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September 23, 2009

Report: Vatican knew of Holocaust denier

A Swedish television program airing Wednesday claims that top Vatican officials knew that Bishop Richard Williamson was a Holocaust denier when they lifted his excommunication in January, the Associated Press is reporting.

The report comes on the eve of reconciliation talks between the Vatican and the traditionalist Society of St. Pius X, whose leaders were excommunicated in 1988 after they consecrated Williamson and three other priests as bishops in defiance of Pope John Paul II.

Pope Benedict XVI has made a priority of reconciling with the society, whose members seek a return to the church as it was before the Second Vatican Council. But the effort provoked a furor in January when Sweden’s SVT aired an interview taped in November 2008 in which Williamson denied key elements of the Holocaust. The British bishop disputed the commonly cited figure of 6 million Jews killed by the Nazis during World War II, saying the actual number was no more than 300,000, and said none were gassed.

Vatican officials have said they were unaware of Williamson’s beliefs when his excommunication was rescinded in January. But SVT says Catholic officials in Sweden knew of his remarks in the interview in November and made a full report to the apostolic nuncio in Stockholm, the representative of the Vatican in Sweden, who passed the information on to Rome.

“Naturally we passed all the information that we had on to the nuncio,” Bishop Anders Arborelius of Stockholm told SVT, according to the AP. “After that I don’t really know how it moved along.”

In a statement Wednesday, the AP reports, the diocese reiterated that it had sent a report about the interview to the Vatican last November. The SVT program says the nuncio, Archbishop Emil Paul Tscherrig, confirmed off-camera that he had contacted several people in the Vatican, including Cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos, who was then leading the effort to reconcile with the Society of St. Pius X.

The report contradicts the statement of Castrillon Hoyos, who told the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera in January that no one at the Vatican knew of Williamson’s beliefs until after his excommunication had been lifted.

“We absolutely didn’t know anything about this Williamson,” said Castrillon Hoyos, who stepped down as head of the Pontifical Ecclesia Dei Commission in July after reaching the mandatory retirement age of 80. The reconciliation effort is now being led by Cardinal William Levada, the highest-ranking American at the Vatican.

The SVT program does not say that Pope Benedict XVI knew of Williamson’s beliefs. Benedict repudiated Williamson’s remarks, and Cardinal Christoph Schoenborn of Vienna said last week that the Society of St. Pius X must respect Jews and members of other faiths if it is to be reinstated to the church.

Williamson eventually apologized for the “harm and hurt” caused by his remarks. But he did not withdraw them or say that he no longer believed them.

Posted by Matthew Hay Brown at 6:00 AM | | Comments (31)
Categories: Catholicism, Interfaith, International, Judaism, People, Politics
        

Comments

I never agreed with lifting the excommunication anyway and it appears now that it was known by some at the Vatican before it was lifted. Until the society agreed to abide by Vatican II, apologize for the Bishops remarks publicly and acknowledge their error excommunications should have remained. I really don't know why reconciling with SSPX is that important. It's time the Vatican come clean with the whole story, and drops the idea of reconciliation unless the SSPX agrees to accept those conditions.

Anonymous let’s see if you can post a constructive criticism instead of one of your usual anti-catholic bombastic entries.

Just wondering...is the St Pius X Church and school on York Road part of SSPX? Nothing on their web site indicates they are part of the Society, but they have the same name.

It's irrelevant if the Vatican knew or not about Bishop Williamson beliefs with respect to the holocaust.
The Bishop has studied that issue and is entitle to have his own opinion and can not be forced to think otherwise, just because external pressures. I'm too in the same way of thinking as the Bishop.
The holocaust issue has nothing to do with the excommunication, since is an internal problem of the Vatican.

