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Some additional updates on Fr. Rodriguez January 16, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, episcopate, foolishness, General Catholic, persecution, priests, Saints, scandals, Society.

The very sad saga of Fr. Michael Rodriguez, a traditionally minded and highly orthodox priest of the El Paso Diocese, continues.  There was a truly execrable article in the El Paso Times on the subject, which, while initially stating that there were ‘alleged’ financial improprieties at San Juan Bautista, then proceeded to fly off into ridiculous unsubstantiated claims and even accuse the Diocese of not sufficiently prosecuting Fr. Rodriguez by not calling the police.  Could it be that the police were not called because this is not at all a criminal matter, but a matter of whether funds were spent in accord with Diocesan approval?  There is a yawning gap in culpability between someone actually stealing money, of which Fr. Rodriguez has not been accused, and a dispute over approvals for certain expenditures.   The article then goes on to try to link Fr. Rodriguez to previous sex abuse cases, when absolutely no such link exists.  As I said, the entire article was a hit piece from beginning to end and reveals the animus that exists among certain elements – very influential elements – of the City of El Paso against Fr. Rodriguez.

Fr. Rodriguez also issued a further press release, which you can read here.  It’s not so much a specific refutation of claims made by Bishop Ochoa, as it is a defense of his character.    

This entire issue is being blown radically out of proportion, and the lawsuit is simply, to my mind, a form of persecution against Fr. Rodriguez for his forthright defense of Church Doctrine, especially with regard to homosexuality.  What is at issue is whether Fr. Rodriguez followed Diocesan norms for all donations received.  There is no issue of theft – good Lord, Fr. Rodriguez lives as simply as can be imagined, he doesn’t even have his own phone.  But San Juan Bautista was a very poor parish in a very poor neighborhood.  It was also in a Diocese with much corruption and abuse ongoing.  Normally, monies received for capital improvements must go to a general Diocesan fund, where they could be spent, theoretically, as money is fungible, on other parishes.  Perhaps a donor of some means was very loathe to have that occur.  Perhaps they insisted on finding a way to only fund activities at San Juan Bautista, without the diocesan assessment, or without being put in the Diocesan trust?  I don’t know this to be the case, but it seems possible.   Many priests around the country have great problems with this funding scheme which has come into being in almost all US dioceses over the last several decades, where rigid approvals have to be sought and given for even minor repair work (I know of one parish locally that had to wait months, even though it had the money available, to put a desperately needed new roof on the church, because the diocesan business office refused to give approval for a normal building repair).   Speculation aside, this entire lawsuit turns on whether Fr. Rodriguez followed proper protocol – certainly, this is an extreme step for any bishop to take on such an issue.

In a related matter, a lay staff member of the Diocese of Kansas City, Mo, already dealing with enough problems, has filed a lawsuit stating he was repeatedly sexually harassed by another lay staffer and a member of the clergy at the chancery, who made unwanted advances of a homosexual nature.  The article is grievously explicit, I warn all readers that the topics discussed are revolting and, if these allegations are true, reveal the hideous nature of the degeneracy which has reached even into so many of our chanceries (to think that a priest ordained to God made one of the statements in the article is heart-breaking).  This homosexuality, actively practiced within the priesthood, is really at the core of the ‘treatment’ Fr. Rodriguez has received, to my mind. 

But I think we all knew that already. 


1. Dismas - January 16, 2012

Sad only in the sense that the human element of the Church has degenerated to this point. Apart from that this is a marvelous story about the persecution of an incredibly faithful Catholic priest by a gaggle of literal modern-day Pharisees.

I mean, after all, did Our Lord not promise us this stuff. Do we believe Him or what?

On another point, who in their right mind would contribute a dime, much less significant monies, if those funds had first to be channeled through an absolutly filthy, corrupt and apostate diocesan hierarchy? Forget it.

These guys took over the human element of Holy Mother Church. Did we think they were going to just let go or give up? In the resolution of this the hierarchy of the Church at higher levels will have the opportunity to demonstrate their own heroism – or lack of it. Meanwhile, Father Rodriguez gets the opportunity to grow in sanctity and suffer his crucifixion with Our Lord.

Not a bad deal, huh?

tantamergo - January 16, 2012

It’s sad in the wordly sense. Sorry if that annoys you, but I’m trying to make a point to folks who may look at things more as the world sees them, rather than the glory that persecution can be.

And while Fr. Rodriguez may grow in personal holiness, many others involved may lose the opportunity to do so since he has been sequestered away. And the ugly situation playing out now in the media and I perhaps the courts at one point are sad for the Church, for they reveal just how bad things have gotten, when a faithful priest is hounded and persecuted because he may not have submitted to an authority unworthy of the office held.

