by Neil Z. Miller of the Global Vaccine Institute, the live polio virus from the vaccine can remain in your throat for one to two weeks and in your feces for up to two months. So not only is the vaccine recipient at risk, but he or she can potentially spread the disease to others.

In 1999, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommended that the United States replace the live-virus vaccine with an inactivated "killed" virus vaccine, which is what remains in use today. However, the inactivated polio virus vaccine has not been without its share of serious side effects either.

Rotavirus Vaccine Contaminated with Pig Virus

Last year, the US FDA suspended the rotavirus vaccine Rotarix after an independent lab discovered it was contaminated with "a substantial amount" of DNA from the porcine circovirus. In pigs, this virus causes poor growth, weight loss, weakness, enlarged lymph nodes, skin rashes, difficulty breathing, jaundice, stomach ulcers, and sudden death.

As expected, both the FDA and GlaxoSmithKline spokespeople stated that the contaminated Rotarix vaccine carried no known human health risks. However, this is easy to say since there are no studies to confirm or deny a link between these viruses and human disease.

In the case of the polio vaccine, the link between the SV40 virus and human cancer wasn't discovered until 40 years later!  It is actually surprisingly common for vaccines to contain various animal matter, including foreign animal tissues containing genetic material (DNA/RNA).

Once the Rotarix contamination was discovered, new technology was used to test eight infectious attenuated viral vaccines, and in addition to Rotarix, two others contained "unexpected viral sequences":

A measles vaccine was found to contain low levels of the retrovirus avian leukosis (AVL) virus—a virus known to cause cancer in chickens. This despite the fact that vaccine manufacturers have been required to use eggs from leucosis-free stocks for over 40 years.
Rotateq, Merck’s rotavirus vaccine, was found to contain a virus similar to simian (monkey) retrovirus—the SV40 virus previously linked to human cancer.
Are you willing to bet that they a) know what they're talking about, and b) are telling the whole truth and nothing but the truth about the potential health dangers of all these vaccines?

HPV Vaccine Now Routine for Boys as Well...

So far, very few parents have voluntarily lined up their sons for the HPV vaccine, but that may soon change. As reported by Paging Dr. Gupta, the American Academy of Pediatrics' 2011 schedule of recommended routine vaccines for children and teens now includes the HPV vaccine for boys aged 9-18 as well.

Folks, this is a disaster in the making. I shudder to think about the statistics we'll see in a few years if parents fall for this nonsense.

I urge you to consider the risks already revealed in the four short years since Gardasil came on the market. Already, there are close to 21,000 reported incidents of adverse effects and death, despite the fact that only two out of every 10 women in the approved age group have gotten the vaccine so far.

Add to this the fact that an estimated 90 to 99 percent of all adverse effects are never reported, and the abnormally large risks of the HPV vaccine compared to other vaccines should give most people reason to pause.

Although the FDA ultimately dismisses all side effects, including deaths, as being within the norm, even they have stated that:

"In VAERS, a higher proportion of Gardasil reports were of syncope [fainting] and VTEs [venous thromboembolic events] compared with other vaccines."

And according to the National Vaccine Information Center, the incidents of miscarriage and still birth events from Gardasil supersede the same event from all other vaccinations.

According to a recent Sane Vax press release on PR Log:

"There is no doubt the vaccine's safety and efficacy has not been thoroughly investigated. And independent investigation on the safety and efficacy of the HPV vaccines, Gardasil and Cervarix must be conducted before there are more injuries and deaths."

What's most frustrating about this is that not a single one of these 21,000 children and young women needed to be harmed or die.

Why?

There are still outstanding questions about whether HPV is or is not the direct cause of cervical cancer. The FDA knows there are many other co-factors involved with the development of cervical cancer, and as of 2003 acknowledged that "most infections (by HPV) are short-lived and not associated with cervical cancer." The same news release also states that "with proper screening, cervical cancer is avoidable, and if caught early, curable."

