UPDATE: Liberal Catholics who oppose reforms to D&P are claiming that the Cardinal’s letter dates back to April 1st!  If this is true, the CCCB has been hiding it for more than 2 months!

Moreover, they seem speechless in front of the vigour of the Cardinal’s words. This is yet another confirmation that the release of the letter would help defuse the D&P crisis.)

Last Friday, the Catholic Register published portions of a letter written by Cardinal Norberto Carrera of Mexico in which the prelate vigorously denounces the Centre PRODH, a Development and Peace partner at the forefront of the scandal this spring.

The letter was addressed to the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, who have so far not released it publicly. Now that the cat’s out of the bag, Socon or Bust calls on the CCCB to publish the entire letter. This is not the time for the CCCB to offer legalistic excuses for keeping the letter secret. If the CCCB is serious about reforming D&P, they must show some good faith and come clean on the full content of the letter.

The Catholic Register asserts that this letter from Cardinal Carrera was the catalyst that led to D&P cutting all funding to the Centre PRODH. Since the funding cut was announced by D&P on May 18, that means that the Cardinal’s letter dates back to at least mid-May. Consequently, the CCCB has been hiding the letter for at least three weeks, despite the rapid intensification of the D&P crisis among its membership.

No doubt, proper episcopal protocol requires that such correspondence remain confidential. I get that. However, I’m sure that if the CCCB explains the escalation of the crisis to the Cardinal (in particular the disinformation being spread about the Mexican partner that the Cardinal is denouncing), I’m confident he would consent to the release of the letter for the greater good of the Church.

Bad strategy

What a momentous screw up. The growing upheaval among D&P’s membership could have been partially defused if the letter had been released sooner. The delay has provided several weeks for the opponents of the reforms at D&P to continue mounting their offensive. For example, some Jesuits published a whitewash of Fr. Arriaga and his Centre PRODH on May 25, which was widely publicized among D&P militants and in the mainstream media, adding much fuel to the fire. What do you think would have been the odds of them releasing that letter if the Cardinal’s letter had already been in the public domain at the time? Zilch. Nobody wants to go up against a Cardinal, especially not the Mexican Jesuit who signed the whitewash and who is under obedience to the Cardinal.

No more excuses. Publish the entire letter now.

And if the bishops won’t release the letter, then the Catholic Register should publish it.

That won’t be enough, however. The CCCB should also retract its whitewash report, which has been made null and void by the Mexican Cardinal but continues to be used by the opponents to the D&P reforms.

Have you noticed how the truth is such a brutal double-edged sword engraved with irony? When the scandal broke in 2009, the bishops hastily put together the whitewash report to lie about the facts and cover up the scandal. However, as time passed, the tide turned and most of the bishops now appear willing to reform D&P. But a main impediment to their efforts is their own report, which is now being shouted on every rooftop by D&P rank and file and in the Québec mass media in an effort to stop the bishops’ reforms. What a sad irony.

The only logical course of action at this stage is for the bishops to immediately retract their 2009 report which is undermining their own reforms.

Please pray that the Lord will grant the bishops enough humility to do what is necessary.

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