2. oldkate - January 16, 2012

For 40 yrs my sister & I have watched the homosexuals take over the the church in Texas. Homosexuality is not just a dis-ordered choice of gender.. Sexuality is just the tip of the ice-berg. “I WILL NOT SERVE” would be an appropriate chant. Some laity want to keep all this quiet & “don’t talk about our priests & bishops”!! That’s how we got to this point!! We need to pray for All of us, the entire Church! But, Christ Himself told us if we “see our brothers, sisters, in sin & do not warn them, WE become just as responsible as the sinner!” It’s no more possible today, than it was in the days of Roman excesses, for a Judeo Christian Culture to co-exist peacefully with the homosexual lifestyle!! Because the homosexual does not want “Tolerance” from us, they DEMAND approval!! That is not ours to give! No Christian can! The real shame here are the lost souls (I mean confused) who are homosexual, confused, & in deep pain. They are made to feel they’re in a box. There is a way out! There are several organizations, & groups who are willing to help. They’ve been in that private hell of the “lifestyle”. They have escaped from it too! But they are attacked viciously by the “pro-active” homo groups!! Still, they bravely go out & tell their stories to any who will listen! Let’s open our Churches to them for their meetings! Let us receive them as the brothers & sisters in Christ that most of them are & many want to be! El Paso & Dallas would be great places to start! Once the public gets a picture of how vicious the activist homosexuals are at the mere mention of “Change”, even the liberal media won’t be able to “cover” for them any more!

3. Dismas - January 17, 2012

I contributed a significant amount of the money that is in question. Do I have any concerns about what happened to my money? You bet I do. The diocese now has my money and that was neither my intention nor the intention of a long line of folks who will tell you the same thing I am telling you. We trust Father Rodriguez implicitly and we would not have donated a thin dime if we thought that the Diocese of El Paso and it’s bishop would have had any say whatsoever in how our money was spent. At this time we are preparing action to recuperate our money and the Diocese is aware of that.

My money? I’ll do with it as I please, thank you, diocesan “regulations” notwithstanding. If a person understands the nature of the Diocese of El Paso on the one hand, and authentic Catholic teaching on the other hand, it might well be a mortal sin to give any money whatsoever to that diocese. Will the truth come out in this? That remains to be seen. But for anyone who might have reservations, you may avail yourself of these comments by a person on the scene. You will search Catholic history for an example of a priest, and that includes bishops, cardinals and popes, more honest and more heroic than Father Michael Rodriguez and do so in vain. You will find many who equal him, but not a one who surpasses. I’ll leave the topic of the other personages in this drama for posterity and God to comment upon.

tantamergo - January 17, 2012

Excellent comment. I was hoping someone from San Juan Bautista would so comment. This is an issue we struggle with quite a bit. Even if one picks out the most orthodox parish possible, with great priests and a reverent, beautiful Mass, and even if that parish spends it’s money completely in consonance with Church Law, still, some of your money goes to the Diocese (unless you are SSPX or assist at certain religious chapels). This is a big concern for us. The Dallas Diocese, I do not believe, is in quite as bad a shape as El Paso, but there are many problems. There are associations with left wing, Alinsky-ite groups. There are heterodox speakers brought into the Diocese. So, some portion of our money is still going to support things that may be contrary to the Faith, and are certainly things we would not support. Our FSSP parish has to give money through the assessment, the annual appeal, etc. We have taken steps to donate to funds that don’t go to the Diocese, which we have the ability to do.

But in El Paso, the problem is of an entirely different order of magnitude. The Diocese is out of control. Heterodoxy runs rampant. Homosexuality (active) in the priesthood, too. And, it seems, the Diocese has put in place procedures to collect almost all monies from parishes and then re-distribute them back out, at least so far as capital improvements go. I can see how a faithful Catholic would have grave concerns, or even conclude it is impossible, to contribute monies that wind up going to the Diocese. What then? Just let the good parish whither and die?

The thing is…….if it wasn’t this, it would be something else. Fr. Rodriguez was becoming a problem, and he had to be dealt with. I don’t know where this court case will go – I think it’s intended solely to shut him up, I doubt it will go to trial. It’s meant just to intimidate. I pray a new bishop will make a dramatic difference, but I’m skeptical. I’ve heard stories recently about even the supposedly good, orthodox bishops that are very disappointing.

4. Lay staff member suing Diocese of Kansas City, MO, for homosexual harassment « A Blog for Dallas Area Catholics - January 18, 2012

[…] had included a link to this story at the bottom of a post on Fr. Michael Rodriguez I did on Monday, but it was a long post and I’m afraid it might have gotten overlooked.  A lay staff worker […]

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