Cardinal Mahony’s La Cosa Nostra

Leon Panetta, Governor Keating, Cardinal Law recalled
Cardinal Law

Cardinal Law

The following comes from a January 25 story by George Neumayr on the RealClearReligion website.

“I have a 3 x 5 card for every victim I met with on the altar of my small chapel. I pray for them every single day,” retired Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahony said after the court-ordered release of personnel files detailing his elaborate efforts to hide abusers from the police. How comforted the victims must feel knowing their names appear on his 3 x 5 cards. How big of him to entrust the victims of his pedophile-shuffling to the efficacy of his prayers.

Such acts of chutzpah come naturally to the cardinal. At the height of the abuse scandal, even as he retained an army of lawyers and publicists to conceal his own complicity in it, he had the gall to join the media in calling for Boston Cardinal Bernard Law’s resignation. Referring to Law, Cardinal Mahony piously told the press that “he would find it difficult to walk down an aisle in church if he had been guilty of gross negligence.”

Meanwhile, Cardinal Mahony was unleashing his attack dogs on anyone who probed his staggering negligence. Until the media furor of 2001, he had been planning on making a pedophile long known to him and residing in his living quarters, Father Carl Sutphin (with whom he had gone to seminary), associate pastor of the archdiocesan cathedral. “I can’t believe a cardinal keeps a pedophile on staff,” said one of Sutphin’s victims.

Leon Panetta

Leon Panetta

Long before Leon Panetta joined the Obama administration as CIA director, he had scented out Cardinal Mahony’s misdeeds. He “has done tremendous damage to his reputation and the archdiocese,” said Panetta after his spell as a member of the National Review Board, a watchdog group formed in the wake of the scandal. Panetta recalled a meeting at which Cardinal Mahony turned up with “more lawyers in the room than I’ve ever seen.”

After Cardinal Mahony helped orchestrate the ousting of former Oklahoma Governor Frank Keating from the chairmanship of the National Review Board, Keating complained to the press that the cardinal had kneecapped him, likening his vicious behavior to that of “La Cosa Nostra.”

Gov. Keating

Gov. Keating

Throughout the abuse scandal, Cardinal Mahony has cast himself as a “naïve” waif, guilty not of a cover-up but of mere cluelessness. The recently released files explode that claim. He knew perfectly well that he was hiding criminals. “I believe that if Monsignor [Peter] Garcia were to reappear here within the archdiocese we might very well have some type of legal action filed in both the criminal and civil sectors,” he wrote to the director of a New Mexico treatment center, asking him to keep the fugitive from justice holed up there.

Together with one of his auxiliary bishops, Thomas Curry (who remains in that position to this day), Mahony plotted to keep pedophile priests from going to therapists who might report them to the police as the law required. The Los Angeles Times captured the scheming:

In a letter about Father Michael Wempe, who had acknowledged using a 12-year-old parishioner as what a church official called his ‘sex partner,’ Curry recounted extensive conversations with the priest about potential criminal prosecution. “He is afraid…records will be sought by the courts at some time and that they could convict him,” Curry wrote to Mahony. “He is very aware that what he did comes within the scope of criminal law.”

Curry proposed Wempe could go to an out-of-state diocese “if need be.” He called it “surprising” that a church-paid counselor hadn’t reported Wempe to police and wrote that he and Wempe “agreed it would be better if Mike did not return to him.”

Perhaps, Curry added, the priest could be sent to “a lawyer who is also a psychiatrist” thereby putting “the reports under the protection of privilege.”

Even when priests wanted to turn themselves in to the police, Cardinal Mahony blocked it. Fr. Michael Baker, a convicted abuser, has previously recounted to the press a meeting with the cardinal in which Mahony said “no, no, no” to the suggestion of calling the police. For the next fourteen years Baker was shuffled from parish to parish. According to these new documents, Curry told Mahony that they should keep Baker away from therapists who might report him. Cardinal Mahony’s response: “Sounds good-please proceed!!”

These documents explain why Mahony in 2007 agreed to the largest Catholic Church settlement ($660 milion) in American history rather than go through the sustained exposure of a civil trial. He agreed to the settlement just days before he was scheduled to appear as the trial’s first witness. As the Times notes, one of his alibis has been that in the 1990s therapists, not bishops, were required to report abuse. Now it is clear that he took steps to ensure that molesting priests didn’t go to them unless the therapist doubled as a lawyer.

Keating was roundly criticized for likening Mahony’s conduct to “La Cosa Nostra.” But these documents confirm a level of devious maneuvering beyond even the dark satire of the Sopranos.

On Cardinal Mahony’s 3 x 5 note cards, he says that “I also list in parenthesis the name of the clergy perpetrator lest I forget that real priests created this appalling harm in the lives of innocent people.” Noticeably absent from his cards is the name of the real cardinal who abetted that harm.


To read original story, click here.

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  1. Clinton R. says:

    Cardinal Mahony should have long ago been removed from his office. The damage he and others have done is beyond tragic. He might evade justice in this life, but he will not in the next.

