The Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz Prayer Club

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Priesthood and Seminary

Fr. Eduard Perrone . . .

Focuses On The
Spiritual Sabotage That Has Devastated Seminaries


(Special to The Wanderer)

DETROIT — As a team of U.S. bishops, including the Most Rev. Fabian Bruskewitz of Lincoln, Neb., headed to Detroit to conduct an investigation of the archdiocese’s Sacred Heart Seminary, a Detroit priest sounded off with some practical recommendations of what to look for, and where.

Fr. Eduard Perrone, pastor since 1994 of the renowned Assumption Grotto Church — known far and wide for its beautiful liturgies and outstanding liturgical music — and a priest since 1978, wrote in his parish bulletin October 16 that a major area for exploration is the psychological brainwashing that prospective candidates for the priesthood must endure on the path to Ordination, and the inculcation of a cynical attitude that destroys faith.

The issue of homosexuals in the seminary, he observed, is only a “small if necessary focus of this investigation.”

What the bishops’ team must primarily do, he suggested, is examine the teaching of professors who have been “dizzying the brains of seminarians with confusing accounts of some pivotal teachings of the Catholic Church.”

“Young men entering the seminary usually do not do so to become rebels against the Magisterium and defamers of Catholic Tradition. Rather, this is a thing inculcated in them over a period of years of ‘formation’,” he wrote.

“They are tutored in the subtle art of theological ambiguity, of how to conserve a veneer of Catholicism while personally believing and practicing what is contrary to the faith. Especially through the technique of an oppressive psychological conditioning, they are led to espouse aberrant theological views (for example, to regard the Sacred Scripture as mere literature whose inerrancy is to be debunked; or to doubt that our Lord possessed divine knowledge during His life on earth).

“They are permitted to hold and sometimes openly express opinions on matters contrary to the defined teaching of the Pope, such as the moral impossibility of women priests (an issue now forever determined by the definition of Pope John Paul II). They may be taught by word or example to disregard liturgical norms.

“Much more insidious than these is the infusion of a cynical mental attitude regarding holy things and defined beliefs, an attitude due to years of ‘formation’ in classroom teaching and group discussions, by faculty evaluations, and in psychological counseling. Often there is no single thing that is the cause of this kind of malformation. It’s rather the cumulative effect of a twisted and persistent conditioning which clouds reason, foments arrogance, stifles the devout life, and, in the end, destroys the faith of the seminarian.

“Behold the result: the unbelieving, rebellious, impious priest who enters the parish to undo the holy apostolic and Catholic faith and root out any vestige of Catholic piety in the faithful.

“If someone were to demand evidence for this dire account of some of our seminaries,” he continued, “I would call as my witnesses you, the Catholic laity, who, without knowing how it came about, have seen and heard their ‘products’ operating in our parishes. Malformed priests have endangered or destroyed the spiritual lives of many Catholics, some of whom have stopped practicing the faith altogether.

“Such priests have led the laity to doubt Catholic doctrines, to denigrate the word of God, to neglect Confession, to make light of sinful matter — even of gravely sinful things. Finally, these priests have attempted to pacify their troubled consciences by assuring themselves and their parishioners that, in the end, all will be saved anyway.

“Sad to tell, there is yet more to this dismal picture. This concerns not the seminary directly but what precedes it. This is the process of interview and evaluation of the candidates. Here they are screened so that those deemed unsuitable are barred from entry into the seminary.

“While one might think it a good and necessary thing, one would be shocked to learn that those refused are not those who were found wanting in orthodox Catholic faith or who [fail to] practice traditional forms of Catholic piety but rather those who give evidence of those very things. The special tool employed for this process of exclusion of candidates is psychological testing with a follow-up evaluation by a psychologist.

“If a candidate is found to be too ‘rigid’ (a cherished term in their lexicon) because he holds to certain Catholic beliefs and religious practices, he is rejected as one unsuitable for the diocesan priesthood. One may wonder who these expert psychologists are who wield such power in determining priestly vocations. I answer with a single example.

“The archdiocese employed a woman psychologist who, among her other attributes, regarded [as] unacceptable any candidates who agreed with the Church’s mandate of clerical celibacy. Without a doubt, her evaluation caused several candidates to be barred from entering our seminary. She has now left her job, but not on account of her views, but because she took off to ‘marry’ a priest of the archdiocese.

“All these and many more shameful and underhanded dealings with seminarians and seminary candidates have been kept from the devout Catholic faithful who have continued to pray — rightly of course, but naively — for more vocations to the priesthood.

“I believe that we do not have a true vocations problem, but rather a crisis fabricated by those who are depriving the Church of many potentially good priests and unleashing upon the Church some intellectually and morally unfit men to assume the life and work of the priesthood.

“Not all of their efforts have succeeded. There have been some very fine men ordained in recent years. Nor would it be true to say that all our seminary professors have been dissidents. Detroit, in fact, now has many excellent faculty members. But the aforesaid problems in some seminary courses and in the formation department really do exist nonetheless.”

