(LifeSiteNews) — A not insignificant number of troubling developments in the Catholic Church are related to Pope Francis’ attempts to ensure that Church leaders don’t forget who is really “in charge,” according to one of LifeSite’s Vatican correspondents.
On today’s episode of The John-Henry Westen Show, Michael Haynes (click here to visit his author page) shares the latest up-to-date news and reaction to all the various crises afflicting the Church, including pro-LGBT Cardinal Jean-Claude Hollerich’s appointment to a select group of papal advisors, whether further restrictions on the Traditional Latin Mass are coming after Cardinal Arthur Roche’s rescript approved by the Pope, the accusations of heresy against Cardinal Robert McElroy by other Church leaders, and much more.
In our discussion on Francis quietly eliminating housing subsidies for cardinals, Haynes argued that the real reason for the Pope’s move has less to do with finances and more to do with “making sure the cardinals know who is in charge.”
“It’s very much a move which seems to be very related to one thing, and that’s power,” he said. “That’s making sure the cardinals know who is in charge, making sure that if they speak out of line, perhaps, or if they align themselves with any arguments that they be … proposing Catholic tradition or the ancient liturgy, then the Pope might be able to move against them and withdraw whatever concessions he has allowed them for housing.”
One of the many stories Haynes has been following is the saga of Jesuit priest Father Mario Ivan Rupnik, who has been accused of psychologically and sexually abusing religious sisters and was recently spotted concelebrating Mass at a Roman basilica despite his ban on public ministry. Pope Francis allegedly intervened to lift the automatic excommunication of Father Rupnik after he was found guilty in ecclesiastical court of absolving in confession a woman with whom he had sexual relations.
READ: Bp. Schneider: Bishops who push ‘heresy’ know Pope Francis won’t punish them
“Father Rupnik appears to be completely rejecting all the restrictions placed upon his ministry,” Haynes said. “No action is appearing to actually have an effect on him. And the excommunication which … [the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith] confirmed [was] lifted very, very quickly.”
In light of the crackdown on the Traditional Latin Mass and the proliferation of voices calling for a change in Church teaching on homosexuality, the situation in the Church is dire because good bishops are forced to “tread a very fine line” while heterodox bishops and cardinals are allowed to say whatever they want with no repercussions.
“Bishop [Athanasius] Schneider was making comments in response to Cardinal McElroy’s repeated heretical articles, and Bishop Schneider made a very astute observation. He said that these cardinals and these bishops say these things because they know they can get away with it,” Haynes said. “It relates back to what we mentioned before with Father Rupnik. Those who feel they have the protection of the Pope seem to be able to get away with things.”
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