  2. I think the Cardinal should be defrocked.

  3. Maryanne Leonard says:

    This properly outraged writer has verified once and for all why I was always overcome with a horrified and creepy feeling when I was in the presence of Cardinal Mahony, and why his arrogant countenance always reminded of what happened to me within the context of the Catholic Church in San Francisco when I was a teenager, even though he had nothing to do personally with that shockingly outrageous abuse. He also reminded me of Richard Nixon and his apparent sense that he was above the law. After all these years of telling myself I must be wrong about my feelings about Cardinal Mahony, that he must be a good man and probably just either a forgiivng soul or not fully aware of these crimes, if he was the leader of our flock in Southern California, I have learned once again that I should pay attention to my instincts about people. As a young person, I thought that being ordained was essentially tantamount to being on the road to sainthood, although I was devastated to learn for myself as a teenager that extreme evil can and does exist within the cloistered halls of our great faith. How sad and how infuriating to have this sorrowful lesson relearned yet again. We must rid ourselves of these cancerous eruptions at every turn. Mahony belongs in jail, and Pope Benedict needs to excommunicate this man immediately. Why is his presence within our holy church tolerated at this point?!! I feel sick at my stomach again, as I always did whenever I saw him in person or in photographs. God obviously gave us some kind of instinct as an aid to our personal, emotional or perhaps spiritual survival, and from now on I will always pay attention to that creepy feeling if it overcomes me in the future. We are never too old to learn. I hate that I was so trusting and still have a ridiculously trusting way about me that has not always served me well. Perhaps many of us have been too trusting of evil people within the Church since the majority of the ordained and religious are so wonderfully good – thanks be to God.

    • Well said, Maryanne, and charitable of you, as well. God bless you, dear sister in Christ, and I’m so sorry for what you must have suffered as an idealistic young girl. Whenever you write of it, I’m always saddened when I think of all the young people deeply hurt by these evil pedaephiles and sexual predators, and makes me want to be doubly vigilant for my grandchildren.

    • Maryanne, I concur with your description of feelings while in the presense of Cdl Mahony.

  4. Larry from RI says:

    Were these crines pedophile or ephebophile it does make adifference.
    The former is about very young children,the latter is about teenagers.
    They are both dastardly crimes.
    Why didn’t these lawyers report thse crimes?????
    Book em Dano!!!

  5. Long-Skirts says:


    There was a Cardinal named Baloney
    Or was it Cardinal Macaroni?

    He built a church out west brand new.
    A church for me, a church for you.

    Where people drive their pristine cars,
    Emission pure no ozone mars.

    A church for many kinds of sexes
    Even witches casting hexes.

    There was a Cardinal named Marconi
    Or was it Cardinal Boney-Maroni?

    He built a church ten million three.
    For gender-benders by the sea.

    For all to sit not kneel awhile
    And share your peace with ped-o-phile.

    An all new church on L.A. sod
    For me and you…thank God, not God!

  6. The Cardinal’s depth of duplicity reveals a malevolence that is otherwise difficult to fathom. Five centuries ago he would have been tarred and feathered, if not worse, but in the present moment we have been so anethetized to the dark reality of evil in our midst that the outcome of these events will be measured simply by casual indifference.

    Given these realities, is it any wonder that the Church of the 21st millennia appears as nothing more than an anemic institution that is incapable of the necessary measures of self-correction?!?!

    Windswept House, indeed!

    • Five centuries ago he would have been tarred and feathered? You need to read more about clerics of 1513.

      • Hmm…your post reminds of what the Borgia Pope, Alexander VI, got away with about 500 years ago:

        Having kids,
        Making one of them a cardinal,
        Apparent orgies,

        And yet…and yet…no one saw fit to “tar and feather” him.

        So much for the good old days!

        • Kenneth M. Fisher says:

          His nephew, St. Francis Borgia, became a Saint praying for his morally sick Pope Uncle, praise God!

          God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
          Kenneth M. Fisher

      • Sometimes the tar and feathers were applied at the funeral, and not at the rail head at the edge of town.

  7. Throw Mahoney in jail and lose the key.

  8. Obviously, much malfeasence was actually done as proven by specific cases and by a $660M settlement. One would suppose the truth to be bad enough without making illogical and obviously false assertions.

    Fair-minded Cal Catholic readers should realize that a person cannot be a fugitive from American justice while living openly in the state of New Mexico, nor would lawyers accompanying a minister of any other religion be compared to “La Cosa Nostra”.

    From the sneering reference to a cleric’s prayers with which it begins and ends, this article is full of uncharitiable rhetoric masquerading as expose.

    • I’d say that the Pope should strip Mahony of all money and income and benefits that come from the Church. Mahony has wealthy friends, and probably a thick bankroll, so let him fend for himself. Most importantly would be giving Mahony the option of either wandering off after Church ties are cut, or living out his days in a remote monastery without any special treatment … and paying for it all up front with every last penny he can command.

    • Brian S., you should go and personally give comfort to Mahony.

      • Why would I provide comfort to Cardinal Mahoney? And what, exactly, did I say that you interpret as providing comfort?

        That prayers are good things? That racial stereotypes to demean the Church are not? Perhaps you are opposed to political jurisdictions and enumerated powers.

