Showing posts with label FFI. Show all posts
Showing posts with label FFI. Show all posts

Friday, May 22, 2020

The Case of Vatican Employee -- Msgr Weninger, Ex-Diplomat, Priest, Curia Official, Freemason


Book presentation with Msgr. Weninger on February 12 in Vienna; next to him Georg Semler, the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Austria, and on the far left the publisher Georg Löcker - fellow lodge brothers.

Von P. Paolo Maria Siano*

[Katholisches] In 1982 Michael Heinrich Weninger (born 1951 in Wiener Neustadt) joined the diplomatic service of the Republic of Austria, where he had a brilliant career. Among other things, he was from 1993 to 1997 head of the Austrian embassy in Belgrade and from 2008 to 2009 in Sarajevo. [1] Weninger, who has been a widower since 2009, was ordained a priest by Cardinal Christoph Schönborn in Vienna on June 24, 2011. Msgr. Weninger is also a member of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue.


In October 2014, the website of the East Lancashire Provincial Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons (English masonry was founded by the masters of the United Grand Lodge of England - UGLE) announced that a few days earlier, three ceremonies were held in Austria in the presence of an English Masonic delegation Installation by masters. The ceremonies took place in two boxes of the Mark Master Masons (MMM) [2] - in the St. Margaret's Lodge of MMM and the New Quarries Lodge of MMM, which is the oldest English-speaking Mark Master Mason Lodge in Austria - and in a Royal-Ark-Marine Lodge (RAM) held at the New Shores Lodge of RAM. [3] These three Austrian lodges with English names are associated with English Freemasonry and use rituals in English.

In each of these three lodges the "Brother" Msgr. Michael Weninger ("Bro. Rev. Michael Weninger") as chaplain for 2014–2015, who even celebrated a commemorative Mass on the fifth anniversary of the opening of the New Quarries Lodge and St. Margaret’s Lodge. 500 Freemasons of all obediences were present at the Mass. The Masonic website adds that “Bro. Rev. Michael ”(Bro. Stands for “brother ”, that's how the Freemasons call themselves) is well qualified for the position of lodge chaplain, since he lives in the Vatican and works as a member of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue:

"Since he lives in the Vatican as a member of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue but works in Rome."

Anyone who knows a little about Masonic matters knows that Msgr. Weninger, in order to be appointed chaplain of a lodge (or rather three lodges), had been initiated as a Mason of the first degree (apprentice) years before, then had to be transferred to the second degree (journeyman) before finally moving to the third degree, the master degree. Then he must have climbed to the higher grades, first as a master mason, then as a Royal Ark Mariner. It cannot be ruled out that he completed other “side degrees”.


It is therefore likely that Msgr. Weninger became a Mason even before he was ordained. I remember years ago someone mentioned the case of a former Austrian diplomat who had joined the Roman Curia as a priest and was considered a member of Freemasonry. It is only now that I have no doubt that this information is factual. And so we come to our days.

On Wednesday, February 12, 2020, Msgr. Michael Heinrich Weninger in Vienna in the presence of Georg Semler, Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Austria (GLvÖ), presented his 500-page book “Lodge und Altar. On the Reconciliation of the Catholic Church and Regular Freemasonry.” In it he claims (I summarize):

that the Church's rejection of Freemasonry was motivated more by political than religious reasons;
that the Church was unable to distinguish between regular and irregular Freemasonry;
that the freemasons of regular freemasonry (e.g. the UGLE, the GLvÖ etc.) are not excommunicated
and that you can be Catholic and “regular” Freemason.

Msgr. Weninger even sent his book to Pope Francis, Cardinal Schönborn and various Vatican figures. Grand Master Semler praised the book as an important step towards reconciliation between the Church and Freemasonry. [4]

The Freemasons and Msgr. Weninger hope to meet with the Holy Father or with the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. [5]

Dialogue with members of the Catholic hierarchy is not new to Austrian Freemasonry. From 1968 to 1983 the Archbishop of Vienna, Cardinal Franz König, was the protagonist of the dialogues with representatives of Austrian, Swiss and West German Freemasonry, which culminated in the 1970 Lichtenau Declaration in favor of the compatibility of the Catholic Church and regular Freemasonry. It states that the latter is not a danger, which is why excommunication should  be lifted.

Later, the German bishops in 1980 and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in 1981 and 1983 reiterated the incompatibility between the church and the lodge, and that was not for political but for doctrinal reasons, after Masonic writings by members.

Another interesting novelty is that the book by Msgr. Weninger is based on his dissertation, which he submitted to the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, with which he received his doctorate and which was published by this university in November 2019. That is its title: “Wisdom. Strength. Beauty. On the reconciliation of the Catholic Church and regular Freemasonry, Tesi Gregoriana (Spiritualità series, 16), PUG 2019, p. 523.

The case of Msgr. Weninger raises a few questions and considerations:

1) Why did this website of the English masonry reveal the Masonic status of Msgr. Weninger, who is so well integrated into the Vatican? Was it an accidental carelessness or a clever display?

2) How long is Msgr Weninger's membership in Freemasonry in the Archdiocese of Vienna and the Roman Curia?

3) How is Msgr. Weninger's canonical position affected by his "coming out"?

4) How do Freemasonic prelates behave towards their subordinates who express amazement and concern about the affiliation of clerics and lay Catholics to Freemasonry?