To the post-conciliar and conciliar mind, would this encyclical be anti-semitic?
To the reader who takes the time to view the link below, please note, the pope whose tone though harsh when speaking an inconvenient truth, takes pains to remind the episcopacy of Poland that, “…The Jews are not to be persecuted…” Is the reminding of the world of the danger of creating a false reality concerning,”…those whose color have changed…”, an example of being insensitive? God Bless +Richard Williamson of speaking in the same manner as POPES previous!

http://www.papalencyclicals.net/Ben14/b1 4aquo.htm

“…Furthermore, by means of their particular practice of commerce, they amass a great store of money and then by an exorbitant rate of interest utterly destroy the wealth and inheritance of Christians. Even if they borrow money from Christians at heavy and undue interest with their synagogues as surety, it is obvious to anyone who thinks about it that they do so to employ the money borrowed from Christians in their commercial dealings; this enables them to make enough profit to pay the agreed interest and simultaneously increase their own store. At the same time, they gain as many defenders of their synagogues and themselves as they have creditors.”
“On Jews and Christians Living in the Same Place” - Encyclical of Pope Benedict XIV promulgated on June 14, 1751

Submitted by a former seminarian cleric of the Society of Saint Pius X

Most of the so called history surrounding the Holocaust is myth that has yet to be verified historically. To question the details is not a crime, it is merely critical inquiry. When we loose that right and privilege, we loose our freedom of speech. This entire question regarding the Holocaust can be clarified if the Nazi prison records which are now at the Holocaust Museum were opened to the public for study and investigation.

If people want this phenomenon of “Holocaust denial” to go away, open the German prison records to the public…if you dare.

Capital idea. Let's trust the Nazis to tell us the truth about the Holocaust.

Fascinating. Richard Williamson and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad both deny the Holocaust. I have always believed that the lunatic fringe elements wthin the various religions have more in common with each other than with their own mainstream. These two prove the point.

By the way, Mr. Fallon, the right to free speech means the government can't punish you for expressing your opinion. It doesn't prevent others like myself from labelling Bishop Willamson or President Ahmadinejad as blithering idiots.

Anonymous Sept 24, 2009, 10.32 AM
Ravensfan the above was not me your bugaboo Anonymous but he or she did a capital job--my sentiments exactly--Anonymous Sept 24, 10.32 a crisp remark--congrats--you speak for those who have been excoriated on these blogs for pointing out what's clear to everyone from the pages of history--except of course to the devout Catholic deniers of this truth--the Catholic Church's association through the ages with despots--Hitler being their protege and Franco of Spain another--and Ravensfan this time you have said something sensible--wonder of wonders I completely agree with you and hence I will not overwhelm your chafing intellect with the flourish of my bombast.

Koldobika, Jack Fallon and John Kokenga,
Ahmadinejad invites all three of you to dinner with Gaddafi and Hugo Chavez , in a Bedouin tent in Englewood, New Jersey. Father Williamson is also cordially and hospitably asked to attend this meeting of like minds. Bring along a blanket, watch the stars and sing a song of six pence that goes,

'"Holocaust O Holocaust?
A hollow cast of characters made up Holocaust,
Hitler was a pliant pussy cat who could have never dreamed up Holocaust,
Six million Jews killed? That's hot air and bombast!
We will never let this lie take root or last,
We will rewrite history every chance we have,
We know the Jews enclosed themselves-
In concentration camps,
They starved themselves, beat themselves,
Branded themselves,
Even threw their own children under Zyclon B showers,
Then made up an awful story the sick little cowards--
Holocaust O Holocaust,
Don't believe their lies,
Come join us in our Jersey tent beneath the starry skies,
Across this globe they call us clowns though our ambition is vast,
We'll one day pulverize the fools with a single mighty blast,
Holocaust O Holocaust,
A hollow cast of characters made up Holocaust!"
Kokenga, Fallon and Koldobika--have a good time guys. Take along some banjos and guitars.


What does Williamson's statement have to do with Catholic faith? Where is it taught that Catholics must believe every Jewish fable?

Palehorse the holocaust a Jewish fable? You can’t be serious.