  9. Why is Archbishop Jose Gomez silent?

    • John, I shudder to answer that perhaps Mahony is still in power, unofficially, but in effect. Maybe he’s got something on higher ups. How do you think I feel wondering when, even if, Curry, my bishop, will be removed. If he isn’t, what other inference can there be than the Church is really tanking and unable to govern itself. Although Our Lord promised the Church would last to the end, He didn’t say where.

      • Pope Benedict XVI has said that the Church will “become smaller and holier”. Likely that big chunks of it will peel away, unnoticed at first, but then starkly and everyone will see clearly the transformation.

  10. Priests are thrown to the wolves for all kinds of offenses, yet bishops get away with murder.

    The same bishops who proclaim a zero-tolerance policy for their priests (when it comes to SEXUAL abuse, at least) seem to think they themselves are above the law.

    If bishops enjoy “the fullness of the priesthood” as our tradition says, should they not also ‘enjoy’ the fullness of responsibility in such crimes against children, teens, and their families?

    • Mackz, “think” they’re above the law: St Augustine described it as “believe” they are above the Law of God. There is a perennial false belief, aka heresy, where the clergy believes it can do anything but holds the laity’s toes to the fire. Among the various categories of heresy, this one is prevalent today.

    • Kenneth M. Fisher says:


      Don’t be bothered, they will enjoy the fullness of Hell for Eternity if they don’t SINCERELY repent before death!

      God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
      Kenneth M. Fisher

  11. At least Judas, unlike Mahony, realized the evil he had done.

  12. Just play dumb. It seems to be a useful strategy for the bishops.

    • Cardinal Dolan has it down to a science, DaveN. His ‘aw shucks, gee whiz’ act has many people fooled into thinking him something other than what we see accomplished while he looks ‘haplessly’ on or bumbles about. I seriously think Cardinal Mahony actually has deceived himself and as I’ve said before, the worst sort of liar is the one who lies most to himself…but they sure make convincing story tellers! I’m sorry if I sound judgmental, for I don’t feel like I’m judging so much expressing what I’ve found to be a character fault in some people that I”ve learned about through years of experience in the world.

    • Abeca Christian says:

      Dave N even some of the posters here who bash the faithful for having an outcry on what the bad bishops do, they are playing dumb here…..they are not bashing us now for being upset at these horrific scandals. But on other threads they bash and say that we attack the bishops. They are not playing dumb, they just find the perfect opportunity to bash us on topics that they tend to be more in line with. Like homosexuality, they maybe pro-gay issues, so they will find the opportunity to try to discredit us so they can justify their support for anyone who is pro-gay rights. There is bad will in all directions. Not just on the bishops.

  13. Cardinal Mahony should be brought to justice that is a no brainer but how about auxiliary bishop, Thomas Curry (who remains in that position to this day), why is he still there why not go after him as well.

  14. Thomas Edward Miles says:

    As stated prior, the CARDINAL belongs in a maximum security penitentiary rooming with CARDINAL LAW, what a troubling couple they would make, however, very appropriate, sad to say!!!!

  15. good cause says:

    The longer Rome keeps cardinals like Mahoney in power the greater the damage to our Church. Also, I believe that there are plenty more “Mahoneys” out there in plenty of dioceses throughout the world who have been lucky so far in not having their criminal misconduct “outed” by the courts and the press.

    The Holy See is equally guilty of keeping these criminlals in power as they irreparably damage our Church. If Pope Benedict keeps Mahoney in the public eye, he shares his guilt.

    Where are the priorities? If Cardinal Mahoney suggested that birth control pills or condoms are now OK, Rome would remove him and banish him from public life in a heartbeat, but leading a well crafted criminal conspiracy for decades that has cost the LA Church $600 Million to date, and counting, is perfectly acceptably behavior to the Pope. Why? Because the actions of Mahoney are widespread by many of the princes of our Holy Mother Church. Why punish something they don’t think is really wrong beause their “intentons were noble” in keeping the scandal covered up.

  16. Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

    I do not know the Man ; so I will not say he should be hanged, neither would I say that our Lord does not hear the grant grace for the Masses Cardinal Mahoney celebrates, because there is infinite grace in every mass. All grace ever won is present at every mass.

    HOWEVER, everything I seem to find out about this poor cardinal gives me the Cringes. He seems to be a bad actor in all measures.

    I was really disappointed watching the Conference of Bishop’s to see him be the first to stand up and bring up immigration as the most pressing issue. Really? In the light of the crisis of faith and evangelization, vocations, holiness, the disaster of an institution that his seminary is and what he is worried about is immigration?


  17. Jesus will judge Cardinal Mahoney.

    In the meantime he should be shunned by the Faithful. He should lose all pension and other Church benefits.
    He should not have any active or public role in the Church.
    1 Cor 5:11-13.

    All Bishops including Abp Gomez should have nothing to do with Mahoney, and prohibit him from speaking, writing or doing anything within their Dioceses.