5) Can the so-called "Masonic regularity" be a criterion for the canonical rehabilitation of Anglo-Saxon Freemasonry? In fact, I find a certain contradiction with the topic of “Masonic regularity.” For example, the United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE) recognizes the Grand Lodge of Austria (GLvÖ) as "regular", which in turn recognizes the Grand Orient of Italy (GOI) as "regular", which the UGLE does not recognize. Now, what credibility can the Grand Lodge of Austria claim before the Roman Curia, since it recognizes the Grand Orient of Italy as "regular", which is clearly a secular and esoteric Freemasonry with a long anti-clerical tradition?

6) Austrian Freemasonry wants a dialogue with the Pope, the Prefect of Faith and other personalities from the Vatican. Good. I hope, however, that the Austrian Freemasonry will not only talk to Msgr. Weninger's book, but also the rituals of the three degrees of apprentice, journeyman and master; the rituals of the high degree rites to which the masters of the Grand Lodges of Austria have access and the esoteric and initiatic writings that are reserved for the Masonic masters (there are, I know that very well).

Only careful review of such extensive documentation can enable ecclesiastical authorities and Catholic scholars to make a real and objective judgment about Freemasonry.

Finally, for reasons of space, I limit myself to this brief information: Regarding the English Master Mark Masonry (MMM)  and the Royal Ark Mariner (the RAM level is reserved for MMM), which is connected to the above-mentioned United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE) I know with certainty that even bricklayers of these degrees, who are apparently "biblical", are able to maintain esotericism. The same thing happens in Austrian Freemasonry. Therefore, the statements by Msgr. Weninger is anything but convincing.

* Father Paolo Maria Siano belongs to the Order of the Franciscans of the Immaculate (FFI); the church historian with a doctorate is considered one of the best Catholic experts in Freemasonry, to whom he has dedicated several standard works and numerous essays.


1] Delicate and responsible missions, since from 1991 to 1995 there was war in the crumbling Yugoslavia. This also applies to operations in Sarajevo, the formal capital of the EU protectorate of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the de facto capital of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in which Muslim Bosniaks and Catholic Croats have been united since 1996.

Austrian diplomacy emphatically supported this compulsory situation, as if trying to force “fraternity” in an experiment.

2]  The Mark Masonry originated in England in 1756. This makes the mark master degree one of the oldest freemason degrees. It was only introduced in Austria in 2009. 

[3] The Royal-Ark Mariner-Logen (RAM) and the Mark Master Masonry (MMM) are part of the Anglo-Saxon high degree system, with the RAM standing above the MMM. Both MMM and RAM degrees accept masters of all creeds, while certain obediences only allow "Trinitarian Christians".

 [4] The Grand Master said: "This book is very important. Even if there is practically no longer any conflict with the Church, we in the Grand Lodge have a vital interest in making a gesture of reconciliation. ”

 [5] A few days ago, the online Freemason encyclopedia Freemason Wiki published a detailed review of the Weninger book and the following note: "How important Weninger's book is taken internationally is shown by two events: Christoph Bosbach, Grand Master of the United Grand Lodges of Germany, on the book presentation" traveled specially from Catholic Cologne ". And more importantly, when the Pontifical Gregorian University learned of his research there, he explicitly encouraged the author to submit the book to her as a dissertation. The Gregoriana is run by Jesuits; the current Pope Francis is also one. "

Baron Yves Marsaudon: A High Ranking Freemason in the Order of Malta

Yves Marsaudon (1899-1985), High-Level Mason and Minister of the Order of Malta.
Edit: doing some housework as it were, and posting up some articles whose information didn't seem to get much circulation beyond Infowars and Alex Jones' resident Freemason, Leo Zagami., who discussed Msgr. Weninger. It sure looks like someone publicly declared that Masons aren't excommunicated and no one said anything about it after, at least not anyone in authority.

Update: Well, Complicit Clergy had an article up on him in February when this first came out., and this from a normie agglomerator site run by "academics".

by Father Paolo M. Siano FFI*

On 2 February 2017, the journalist Riccardo Cascioli summed up the contents of a letter from Pope Francis sent to Raymond Cardinal Burke, Patron of the Sovereign Order of Malta, on 1 December. In it, he issued "a call for vigilance against the affiliation of Members of the Order of Malta to Freemasonry and to take decisive action to stop those responsible for the distribution of contraceptives through aid programmes in poor countries." It seems that the letter does not speak directly of "freemasonry", but of "associations, movements and organizations that are against the Catholic faith or of relativistic imprint". Cascioli would do well to see at least an implicit reference to Freemasonry.

I was asked: "How is it possible for a Freemason to enter the Order of Malta?" I must confess that I have no further knowledge of the current situation in the Order of Malta, to which I wish in any case that they prosper in complete Catholic fidelity to their religious and charitable charism.
Yves Marsaudon, 1926 Eintritt in die Loge, 1946 in den Malteserorden.
Yves Marsaudon, 1926 entry into the lodge, 1946 to the Order of Malta.

What I know with certainty, however, is that, in the distant past, some cases of dual membership in the Order of Malta and Freemasonry have become known. Probably the most sensational case was that of Baron Yves Marie Antoine Marsaudon (1899-1985). Important details to get to know his life and his thinking, are present in his books "L'Ocuménisme vu par un Franc-Maon de Tradition" (The Ecumenism from the Point of View of a Traditional Freemason, Editions Vitiano, Paris 1964), "De l'initiation masonnique l'orthodoxie chrétienne" (From the Masonic Initiation to Christian Orthodoxy, Dervy, Paris 1965) and "Souvenirs et Réflexions. Un Haut Dignitarie de la Franc-Ma'onnerie révéle des secrets" (Memories and Thoughts. A high dignitary of Freemasonry reveals secrets, Editions Vitiano, Paris 1976).
Growing up in a Catholic family, Yves is only vaguely a believer and at the age of 16-17 and falls into a philosophical and religious indifference. In 1926 he was accepted as a Freemason in the Grand Lodge of France (GLDF). At the time, he was a young entrepreneur who worked in trade with South America. In 1936 he received the 33rd and highest degree of the Old and Adopted Scottish Rite (AASR). In 1937 he became a member of the High Council, the highest authority of the AASR in France, to which the Grand Lodge is attached.