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Images

Okay...if you want to show your support and fanship of Bishop Bruskewitz in the form of a little picture you put on your blog, these is for you. It would be great if you could make the picture also a link to this blog by simply putting the link code around the image code. So it basically looks like this.









Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Awesome awesome!

I added the blog Defensor Veritatis to the blogroll the other day because, sure enough, Brad is a fan of Bishop Bruskewitz. Brad posted about this blog and kindly links to it as well. Well look at this comment that was left there yesterday. Thanks to Brad for drawing my attention to this!

Wow...I'd like to have Bishop Bruskewitz's autograph. :-)

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Bishop Bruskewitz interview

The Wanderer Interviews . . .
Bishop Bruskewitz On Defying The NRB


Q. On March 30, Mrs. Ewers, who heads the USCCB’s National Review Board, urged your brother bishops to give you some fraternal correction. Do you feel adequately corrected?

A. Sometimes you have to react. If I’m attacked, they are going to get a mouthful of porcupine quills. And it wasn’t just me. They attacked my diocese . . . the people who serve on that board. Some Board members support abortion very strongly, such as Leon Panetta. Paul McHugh, a Kinseyite from Johns Hopkins University, has supported human cloning. This is publicized in some of the USCCB’s own publications like Origins.

Q. What prompted your response to the published letter from Mrs. Ewers to Bishop Skylstad?

A. I was speechless with indignation, and I refuse to be bossed around by these people. It was explicit in a published report that was put on the Internet, an attack on the Diocese of Lincoln.

Q. Have you experienced any efforts since then of fraternal correction from Bishop Skylstad or others?

A. Not even the slightest negative, although several bishops have communicated positively.

Q. In the Dallas meeting of 2002, you recommended a study of the true causes of the sex-abuse scandals. Your resolution addressed homosexuality and the traditional teaching of the Church on moral issues.
Why do you think you received so little support?

A. I don’t know, except possibly a fear of offending a powerful constituency. I don’t think there’s any doubt that, in many dioceses, colleges, and universities, the homosexual attitude is very powerful. After all, the abuse crisis is a homosexual issue, not a pedophile issue, involving adolescent boys. That seems to be corroborated by the information that the bishops’ conference itself has gathered. That’s why the bishops wanted to delay the document from the Congregation for Catholic Education on admitting homosexuals in the seminaries. I don’t think homosexuals belong in the priesthood.

Q. Why do you object to pro-abortion Catholics serving on the lay board? Aren’t a lot of prominent Catholics supporters of partial-birth abortion? Don’t they deserve representation too?

A. It’s a standing disgrace that some of these people who call themselves Catholic don’t understand the heinous evil that they support. That we should give them a position of prominence in the Church is an outrage.

Q. At the bishops’ meeting last November, Archbishop Harry Flynn of St. Paul-Minneapolis attacked The Wanderer for its articles on the Charter and the Safe Environment programs. Has he ever engaged you in conversation about the issue?

A. Never. We’ve never quarreled. We have exchanged social greetings at meetings. I’ve seen [Teresa] Kettelkamp at the meetings, but we’ve never had conversation or conflict.

Q. Under your direction, the Diocese of Lincoln has had spectacular results in fostering vocations to the priesthood. What do you think accounts for that?

A. First of all, it is God’s grace and the patronage of Mary, to whom the diocese is dedicated. And it’s also due to the wonderful diocese that I inherited from a great predecessor, Bishop Flavin; also a cadre of excellent priests who are wholesome, holy, pure, learned, and good.

Q. As you have probably heard, Bishop Paul Loverde has announced that girl altar boys will now be allowed in the Diocese of Arlington. That means that your diocese is alone in not allowing them in the United States.
Will you continue that policy?

A. I’ve been alone before. However, it might be interesting to know that there are other dioceses that don’t have altar girls, but they do not want it to be known. But, as I’ve said many times, if I see a diocese, chiefly because of altar girls, with convents overflowing with novices, and hundreds of priests being ordained, then I’ll change my mind. In the meantime, we’ll just continue in the old traditional way.

Q. There are clearly many problems facing the American Catholic Church. Now that Pope Benedict XVI is nearing his first anniversary in assuming the See of Peter, how do you think he will address the problems in America?

A. That’s hard to say. I think that as the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, he was aware of the problems. I think that’s an indication of good things. We can look forward to a very careful observation of the problems in the United States on his part. Not that Pope John Paul II hadn’t visited our country many times, but perhaps some of the members of our hierarchy might now be more willing to discuss our problems more openly and clearly with the present Pope.

Q. Many thanks, Your Excellency.

commenting and trackback have been added to this blog.

'Fraternal Correction'

Bishops Sex Abuse Board Recommends “Fraternal Correction” Against Nebraska Bishop
Bishop counters liberals on Board dislike diocese for upholding church moral teachings

by Hilary White

LINCOLN, April 3, 2006 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Patricia O'Donnell Ewers, chairman of the US Conference of Catholic bishops’ Office of Child and Youth Protection (OCYP), recommended March 30 that the US bishops use "strong fraternal correction" to one of their members who has refused to comply with an annual audit of compliance with national guidelines on sex-abuse programs.