In essence, three years before the HPV vaccine came upon the scene, they knew that what was needed—if anything—was simply improved screening methods, such as regular pap smear testing for girls and women that are far less risky than getting an HPV shot.

Interestingly, and disturbingly, routine pap smears have DECLINED, coinciding neatly with the release of the HPV vaccine. Between 2007 and 2010, cervical cancer screening rates declined by nearly 7 percent, the New York Times reported in December of last year.

When you consider that the HPV vaccine increases your risk of cancer if you're already infected with certain types of HPV, this is a double-whammy of bad news since rarely, if ever, are girls and women given HPV pap screening before they get an HPV shot.

It's all madness! Not only is the HPV vaccine is one of the most unnecessary vaccines on the market, it is also the most dangerous! And now they want to unleash it on young boys, and they're trying to get it approved for older women as well.

Weighing Benefits versus Risks

Even without a potential contamination scare, there are serious risks to every vaccine. The HPV vaccine is a perfect example. So before vaccinating you really need to be certain that the benefits will outweigh those risks.

In the case of Rotarix, along with RotaTeq (a similar vaccine made by Merck), the benefits are very questionable, especially if you live in the United States or another developed country. Typically, when a child in the United States contracts rotavirus, and most do in infancy and early childhood, all that is required is lots of rest, good nutrition and plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration from diarrhea. This infection also provides natural immunity that will protect your child for life.

Along with showing little benefit for a disease that is typically entirely treatable with fluids and rest, a recent drug review by the FDA found that Rotarix is associated with an increase in pneumonia-related deaths in children, compared to a placebo.

So with this particular vaccine, children living in developed countries like the US are potentially taking on serious risks with what appears to be very little benefit -- and that was before the contamination was uncovered.

In the case of the HPV vaccine (Gardasil and Cervarix) the choice is clear. It has a high rate of risk and the potential benefits are unproven:

In more than 70 percent of cases, HPV clears up on its own within a few weeks or months. In over 90 percent of cases, it's gone within two years, causing no symptoms or disease.
Only about 26 percent of girls and women ages 14 to 59 have been exposed to any HPV strain at all; and
Only 2 percent have been exposed to strains 16 or 18 – the two that Gardasil and Cervarix protect against – meaning this vaccine is completely unnecessary because HPV infection very rarely leads to cancer.
Women whose partners wore condoms during vaginal intercourse are 70 percent less likely to become infected with HPV. That's a FAR greater level of protection than you can get from this vaccine!
For more in-depth information about the HPV vaccine along with the top 10 reasons why you don't need it, please see this previous article.

The moral of the story?

Do your homework before subjecting your children to any vaccine. A great way to get started is to simply use the Search Feature at the top of each of my Web pages and search my site as it contains a litany of research on vaccine safety, and the lack thereof. The National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) also provides well-referenced information on vaccines and diseases, such as HPV, rotavirus and polio.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Cardinal O'Brien resigns after gay allegations – and won't vote for next Pope. This is a shocking crisis for the Church


Implosion continuing...



Cardinal O'Brien resigns after gay allegations – and won't vote for next Pope. This is a shocking crisis for the Church
By Damian Thompson 

Cardinal O'Brien: sudden resignation

Let's spell this out bluntly. The most senior Catholic cleric in Britain, Cardinal Keith O'Brien of St Andrews and Edinburgh, has been forced to resign ahead of schedule following allegations that he made homosexual advances to younger clergy in his diocese – and isn't expected to attend the conclave to elect the next Pope. There will now be no Briton in the Sistine Chapel when voting takes place. O'Brien's early resignation is believed to have been at the personal insistence of Benedict XVI, in one of his last acts as Pope.

The Cardinal denies the allegations, whose publication has been carefully timed – but his decision will remind the cardinals meeting in Rome next month that allegations against its clergy have now permeated the entire institution.

The next Pope's first priority must be to restore confidence in the sexual probity of the Church. Who on earth is going to be able to do that?

