Saturday, January 11, 2014


Patti Arroyo interviews Tim Rohr on K57 about the seminary conflict and the matters relating to the Neocatechumenal Way and the firing of Fr. Paul Gofigan.


  1. Tim, thought this might be interesting to you about the article mentioning Apuron.

    The Neocatechumenals Obey the Pope – But in Their Own Way
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    by Sandro Magister

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    The founders and heads of the Neocatechumenal Way, Kiko Argüello, Carmen Hernández, and Father Mario Pezzi, have decided to obey the severe reprimand issued to them by Benedict XVI on January 12. But they did so with strong reservations over one point in particular: Eucharistic communion.
    Publisher & Date:
    www.chiesa, March 6, 2006
    The founders and heads of the Neocatechumenal Way, Kiko Argüello, Carmen Hernández, and Father Mario Pezzi, have decided to obey the severe reprimand issued to them by Benedict XVI on January 12. But they did so with strong reservations over one point in particular: Eucharistic communion.

    Their act of partial obedience is found in a letter that they wrote to the pope on January 17. The letter – reproduced here below – was made public on February 27 by the Catholic website

    Benedict XVI’s reminder concerns the manner in which the Neocatechumenal groups celebrate the Mass. The pope wants them to conform to the prescriptions of the liturgical norms that are valid for the whole Church.

    For example, the Neocatechumenals receive communion seated, around an altar that is shaped and decorated like a large, square dinner table. They divide and consume a large unleavened loaf, made with two-thirds white flour and one-third whole wheat flour, which is prepared and baked for a quarter of an hour, all according to detailed rules established by Kiko. They drink the wine from cups that are passed from hand to hand, always in a seated position.

    But the pope wants them to “pass to the normal way in which the entire Church receives Holy Communion,” within no more than two years’ time. The details of this request and others are set forth in a letter dated December 1, 2005, written in the name of the pope to the heads of the Way by cardinal Francis Arinze, prefect of the Vatican congregation for the liturgy: a letter made public by www.chiesa.

    And so, in their reply to Benedict XVI, Kiko, Carmen, and Father Pezzi stated that they were willing to “follow in every way, with great respect and obedience, the rubrics of the Roman Missal.” They promised that they will make arrangements with the bishop of each diocese for their own members to participate in the Sunday Mass together with the rest of the faithful “at least one Sunday a month.” But on the crucial point of communion, they make it clear that they want to keep going their own way.

    They stop, in fact, at thanking the pope for granting them two more years. And then they return to defending their manner of distributing communion. They give as the model for this the “eschatological banquet” at which Christ has the disciples “sit down,” as written in Luke 12:37: “He will have them recline at table, and will come to wait on them.” Furthermore, they emphasize that giving communion “in this way” is an essential instrument for converting those who are far removed from the Church, and that abandoning it would compromise their mission.

    The letter to Benedict XVI from Kiko, Carmen, and Father Pezzi was also distributed by them to all the leaders of the Neocatechumenal Way, who received it as an official directive for their respective communities.

    At the end of the letter, the heads of the Way recall “the many bishops who have supported us.” In effect, at the synod on the Eucharist held in Rome last October there were bishops who asked for an extension of the method of taking communion while seated, as in use among the Neocatechumenals.

    One of these was the bishop of Agana, on the island of Guam, Anthony Sablan Apuron, president of the bishops’ conference of the Pacific.

    In a recent radio interview, Apuron again defended the practice of distributing communion as at a banquet, and downplayed the value of the letter from Cardinal Arinze.

    1. It seems that Mr. Rohr has been correct all along. What's even more telling is that our archbishop will defend his disobedience to the pope, respectfully of course, but if one of his priests disobeys, respectfully of course, he faces an arduous and painful closure to his life as a priest. He(archbishop Apuron) should be ashamed of himself! And the sad and tragic thing is...he isn't.

    2. Just imagine, the writer is a journalist in Rome. How he knew, unless our catholic radio station is heard elsewhere in the world. Wonder why the vatican never knew this they must have been side blinded .

  2. Tried to listen to K57 but it cuts off

    1. You may need to let it load or go to and find it under Interviews. I am listening to it now. There doesn't seem to be a problem, though it did pause at the beginning while it loaded.

    2. Anonymous (January 11, 2014 at 2:06 PM) may be trying to listen to the interview on a mobile or a tablet and will need to listen on a laptop or desktop. I was unsuccessful in listening on my iPad Mini because the interview cut off at a certain point. However when I tried on my laptop, I was able to listen to the entire interview.

