An open letter from JAHLF An open letter of the John Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family in support of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò to Pope Francis and to all the Cardinals, Bishops, priests, religious and lay members of the Holy Catholic Church and to all men and women of good will.
September 29, 2018
Feast of St. Michael the Archangel (and of the archangels St. Gabriel and St. Raphael)
Your Holiness, Your Eminences, Your Excellences, Priests, Deacons, Consecrated persons, families, laymen and laywomen of the Catholic Church, all persons who love the true, the just, and the good We wish to express our profound support of Archbishop Viganò’s courage, true charity and faithfulness to Peter, for we recognize that it was solely at the service of truth that Archbishop Viganò, with great heroism and without any personal ulterior personal motive, has revealed many most sad facts and occurrences that have taken place in the life of the Church. As Archbishop Viganò stated in his second message, published on Sept. 29, 2018, the feast of St. Michael the Archangel, any secret (including a Pontifical secret) which is not under the seal of confession, ceases to impose the obligation to observe silence as soon as such a silence can bring great harm to the Church.
Certainly, to persist in remaining silent about the sexual crimes committed by priests and prelates – crimes that cause great harm not just to many souls but also to the whole Church – is in itself a great crime. It is a great crime because it is a poisonous silence which obstructs that measures be taken to protect young seminarians, priests and laypersons from further harm. Such a silence is not the Holy Silence of Jesus in front of Pilate (to whom He had already addressed many weighty words before His silence), but is an evil silence, one that objectively bespeaks a silent pact with the devil. It is a silence that delivers other innocent victims to further sexual abuses. It is also a silence that allows priests and prelates to continue in their pastoral office and the governance of the Church, when instead they should be stripped of their office according to the prescriptions of Canon Law, and sent to confinement to do penance for their sins.
The silence which some voices demand from Archbishop Viganò is the silence of the bad pastors who flee and deliver their flock to the wolves, instead of forcefully and courageously resisting them and driving them away. We also fully support Archbishop Viganò’s sincere plea that all those responsible for such silence and cover‐ups should be ordered to resign by the highest ecclesiastic authorities, or, better still, resign freely in accordance with the truth and the voice of their conscience in which the words of our Savior Jesus Christ should resound loud and clear:
But whoever shall occasion the fall of one of these little ones who believe in me, it would be better for him to have a millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.(Matthew 18:6)
May our Lady, Queen of all Holy Angels, Queen of All Saints and may St. Michael the Archangel and Patron of the Holy Church, wake up our Lord and all those who represent Him on earth, when He seems to sleep in the middle of the storm and dangerous waves afflict us, so that through their intercession to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Jesus, true God and true Man, may be moved, as he was by Peter, to stand up and bless the Church in this present storm and to command silence to the winds and turbulent waters that threaten to capsize the bark of the Church.
May God Himself give His Holy Bride, the Church, so much deformed by sinners, true healing and renewal! This is the only hope for the Church, which is also Archbishop Viganò’s hope, a hope that we all share with him. Anyone who charges him with pride, divisiveness, or disrespect for the Pope is committing an act of slander against him, for he is one of those good pastors of the Church who, with regard to the scandal of sexual abuse, speaks openly as St Paul did to Peter during the Apostolic Council. He neither flees and leaves his flock to the wolves, nor lies nor protects criminal offenders with falsehood or sinful silence. His Excellency, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, would do us the greatest honor if he were to accept our most cordial invitation to become a member of the John Paul II Academy for Human Life and The Family. We thank God for the great gift to the Church that God has given us through Archbishop Viganò.
Prof. Dr. phil. habil. Dr. h.c. Josef Seifert,
The President, John Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family; member for life of the Pontifical Academy for Life, 1995‐2016 (removed 2016 with all other members and not reappointed by Pope Francis). Founding Rector of the International Academy of Philosophy in the Principality Liechtenstein.
All the other signatories are regular members of the John Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family (JAHLF); this affiliation will not be noted expressly, except for the members of the Board and the Advisory Board of JAHLF.
Dr. Gerard J.M. van den Aardweg, psychologist in private practice.
Dame Colleen Bayer DSG.
Judie Brown, President, American Life League Inc., 3‐term member, Pontifical Academy for Life (appointed by St. John Paul II), member of the Advisory Board of the John Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family.
John T. Bruchalski, MD, FACOG; Founder Divine Mercy Care and Tepeyac Family Center
Georges Buscemi, President, Campagne Québec‐Vie.
Paul A. Byrne, M.D., Clinical Professor of Pediatrics; President, Life Guardian Foundation .
