Fr. Rosica Interviews Gregory Baum

Holy smokes.  Just when you think it couldn’t get any worse in the Canadian Church, disappointment abounds. 

Fresh off his star appearance at the Den of Dissent conference here in Ottawa, Gregory Baum took the time to skip off to Toronto for a one-on-one interview with his pal from St. Michael’s College days, Fr. Tom Rosica!

But before doing that, here is an account of Baum’s performance at the conference…

…the only place where there was outright dissent was in the panel by Gregory Baum, +Remi de Roo and others. Most of the panel was pretty good and even + de Roo said some stuff that I was surprised to find I agreed with. But Gregory Baum said something about how he was surprised this day and age to see no women around the altar in this era of women’s equality. Only a distant paraphrase of his exact words, but you get my drift. There was applause if I recall correctly. (Source)

Now, let’s not forget, folks, to remember who Gregory Baum is.  Here is the bio from my post on the Den of Dissent Conference:

Gregory Baum, a former priest who married a divorced former nun (and then proceeded to divorce her), is Canada’s most notorious, defrocked, and dissenting ex-priestHe was one of the leading dissenters of Humanae Vitae, Pope Paul VI’s encyclical condemning contraceptive acts, and became a catalyst in the adoption of the disastrous Winnipeg Statement. Gregory Baum, remember, is Fr. Rosica’s pal from Fr. Rosica’s days at the Newman Centre. Baum was (and is) arguably Canada’s staunchest and most influential opponent of Humane Vitae, and who even openly advocated for same-sex “marriage“. Baum’s 1974 article on homosexuality in the U.S. Catholic weekly Commonweal (February 15) was used as a handout by homosexual activists throughout North America for almost two decades. In it he argued, first, the theme developed earlier by others that the biblical references condemning sodomy were really references to lack of hospitality; and, secondly, that Catholic teaching would change and endorse homosexuality within a few years. Father Baum was excommunicated automatically under the existing (1917) Code of Canon Law for sinning grievously by abandoning his vocation and “attempting” to get married while still a functioning priest. (Source).

As I pointed out above, Baum, the most notorious Church dissenter in Canadian history, is Fr. Rosica’s pal from the days at the Newman Centre.

Toronto– On May 6, 1996, at Toronto University’s Catholic Newman Centre, Gregory Baum, 74, Catholic dissenter of nineteen sixties and seventies fame, delivered a lecture on his experience during the Second Vatican Council that abandoned the universal Latin liturgy and acknowledged ecumenism and made other reforms before a small audience of older people. Well before the event people wrote or telphoned the Centre questioning why this man had been invited.   Much to the astonishment and annoyance of Newman’s director, Father Tom Rosica, on the day of the lecture a group of two dozen protesters appeared, handing out flyers which documented how Professor Baum, an excommunicated priest, had done the Church much harm in the past. Their point: he should never have been invited to speak at a Catholic institution.  “That’s pure madness in those flyers,” Toronto’s Catholic Register (May 27) reported Fr. Rosica as saying. The director called the police, ostensibly to “restrain” the picketers, but when the former showed up in strength in response to the alarm call they found the protesters perfectly peaceful and left them to their business. (Source)

Anyhow, they don’t seem to miss a beat in reminising about the good old days of Vatican II.   Here are some highlights:

  • [On Pope Benedict] – “He wasn’t really known to be a person who encourages and who has hope…” (12:18-12:30)
  • [On “Positive Orthodoxy”]:  “I mean I will have to think of this much longer.  I’ve never heard of this positive orthodoxy.” (17.27-17.54)
  • [On Unity of Belief]:  “I don’t think we need this enormous unanimity in the Church….If you go into the parishes to find out what people really believe, you’ll find that there is a great variety of beliefs….This kind of unanimity regarding elements, doctrines are quite removed from the Scriptures.  I don’t think this is such a good formula. (18:35-19:09)

It’s sad for many other reasons too.  It’s sad that Baum still does not get it.  He has apparently no intention of repenting.  How does an excommunicated priest get on Canada’s Station of “Hope” to be referred to as an authority on Vatican II?  Can someone please explain that to me?  Why does Fr. Rosica claim, “you remain a faithful, deeply devoted Catholic” (24:45),  given Baum’s unrepentant scandalous past and present?  We have never heard of any renouncement of Baum’s scandal either by him or any Church official.  Baum’s views on sexual ethics continue to this day and preceded him when he was a superstar theologian in the 1970s:

The sharpest establishment critique came from Gerald Emmett Carter, a Council Father who, in a sermon in the late 1970s at St. Peter’s Cathedral in London, Ontario, denounced the alleged disobedience rampant in various Catholic circles, singling out for reprimand New York’s Jesuit advocate for gay rights, John MacNeil, and Toronto’s own Gregory Baum. “What I say, I say without apology,” Carter thundered; “it is the teaching of the church.” Roma locuta est!

Baum’s public dissent from the Vatican’s 1976 “Declaration on Sexual Ethics,” with its strictures against homosexuality, Toronto’s Archbishop Philip Pocock announced that “Fr. Baum’s published reactions are contrary to official Catholic doctrine and may not be followed as either the teaching or the practice of the Catholic Church.”  (Source)

It’s also sad because Fr. Rosica is giving the most notorious Canadian dissenter a platform to espouse his views and become better known among his viewers without challenging him on his dissident positions – shades of Rosica’s lollipop interview of Dalton McGuinty.   The first comment on the You Tube video captures the problem with Fr. Rosica’s prudence and wisdom in hosting such a person:

I’m not sure it’s appropriate to laud an excommunicated (last time I checked) ex-priest on your show and have him give his spin on Vatican II just before the Year of Faith.

