Friday, July 4, 2014
SO THE ARCHBISHOP WANTS TO "MEET"
Here's a record of some meetings with Archbishop Apuron.
In October of 2009, Archbishop Apuron called a meeting with senators to discuss the legalization of same-sex unions. The meeting ended with the Archbishop running away from the press and the senators holding a letter from him insinuating that homosexuals should be put to death. The letter became famous. Google "Apuron" and "homosexual" and see titles such as "Archbishop Apuron looks to the Taliban for inspiration." Despite the horrid outcome of the meeting, an outcome that split Guam even further, Apuron called the meeting fruitful.
In 2010, the pain in this Archdiocese between the Archbishop and many members of the clergy had grown so severe, that a special multi-day meeting was called for and experts on clerical disunity were called in from Georgetown University's Center for Applied Research. The meeting produced a very expensive 69 page study entitled Cultivating Unity: Research Findings. A Report for the Clergy of the Archdiocese of Agana. The report recommend several courses of action to restore unity between the Archbishop and the disaffected members of the clergy. The Archbishop's actions? You guessed it. NOTHING. Not only was this another ruse and a waste of time and money, it allowed the Archbishop to say he tried and then disabuse the disaffected priests even further. Another fruitful meeting.
In 2011, the Archbishop called for a meeting with the Archdiocesan Finance Council whose approval he needed to give away the multi-million dollar Yona property occupied by the Redemptoris Mater Seminary to the Neocatechumenal Way-controlled corporate entity that controls the seminary. When four of the five members voted NO as per the recommendation of the archdiocesan legal counsel, all four, even though they had served the Archbishop cumulatively for more than fifty years, were fired! Another fruitful meeting.
In July of 2013, Fr. Paul Gofigan was called to a meeting with the Archbishop at his office. Little did Fr. Paul know that the meeting was an ambush. At the meeting, the Archbishop demanded Fr. Paul's resignation as pastor of Santa Barbara parish, threatened him with a "more arduous and painful closure to his assignment as pastor" if he did not resign, and had the locks changed on Fr. Paul's office while Fr. Paul was still at the meeting. In addition Fr. Paul was left homeless by being ordered to vacate the rectory, stripped of his ability to say Mass, and his firing was announced at all the Masses the following Sunday. It didn't matter that Canon Law (church law) prohibited the Archbishop from treating Fr. Paul this way. The Archbishop believes himself to be his own law. Another fruitful meeting.
In October of 2013, at a clergy retreat in the Philippines, members of the clergy gathered for a meeting to hear a few words from the Archbishop. Given that it was a retreat, the clergy expected to hear some encouraging and spiritual words from their high priest. Instead, the Archbishop launched into an attack on Fr. Paul, implying that he was in a homosexual relationship with a parishioner and accusing him of secretly building a stairway to his second floor bedroom for the purposes of facilitating night-long homosexual orgies. It didn't matter that none of it was true. The Archbishop wanted it to be true so he could further destroy Fr. Paul, and he used the occasion of the clergy retreat to do so. Another fruitful meeting.
In January of 2014, after Fr. Paul had publicly complained about the Archbishop's trashing of his person and that of the other man named who was a married man with two children, the Archbishop called Fr. Paul to a private meeting held at a neutral location. Given the location and the nature of the invite, Fr. Paul was under the impression that the Archbishop was ready to reconcile if only for the good of the diocese. Instead, Fr. Paul was ordered to "cool it" and to let the "canonical process take its course" ( a reference to the canon law suit brought against the Archbishop by Fr. Paul). In other words, rather than reconcile, Fr. Paul was ordered to cool it and shut up. Another fruitful meeting.
Archbishop, I do not know who the people with the money are behind the ad demanding that you do what every other bishop in the United States if not the world has done or is now doing. I don't know and I don't care. I don't care because I have already called publicly for the same thing on this blog several months ago. But since I am nobody to you, my call didn't matter. But now that your name is in the paper, you care. But you care only that your name is in the paper, not that you owe the people of this archdiocese an accounting of your actions with assets that you are entrusted with.
And rather than respond responsibly as the rest of the world's bishops have seen fit to do, you mock that request and say "let's meet". Right. You mean like your meeting with the legislature in 2009? Like your meeting with the clergy in 2010? Like your meeting with the finance council in 2011? Like your meeting with Fr. Paul in 2013? Like your retreat meeting in 2013? Like your "cool it" meeting in 2014?
You are hiding, Archbishop. And you have just admitted it to the world.
NOTE: To read about the January 2006 meeting where in the presence of the Archbishop, Fr. Mike Crisostomo, myself, and others were gathered and asked to come up with a lie to cover for the Archbishop's public trashing of a Vatican directive, the Cursillo Movement, and our traditional Catholic faith in general, go here.