    • Kenneth M. Fisher says:


      The Concerned Roman Catholics of America, Inc. have asked Archbishop Gomez to do just that, now we await his answer before we go more public. We need those who want to be or consider themselves to be members of the Church Militant to join us as we prayerfully demonstrate at the upcoming, February 22nd to 24 REC.

      God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
      Kenneth M. Fisher

  18. Fr. Gregory Coiro, O.F.M.Cap. says:

    Cardinal Mahony has done what all of us do when we have sinned…he has apologized and sought forgiveness. Is he to be denied because he is a bishop? The attitudes I see expressed here are very un-Christian.

    • Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

      No one is saying he should not be forgiven, however, Like you know Father, Confession does not wash away punishment becouse of sin, (reparation) it just removes the threat of hell. That is why a lot of us end up in pagatory.

      While we understand he is sorry, he still needs to be given due punishment for his sins. He needs to serve Jail time..

      Can you put yourself in the place of an abused victim for one moment and tell me why Cardinal Mahoney should not serve Jail time and should not be punished becouse he said he is sorry?

      Our Lord and we have already forgiven him, however, civil punishment due to him should be given, so that when you Fr. Coiro are Bishop, you will remember exactly what happens when you let your priests get away with crimes.
      This is not a theoritical exersise. This man is loosing souls for Christ. He is sorry he was caught.

      You should be the first to call for his jailing.

    • Mahoney is sorry because he got caught.
      If it were not for the legal system making his sins public, would he be sorry?
      O would he have made financial reparation in the amount of more than $660 million if he had not gotten caught? – Only God can know.
      We do not, and can not judge this.
      We can only judge sin.

      And yes, Fr. Corio, he will be judged more stringently than the majority of the rest of us due to his vows, and his theological education, and his agreed upon responsibility when he took the post of Bishop.

      We do have the words of Jesus: Mt 5, 20; Mt 7:21-23; Mt 19:14;
      Mt 18:5.

      • Mahony’s “theological education”: I happened upon his doctoral thesis, among those of other bishops, which were stacked in a section in the main library at Catholic University in Washington DC, in 1985. A dismal attempt at intellectual pursuit! Mahony is not intelligent but merely crafty; these types are often likened to foxes. Jesus called the Jewish King Herod a “fox”. Herod was the one who lopped off the head of John the Baptist, and pushed for the execution of Jesus. Isn’t that what Mahony has actually done? And since when have such historical figures ever repented? Almost never.

        • Honestly, Skai, how would you possibly know who – historical or otherwise – has repented? Unlike you, apparently, I have no way to know the souls of others. I hope that Mahoney receives absolution for all his sins which require it.

          Meanwhile, the sensational SNAP agenda which seeks to elevate every accusation and suspicion to an execution is dishonest and furthers an anti-Catholic animus harmful to society and to us.

    • Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

      CCC. 1473

      The forgiveness of sin and restoration of communion with God entail the remission of the eternal punishment of sin, but temporal punishment of sin remains. While patiently bearing sufferings and trials of all kinds and, when the day comes, serenely facing death, the Christian must strive to accept this temporal punishment of sin as a grace. He should strive by works of mercy and charity, as well as by prayer and the various practices of penance, to put off completely the “old man” and to put on the “new man.”84

      In other words, we want what is best for Cardinal Mahoney. He needs to pay his price for the good of his soul.

    • Fr. Gregory Coiro O.F.M.Cap., I agree he should be granted forgiveness, but he still needs to pay restitution just like all of us do when we have sinned. A humbled contrite spirit oh Lord you will not spurn.

    • To forgive is divine and this I understand but you, Father, must understand that what this man has done and concealed berates the human mind – There is no excuse for hiding the truth – The attitudes expressed are not very un-Christian but those of wonderment at a senior Church official who would punish the people whose souls he is responsible for -

      • Abeca Christian says:

        Something like this can not be forgiven by us but that has to be left up to our Lord…also our Lord loves His children and therefore consequences have to follow.

    • Sorry Father, he was corrupt man who deserves punishment, he should be defrocked and prosecuted immediately…..

    • Father, thank you! You are a true disciple.

  19. Read the book by Raymond Arroyo – about – “Mother Angelica, the Remarkable story of of a Nun, her Nerve, and a Network of Miracles”.

    Mahoney (does not deserve the honor of the title “Cardinal”) also tried to steal away EWTN for his own use and that of some other Bishops.

    This is not a good man.

    • Has anyone thought of Removing Mahoney from Office under Code of Canon Law: ” CHAPTER II. LOSS OF ECCLESIASTICAL OFFICE under Removal or Privation ? – due to his public and scandalous behavior ?

    • Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

      Cardinal Mahoney gets worse.

  20. FrMichael says:

    Anybody who knows the presbyterate of LA knowns full well the fear the majority of LA priests had of “The Cardinal.” The only noteworthy aspect of this story is that it provides details to the story every priest in the Southland knows is true– that Mahony is as malevolent a cleric as has ever served west of the Appalachias. Cardinal Law was merely a bumbling Keystone Cop compared to the premeditated malice of Godfather Mahony.