Watch out for real fireworks in Scotland, where tribal Catholicism is dying off. Cardinal O'Brien was a firebrand on the subject of gay sex and the unsuitability of homosexuals for clerical office; his counterpart in Glasgow, Archbishop Philip Tartaglia, is even more outspoken, recently suggesting that a Scottish MP's death was hastened by his homosexuality.

If the charges against O'Brien have any substance to them, then the public credibility of the Scottish Catholic Church will collapse. And the rejoicing of the enemies of conservative Catholicism, who are especially vocal in Scotland, will be deafening.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Papal resignation linked to inquiry into 'Vatican gay officials', says paper


The Vatican is awhirl with rumours about the pope's decision to retire. Photograph: Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images

Pope's staff decline to confirm or deny La Repubblica claims linking 'Vatileaks' affair and discovery of 'blackmailed gay clergy'



A potentially explosive report has linked the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI to the discovery of a network of gay prelates in the Vatican, some of whom – the report said – were being blackmailed by outsiders.

The pope's spokesman declined to confirm or deny the report, which was carried by the Italian daily newspaper La Repubblica.

The paper said the pope had taken the decision on 17 December that he was going to resign – the day he received a dossier compiled by three cardinals delegated to look into the so-called "Vatileaks" affair.

Last May Pope Benedict's butler, Paolo Gabriele, was arrested and charged with having stolen and leaked papal correspondence that depicted the Vatican as a seething hotbed of intrigue and infighting.

According to La Repubblica, the dossier comprising "two volumes of almost 300 pages – bound in red" had been consigned to a safe in the papal apartments and would be delivered to the pope's successor upon his election.

The newspaper said the cardinals described a number of factions, including one whose members were "united by sexual orientation".

In an apparent quotation from the report, La Repubblica said some Vatican officials had been subject to "external influence" from laymen with whom they had links of a "worldly nature". The paper said this was a clear reference to blackmail.

It quoted a source "very close to those who wrote [the cardinal's report]" as saying: "Everything revolves around the non-observance of the sixth and seventh commandments."

The seventh enjoins against theft. The sixth forbids adultery, but is linked in Catholic doctrine to the proscribing of homosexual acts.

La Repubblica said the cardinals' report identified a series of meeting places in and around Rome. They included a villa outside the Italian capital, a sauna in a Rome suburb, a beauty parlour in the centre, and a former university residence that was in use by a provincial Italian archbishop.

Father Federico Lombardi, the Vatican spokesman, said: "Neither the cardinals' commission nor I will make comments to confirm or deny the things that are said about this matter. Let each one assume his or her own responsibilities. We shall not be following up on the observations that are made about this."

He added that interpretations of the report were creating "a tension that is the opposite of what the pope and the church want" in the approach to the conclave of cardinals that will elect Benedict's successor. Another Italian daily, Corriere della Sera, alluded to the dossier soon after the pope announced his resignation on 11 February, describing its contents as "disturbing".

The three-man commission of inquiry into the Vatileaks affair was headed by a Spanish cardinal, Julián Herranz. He was assisted by Cardinal Salvatore De Giorgi, a former archbishop of Palermo, and the Slovak cardinal Jozef Tomko, who once headed the Vatican's department for missionaries.

Pope Benedict has said he will stand down at the end of this month; the first pope to resign voluntarily since Celestine V more than seven centuries ago. Since announcing his departure he has twice apparently referred to machinations inside the Vatican, saying that divisions "mar the face of the church", and warned against "the temptations of power".

La Repubblica's report was the latest in a string of claims that a gay network exists in the Vatican. In 2007 a senior official was suspended from the congregation, or department, for the priesthood, after he was filmed in a "sting" organised by an Italian television programme while apparently making sexual overtures to a younger man.

In 2010 a chorister was dismissed for allegedly procuring male prostitutes for a papal gentleman-in-waiting. A few months later a weekly news magazine used hidden cameras to record priests visiting gay clubs and bars and having sex.