As a high-level Freemason, he turned his back on the Catholic Church and converted to the Orthodox Church in France. He described himself as a Freemason of the (Freemasonic) "tradition" and as a "spiritualist".

In 1964, the High Council of the Old and Adopted Scottish Rite (AASR) split. A group of 33rd-degree freemasons established a new High Council of the AASR for France and joined the Grande Loge Nationale Francoise (GLNF), the only Masonic obedience recognized as regular by English Freemasonry. Marsaudon 33° belongs to this group that crosses. Since this year, he has been a member of the new High Council of the GLNF. He is even (perhaps 1976 or earlier) appointed Sovereign Grand Comtur, the highest honorary officer of the High Council of the Old and Adopted Scottish Rite.

In 1946, at a time when Marsaudon was already a 33rd-grade Freemason, he joined the Sovereign Order of Malta. As Magistral Grand Cross Knight in gremio religionis, he was directly under the leadership of the Order in Rome. In the same year he became Extraordinary Envoy and Plenipotentiary Minister of the Order in France. He maintained close diplomatic contacts with the then Apostolic Nuncio in Paris, Monsignor Angelo Roncalli, the future Pope John XXIII and Saint. In 1951, after criticism of the "integralist party", as the staunch Freemason Marsaudon calls his critics of the Roman Curia, he resigned from his post as Plenipotentiary Minister of the Order of Malta, but remained its Emeritus Minister. This at least until 1976, the year in which his "memoirs" appear in book form (perhaps longer). In this book he revealed that he was not the only Masonic Knight of Malta.
Die Ökumene aus der Sicht eines Freimaurers
Ecumenism from the point of view of a Freemason

Let's take a quick look at some of the ideas of the Freemason Marsaudon, which he presented in his books. In the aforementioned book of 1976, he describes himself as a pupil of the 33rd-grade Freemason, Oswald Wirth, whom he calls a "Great Initiate". Wirth (1860-1943) is an occult Freemason who had moved from the Grand Orient of France to the Grand Lodge (GLDF). In the same book by Marsaudon 33° there are various esoteric images typical of the books of his master Wirth. Marsaudon is convinced of the Templar and Rosicrucian roots of modern Freemasonry and claims that the Rosicrucian is "Christian" and "cabalistic". In his 1964 book, he praises the thinking of Teilhard de Chardin (p. 60).
Marsaudon writes that the Church is a "prisoner of dogmatic texts". To underline this assertion, he describes the situation of a remarried divorcee in a way that is as exaggerated as it is erroneous, but sentimental: "he must not be admitted to the sacraments and will die without absolution, unless he denies the mother of his children ...". Therefore Marsaudon justifies the divorce and cites as positive examples the Protestant "churches" and the Orthodox Church, while in the Roman Church he sees only dogmatic and inhuman intransigence (p. 63f).

Marsaudon despises the primacy of the Roman Pope and shares the view of André Gide (1869–1951), an aberrosexual Nobel prize winner from Calvinist upbringing: "What counts is not to be Catholic or Protestant, but simply to be a Christian".

Marsaudon makes fun of certain dogmas, such as Hell (p. 65). He rejects the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, as well as the mediation role of Mary and the infallibility of the Pope in matters of faith and morality (p. 85f)

Marsaudon sees ecumenism in the Masonic sense as over-dogmatic and relativistic. As late as 1976, he wished that Roman Catholicity would open up to the equality of all Christian denominations ... Marsaudon asserts that "the Orthodox Church is closest to the Gospels, while the Vatican must bow to Freemasonry and take a step towards rapprochement, not the other way around" (p. 363).

Marsaudon considers himself tolerant of philosophical and metaphysical questions. He lets a certain panvitalism seep through when he declares to respect every way of life (environment, oceans, plants, animals) because "life is one". He is against abortion, but accepts contraception. He also reveals esoteric convictions when he claims that the animals are our "unknown superiors", a term typical of the hierarchy of the esoteric movement of Martinism, and that "we must reclaim paradise on earth" (p. 380ff).

The Marsaudon case is indeed irritating: a 33rd-degree Freemason is granted admission to the Order of Malta and given a high dignity that guarantees him diplomatic immunity, while at the same time advocating divorce (and implicitly advocating Communion for the remarried divorcees, until he eventually even transitions to the Orthodox Church) and advocates contraception, which is anti-Catholic and anti-Roman , and who acts as an anti-dogmatic and relativistic ecumenist as well as an esoteric animal and environmentalist.

Whether there is anyone in the Order of Malta today who shares all or part of Marsaudon's heretical beliefs, I do not know. But even if this were the case, I would not be surprised by the current ecclesial situation.

*Father Paolo M. Siano is a priest of the Order of the Franciscans of immaculates. He is considered one of the best Catholic connoisseurs of Freemasonry.
Photo: Corrispondenza Romana
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Friday, July 19, 2019

The New Franciscans of the Immaculata

(London) On July 5, 2019, the southern English city of Portsmouth was without its knowledge,
 for a brief but important moment, something of the center of the Catholic world. The coastal city is the birthplace of Charles Dickens and was the starting point of the Allied landing in Normandy. It has also been the seat of a bishop since 1882, after over 300 years of prohibition,
the Catholic hierarchy could be rebuilt in England.

