Monday, June 25, 2018

The Innocence of Fr. Phillips ... A Mystery

It seems we'll never know what happened at St. John Cantius, Chicago.

So says New Catholic at Rorate Caeli:  "After months of speculation, the Congregation of the Resurrection (C.R.), the order to which the founder of the Canons Regular of St. John Cantius, Fr. Frank Phillips, belonged, issued a final statement on his situation..."

Something happened. What happened? The Congregation of the Ressurrection and the Archdiocese of Chicago have an obligation to make public those parts of their conclusions that can be made public (that is, with names or other information that could identify specific persons blacked out). Otherwise, the removal of Fr. Phillips will be seen as a persecution motivated not by his "improper conduct" (what was it?), but actually by his good work at St. John Cantius. The people have a rightful expectation to know what actually happened. - New Catholic

Something happened.  Of course something happened.  Cardinal Cupich obviously felt he shouldn't return.  He has no obligation to explain himself - they never do - unless some legal suit develops.  If Fr. Phillips hasn't been silenced - then perhaps he can explain what happened.  If there remain credible allegations perhaps someone can bring forth a civil suit of inquiry?  But the original allegations involved adult men.  Maybe it was consensual?  I'm way out of my league here. 

I seriously don't know and I'm not interested in the answer - unless it involves a sort of Catholic #Metoo development.  After the Cardinal McCarrick story broke, I'd be interested in cleaning up the scandal that keeps giving.  Now that it's safe to point out that the homosexuals in the clergy are not limited to the Novus Ordo, perhaps men will come forward and Catholic teaching, as well as Catholic discipline on the admission of homosexuals to seminary and religious life can be clarified.  (Or at least get rid of the hypocrisy and cover up surrounding it.  Maybe Fr. Martin could take the lead here?)

I hope it all gets sorted out.


  1. Not much longer ... “There’s a man going around town, and he’s taking names ...”

    1. I need a 'wow' emoji like on FB.

    2. I read the piece - I never read that blog but I noted Matt Abbot commented - so this is part of a trad network/cabal then? Haha! Just kidding.

    3. I'm burned out on all these sex clergy scandals. For all I know, these types of scandals have existed for many hundreds of years and the devil failed then to destroy the Church and he will and has failed now to do the same.

      He delights when we are scandalized and angry and depressed and distracted by all of this ugly perversion. He thinks he has the upper hand just because a few walk away from the battered Bride of Christ forgetting that he's already been defeated no matter his rage.

      As of today, I will pray and I will continue to hope in the promise given to us all by our Risen Lord before he ascended into heaven.

      "Behold! I am with you all days, even unto the consummation of the world!"
      Matthew 28:20

      In the end and as is just, our Lord will deal with and judge all who have betrayed him, repented from betraying him, those who perverted and led others astray, those who repented from this behavior of leading others astray ... etc.

      "Lord Jesus, I trust in you. Take care of everything!" Amen

    4. You are right Yaya.

  2. So many accusations, it is near impossible to evaluate and definitively adjudicate. Yet the taint sticks to all. Is this, the fear of inappropriate behavior, why so few children are at Mass anymore? The trads need to beware. I hope their clergy are more trustworthy but I think there is a statically probability that a certain number are present there too. I agree with Yaya, as I usually do, that this is probably as old as institutions themselves. As I wrot last week, I feel it is hard to hold on in this tempest. I will but I cannot blindly defend the institutional Church as I once did and still want to. I saw the popular movie Three Billboards etc. The main character lambasts an arrogant priest who is not supporting her cause. Let me just say, it was not going my way! I was more taken back and offended by that scene then the crude and gratuitous use od expleitives. Not that her chewing out of the priest might not be true but that the violation was so against my ingrained conditioning and desire to believe it was not true. There is no escaping, ignoring or running away from this issue. Only prayer for victims and perpetrators and the innocent which most of us are.

  3. There is something going on here that we are not being told. According to the Chicago Tribune, the review board recommend that Philips not be returned to his ministry, and the Archdicocese made their decision based on that. It was Philips’ fan club and his attorney who said he was exonerated, not the review board.

    Although Phillips was not found to have violated any church or secular law, archdiocese spokeswoman Paula Waters said there was other information that warranted his removal and a continued ban on his administering sacraments in public within the archdiocese. Waters declined to detail the findings against Phillips.

    “There are standards for behavior,” Waters said. The review board “did not recommend that he be returned as the pastor of St. John Cantius. And so, based on their recommendation that he not return and on other factors, the cardinal decided that his faculties to minister would remain withdrawn.”

    Komie [the attorney] disputed the archdiocese’s claim that the review board recommended he not be reinstated.

    “They did not make any recommendations,” Komie said. “They returned a straight report.”

    Sometimes it is just best to ignore these stories and let them work themselves out. The Internet makes everything worse.

    1. Many thanks for your comment. I agree - there is more to the story and the online info is not to be relied on.

    2. Catholic in Brooklyn very much wants Fr. Phillips to be gay.

      He's not.

      As I said in a similar context, Catholic in Brooklyn's creepy little desire is more than sick, and says much more about him than it does about Fr. Phillips.

      Catholic in Brooklyn also appears to put as much trust in the statements from the archdiocese as in those from what he snidely calls "Philips' [sic] fan club." But no faithful Catholic who has followed the story closely believes that Cupich has any credibility left.

      But the back and forth nature of the thing is the problem. A cursory reading is just a bunch of he saids, she saids, he saids, so given the current scandal-a-week situation in the Church, and the well-known high-level of homosexuality in the archdiocese of Chicago, people just assume there must be something to it, or "we'll never know."

      And Cupich and the archdiocese is taking full advantage of this. They've said almost nothing from day one. They stripped a priest, untouched by even an atom of scandal for thirty years, of two offices and his faculties without explaining why, though even the little they've said has caught them in the act of petty evasions and misstatements.

      The findings (which have not been made public) show that the accusations were not credible. Yes, it's "partisans" (who are familiar with the report) who have said this, but you'll also notice that neither the archdiocese nor Fr. Szarek the Provincial Superior of the Resurrectionists has denied that specific point. That's because they can't.

      And the votum from the Fr. Szarek (which was leaked and is thus now public), while not directly commenting on the credibility issue, shows that whatever Fr. Phillips was accused of or may have done, it or they did not rise to the level of justifying ANY of the archdiocese's three actions.

      Canon 193 requires "grave causes" to support the archdiocese's Fr. Phillips. But all the archdiocese can do is vaguely insinuate "other factors" and "other information." They have nothing and they know it.


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