Friday, January 12, 2007

Wielgus and what the Pope didn't know

The comment on Wielgus’ resignation read over Vatican Radio on January 7, 2007, by Fr. Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See press office”

“The behavior of archbishop Wielgus in the past years of the communist regime in Poland has gravely compromised his authority, even among the faithful. "For that reason, in spite of his humble and moving request for forgiveness, his resignation from the see of Warsaw and the quick acceptance of this by the Holy Father appeared to be a suitable solution in the face of the disorientation created in that nation.

"This is a moment of great suffering for a Church to which we all owe so much and which we love, which has given us great pastors such as cardinal Wyszynski, and above all Pope John Paul II. The universal Church must feel itself spiritually bound to the Church in Poland, and accompany it with prayer and encouragement so that it may quickly recover its serenity.

“At the same time, it is good to observe that the case of archbishop Wielgus is not the first and probably will not be the last case of an attack against Church personalities on the basis of the documentation of the secret services of the past regime. There is an endless amount of this material, and in seeking to assess its value and draw reliable conclusions from it one must not forget that it was produced by functionaries of an oppressive and extortionist regime.

“These many years after the end of the communist regime, with the disappearance of the great and irreproachable figure of pope John Paul II, the current wave of attacks on the Catholic Church in Poland, more than being a sincere search for transparency and truth, has many aspects of a strange alliance between those who once persecuted the Church there and its other adversaries, and of a vendetta on the part of those who persecuted it in the past and were defeated by the faith and by the Polish people’s desire for freedom.

“Christ said, ‘The truth shall set you free’. The Church is not afraid of the truth, and in order to be faithful to the Lord its members must know how to acknowledge their faults. “We hope that the Church in Poland will be able to live through this difficult period and overcome it with courage and lucidity, so that it may continue to make its precious and extraordinary contribution of faith and evangelical zeal to the Church in Europe and all over the world."

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