The Vatican does not condemn homosexuals. But it teaches that gay sex is "intrinsically disordered". Pope Benedict has barred sexually active gay men from studying for the priesthood.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

ABC NEWS: Rhode Island Records Show Inner Workings of Legion of Christ


Reposted from American Kabuki 

The house of cards is crumbling down.

Rhode Island Records Show Inner Workings of Legion of Christ
By MICHELLE R. SMITH and NICOLE WINFIELD Associated Press
Feb 15, 2013, 5:07 PM

Documents detailing the dubious fundraising practices of a disgraced Roman Catholic religious order called the Legion of Christ were released to the public Friday, showing how the organization took control of an elderly woman's finances and persuaded her to bequeath it $60 million.

The records include the first-ever depositions of high-ranking Legion officials. They shed light on the inner workings of a secretive congregation placed under Vatican receivership after the Holy See determined that its founder was a spiritual fraud who sexually abused his seminarians and fathered three children with two women.

A Rhode Island Superior Court judge said last year that the documents raised a red flag because a steadfastly spiritual elderly woman transferred millions to "clandestinely dubious religious leaders." But they had been kept under seal until The Associated Press, The New York Times, the National Catholic Reporter and The Providence Journal intervened, arguing that they were in the public interest.

Pope Benedict XVI took over the Legion in 2010 after a Vatican investigation determined that its founder, the late Rev. Marcial Maciel, had lived a double life. The pope ordered a wholesale reform of the order and named a papal delegate to oversee it.

The Legion scandal is significant because it shows how the Holy See willfully ignored credible allegations of abuse against Maciel for decades, all while holding him up as a model of sainthood for the faithful because he brought in money and vocations to the priesthood. The scandal, which has tarnished the legacy of Pope John Paul II, is the most egregious example of how the Vatican ignored decades of reports about sexually abusive priests because church leaders put the interests of the institution above those of the victims.


The will of Gabrielle Mee, who died at age 96 in 2008, is the focus of the lawsuit. Mee's niece, Mary Lou Dauray, had alleged that Mee was defrauded by the Legion and unduly influenced by its priests into giving away her fortune. Her late husband was a onetime director of Fleet National Bank, which has since been absorbed by Bank of America.

Superior Court Judge Michael Silverstein ruled in September that Dauray could not sue, but he noted there was evidence that Mee had been unduly persuaded to change her trusts and will and give the Legion her money. Dauray's lawyer, Bernard Jackvony, said Friday that the documents being released show an orchestrated effort by higher-ups at the Legion to get Mee's money and cover up Maciel's misdeeds.

The Legion says its actions surrounding Mee and her estate were appropriate and honorable. It says it did not exert undue influence over her decision-making, and that the gifts she gave to the order were made of her own free will.

Among the documents being released are depositions given by top-ranking leadership of the Legion, including the Rev. Anthony Bannon, who was once Maciel's deputy, and the Rev. Luis Garza, current head of the Legion's North American operations.

In one deposition, Garza acknowledged that he was on a committee of Legion officials that was created to distribute funds from one of Mee's trusts exclusively for Legion activities.

———

Winfield reported from Rome.
_________________________________________________________________________



Mexican catholic Father Marcial Maciel
 celebrating the solemn Mass on
 August 15, 2005 in Rome.
(-/AFP/Getty Images)



Legion of Christ documents: Who was Father Marcial Maciel?
New documents offer insight into a sex scandal with connections to Pope Benedict just days after his resignation.

GlobalPost correspondent Jason Berry today published a story explaining the significance of a trove of documents ordered to be released Friday about Father Marcial Maciel, founder of the powerful, ultraconservative Legion of Christ. The documents are expected to illuminate the way in which the Legion handled accusations of rampant child sexual abuse and the siring of several illegitimate children by Maciel over several decades.

Here is a primer on Maciel and his relationships with Pope Benedict XVI and Pope John Paul II:

Who was Father Marcial Maciel?

Born in Mexico, the Roman Catholic priest founded the powerful, ultraconservative clerical order Legion of Christ in Mexico City in 1941. Dozens of victims in multiple countries made sexual abuse allegations against Maciel over the course of several decades, dating back to the 1950s.