    • Wow! Fr.Michael, Has anyone written a book about the Cardinal? Perhaps his red hat is a payoff for his not publishing dirt he has on someone? He doesn’t seem the sort to take the higher ground, apparently. Utterly repugnant that someone like this can get so far for so long and not be eposed for who and what he is! Was he a friend of Cardinal Bernardin?

      • FrMichael says:

        No, as far as I know there is no book length treatment of The Cardinal. One day I suppose some Ph.D. student will write his monograph and try to turn it into a commercial book (or e-book). Heaven knows there is plenty of material to write such a work.

        • I’ve always wondered if “the bishop of Century City” character in “Windswept House” wasn’t based on Cdl. Mahony.

    • Kenneth M. Fisher says:

      Fr Michael,

      You and I could undoubtedly have some great conversations. Maybe you are using a fictitious name and we already have?

      I must say, none of this gives me any pleasure, but it does vindicate what I have been trying to educate people on for some time.

      God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
      Kenneth M. Fisher

  21. Mark from PA says:

    It is sad that men like Cardinal Mahoney and Cardinal Law felt that it was more important to maintain the impression that all priests were faithfully celibate than to protect the lives and health of innocent children. Looking the other way was not a virtue. If either of these men had been outspoken in support of women priests, they would have been swiftly removed. Something to think about.

  22. Laurette Elsberry says:

    One of Cardinal Mahony’s worst “mafia” connections was with what is now referred to as the “lavender mafia”. It was in the 80s that he initiated “gay” Masses in the LA Archdiocese. In 1993 he helped fund and produce a dreadful 24 minute video entitled, “Journey for Understanding – Gays and Lesbians in the Church”. Even today it is a despicable piece of sodomite propaganda in which the Cardinal affirmed that there is nothing at all wrong with being lesbian or gay. Do you suppose that this also the message he promoted to all the pederast priests who abused young boys?

    Those interested in the Cardinal’s history on various issues should check out cardinalrating(dot)com.

    • My goodness…worse and worse! Let’s keep praying for our beloved Church as it looks like we’re in for more scandal!!

    • Mark from PA says:

      Good grief, Laurette, “despicable piece of sodomite propaganda” “the Cardinal affirmed that there is nothing at all wrong with being lesbian or gay.” Wow! Do you honestly think that young gay people should be bullied and have it thrown into their faces and beaten into their skulls that there is something wrong with them? The Catholic Church teaches that it is not a sin to be a homosexual even though some people don’t believe this and continue to fan the flames of hatred against people they view as defective and something less than fully human. Looks like Cardinal Mahoney did do some good after all.

      • Mbûkû Kanyau Mbithûka says:

        There is something wrong with being gay. Do not beleive me? Look at your anatomy and notice it’s made for use in a certain way by the creator.

      • Of course, being gay is not a sin but acting on it certainly is….Cardinal Mahoney was notorius for promoting ‘tolerance and acceptance’ of homosexuality……I’m afraid it is straights who are being bullied now. The intolerance and hate for anyone who disagrees with the gay lobby is becoming commonplace……….Mahoney’s criminality in hiding and protecting those gay Priests was his downfall….And isn’t it ironic that the most abuse occured in liberal dioceses.

      • Mark, I’m so sorry, but you’re incorrigible. You’re like one of those flat-earth people who don’t believe the earth is round even when looking at photos sent from outerspace. I just pray our Blessed Mother will entreat her Beloved Son for your spiritual eyes to be opened, friend.

        • Mark from PA says:

          Dana, when I was a young person I really wasn’t exposed to a lot of hatred expressed against gay people. I was sheltered. Some of the comments that I read here are very eye-opening to me. I have learned quite a bit.

    • An icthyologist says:

      WOW!… ROCK AND ROLL SISTAH!… My sentiments exactly… Lavender lad mafia… rotflol!

  23. Mary Castle says:

    Excommunication seems called for here. And then the L.A. District Attorney needs to treat the Cardinal the way they would the rest of us. No favoritism should be tolerated. I stand with the innocent victims.

    • Anonymous says:

      It is not an excommunicable offense. I stand with the victims, also.

      • Kenneth M. Fisher says:


        I beg to differ, a Prince of the Church bringing scandal on the Church is excommunicable!

        God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
        Kenneth M. Fisher

        • Kenneth M. Fisher, even if it was excommunicable, he has repented, publicly. I reviewed the section of canon law and I don’t see where he could be excommunicated for it. Maybe, as a ommission of ecclesiastical duty but excommunication is not prescribed for that; it only mentions a just punishment. Bearing in mind that excommunication is a medicinal remedy with the purpose of reform and return of the offender, I don’t see how it would apply here. He has received from the ordinary the loss of his duties, I assume that is in accordance with canon law.

  24. The Vatican cannot claim ignorance.

  25. Mark from PA says:

    Mary, Cardinal Mahoney is certainly not going to be excommunicated. Good cause said, “Why punish something they don’t think is really wrong because ‘their intentions were noble’ in keeping the scandal covered up.” I agree with this to a point. I think now Cardinal Mahoney and many others realize how wrong they were and the harm that they helped to cause. I think the authorities go easy on higher ups in the Church as they don’t want to be accused of going after the Catholic Church, so in a way their positions protect bishops and higher to an extent.