Since 2012, appointed by Pope Benedict XVI, Msgr. Philip Anthony Egan heads the diocese with around 250,000 Catholics (eight percent of the population). Bishop Egan consecrated four Franciscans to priests in the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist last July 5 - in the traditional rite.

The brothers of St. Francis of Assisi are former Franciscans of the Immaculata, who were incardinated by Bishop Egan into his diocese of Portsmouth.

The four candidates

The Order of the Franciscans of the Immaculata, founded by Fr. Stefano Maria Manelli, has been suffering a great ordeal since the summer of 2013. The still young order, which looked back to the original charism of the order’s founder, was followed by Pope Benedict XVI. in the Motu proprio Summorum pontificum, and was transformed from a New Mass-religious order to an Old Rite order, since he was committed in his charism to tradition. But he remained subordinate, a complete exception, in the  Roman Congregation of Religious. In pastoral care the Order was bi-ritual, in-house old-ritual. The canonical community, first established in 1990, grew rapidly and received considerable appointments from Europe as well. Towards the end of the pontificate of Benedict XVI, it seemed that the Franciscans of the Immaculata could even become a role model for other new rite-religious orders. It was especially the  young members of other orders were interested in their way.


A few months after the papal change, however, came the turn. The protective hand of Benedict XVI. was replaced by the punitive hand of Francis. In July 2013, the Order's leadership was deposed by the Order's Congregation and the Order was placed under the administration of a Commissar without any reason. This raged in the Order and smashed much of what had been built. With the decree of the Commissar by Rome, the Order had been forbidden to perform the traditional Rite. This left no doubt against whom and what the hard measure was directed. All relevant decisions were declared null and void. Each priest had to apply individually for a special permit if he wanted to continue to celebrate in the traditional Rite. Monasteries were abolished, the internal seminary was closed  and pilgrimage sites and churches entrusted to it were removed from the Order.


Against the founders of the Order and Superior General until the Commissar  came, a slander campaign was carried out, which was also carried out in court. The Commissar embarrassingly failed and reinforced the impression of arbitrary and ideologically motivated persecution. Not only the vocations collapsed, even the friars themselves were urged to leave the Order because the original religious charisma was eliminated. At this point all the harshness became apparent, some even reveal the persecutor’s ugliness. The friars, who reconstituted the Order as an Old Rite order and thereby wanted to submit to the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei (now a division of the Congregation of the Faith), this was denied. The friars, who wanted to leave the Order and ask for release from their vows to found a new order, were forbidden to do so. The then Commissar even threatened Italian bishops who would allow Franciscans of Immaculata in their dioceses admission. The bishop of Albenga-Imperia, who had promoted the Order particularly, gave him three settlements there,
entrusted pilgrimage churches and dared to defend the Order against unjustified persecution, was made emeritus by Pope Francis.

The same happened to a Filipino bishop, who received the former Franciscan Immaculata in his diocese and helped to found a new order there.


Others found refuge in England, which was previously tolerated by Rome, because they live their charism without a stir. Bishop Egan granted a new home to one of the Order's brilliant heads, Father Serafino M. Lanzetta. In 2015, he entrusted him with the parish of St. Mary in Gosport and appointed him pastor. P. Lanzetta made the New-Parish a bi-ritual one. The change that became possible coincided with the death of the first Roman Commissar, Capuchin Fidenzio Volpi.

Fr. Lanzetta enabled the other brothers of his order to settle in Gosport. Thus the exile of the
seminarians, who were in the middle of their studies, came to an end when the storm broke over the Order. A few days ago they were consecrated by Bishop Egan, according to their sensitivity, in the traditional form of the Roman Rite.


In the diocese of Portsmouth the former Franciscans of Immaculata can live. Their community is called the Family of the Immaculate Virgin and Saint Francis. It already has nine priests, brothers and seminarians. So far, two other priests have worked together with Fr. Lanzetta in Gosport, who are now strengthened by the four new priests Fra Philemon, Fra Rosario, Fra Faustinus and Fra Michael. Thus, the number of Mass sites reached can be expanded. Wherever the priests of the new community come, they also bring the traditional Rite and tradition.


In recent years Bishop Egan has been particularly sensitive to the priests and the faithful who are associated with the traditional Rite. In September 2018, he established a personal parish of the traditional Rite in Reading, which he entrusted to the FSPC. In March 2019, he paid a visit to St. Michael's School in Burghclere, which is located in his diocese and run by the Society of Saint Pius X  (FSSPX).


In Gosport, a seed has become a small plant.


Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: MiL / MyAlbum / Saint Marys
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Franciscans of the Immaculate Win Important Legal Battle

Franciscan of Immaculate marching for life. New points for victory, but without a rethinking in the Vatican there seem no end to the torments in sight.

(Rome) The Franciscans of the Immaculate, oppressed by the Congregation of Religious with the approval of Pope Francis, have achieved another victory, at least a moral victory, which should more than ever be the occasion of a process of reflection in the Vatican. There aren’t any indications so far.

Despite its young age, the Order, which was not established until the early nineties, stood out for the great number of religious and priestly vocations, even in Europe, where most of the orders are moaning because of a lack of vocations.