To Anonymous:
I am not sure why you have chosen to not list your name but I have listed mine. And I will remind you that I made not one reference to that historical episode in my blog entry. If you choose to make an ad hominem attack, please put it in the correct context. I will attempt to answer the accusation you have put forth in your very disrespectful ditty. The friend of my enemy is not my friend and neither is the enemy of my friend my friend necessarily. Anyone whose rhetoric is filled with hatred and injustice be anathematized; this is what Catholicism has taught me and what I learned from the SSPX. This is the same of the Pope which I quoted and which you did not respond, and it is also the mind of Richard Williamson. This is an argument of numbers and of truth and NOT of whether injustice was committed; it was clearly committed against a society and a race. A mind rooted in reality ought to be able to see this.
No person in the entire created universe should be persecuted for their ignorance or their stubbornness in the refusal to believe in the divinity of Our Lord Jesus Christ. This is a grave injustice and it is why the nationalism which morphed into the hatred of natural society (and religious society) in Germany and other parts of Europe was so roundly condemned by The Church. This is a fact. Oversimplification is always sensational ‘Anonymous’ and evil thrives in ambiguity.
Those ‘whose color have changed’ need the sacrifice of every single good-willed soul in the entire universe to pray for their wholesale conversion and acceptation of Jesus Christ. They are the best of humanity whose flesh is present in the greatest of all creatures and who reigns in heaven with Her Son. And yet there are elements of that race which refuse to accept their greatness due to their historical reluctance in the acceptation of the Messiah.
Now, tell me that I embody anti-$$$$$$$$.

You're nuts Kokenga--my poem stands and I stand by it. And let me tell you something my name wouldn't mean anything to you even if it were splashed here in neon lights.
Hurray Ravensfan--you are the voice of sanity on this board.

Anonymous I am very sorry you continue to make ad hominem attacks. I may be nuts but you have not answered any of the specific information contained in my prior entries. Despite my statement of principle concering injustice and a race which I clearly stated is superior, you are either incapable of viewing the fundamental nature of this argument or you do not have the time to do so. You otherwise seem intelligent.
I did actually like the poem but am sickened at being placed in the same ideological camp as a Communist, an Islamic anti-semite and a Middle Eastern UN puppet/opportunist.
I suppose you have said something true; your name probably would not mean anything because you have said nothing but made a lot of noise.
I am intrigued though as to why you have 3 times intentionally spelled my name ending with an A. Is there some esoteric joke that I am missing? Please share it with me so I too may laugh.

Interesting all the name calling and ranting and raving. I'm sure taht everyone will agree that the camps with the worst reputation were Dachau, Auschwitz and Treblinka. A trip to the following website which to this point is the only published records of the Nazi prison camps will reveal that in 11 years 160,000 prisoners were taken to Dachau. Only 10% were Jews and only 35,000 deaths of all prisoners of all nationalities for all causes including natural occured at Dachau. This list was compiled by the Holocaust Museum by Jews in Washington, DC. You may click on the details of each individual prisone to find out his/her nationality and how they died. Give it a try. We can only hope that the records from the other camps will be released. But presently the oldest and most notorious Nazi concentration camp can only safely record that at the most only 16,000 Jews died died there and most from disease and natural causes.
http://stevemorse.org/dachau/dachau

For the compelation of the numbers read the introduction.

So what is your contention John Fallon? That the Jews have lied about the number six million dead? Heck, if that is a lie let it be so because the Nazi bastards had no business putting one Jew in a concentration camp; not one child Jewish or gypsy, not one adult gay or straight needed to be enclosed by barbed wire, their freedom curtailed, their manhood or womanhood destroyed, their life at the mercy of tyrants. Died of disease you say and natural causes. Big discovery man! What's the disease? Depression, suicide, malnutrition, tuberculosis, typhus--all conditions that occur when men are enclosed, enslaved and savaged. If six million slaughtered is a lie, let it be so, to shock the complacent , to wake up the apathetic and shake up the status quo so we will always be aware of the potential for man's inhumanity to man and man's proclivity, as is evident on this blog, to excuse the inexcusable with the cunning use of specious language--dastardly sophistry to cover up ethnic hatred.