Though he was suspended in 1956 from his leadership of the Legion by Pope Pius XII after being accused of abusing youths in Mexico, Cardinal Clemente Micara, the Vicar of Rome, reinstated him in 1958 after his predecessor’s death and Maciel enjoyed a long and prosperous career despite the claims of as many as 100 victims.

The Legion publicly apologized for Maciel’s alleged actions in 2009, just months after a new set of allegations emerged, including the fact that Maciel fathered several children during his reign as head of the Legion.

In 2010 the Vatican formally denounced Maciel for living a “life devoid of scruples and authentic religious meaning.”

How was Maciel tied to Pope John Paul II?

A man of great charisma, and the greatest fundraiser of the modern church, Maciel cultivated a relationship with John Paul II, using scenes of the two men in video-tapes that the Legion distributed to its growing base of benefactors. Maciel accompanied John Paul on papal visits to Mexico in 1979, 1990 and 1993, and in 1994 he was celebrated in “an open letter by Pope John Paul II celebrating Maciel's 50th anniversary as a priest, appeared in major newspapers of Mexico City, as a paid advertisement, celebrating Maciel as ‘an efficacious guide to youth.’”

[Jason Berry, Render unto Rome: The Secret Life of Money in the Catholic Church (Crown 2011)]

In 1997 a Hartford Courant investigation by Gerald Renner and Jason Berry identified nine seminary victims of Maciel in on-the-record interviews. The Vatican refused to comment. In 1998, the ex-Legionaries filed a recourse in Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger’s tribunal seeking Maciel’s ouster. But John Paul continued praising him, and the canon law case went nowhere.

Juan Vaca, who left the Legion priesthood, was the first victim to accuse Maciel.

“If John Paul had acted on the allegations against Maciel that Juan Vaca detailed to the pope in a 1989 letter, in a request for dispensation from his vows as a priest, Maciel's career would have been derailed...”

Vaca entered the Legion in Mexico in 1947, at age 10. Repeatedly abused by Maciel in Spain from age 12 through adolescence in Rome, the young priest went to Orange, Conn., as the Legion's U.S. director. In 1976, when Vaca left the Legion, joining the Diocese of be Rockville Centre, Long Island, N.Y., he sent a blistering 12-page letter to Maciel, naming 20 other victims.

With support of Bishop John R. McGann, he sent the letter to the Vatican in a formal protest, which achieved nothing. With McGann's support he petitioned the Vatican to punish Maciel again, sent via diplomatic pouch from the Vatican Embassy, without action. His final attempt in 1989, again through Vatican channels, included an impassioned cover letter to John Paul specifying what Maciel did.”

[Jason Berry and Gerald Renner, Vows of Silence: The Abuse of Power in the Papacy of John Paul II (Free Press, 2004) and documentary by Berry: VowsofSilenceFilm.com]

"My dad told my mom that when John Paul II dies, he was going to be in trouble," said Raul Gonzalez, who filed a lawsuit in 2010 claiming that he is one of Maciel’s children and alleging the late priest molested him beginning when he was 7 years old.

How is Maciel tied to Pope Benedict XVI?

A formal request for investigation submitted to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in 1998 was denied by then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who went on to become Pope Benedict XVI.

A book published by three religious scholars last year alleges “that in 2001 Cardinal Ratzinger and his chief canon lawyer, Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone, modified the statute of limitations in church law regarding sex with minors ‘retroactively in favor of the Legionary founder, and injuring the human rights and legitimate interests of us, his victims.’”

Ratzinger reopened the case in 2004, ordered an investigation of Maciel and was elected pope in 2005. In 2006 the Vatican dismissed Maciel from ministry to “a life of prayer and penitence.” He died in Jacksonville, Florida in 2008 without facing criminal charges. A year later the Legion disclosed that he had a daughter by a paramour from Mexico. Several months later two men came forward claiming to be Maciel’s sons by another woman. The Legion did not dispute their claims.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Friday, February 1, 2013

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