Old Rite and missionary - and a thorn in the eye

The secret: As large parts of the Church and also many members of the Order, especially during and after the Council, were enthusiastic about "cutting off old braids" and introducing all sorts of innovations in the name of new "freedoms," from the setting aside of the Order's name to the abandonment of the Order's habit, from the convenient expansion of the cells while at the same time reducing the communal prayer of the hours, two friars minor went the opposite way. They asked to leave the company of their "progressive" confreres and retire to an abandoned monastery and revive it. There, they did not seek to subject their religious rule to an "aggiornamento" but to build on the first Franciscan rule of the order and deepen Marian spirituality.

The two Minorites, Fr. Stefano Maria Manelli and Fr. Gabriele Pellettieri, were joined by others, and they became the founders of the Franciscans of the Immaculate, a Marian and traditional order. As Pope Benedict XVI. freed the Immemorial Rite with the Motu proprio Summorum Pontificum and procured a home in the church, the young religious community did not hesitate to follow him in it. The Franciscans of the Immaculate became the first and so far only new religious order, which has returned to the traditional rite, but remained pastoral and bi-ritual. The special charisma that has distinguished the Order from other altruistic communities was its missionary zeal.

Benedict XVI. held his protective hand over the Order, which seemed to become as unique and interesting a model as it was to young members of other orders.

The Commissar 

Then there was the unexpected resignation Benedict XVI. and election of Pope Francis. In the Order, a tiny minority of five disgruntled, liberal brothers had complained because of the change to the Immemorial Rite in the Vatican. Under Benedict XVI. the Congregation of the Religious did not dare to take action. Under Francis, it immediately received the tiny minority's complaint as an opportunity to crack down on the unloved model - and radically.

Order's founder, Father Manelli
Manelli was deposed as Superior General and placed under house arrest. The order's leadership was removed from office, the priests were forbidden to celebrate the Immemorial Rite, and an apostolic commissar was appointed. In contradiction to Summorum Pontificum, each priest had to individually apply for a special permission to celebrate in the forma extraordinaria.

In order to exorcise the Order's charisma, monasteries were closed, its seminary closed and evictions were carried out. The conversion into an Ecclesia Dei community was prohibited as well as the founding of a new order. Bishops were threatened if they accepted Franciscans of the Immaculate who left the Order.

In that summer of 2013, a veritable destructive campaign was kindled. The consequences did not remain: the first was the drying up of the vocations.

No reason

The Summit: To date, the Vatican has not given any reasons for this radical interference, let alone any charges. So far there was no possibility for the Franciscans of Immaculate to defend themselves against the oppressive measures of the papacy or at least to defend themselves. The requests and queries of Fr. Manelli to be received and heard by the Pope were not answered by Francis.

As Commissar, the Congregation of Religious used the Capuchin, Father Fidenzio Volpi. A man who was possessed of no sympathy for the tradition or the Immemorial Rite. Accordingly, he raged against the Order. Unofficially, let it be cryptically hinted that the order was being cleaned up because of "Lefebvrian deviationism." Later, he even claimed that the Order had been put under temporary administration four months after the election of Pope Francis, because it wanted to "overthrow" the Pope. That tradition and the Immemorial Rite is the real enemy became more and more clear, if there was any need for further proof.

In May 2013, founder Manelli celebrated his 80th birthday (see Father Stefano Maria Manelli is 80 - success story of the Franciscans of the Immaculate: Old Rite and Missionary), unaware of what a storm would soon rage over his work. Meanwhile, Fr. Manelli is 85 years old and has been under house arrest for nearly five years, as ordered by the Vatican.

The Book of Slander

By contrast, Commissioner Volpi has been long dead. Today, the second Commissar, who is a bit more reserved than his predecessor, is in office today. Volpi died in the midst of a civil and criminal dispute before Italian courts. The way in front of state courts is at least open to Father Manelli and representatives of the lay organizations affiliated to the Order because the Vatican has no access to it.

The book by Loredana Volpi
Volpi had been condemned by the Italian court for defamation, to payment of damages, the execution of which was prevented by his death.

Loredana Volpi, a niece of the deceased commissar, saw the reputation of her uncle damaged. Together with Mario Castellano, she wrote the book "Truth and Justice for Father Fidenzio Volpi. A dark matter in the pontificate of Pope Francis" (Verità e giustizia per padre Fidenzio Volpi, Una oscura vicenda nel Pontificato di Papa Francesco). Now, she has admitted to accusing the Order of unproven things and writing slander against those in charge of the lay religious organizations.

"While the Acting Administration of the Franciscans of the Immaculate continues in its sixth (!) year, without for the time being, foreseeing a possible solution to this unusual affair, which together with other actions bordering on arbitrariness (see the Order of Malta) like a blemish on this pontificate, has been a important manner of procedure in the indictment and slander-construct that has poisoned this story," said Vatican Marco Tosatti.
Mario Castellano, the co-author with Loredana Volpi, was a consultant to Commissar Volpi. Numerous hints, tips and "recommendations" from Fr. Alfonso Bruno, the main opponent of Fr. Manelli, who became the main beneficiary of the provisional administration of the Order, were probably included in the book.

In each country there are keywords that function as ciphers. If you want to slander someone, it is sufficient to incorporate these keywords and to drop some allusions in the subjunctive. Castellano and Volpi in their book brought the Order and lay organizations into contact with the Camorra, the Neapolitan mafia. The mafia is good for slander in Italy.

Loredana Volpi was received in audience, apparently for merit in the struggle against the Franciscans of the Immaculate, even by Pope Francis, to whom she presented a copy of her book.