I hope that you can apply all of that paaion and concern to the Palestinian people who are as we speak , "Dieing of disease you say and natural causes.... Depression, suicide, malnutrition, tuberculosis, typhus--all conditions that occur when men are enclosed, enslaved and savaged."

If you mean what you say, you should be otraged at Israel's treatment of the Palestinians.

And I am as I am outraged by the Palestinian treatment of the Israelis--both.

Anonymous...
"...cunning use of specious language, as is evident on this blog..."

Like uh, what ugh, are you trying to say?

I am guessing it would be better if the persons that write on this blog speak less 'sophisticated'.

Umm, I think, um, that any person, um, that is hurt, or who suffers because of, ugh, cruelty, has had a wrong committed on them--DUH! (This is true for an Islamic Semite, an African Animist, a Japanese Buddhist, a European Catholic, an American Native, or a Jewish Semite.)
It ain't right with the Lord--DUH! But, um, creating a ugh, lie about some uggh, event, ugh for the POTENTIAL of um, gaining some ugh, pity, ummm, at the ummm, expense of the truth, ummm, is not just either.
Ugghhh, if The Man that was ugh, sent by, umm, God lied to his peeps, then ughh, he would have, umm, been un-just too. But ughh, the Book say he did not lie at all.

Again Anonymous, you are incapable of distinguishing the difference between injustice and cruelty, and pity at the expense of truth. Objective truth is very difficult for the sophisticated like yourself to comprehend.

Let us not lose sight of the subject of this particular blog which is Bishop Williamson who quite clearly has been subjected to unwarranted attacks and criticism bordering on labeling him a criminal. I don't know about the rest of you, but I was taught to question just about any subject that was being rammed down my throat. In a society which seems to have abolished all taboos, the mandatory unquestioning acceptance of the Holocaust is an anomaly which demands closer scrutiny. Every time someone challenges any detail of the official Holocaust narrative they are subjected to an avalanche of vicious vitriolic vituperation. Personally I would jump at the opportunity to explicate any position that I held dear, but to the Establishment all discussion is closed down by labeling any honest inquiry as Holocaust denial and deserving of nothing more than contempt. It is interesting and indicative of the paucity of the Holocaust narrative that none of its defenders will engage any of the "deniers" in a rigorous and open debate.

"M'thinks the lady doth protest too much!"

John Kokenga you are an irredeemable anti Semite-- admit it. You are saying, with a lot of muck to hide what you say, that the Jews had an injustice done to them, not a cruelty, that they have exaggerated the numbers of them killed to extract pity for themselves through the collective guilt of humanity. And I say numbers are irrelevant--I also say that you are not right about the numbers. For the Chechens, the Armenians, the Jews, the gypsies, the Tibetans, the people of the Xinjiang province of China, the Rwandans, the Congolese, those who are currently undergoing a purge, in Sudan, in the West Bank and the Gaza, we must all weep that we are capable of such utter cruelty-- we must cry for Krystallnacht, the marking of the Aryan race as superior and the Jews as inferior and worthy of death--men are not destroyed by death alone--the numbers of dead therefore is unimportant--what led up to the death of the few (and I disagree that there were only few and I say that even one is a terrible injury to our collective souls ) --how many people died without actually dying--how many had to leave home and hearth to escape the dying--how many lost everything and died anyway within themselves for men die even as they live--they die from feelings of unworthiness-they die from inability to function-from mental debility--the systematic dispossession of the Jews, the stripping of their civil rights--all documented and accepted by the German people and you find comfort in the numbers game? Ah, Kokenga you are an unworthy man. I will not talk to you any further, not because I am too sophisticated, but because I know you have made up your mind--I have tried to see it your way, and reason with you even accepting your statistics but to no avail. Therefore I'll call it a day with you pal. Go forth and conquer your demons. I wish you luck.