  26. I wonder what the Pope’s response would be if he were asked what he thought of the two most prominent cardinals in the USA, Mahony and Law.

    • Mark from PA says:

      Skai, Cardinal Law was given a nice position in Rome, a villa to live in and servants. He is treated very well and with respect, quite different from the treatment given to many of the abuse victims in Boston.

      • MarkfromPA,

        You are criticizing Cardinal Law while you, yourself are working behind the scenes to disobey God and the teachings of his Church. Do you deny this fact?

        “And fear ye not them that kill the body, and are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him that can destroy both soul and body in hell.” Matthew 10:28

        Mark are you working one step at a time behind the scenes encouraging others to destroy their souls?

        • Mark from PA says:

          Catherine, how is speaking up for victims of abuse encouraging others to destroy their souls? If you find my criticism of Cardinal Law to be offensive, I am sorry if it offends you, but that is how I feel. I don’t feel that saying that gay people should be treated with respect and compassion is encouraging other to destroy their souls. God will never punish anyone for treating others with kindness. On the other hand, I feel that name calling and bullying, especially that directed towards gay youth, is sinful. Perhaps you feel that I am not one to talk as I am also a sinner but it hurts me to see how some young people have been treated by some in the Church.

          • MarkfromPA,

            Speaking up for victims is a good thing. I support your speaking up for the victims of the sex abuse scandals. Mark, I met with many victims. It was very difficult to hear their different stories. What hurt the most was hearing the loss of trust. On one specific occasion I met for lunch with a person who was so wounded that she was publicly advocating that others do something very wrong and very sinful because of what had happened to her. I treated her the same way I am treating you. I asked her to please stop adding to the wrong that has already been done. I told her that what happened to her was one thing but that if she encouraged others to offend God that she would be held accountable. I asked her to take her individual circumstances and to place all of her trust in God. Mark, this woman started to cry and she said that the reason she purposely did not wear make up for our meeting was that she knew I would tell her the truth and she did want to hear the truth, even if it was difficult to hear. I gave her a blessed miraculous medal and a blessed rosary. I still receive the sweetest thank you notes from this person Mark so you are right, compassion is important.

            This is not about the topic of bullying youth or teenagers either. Mark, I will ask you again. How can you consistently criticize Cardinal Law while at the same time you publicly praise the scandal of a homosexual priest in Italy for coming out and endorsing same sex unions. Mark this IS encouraging very serious mortal sin. Mark it does not matter what kind of smile someone has if they are offending God. You are publicly praising a priest for rejecting God’s laws. Mark, There is no love in hell. It is always a good thing to treat everyone with dignity but helping someone go to hell is not an act of compassion or dignity. It is a selfish and hateful act. Mark this priest’s soul is in very serious jeopardy and you should not want him or anyone to also be a victim of false compassion by encouraging him or others to offend God. You might think that you are being kind but you are not. Mark you are fooling yourself if you think that any of us can disobey and mock God’s laws “one step at a time” and not have a very serious consequence. Yes Mark, you are encouraging others to destroy their souls. You can be kind without telling others to disobey God “one step at a time.”

          • Mark from PA says:

            I read your post with interest, Catherine. Thank you for saying that you support my speaking up for the victims of the sex abuse scandal. Far too many boys and girls were hurt by this. I want to share with you something that a man that went to high school with me had to say. “I found my preheated place in hell at High School as a young boy. I have spent the last 40+ years trying to regain my soul and make sense of what happened to me at the hands of a Catholic priest.” I think of how much I loved high school and how I had so many wonderful nuns as teachers. I have so many great memories of high school but it is painful to me to think that some of my classmates have different memories, memories of abuse. I remember how a priest who called himself “the perfect one” had nothing to do with me and how I felt bad about it. Now I realize that I was blessed but wish that someone could have stopped that man long ago before he had the chance to harm so many.

        • Anonymous says:

          Mark from PA, I do not understand. You say that gay people should be chaste, but Catherine accuses you of praising a preist who endorses same sex unions. This must have been before I began reading CalCath. Is it true?

          • MarkfromPA,

            Please do not ignore the question asked by an anonymous poster on January 30, 2013 at 5:36pm. Please tell the truth and admit that you posted a comment in response to an article written a priest in Italy for openly “coming out as a homosexual” and for his support of same sex unions. You asked God to bless this priest who was openly rebelling against God and showing such disobedience. How can you ask God to bless someone for disobeying the teachings of God’s Church? You commented about the nice smile of the priest who was photographed and wrote “one step at a time.”

            You wrote this comment using the name Mark Davenport and it was posted on a heretical website that is working to undermine and destroy the teachings of the Catholic Church. I told you earlier that I came across this website thinking that it was a faithful website. I was very surprised to learn that this was not a faithful website and even more surprised to read your name as well as a few others who post here on CCD.