The Apology


The founders Manelli and Pellettieri
The two authors, however, made a mistake. In their references in the book, they named the leading lay representatives by name. These filed a criminal complaint for defamation. This was to prove the truth, which was obviously not possible. To escape prosecution, Loredana Volpi decided to come to an out of court settlement with the plaintiffs. She undertook to write a letter of apology to be published in the leading daily newspaper of Southern Italy, in Il Mattino, and in the national daily La Repubblica. The left-liberal Repubblica was not the only newspaper to participate in the campaign against the Franciscans of the Immaculate. The ruling may have fallen on it because it is the only newspaper that Pope Francis reads daily, according to his own statement.

However, in order for the message to arrive at the governing pope, who bears the responsibility for the whole case, Volpi must, as she had handed him a book, also make her apologies directly.

Tosatti published excerpts from the letter of apology:

"It is absolutely certain that the statements employed are [...] not justified, being untrue, and for that reason they must be considered absolutely baseless and unjustified. In that sense, I renew to you my formal apology for the unfortunate and unjustified conduct towards you, and I inform you that the present letter will be published in the following ... media organizations and also on the Internet so that it may be widely used to redress the damage caused."
In return, those affected withdrew their ad.

The one most principally responsible is Pope Francis

The incident proves "once more," according to Tosatti, that the whole affair, which brought a most extraordinary, flourishing, young order to the brink of annihilation, is based on a construct of unproven allegations, rumors, baseless allusions, numerous verbal aggressions, and unbelievable slander. In short: it is an intrigue. The intriguers, that's for sure, seem partly personal, but partly ideologically motivated.

The ultimate responsibility for this lies not only with Pope Francis, because he endorsed the interventions of the Congregation of Religious, but above all because he has put both the male and the female branch, which was also placed under provisional administration at a later time, with two separate actions he refused to appeal to the Supreme Court of the Apostolic Signatura against the measures of the Congregation of Religious. Thus, he decided by virtue of his powers as an absolute monarch. Why so much emphasis on an Order with which he had never had direct contact? The ordinary legal process would have clarified the legality and validity of the measures of the  Congregation of Religious and above all revealed what it is all about. That was (and is) precisely, obviously not desired.

Loredana Volpi's apology, according to Marco Tosatti, "casts a heavy shadow on the credibility of the Fronde [faction] of adversaries," arrayed against Father Manelli and his Order.

Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: MiL / Chiesa e postconcilio / Corrispondenza Romana
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Friday, September 16, 2016

15 Cloisters Dissolved: What Remains of the Order of the Franciscans of the Immaculate?

What Remains of the Franciscans of the Immaculate?
(Rome) How far has the destruction of the Order of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate progressed? This is the updating of a chapter that is like a dark shadow on the pontificate of Pope Francis.
In 1969 two Fathers Minor, Stefano Maria Manelli and Gabriele Maria Pellettieri, asked the Father General of the Order, after a thorough study of Fontes Franciscani, to be allowed to start a "new experience of Franciscan life" back to its original rigor. In 1970 an abandoned monastery of the Order was made ​​available to them where they gathered more men over time, and with the establishment of a female branch, women also joined. In 1990, the Community was canonically recognized as a separate order.

The Peculiarity of the Young Order

The Order represented an anomaly of Catholic orders until July 2013. While the old religious orders steeped in tradition suffer decline and waste away, the young Franciscan Order saw a veritable blooming of vocations.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Franciscans of the Immaculate: Father Manelli Initiates Criminal Complaint For Slander



Father Alfonso Bruno

(Rome) The Congregation for Religious' struggle against the   Franciscans of the Immaculata  is going into a new round On March 2nd, the  legal representatives of the founder and General Superior dismissed by the Vatican, Father Stefano Manelli, has issued a complaint to the state prosecutor of Avellino. 
He founded the Order in the 1970s, it was recognized by the Holy See in 1990, returned to the original Franciscan Rule and also followed Pope Benedict liturgically.   After the Motu proprio Summorum Pontificum  he implemented the traditional liturgy internally, while offering the Sacraments in both forms of the Roman Rite for pastoral reasons. Thus the Order was an absolute exception, because it was the only Old Rite religious order of the Congregation for Religious, and not under the Papal Commission of Ecclesia Dei. What appeared to be taken in a special dynamic under Pope Benedict XVI., because the Franciscans of the Immaculata, in contrast to other new ritual orders, was an attractive example of an Old Rite Order  that was also missionary in character, became under Pope Francis, the complete opposite. Now the protective umbrella  of the  Ecclesia-Dei Communities is completely absent.

Slander Campaign Against the Franciscans of the Immaculata

Attorney Enrico Tuccillo lodged a complaint two weeks ago, of slander, and the formation of a criminal organization. In this way the founder is defending himself, in the name of his brothers and sisters against the ongoing "slander campaign," which was directed initially against the men's and subsequently against the women's branch of the order.  On November 4.  2015 the  Corriere della Sera  made an appeal from direct or indirect statements by  "concerned parties" in an article series with various horror  stories about the Franciscans of the Immaculate. Similar slander campaigns have happened in the past already against other religious communities and have mostly had their origins in inner-ecclesiastical conflicts. The mass media has likewise been ever ready themselves  to assist progressive circles.  
The Congregation of Religious reacted with the introduction of an  Apostolic Commissar  to the female order and justified this step just as they did the Commisarate administration of the male branch in July of 2013. The sisters were accused that they  "did not succeed in assimilating the riches of Concilar doctrine and the subsequent papal magisterium in their consecrated life in a reasonable way and to use it in the context of their apostolic life and mission."