Pilar Calva MD, Master in Bioethics; Derechos del Concebido and Expovida Mexico Culture for Life, Member 2002‐2012 of the Pontifical Academy for Life, Member of the Advisory Board of the John Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family.
Dr. Anca‐Maria Cernea, MD, Romania, President, Ioan Bărbuș Foundation.Bucharest.
Richard P. Fitzgibbons, M.D., Director of the Institute for Marital Healing, author of forthcoming Habits for a Healthy Marriage: A Handbook for Catholic Couples, 2019, Ignatius Press.
Paul Herzog von Oldenburg, Fédération Pro Europa Christiana Brussels.
Michael Hichborn, President and Founder of the Lepanto Institute.
Dr. Roberto de Mattei, Historian, University Professor, President of the Lepanto Foundation, member of the Board of the John Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family.
Dr. Stéphane Mercier, PhD Philosophy & MA Theology. Currently teaching at the Brussels International Catholic School.
Dr. Claude E. Newbury, M.B., B.Ch., D.T.M & H., D.P.H., M.F.G.P., D.O.H., D.C.H., D.A., M.Med. Founding member of World Federation of Doctors Who Respect Human Life; Former President of Pro‐Life South Africa; Former Director of Human Life International in Africa South of the Sahara; Life Member of Society for the Protection of Unborn Children; Member of Life UK; Founder of Catholic Doctors Guild of South Africa; Board Member of Family Life International; Former Foreign Advisor to Human Life International; Recipient with my Wife Glenys in 1992 of Human Life Internationalʹs Award for the individuals who had done the most to protect Unborn Babies. Hugh Owen, M.S., Director, Kolbe Center for the Study of Creation; Director, John Paul II Institute of Christian Spirituality Prof. Dr. Claudio Pierantoni, PhD History of Christianity (Università di Roma La Sapienza); PhD Philosophy (Universidad de Los Andes, Santiago); Professor of Medieval Philosophy (Universidad de Chile, Santiago), member of the Advisory Board of the John Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family.
Dr. Philippe Scheepens, MD Ear Nose & Throat surgeon and head of Department in a General Hospital of + 500 beds in Ostend Belgium till 2002; President of the EthicalCommittee in the same hospital till 2002. Founder and president of the Belgian pro‐life doctors. Founded together with Prof. Jérôme Lejeune genetician at the Sorbonne‐Paris and others the World Federation of Doctors who respect Human Life in 1974; became then General Secretary of this organisation grouping approx.400.000 medical doctors in more than 70 countries. Founding member under prof. Jérôme Lejeune and Pope John‐Paul II of the Pontifical Academy for Life, and member of the Board from its foundation 1995 till 2004. Member appointed for life of the above‐mentioned Academy.) Knight of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem. Member of the Board of the American Life League (Stafford Virginia USA) since 2002. Founder (2017) and Board member of the John‐Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family.
Jeanne Smits, Master in Law, editor‐in‐chief of reinformation.tv, former director of the French daily Présent.
Elida Zelaya Solorzano, Master in Education.
Mrs. Christine de Marcellus Vollmer, Member of the Pontifical Council for the Family 1992‐2016, Founding Member for life of the Pontifical Academy for Life (PAV), (removed 2016 with all other members and not reappointed by Pope Francis). President, Associacion Provida de Venezuela‐PROVIVE, President Alianza Latinoamericana para la Familia‐ALAFA, President ALAFA Editions, Vice‐President of the John Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family.
Dr. Thomas Ward, M.B,Ch.B, DCH,DORCOG: Founder and President of the National Association of Catholic Families (United Kingdom, Australia,Ireland ), Corresponding member of Member of the Pontifical Academy for Life 2007 ‐till removed in 2016 , Vice‐President of the John Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family. Retired Family Doctor.
John‐Henry Westen, B.A, M.A; Co‐Founder and Editor‐in‐Chief LifeSiteNews; Founder Rome Life Forum; Co‐Founder Voice of the Family; Founding Editor Faithful Insight magazine; Board member of the John Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family.
Dr. h.c. mult. Mercedes Arzù Wilson, Founder and President of The Family of the Americas, Member for Life of the Pontifical Academy for Life (1994‐2016), (removed 2016 with all other members and not reappointed by Pope Francis), member of the Board of the John Paul II Academy for Human Life and the Family.
Dr. Thomas M. Zabiega, M.D. Neurologist, Palos Community Hospital, Palos Heights, Illinois; Former Regional Director of the Catholic Medical Association.