Cardinal Danneels – “Family Expert” Appointed by Francis – Pushed for Abortion Law

Two Belgian politicians admit for the first time openly that Cardinal Godfried Danneels tried to convince King Baudouin to sign the law on abortion in 1990. Former politicians Philippe Moureau (PS, Parti Socialiste) and Mark Eyskens (CVP, Flemish Christian Democrats) said this in a documentary for the Flemish Broadcasting Corporation VTM on April 6, 2015 (http://nieuws.vtm.be/binnenland/135916-25-jaar-abortuswet-boudewijn-onder-druk, at 2:05). According to VTM, cardinal Danneels did not want to comment.


In 1990, the 14 members of the Belgian Government – a coalition led by CVP-Prime Minister Wilfried Martens, signed one of the most liberal abortion bills in the world. King Baudouin, a devout Catholic, refused to sign this bill into law, and was temporarily considered fictitiously “incapacitated” so that the government could have the bill turned into law.

Danneels, rabid liberal and a known pedophile-bishop-protector, was picked by Pope Francis as one of his personal choices for the 2014 Family Synod.


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News comes out at a time the influence of Cardinal Danneels in the Catholic Church is bigger than ever. According to the Flemish newspaper De Standaard (04/04/2015), Danneels (81) is nowadays more in Rome than when he was as archbishop of Mechlin-Brussels. Next month, archbishop André-Joseph Léonard will have to present his resignation letter to the Pope, when he becomes 75. According to De Standaard, two progressive ’poulains’ of cardinal Danneels are in the running to become the new archbishop: bishop Johan Bonny of Antwerp (more about him here) and bishop Jozef De Kesel of Bruges (more about him here). Other names are Mgr. Léon Lemmens (auxiliary bishop of Mechelen-Brussel) and Mgr. Jean-Pierre Delville (bishop of Liège), both linked to the multi-religious San Egidio Community.

Source: rotate caeli

Former Priest and Liberation Theology Leader: Pope Francis is More Radical Than You Think

Below is the translation published in Rorate Caeli of the full text of the interview granted by former priest and Liberation Theology master Leonardo Boff to Erich Follath, of German weekly Der Spiegel. Leonardo Boff is one of the main proponents of the Liberation Theology movement condemned by both St. John Paul II and Benedict XVI.  He has since left the priesthood, and currently lives with his lover.  He has claimed that Pope Francis has asked for his help in writing the pope’s upcoming Encyclical on the environment.

S: Professor Boff, were you surprised, ecstatic, or horrified when you heard about who was elected in Rome?

Boff: I had hoped that the new Pope would take the name Francis – and had predicted that it would happen this way. In this sense my reaction was one of great satisfaction, coupled with the hope that something would finally change in this catastrophically antiquated church. For this choice of name is programmatic: Francis of Assisi stands for a church of the poor and the oppressed, for environmental awareness and against great love of pomp and circumstance.

And you are not disappointed that Cardinal Odilo Scherer from Sao Paulo wasn’t elected at the conclave?

Boff: Good heavens! Anything is better than Ratzinger on the throne of Peter, to be sure, but Scherer is an arch-conservative who has adopted all the positions of the curia. The fact that the new Pope hails from South America, from the region with the most Catholics in the world, and not, as was customary, from Europe – that is something I am happy about…

You sound surprisingly euphoric, even though the new Pope is an arch-conservative – he opposes contraception, allowing priests to marry, an expanded role of women in the church, homosexual marriage…

Boff: That’s something the Vatican decreed; all high-ranking dignitaries had to go along with it. Nothing was allowed to be questioned. That can change now.

You have reason to believe that Bergoglio is more liberal?

Boff: Yes. For example, a few months ago he explicitly permitted a homosexual couple to adopt a child. He kept in touch with priests who were expelled from the official church because they had gotten married. And no one could ever persuade him to change his position, which was: we have to be on the side of the poor, even if it means opposing the powerful.

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This article was originally published in Rorate Caeli 

Nearly 500 priests in Britain urge synod to stand firm on Communion for the remarried

Priests says that doctrine and practice must ‘remain firmly and inseparably in harmony’

Almost 500 priests in Britain have signed a letter urging those attending this year’s family synod to issue a “clear and firm proclamation” upholding Church teaching on marriage.

In the letter, published in this week’s Catholic Herald, the priests write: “We wish, as Catholic priests, to re-state our unwavering fidelity to the traditional doctrines regarding marriage and the true meaning of human sexuality, founded on the Word of God and taught by the Church’s Magisterium for two millennia.”

Last year’s extraordinary synod provoked heated debate on the question of whether remarried Catholics should be permitted to receive Holy Communion – a proposal presented by retired German Cardinal Walter Kasper. 

In what is thought to be an unprecedented step, 461 priests in Britain have joined together to urge synod participants to resist the proposal. 

They write: “We affirm the importance of upholding the Church’s traditional discipline regarding the reception of the sacraments, and that doctrine and practice remain firmly and inseparably in harmony.”

One signatory, who asked to remain anonymous, claimed there “has been a certain amount of pressure not to sign the letter and indeed a degree of intimidation from some senior Churchmen”. 

Another, who also asked not to be named, said the issue of Communion for the remarried was “a matter of pastoral concern and fidelity to the Gospel”. 

He said: “Mercy requires both love and truth. There’s a lot at stake. Not all priests would be comfortable expressing themselves in an open letter, but I’d be very worried if there were priests who disagreed with the sentiments it contains. 

“The letter calls for fidelity to Catholic teaching, and that practice should remain ‘inseparably in harmony’ with doctrine. The priests state that they remain committed to helping ‘those who struggle to follow the Gospel in an increasingly secular society’, but imply that those couples and families who have remained faithful are not being adequately supported or encouraged.”

Notable signatories to the letter include theologians Fr Aidan Nichols and Fr John Saward, and Oxford physicist Fr Andrew Pinsent. Fr Robert Billing, spokesman for the Diocese of Lancaster, Fr Tim Finigan, blogger and Catholic Herald columnist, and Fr Julian Large, provost of the London Oratory, have also signed the letter.

The priests conclude the letter by urging all participants in the forthcoming synod “to make a clear and firm proclamation of the Church’s unchanging moral teaching, so that confusion may be removed, and faith confirmed.”

Speaking recently at the presentation of his new book, Pope Francis’s Revolution of Tenderness and Love, Cardinal Kasper said Catholics should let their bishops know their hopes and concerns about the synod. But even more importantly they should pray that the Holy Spirit guides the bishops’ deliberations.

He said: “We should all pray for it because a battle is going on. Hopefully, the synod will be able to find a common answer, with a large majority, which will not be a rupture with tradition, but a doctrine that is a development of tradition.”

Full text of the letter and list of signatories:

SIR – Following the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops in Rome in October 2014 much confusion has arisen concerning Catholic moral teaching. In this situation we wish, as Catholic priests, to re-state our unwavering fidelity to the traditional doctrines regarding marriage and the true meaning of human sexuality, founded on the Word of God and taught by the Church’s Magisterium for two millennia. 

We commit ourselves anew to the task of presenting this teaching in all its fullness, while reaching out with the Lord’s compassion to those struggling to respond to the demands and challenges of the Gospel in an increasingly secular society. Furthermore we affirm the importance of upholding the Church’s traditional discipline regarding the reception of the sacraments, and that doctrine and practice remain firmly and inseparably in harmony. 

We urge all those who will participate in the second Synod in October 2015 to make a clear and firm proclamation of the Church’s unchanging moral teaching, so that confusion may be removed, and faith confirmed.

Yours faithfully,

[signed by 500 priests]

Originally published in catholic herald