Anonymous has just clearly demonstrated the points which I have just made. Through his hysterical rancor he breates and attributes all sorts of unwarranted heinous motives to Kokenga.

Indignation is a poor substitute for the truth, Anonymous.

Jack Fallon sorry I did not give credit where credit is due--substitute your name for Kokenge's in my last post--of course you jump to defend Kokenge a fellow philosopher of the same mold. Kokenge--you have complained about my misspelling your name-- and I apologize for that! You mean berates Jack Fallon--take a breather. You can be indignant Fallon about liars and outright racists. And you Fallon are right--you are not even worthy of that.

Anonymous you simply can not reason correctly or you yourself hate anyone who you can not manipulate. Your supposition of anti-semitic is typical; I do not believe that all truths have been told concerning this historical event and as such, I might as well be an SS officer. What faulty reasoning!

You stated in your last entry that, "...and I say numbers are irrelevant--I also say that you are not right about the numbers." If numbers are not relevant to you, why are defending them?

I will state again very clearly on this public domain. Cruelty has been committed and as well an injustice against a race of people who are known as Jews. And yes we must weep and fear the evil of the day because of the hatred and cruelty and injustice and heinousness committed against all innocent people. This was done at the hands of an absolute madman who was and should have been condemned for this. How much clearer can I state this? Creating, as you have stated in your last entry, a paradigm, "...they have exaggerated the numbers of them killed to extract pity for themselves through the collective guilt of humanity."

Yes, this is entirely a possibility and in that vehicle is the denial of an objective truth. Every single human being, including a Jew must convert to and believe in Jesus Christ in order to be guaranteed eternal life.

This objectivity infuriates you Anonymous.

I again notice that you have failed to state one thing about the encyclical quote I added on September 23.

Here is something that you should understand about statistics Anonymous. By the way, I have quoted no statistic!

Statitics are alot like bikinis.

What they show is important, but what they hide is ESSENTIAL.

Kokenge, I wouldn't spend too much time trying to reason with anonymous. His conversational skills seem to boil down to, "If you don't agree with me, you are an (insert your own expletive). What is more important is that Bishop Williamson is being vilified for questioning whether or not 6 million Jews were executed by the Nazi regime and whether or not gas chambers were used. As more and more records are opened, it would appear that Bishop Williamson is correct in questioning the official narrative that we all are expected to pay homage to. Many people suffered and died at the hands of the Nazis, and an overwhelming majority of them were not Jews and that's a fact.

Kokenge is it just the Jews or are the Hindus,the Sikhs, the Buddhists and the Muslims also in peril for not accepting Jesus as a savior? Since the Jews did not accept Jesus, therefore they perished at the hands of Hitler? What be your twisted logic--explain Kokenge, I am dying to know how your great mind has worked this out.

Anonymous...It is an objective truth that is written in scripture (I have no idea if you believe in its inspiration or not) that all Jews and Gentiles must accept that Jesus Christ is the Messiah. Suffering peril on earth as a result of failure to accept Jesus Christ is always and categorically wrong. This would be willful murder and it is a sin that screams to heaven for vengence by Him because it is so horrible.
The man who you have named was baptized a Catholic but through sin and hatred, warped his mind to conceive of such evil. This seems to me to be evident, but I can not for the life of me guess as to exactly why. It does not matter the reason exactly why anyone hate another because of a physical feature, or the color of their skin, or their practice of religion. It is just plain wrong! I do not believe however that AH killed anyone due to a religious reason--but if that was his motivation, then let him suffer his punishment in hell for all of eternity.
Why does any human being physically harm another for failure to conform to the 'spirit of the age?' I could not venture a guess to the precise reason, but I can say that it is due to man's fall from his state of original justice in the garden of Eden. Now, you might call me crazy, and again that I may be, but none of this justifies the killing of ANYONE.