            Mark you did admit to posting on the website already so please explain your publicly posted support and praise for a dissenting priest who is publicly advocating same sex unions. Mark do you realize that many of the victims of the scandals were hurt due to a great lack of honesty. People deceived others because they were not willing to be truly honest about their rejection of Church teaching. Mark, very good people were hurt and marginalized by those who often spoke one way and acted another way and they also distorted Church teaching. Mark although I would still disagree with your supporting the actions of this disobedient priest, by your honesty in just admitting that you did write the comment that publicly supported dissent you would at least show that you are not being a duplicitous person who posts one way on this blog and another way on websites for homosexuals who are angry at the Church for her specific teachings. Mark you DID write “one step at a time” in regards to this story about a priest gaining support for his disobedience, so there is no confusion please tell the truth. How else is that statement, “one step at a time” to be interpreted in the face of your asking God to bless such a terrible betrayal?

          • PA why don’t you respond to Catherine’s direct question…???

          • Mark from PA says:

            Catherine, I don’t remember the comment, “one step at a time,” but I do remember reading about an Italian priest who came out as gay. In truth, I admire the man for his honesty. I don’t think that this is an easy thing for priests to do because by doing so he exposes himself to prejudice and discrimination as many people don’t like gay people. If one’s bishop doesn’t like gay people then a priest puts himself in an awkward situation if he is open about this. You say that people are harmed by lack of honesty, well this man was being honest. I think it is good if priests have the courage to be open about this. One of the reasons for this is that gay youth need good role models. If a priest is gay and is also a good and faithful priest, wouldn’t he be a good role model for gay youth? But how can he be a model for those kids if they don’t know. But I realize it is difficult as many priests are probably afraid to talk about this.

          • Please remember when we speak of gay priests we are speaking about priests who have a hemosexual orientation and not a heterosexual one. Outside of CCD, the meaing of gay means an orientation. People here interpret “gay” to mean a man who is sexually involved with other men and who are striving to change society. But when a priest says he is gay, it is to be assumed that he is also celebate.

      • PA, Law will never return to USA territory since he would be arrested. The Church apparatchiks love appearances, and they made one for him. Apparantly the Pope gave him luxury as a grace, and awaits the day when he will come to his senses spiritually and retreat to some remote monastery to pray out his days in poverty and penance.

    • Perhaps you think such priests have been or are unknown to Popes. Given that you reject wide swaths of Papal teachings, I am surprised you assume them to be so agreeable to you.

  27. That is his honest and not his political or bureaucratic response.

  28. M a h o n y: No “e”. At least give his family tree the respect of correctly spelling their name.

  29. MOTHER ANGELICA WAS RIGHT ALL ALONG! Remember what this man tried to do to her?! She wasn’t being a typical distenting nun like those feminist Nuns on the Bus, Mother Angelic was speaking truth in Christ and Mahoney obsessed on making her pay for years, even tried to take the EWTN network.
    At the time Mother had a powerful ally in the future Pope Benedict XVI. Now i pray the Holy Father finish removing ALL of the filth from Holy Mother Church and remove Mahoney! So many times in the past i always thought i needed to watch my thoughts, afterall Mahoney was a Cardinal, there had to be a level of holiness, but clearly this man was dare i say as bad as the LC Founder, as far as his deceit goes! The damage to all the good and faithful priest Mahoney as fully participated in bringing about is not the type of soul that should be wearing a red hat! All that money paid out (yes to some true victims others were frauds) but just imagine how that money could have been properly spent on the poor, on our Catholic Schools, Catholic Programs and Outreach, Catholic Hospitals! And then what does this Narcissist do? Spend an even more obscene amount of money on a huge cement box we must call a Cathedral!! He needs to be shamed and publicly reprimanded by Pope Benedict XVI!! The man ceased being a shepherd and clearly became the wolf!

    • Speaking about the Nuns on a Bus –

      ” FOLLOW UP – March for Life: Where was NCR? LCWR? Nuns on Bus? CHA?
      by Fr. John Zuhlsdorf
      I am looking for March for Life photos of the banners and contingents from the Fishwrap (National catholic Reporter), the Catholic Health Association, the Nuns on the Bus, the Leadership Conference of Women Religious.
      Photos Anyone ? “

  30. AMEN to Lisa C’s comments. This man, Cardinal Mahony is not good enough to polish Mother Anglica’s shoes. He is the exact opposite of Mother Angelica who is a good, holy person. He should be hanging his head in shame at all the heartache he has brought to so many not only in the Catholic Church but with everyone he came in contact with. He is a shameful person….and being sorry does not cut it. It is so easy to say you are sorry when you have been caught red handed.

    • An Icthyologist says:

      Agreed… he would do well to look and follow the exemplary, humble, pious life, of this saintly nun… our Church should be full of Mother Angelica’s.

