MY WORD: How are you justified, Bishop Knestout?

Knestout White Battle Conscience

Title: MY WORD: How are you justified, Bishop Knestout?

Author: Gene Thomas Gomulka

Publisher: Martinsville Bulletin

Date: 10JUN2020

An open letter to Bishop Barry Knestout of the Diocese of Richmond:

I recently published an article entitled, “Episcopal Abuse of Power,” which relied heavily upon input provided by the priests of your diocese. Interestingly, not one priest whom I queried about your attempt to silence Father Mark White found your actions justified, let alone pastoral in keeping with your role as bishop.

You have placed Father White in a very difficult moral position in regard to following his informed conscience. Based on the evidence he has seen and read, he has come to the logical conclusion that certain church leaders, including Cardinal Donald Wuerl and Pope Francis, are guilty of covering up sex abuse. If Father White is correct in his assessment, then one can understand why he may have been led to “beg” the pope to resign.

I invite you to watch this 12-minute video taken from “Sex Abuse in the Church: Code of Silence.” If such testimony were offered against Father White or any of your priests, I would bet you would have the accused priest removed from ministry immediately. After listening to the testimony of the abuse victims gathered in the Buenos Aires café, do you believe their testimony is credible or do you believe they are lying about the pope having covered up their abuse?

Do you really believe Pope Francis told the truth when he said to the reporter in Rome that he had nothing to do with trying to get the Argentine judges to overturn the 15-year sentence that a lower court handed down against his friend, Father Julio César Grassi?

Do you honestly believe Pope Francis told the truth when, in his co-authored book, “On Heaven and Earth,” he wrote that sex abuse by clergy “has never occurred in my diocese”?

If Pope Francis stated that sex abuse never occurred in his diocese of 2.5 million Catholics, does that explain why he refused to release documents to the Argentine deaf sex abuse survivors who were in Rome on the anniversary of the Sex Abuse Summit that would identify who abused them and what Argentine prelates and chancery officials covered up the abuse?

Do you believe Pope Francis told the truth when he first denied, and then later said he didn’t remember if Archbishop Viganò informed him about ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick’s predatory behavior during a conversation on June 23, 2013?

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