But this argument is entirely seperate from the discussion of the accuracy of historical events. Are you still willing to state that my intentions or my mind is couched in sophisticated language? Even though I have again stated them clearly.
On what proof do you make these claims other than the supposition of a phrase which is utterly abused? You can only judge a man by his words and these words are very precise; NO man can ever justify the killing of another for any other reason than his own immediate safety or of his property. The killing of people from many aspects of society in Europe during that horrible regime's rule is EVIL and is condemnable then, now and forever.

Whoa! anonymous, dearest, where in the world did you come up withis bit of drivel, " Since the Jews did not accept Jesus, therefore they perished at the hands of Hitler?" Logic is based on premises that are either true or false. You cannot possibly come to any logical or accurate conclusions if your premises are inaccurate. Hitler was a pagan as was the Nazi regime. I think anonymousberg is trying to point fingers and interject another Jewish fable into the discourse.

Tell me anonymoustein, do guys take courses on this sort of rhetorical gymnastics?

For the record Anonymous...I don't approve of the sarcasm in the posts of many other people who have contributed to this blog.
Name calling accomplishes nothing for any of us.

Jack Fallon,
You are a an intellectual mouse albeit a dangerous one. You cannot follow train of argument. In my previous post I was replying to Kokenge who said in his post that it is an intellectual truth all Jews and gentiles must accept Christ. Well, in reply to that I asked him a question if he also believed that the Jews were massacred by Hitler for not believing in Jesus. He obviously doesn't and has clarified this but you in the meantime saw it fit to put your long and noxious proboscis in our interchange to disparage me--most bombastically if I may add- that I am a proponent of a Jewish lie when I say Hitler hit the Jews for being non-Christians--or even by posing that question I have spouted a syllogism because if I were not blindly pro Jewish I would have acknowledged that Hitler and his Nazis were pagans and couldn't possibly have hit the Jews for not being Christians. I was more interested in what Kokenge thought about the matter Fallon--if he thought Hitler hit the Jews for not being Christians, if he-- Kokenge-- thought God punished the Jews for not accepting Christ as the messiah--I wasn't asserting that this was actually the case Fallon-- I already know what you think--if it smells pro Jewish then it is an obnoxious lie--what else can it be--three major concentration camp archives reveal so--logic says so-- Palestinian oppression screams so-- and most importantly your anti Semetism dictates and decrees so. Good bye Fallon--go commune more with the spirit of Hitler and gather more statistical force from other archives and when you find out that 0 Jews died at the hands of Hitler, let us know--we'll rejoice with you.
Don't hyperventilate Kokenge--I see your point--you are a rabid Catholic--you are defending Williamson about the finer points that I don't seem to comprehend or so you think--you are against the evil of the killing of any race and your good friend Williamson like Fallon, does not deny Jews were killed, instead he disputes the numbers killed --those numbers being a Jewish exaggeration--and the finer points Williamson has argued do not make him an evil man or for that matter a holocaust denier--thus you have pleaded his case. All this I understand--so please do not belabor the point. I do not accept it though--and about you, I now believe you don't harbor the Fallon type gleeful virulence against Jews--on that note we'll let it go.

Oh dear, anonymous, I've upset you. Let me make this clear, I am not anti-Semitic. I have friends in Israel and even have helped raise money for Israel. Your little diversionary tactic of inserting a comment with inferences of what you now vehemently deny. So I will defer to the likes of Professor Norman Finklestein at http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/ and Israel Shamir www.israelshamir.net/ both of whom are the children of Jewish Holocaust survivors and both of whom hold positions very similar to what I have expressed on this blog.

Read them, if you dare.


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About Matthew Hay Brown
Matthew Hay Brown writes and blogs about faith and values in public and private life for The Baltimore Sun. A former Washington correspondent for the newspaper, he has long written about the intersection of religion and politics. He has reported from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East, traveling most recently to Syria and Jordan to write about the Iraqi refugee crisis.
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