The Rebellious Within the Order Against  Pater Manelli are Given a Name 

With the charge,  now the opposition within the Order who have triggered and expedited in collaboration with the Roman Congregation of Religious, against the  Franciscans of the Immaculata, have a name. Rome has not named till today any reasons for the radical clampdown on the blooming religious order,  which from many points of view represent an anomaly among Catholic religious communities. It has been maintained from different sides, that the Congregation for Religious have only reacted based on a petition from members to this Congregation.  The internal opponents of the founder, Father Manelli, have never been officially identified. The letter actually does this. Less believable is that it was the catalyst for the various interventions of the Congregation.  The Order was a thorn in the side of the Congregation and other heads of religious communities for a long time.  Under  Benedict  XVI., who stood fully behind the Franciscans  of the  Immaculata, Cardinal Braz de Aviz, Prefect of the Congregation for Religious, dared not move against the young order. Under  Pope Francis, who makes no bones about his antipathy to the traditional Rite, the playing field was  fundamentally altered.
With Pater Manelli's legal conplaint, the names now lay on the table. That is, "not an easily introduced step, which has become necessary for the protection of many of the Order's brothers and sisters," said Manelli's attorney.

Three Sisters, Six Priests and Two Laity Cited

The complaint is against the three religious sisters or former sisters,  Lattanzi, Turturiello und Lovine, against six priests and two laymen.  Among the priests there is  Pater Alfonso Bruno, who is considered the actual instigator and leader of the uprising against the founder. Father Bruno already belongs to the leadership imposed by the Vatican and was, under the late Apostolic Commissar, Father  Fidenzio Volpi, who as his right hand as General Secretary, actually became the new highest ranking member  of the Order. Also mentioned in the complaint is  Father Alessandro Calloni, who has been the General Delegate of the Order for Italy.
The two laymen are alleged to be guilty of have disseminating  an "anonymous dossier with false contents," to discredit the former leadership, who have a severe vow of poverty,  among the brothers and sisters, the faithful, the Church authorities and especially the media. "It is no accident that the same subjects now have leading positions within the Order," says the complaint.  

"Indeed Impressive and  Striking, but False Evidence"

For example,   Ilaria Turturiello (formerly  Sister Maria Letizia), because she made, "Indeed Impressive and Striking, but False Evidence," alleging abuse she is supposed to have suffered.  She was, according to her, forced by her superior, a niece of the founder, to sexually gratify the owner of a supermarket. The women's superior has in the meantime, filed a counter-complaint for defamation and slander.
The former sister also offered the media the story of a "poor fellow sister", who likewise, she said, knew to tell the questionable horror story, which was gleefully broadcast by some of the media. This "fellow sister" was approached by the media for a quote but she denied Turturiello's claims.
The founder, Manelli, must lay his cards before the judge's table.  
The smear campaign of Corriere della Sera and other media was commented upon then by  Messa in Latino. The traditional  site opposed the harsh and unjust attacks against this Order, "which wasn't guilty of anything" compared to the shortcomings and defects of other orders, where the Congregation for Religious sees  no impulse to intervene:
"The moral of the story? The new message of Rome to Religious Orders appears to say: if you give in to your sexual desires, lie, steal, betray, deny doctrinal truths and dogmas, disturb ecclesiastical order and promote liturgical abuse, it doesn't matter, the main thing is that you do not hit out at the Vatican Council II and the achievements of the post-conciliar epoch."
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Bild: Airmaria (Screenshot)
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG 

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Highest Court Confirms Judgment in the Case of the Franciscans of the Immaculata

Franciscans of he Immaculata Before the Commissar Came:
Ordination of Nine Deacons in 2010
(Rome) The Supreme Court in Rome has confirmed that the founder of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate and the lay organizations related to the Order are guilty of doing nothing wrong.  The confiscated real estate property must be returned to the lay organizations.
In late June, the rumored reason for the provisional administration of the Order of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate had dissolved into nothingness."Rumored" because was no reason was named for appointing an apostolic commissioner by the Vatican until today. Behind closed doors rumors were spread that it had allegedly been an irregular shifts of assets, including the suggestion that it might be someone who was enriched. It was a slander  which was directed against Founder Manelli to discredit him. A court sentenced Commissioner Volpi to pay 20,000 euros compensation for the false claims.

When the Commissioner Came with the Prosecutor

After the first Commissioner, Father Fidenzio Volpi from the Capuchin Order, could not lay his hands on the real estate owned by the lay organizations affiliated with the Order, he  summarily confiscated the real estate ownership by the public prosecutor. In June  the competent Judicial Senate of Avellino  established that no irregularities were present and ordered the release of the seized property.
Shortly before the verdict of Avellino, Commissioner Volpi had died and been replaced by the canon lawyer Fr Sabino Ardito from the Salesian Order. It  had been hoped there would be a relaxation. But Father Alfonso Bruno was still a driving force in the conflict applies Father Alfonso Bruno in the Franciscans of the Immaculate, who had rebelled against Founder Father Stefano Maria Manelli. After the dismissal of the General Government under the Superior General, Father Manelli,  Pater Bruno then became the Secretary-General and therefore became the right hand of the Commissioner.

Return of property ownership is legally binding

In any case an appeal was filed against the judgment of Avellino, on behalf of the Commissioner. The Second Criminal Chamber of the Supreme Court in Rome has rejected the appeal, thus confirming the judgment of Avellino. The release and return of the seized property ownership to the lay organizations of the Order is now final.
Part of this property is also that of the religious house in Rome, where Father Alfonso Bruno is domiciled. "With the decision of the Supreme Court the last word in the matter,"  said Alfonso Rocco, the legal counsel of the Lay Association Mission of the Immaculate Heart.