The Bishop for whom the OCYP has recommended the correction is Fabian Bruskewitz of Lincoln, Nebraska, a diocese that is one of the most faithful and has among the lowest rates of child abuse by clerics in the US.

The annual “audit” by the OCYP measures how well dioceses have implemented programs recommended at the 2002 Dallas meeting of the USCCB on the homosexual abuse scandals. This year, however, was the first in which it was suggested the bishops attempt to examine whether the programs of the “Dallas Charter” actually succeed in protecting children. Many parents and other Catholics say they do not and that they are little more than massive PR effort to rehabilitate the bishops’ public image. Many have said the programs do little more than shift responsibility onto the children who are “trained” to protect themselves.

Without holding back his outrage, Bruskewitz has come out swinging. In a statement issued March 31, he wrote, “The Diocese of Lincoln has nothing to be corrected for, since the Diocese of Lincoln is and has always been in full compliance with all laws of the Catholic Church and with all civil laws.”

The bishop writes, “It is well known that some of the members of (the National Review) Board are ardent advocates of partial birth abortion, other abortions, human cloning, and other moral errors. It is understandable then how such persons could dislike the Diocese of Lincoln, which upholds the moral teaching of the Catholic Church.”

Bishop Bruskewitz has not been accused of molesting children, of aiding molestors, of bankrupting his diocese, or misusing diocesan funds to pay off plaintiffs, or sacrificing the religious freedom of the Church to avoid prosecution. Thus far, however, no official rebuke, disciplinary action or “fraternal correction” has been issued or even suggested against any of the numerous US bishops who have done one or more of these things.

Bruskewitz does not hesitate to name the problem: “The members of (Ewer’s) Board are unfamiliar with Catholic teachings, Catholic ecclesiology, and even the basic rudiments of the Catholic Catechism.”

Bruskewitz concludes, “The Diocese of Lincoln does not see any reason for the existence of Ewers and her organization.”

In 2002, Bishop Bruskewitz was the only one of the bishops at Dallas who denounced the bishops’ plan saying it failed to address the real problem. The only group of Church employees for whom the Dallas Charter protection program did not establish standards of behaviour was the bishops themselves. When the bishops ignored Bruskewitz’s recommendation that the bishops examine their own failings, he said he did not consider himself bound to the initiative.

Phil Lawler, writing in Catholic World News, called fraternal correction of bishops responsible for the sex abuse scandal a “wonderful” idea. He suggests including those bishops who have themselves been credibly accused of sexual abuse; those who have “signed away” parts of their Episcopal authority to avoid prosecution; those who used diocesan funds to make huge payoffs to settle sexual misconduct suits levelled against them by homosexual men; and those who have driven their diocese into federal bankruptcy courts.

In 2002, the Dallas Morning News reported that at least two thirds of the US episcopate was either complicit through cover-ups or directly involved themselves in some cases of sexual abuse or misconduct. Since then many more allegations have come to light and more dioceses have applied for bankruptcy protection.

Lawler suggests that the problem has been that the bishops have been allowed to respond to the crisis without credible oversight and therefore lack the will or “honesty to denounce themselves.”


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In response, Bishop Bruskewitz had this to say:

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Some woman named Patricia O'Donnell Ewers, who is the Chair of something called "A National Review Board for the Protection of Children and Young People", has said that her Board "calls for strong fraternal correction of the Diocese of Lincoln." The Diocese of Lincoln has nothing to be corrected for, since the Diocese of Lincoln is and has always been in full compliance with all laws of the Catholic Church and with all civil laws. Furthermore, Ewers and her Board have no authority in the Catholic Church and the Diocese of Lincoln does not recognize them as having any significance.

It is well known that some of the members of Ewers' Board are ardent advocates of partial birth abortion, other abortions, human cloning, and other moral errors. It is understandable then how such persons could dislike the Diocese of Lincoln, which upholds the moral teaching of the Catholic Church.

The words attributed to Ewers seem to confirm the suspicion that the members of her Board are unfamiliar with Catholic teachings, Catholic ecclesiology, and even the basic rudiments of the Catholic Catechism. Rather than concerning themselves with the Diocese of Lincoln about which they appear completely ignorant, Ewers and her colleagues would occupy themselves in a better way by learning something about the Catholic religion and the traditions and doctrines and laws of the Catholic Church.

The Diocese of Lincoln does not see any reason for the existence of Ewers and her organization.


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Oh man! I think Bishop Bruskewitz should be charged with fraternally correcting some of his brothers in the episcopacy!!

Welcome

Welcome to The Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz Fan Club! This blog if just the recycling of news stories on Bishop Bruskewitz, and as a sort-of hub for others admirers of him, his courage, his fidelity to God's Church, and for his faith in and love for God.