  31. CDL. MAHONY MUST BE REMOVED FROM PUBLIC MINISTRY. I feel that Cdl. Mahony should be serving a prison sentence for his crimes, no matter his age. If he were a school district superintendent and had moved molesting pervert teachers around from school to school, and as a result of the transferring he was facilitating the sexual abuse of children, at the hands of the sick perverts, I believe he would lose his job and be facing prison time. We as Catholics need to demand he is punished for his crimes. Of course he will be facing his punishment by God but he also needs to be punished here on Earth. He needs to first face punishment from the Church hierarchy and be permanently removed from any public ministry where he is causing further scandal. As Archbishop Emeritus Mahony is still eligible to preside at and/or celebrate sacraments. I don’t know about the rest of you here, but if my son had been sexually abused by a pederast priest, who was known to Cdl. Mahony to be a pederast and transferred to a church where he then abused my son, I would be outraged and sickened to see this man, Cdl. Mahony, be the confirming bishop at a a Confirmation Mass I might be attending, especially if he were to confirm another child of mine. Cdl. Mahony should not be given any occasion which people, especially Catholics, would show him any adoration (kissing his ring, left knee genuflection, etc). It would be best to send him to a cloistered monastery where he will spend out the rest of his days, after his prison time, of course. Btw, bishops get paid for Confirmation Masses. He should not be living the lavish lifestyle he has grown accustomed to, at least not on our dime from our tithes.

    • Kenneth M. Fisher says:


      I don’t know about his present living arrangements, but I understand that the quarters he had built for himself at the cathedral complex were quite luxurious, probably even more so than the off-parish site that Bp. Brown had the poor saps of the Diocese of Orange upgrade and pay for. The upgrades were a Jacuzzi, and visitors quarters built over the garage. I hope and pray that Bishop Vann has rejected such arrangements.

      God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
      Kenneth M. Fisher

  32. An Icthyologist says:

    These bishops who live sensual, opulent lifestyles will answer for this hypocrisy… I have no doubt. Power lunches in Beverly Hills, chauffeured rides in spacious luxury sedans, living quarters that would make a “movie star” blush… being pampered at every turn and basking in the glow of watching lay people bow and scrape before you, like a pack of groveling sycophants, these are just some of the worldly and hedonistic displays that have become a shameful hallmark and source of repulsion for many of the Catholic faithful. I know of some “religious” who take vows of poverty yet live more sumptuously and extravagantly than many secular Catholics… shocking, positively shocking. When I think of exemplary models of being a bishop, I am always drawn to the late Archbishop Fulton Sheen. A holy, humble bishop, devoid of pretense and the trappings of this world.

    • Archbishop Fulton Sheen was criticized for the very same thing, especially that he was in it for the ability to hobnob with celebrities. It was suggested that it would be a difficulty to his cause for canonization. It does not appear to have been.

      • An Icthyologist says:

        Bishop Sheen brought many protestants to the “faith”… he did this because he was an exemplary model of what a cleric and apologist for the “faith” should be… he was not only humble, he was very astute and sagacious.

        • Anonymous says:

          And he was respectful and non-threatening.

          • Catherine says:

            Fulton J. Sheen, Catholic Champion
            by Thomas C. Reeves

            “Pope Pius XII once asked him how many converts he had made. He answered: “Your Holiness, I have never counted them. I am always afraid if I did count them, I might think I made them, instead of the Lord.”

            Blessed Sacrament
            How did this man remain so utterly committed to his vocation? Did he ever take a break, have doubts, transgress? This I do not know, but he would have had to deal with his own weaknesses more or less successfully like all of us.

            The source of his strength and his untiring self-giving came from his daily hour before the Blessed Sacrament, which he never once missed from the day of his ordination to the priesthood. Unbelievable but true!

            From those hours of intimacy with the Lord, he deepened his love for Him and followed Him as faithfully as any Apostle or Disciple. Every priest should dwell on his powerful example.

            He also had a very tender and deep love for the Blessed Virgin Mary whom he referred to as “the woman I love”. It needs to be said that this eminent and intellectual man, this public figure, was always faithful to saying his “three Hail Marys” each day.

            His open-heart surgery in 1977 marked a deepening of his spiritual life. Being very close to death made him cling more closely to Jesus his Lord. He began to divest himself of possessions and unnecessary things in order to be free to be united with Christ.

            At this same period in his life he was not permitted a smooth tranquil time, nor any great sense of achievement. He began to see trends in the Church which in his view were completely against the true intentions of the Second Vatican Council, at which he was present, and would seriously damage the Church and lead to a loss of faith.

            He poured out his anguish in his retreats to priests, pleading with them to arrest the decline of the Church and return to the solid truth. Sometimes he spoke out in great anger at the destruction of religious life and the secularisation of the clergy, particularly under the guise of “psychological growth”. All this was part of his purification. He had to place his trust implicitly in God, to trust that others who came after him would be open to the Holy Spirit, tackle the errors of the day, and continue to preach the Gospel of conversion and new life.”

    • Mark from PA says:

      I agree with you here Icthyologist, it is sad. I was horrified to read of a high church leader, now deceased, who had a million dollar vacation home at the shore and also a ladyfriend. This same church leader, who lived in luxury, didn’t have time to discipline many errant priests. When one of his assistants gave him information about priests who had criminally abused young people, the church leader told him to destroy the information. Where was the concern for our young people?

  33. Thirty years too late, the harm to the souls and the Catholic Church are too numerous. One must pray for the souls he harmed and the “Church” he defiled. Mother Angelica was so right.

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