A thriving religious order of tradition was unbearable to the Congregation of Religious

The order launched in 1970 by Father Stefano Maria Manelli  is committed to tradition. Under Benedict XVI. the Order became, according to the motu proprio, Summorum Pontificum was pastorally birituell and internally old ritual. Since the Order was not under the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei for old rite communities, the Congregation of Religious  made it ​​an exception in the Church. Under Benedict XVI. it was regarded as an attractive model, which aroused the interest of young members of other religious orders, since the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate, despite their strict habit, had a large following.
This combination of factors is thought to be in close religious circles  as the real reason for the provisional administration.  A thriving, tradition related Order, which grew in the midst of widespread vocations crisis,  had become unbearable for many.  But Pope Benedict XVI. held his protective hand over the young religious. Under Pope Francis and his declared aversion to tradition,  the conditions were established to take action against the Order. Four months after taking office, the Order was placed under provisional administration.
The parents of the Founder are recognized as a servants of God. The beatification process is running.The Order was gagged by the provisional government, but not the lay organizations related to the Order.  They continue to see in Founder Manelli their reference point. With the court ruling, their position relative to the Commissioner has been significantly strengthened.
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: Mil
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Franciscans of the Immaculate: Will the New Commissar Also Bring the New Spirit?

(Rome) Since last June, the Order of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate have been assigned  the Salesian priest Sabino Ardito, a canon lawyer, as the new Apostolic Commissioner. Yet there is still a demon in the Order, says Messa in Latino.  Father Alfonso Bruno was responsible and  the ultimate beneficiary of the palace coup against Founder Manelli.
Alfonso Bruno, the father with a penchant for self-expression, already belonged to the old leadership the order, where he was responsible for its media presence. At that time he was only one among several. Then came the dismissal of Minister General Father Stefano Maria Manelli and the whole Order leadership by the Vatican. Alfonso Bruno was the one who made the news public through his media contacts and thus - at least initially - of the urgency  of a  radical intervention.

Press Releases, Legal Letters and Ads

Apostolic Commissioner Father Fidenzio Volpi was then appointed, who was ran like a bulldozer over the Order. The first official act of the Commissioner was the appointment of Father Alfonso Bruno as Secretary General of the Order and thus his right hand.  Excepting the Commissioner, who belongs to the Capuchin Order, Father Alfonso Bruno has since been at the top of the Order of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate, and completely alone.
The decisions by which the clear-cutting was done were signed by Commissioner Volpi. Partially also by the Secretary General, in part he remained in the background, as he had done well in advance of the palace coup against the Founder, who embodied the Order's charism  and the Old Rite. But his handwriting appears on the endless flood of corrections, warnings, notifications, which were all issued  since the coup in July 2013,  against those who expressed criticism  of the actions of the Holy See and the Commissioner.

"Disinformation on the Internet"

The most recent example is the correspondence of a lawyer, which the Catholic website  Riscossa Cristiana received by electronic mail on August 4th. In the letter, the editor  and writer are required to   delete  two articles. The lawyer acts in the name of Father Giulio Maria Scozzaro. Both articles dealt with the issue, as well as the title of the second article: "The Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate and the Disinformation on the Internet".
The items were manifestly defamatory and would severely damage the honor of his clients.
The first article reported the facts about the dismissal of Giulio Maria Scozzaro on 4 October 2007 from the Order of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate by the then General Superior Father Manelli. It was a decision that was confirmed by the Congregation of Religious on 8 April 2008 after Scozzaro raised opposition  against it. "Facts can not be libelous," said Cristiana Riscossa in response to the lawyer.
In the same article, Scozzaro's publication on his internet blog was criticized, which  can also be read there as before. Therein Scozzaro vehemently attacked Order's founder and his now deposed Superior General, Manelli.

Volpi's Reintroduction of Dismissed Manelli Brother

However there is something now new that has became public, it was at the time of publication unknown.   Initially in the context of the contested articles the lawyer submitted, was a decision of 11 February 2015 where the late Commissioner Volpi annulled  the  Scozzaro's dismissal from the Order and has readmitted him into the Order.
Volpi's amazing justification, which made Manelli's decision null and void  from formal legal reasons, is that  the dismissal is supposed to have  never been legal. Amazing because Scozzaro had lodged an appeal against his dismissal to the Congregation of Religious and  confirmed this after examining the case of   dismissal. Volpi's decision bears his signature and that of Alfonso Bruno. "Does  Commissioner Volpi, have the right or the authority to annul an order  whose validity has been confirmed by the religious congregation?" Asked Riscossa Cristiana .
As an aside  it should be recalled that Father Scozzaro could appeal against his dismissal appeal to the Congregation of Religious. Founder Manelli and the deposed general leadership could not have prevented it by  objecting to the provisional administration. Pope Francis had approved the drastic intervention in a form that made any appeal impossible.
The second article referred to the  collected signatures at that time in support of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate and of the Roman Rite. "A report on a petition is also hardly libelous," said Cristiana Riscossa.  Also in this article, the facts of the early dismissal of Father Scozzaro was also reported.
"What can you say about the behavior of a priest and religious who don't directly seek contact and  admonishes  by using worldly means and threatening legal action? For this I will ask the new Apostolic Commissioner for clarification, as well as the bishop of the diocese where  P. Scozzaro is still incardinated. "
The corresponding letter was sent on August 10 to the Apostolic Commissioner and to the Congregation of Religious. The Commissioner immediately acknowledged receipt.
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: Corrispondenza Romana
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