The interview was largely a puff piece on Baum’s participation in the Second Vatican Council but it sure did reveal much about both men, just the same.   Please pray for both of these men – Baum because he is soon to face His Maker and for Fr. Rosica because the Church is simply not going in his direction. I predict an identity crisis for him in the coming years.


19 thoughts on “Fr. Rosica Interviews Gregory Baum

  1. I can’t believe Fr. Rosica said “you remain a faithful, deeply devoted Catholic”. I can’t believe it. Does he not know the meaning of excommunication? Fire this Fr. Rosica now.

    • “Fire this Fr. Rosica”. You can’t fire him – he is da Boss at S&LTV, Assumption University and now he is a big fish at the bishop’s synod. He’s got his eyes on a silk scarlet biretta for sure.

  2. Now, now, Squeaker. We don’t discipline anyone anymore. The Canadian Church is like the factorized school system. No kid fails any more. It’s passes and promotions for everybody.

    When this whole sad, sad episode in Canadian Church history is known, we’re going to be in for one helluva surprise on who had what among the professional class.

  3. Why do you think it is so easy for the worldview,and religion of Politically Correct Relativism with it’s morality to replace Christianity in Government, Law and Education? When most so-called Christian leaders are equally morally corrupt as the Pagans who call themselves “neutral” secularists, one has to ask does anybody care, but Christ and His remnant? The Western World has returned to Paganism, in Government, Law and Education. They have democratically chosen other gods, and worldviews where Pagan morality is legalized, and then normalized by The So-called Canadian Human Rights Act, as a Social Justice, and Human Right, by adults who then indoctrinate impressionable schoolchildren. Societies like Sodom too had temples and shrines normalizing vice. What is coming next, if prayer does not lead citizens to democratic political involvement to change rotten laws? As Edmund Burke concluded to a so-called Christian Society, evil prospers when good citizens choose to politically do nothing.

  4. Gentlemen,

    The rot is very deep, even amongst those “conservative”, wishy washy Catholic colleague’s of The President of the Internet.

    “Just when you think it couldn’t get any worse in the Canadian Church…” Still – from without, we must continue trudging along, discussing and dissecting the apostasy. Criticism and analysis will not come from within.

  5. You are correct, TH2. The Great White Magic Circle will not betray its own.

    Still, it’s quite sad that S+L wants to feature a Sixties Theologian King as the foundation of the New Evangelization.

    It’s too bad too because S+L had such great promise, but if it keeps following Fr. Rosica’s lead it’s going to end up crashing and burning.

    Faithful Catholics will soon become much bolder and not tolerate his antics. The professional Catholics who work there might want to think about their LONG TERM chances of securing a job in a truly Catholic media outlet.

    In the future, there won’t be any toleration for dissent or those who enabled it. Get out while you still can.

  6. I just heard this over dinner and could not believe it; no sooner did I log on to my own blog, did I find out this to be true.

    This priest does not know how much damage he does when he gives a soapbox to this man who has done so much damage to the Church.

    If he thinks he will ever wear anything but black, he has another thought coming.

    Incoming missiles predicted.

    • latae sententiae

      Learn what that means when a priest leaves his ministry without a dispensation under the Canon Law in force at the time of his “departure”.

  7. as for me and my house we will continue to support EWTN…sadly I too had such great hope in S&L but that has gone a long time ago

  8. The only real excommunication is one that is announced by a real authority in the Church and directed to a specific person. That has never happened in relation to Kung. What you call “excommunication” is a pure fiction.

  9. TS,

    We’re talking about Gregory Baum here, not Kung.

    It will take no more than 30 seconds of your time to search the web and find that Baum was excommunicated for marrying while he was a priest. It is a well established fact. Don’t take my word for it: look it up.

  10. Fr Rosica seems to be a blow with the wind kind of guy,..It doesn’t shock me that he interviewed Baum,. He also interviewed Bishop Fellay of the SSPX,..(Anything for ratings?) We need to consolidate our own identity as Catholics first and foremost. Interviewing dissenters can cause confusion and scandal,.. Thank God for Real Catholic TV, Catholic Answers, EWTN and other faithful to the Magisterium media outlets!

  11. I am absolutely revolted by all this. Why doesn’t Cardinal Collins do something about Father Rosica? He is misleading a lot of people.

    • Because their common demonnominator is ‘Vatican 2. Which promotes- religious liberty- one religion is as okay as any other. Except (Traditional) Catholic. Really, they really don’t give a damn.

  12. Rip van Winkle jes freshly woke up here. . . er, uh, the Canadian Church? . . the Canadian “Catholic” Church? Doesn’t exist. A contradiction in terms. Catholic means universal; not Canadian. So its the Catholic Church within Canada. So why DOESN’T the Catholic Church in Canada consolidate itself? Dissenters, why don’t you start yer own church? Jes leave. But you won’t, because you know you’ll sink like a stone soon as you do. The world (society organized without God) doesn’t care about Catholics, or about churches for that matter. It wants to stew in its own free-wheeling, free-thinking pride. Faith? . . what’s that?

  13. Just returned from ‘Rise Up’ in Ottawa, attended by over 700 Catholic Youth from across Canada. Father Rosica was the key note speaker on New Year’s Eve. I fluctuated between tears and nausea as I listened to him lob cryptic pot shots at Orthodox Catholics and use this opportunity as a platform to elevate Development and Peace. This has to be one of the saddest things I’ve ever witnessed since coming into the Church. The worst part about it is that the nasty comments denouncing ‘doomsday prophets’ and criticizing ‘pro-life’ Catholics, completely flew over everyone’s heads and he got a STANDING OVATION! :o( Please excuse me while I RUN to the bathroom to have a conversation with the big white phone.

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