  3. Sorry tried both sites and cut off during you getting to the part of the two local boys. Will try on regular computer. Thanks Tim. ... BTW I am the one asking about privacy of your gmail

    1. Finally had the opportunity to listen and it was a job well done. Point was made!

  4. Thank you Tim. My signed observations and thoughts will definitely be sent to the Nuncio for our region, Archbishop Martin Krebs, who is based in Wellington, New Zealand and whose website is: and whose email is: I believe that silence on our part would only paint for Rome an awful picture of a perceived complacent and apathetic Guam Catholic community.

    You see, what I fearfully anticipate would happen in our Catholic Diocese on Guam is based on what I see is already happening on two levels:

    Foremost in NCW's quest to brainwash parishes (en masse) to the NCWay, is the obvious slow but calculated way in which parish administrator assignments and positions are being filled or replaced with only NCW-formed or NCW-accommodating priests. NCW may believe that this would be a sure guarantee of an NCW-converted parish. To this, I say to the NCW hierarchy: we Catholics in the parishes have not, yet, begun our fight against your goal of an NCW eventual parish take-over!

    On the other level but even more disgusting and ugly, is how our young local aspirants to the priesthood are unconscionably and scrupulously advised or forced into seeking solely NCW seminarian formation or given a clear “NO-place-for-you-and-your-priestly-vocation-as-long-as-you-live-in-Guam-under-my-watch” answer.

    As a result, sadly our young men with vocations to the priesthood have only one alternative, as of now, to pursuing and realizing their vocation and desire to become a non-NCW formed priest and that is to physically leave Guam and establish residency somewhere else in the Mainland in order to secure a Bishop’s formal recommendation to enter a Seminary. Even then, these young, now off-island ordained priests may not be allowed to come back home as long as Guam Catholics are under the hold of the NCW hierarchy and an NCW-cuddled Archbishop.

    We all know that the buck stops with the Archbishop; however for the “Chancery decision-makers” to employ these subtle, underhanded and critical-to-the-NCW-recruitment-goal moves for Guam’s Catholic future, it is a clear indication of how NCW intends to sandbag us, average and traditional Catholics on Guam, onto a loathe participation in the NCW-refashioned practices and alterations of The Celebration of The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Thus, we would be compelled to participate as well, in the altered distribution and reception of the Holy Sacraments of our Faith -- particularly in the diluted NCW way as opposed to the manner in which we as Catholics, display utmost reverence and practice gestures which symbolize and accentuate the way universal Catholics have always regarded, paid homage to and honored The Sum and The Summit of our Catholic Faith: The Holy Eucharist.

    An NCW stamp of approval and NCW-cuddling from the Chancery would assuredly buttress an already transparent NCW-negative attitude and view of most of our traditional local Marian devotions and practices! The observed and documented devious ways that the NCW is being thrust on Catholics on Guam are clearly -- as a local elderly devout cradle Catholic who is respected in the Traditional Catholic circle describes it -- “Mafia-like practices and tactics!”

  5. Has anyone ever noticed that when the NCW came into play that the archbishop decided to make lots of changes to the parishes?

    For example, when a family member dies people would go to the church to schedule a rosary for the deceased. Sometimes there would be 1 or 3 or even 5 deaths within a week for that parish and the families would schedule a rosary to be said at the parish for each deceased member . So if there are 3 deaths in the parish then the church would be utilized for an hour and a half (30 minutes for each of the families). This has always been done.
    The archbishop thought it would be "wise" to combine all deaths into 1 thirty minute rosary. So if there are 3 deaths then all families come together at the same time to pray 1 rosary. Many people were not happy with this setup so most chose to hold rosaries in their own homes.
    Why did the archbishop do this? Maybe because he needed the church grounds to be utilized for the NCW communities. Everything regarding the NCW had to be done in secret so the archbishop had to make sure there were no people on the church grounds that were not a member of the NCW. Plus he had to utilize the choir room or the office or the chapel or the social hall for their "word" or their "celebration". I could list more changes...but I am pretty sure some of you already know of them but feel free to add...

    1. I guess I was just naïve, but I thought that the decision to combine rosaries was meant to save money on utilities — keeping lights and ACs on for 30 minutes instead of 1 1/2 to 2 hours. I honestly did not make the "Neo Connection." However, I do know that there are parishes that have continued to allow families to schedule their own rosaries in the church.

    2. It is doubtful that the combining of rosaries had anything to do with the Neo using the church since they normally don't use the church. Also, I understand that families are normally asked to pay or help pay for the power bill, which is understandable.