Saturday, August 9, 2014

PETITION TO RESTORE MSGR. BENAVENTE

PETITION TO ARCHBISHOP APURON TO RESTORE MSGR. BENAVENTE TO THE POSITIONS HE HELD AS OF 7/25/2014

TO THE MOST REVEREND ANTHONY SABLAN APURON, O.F.M. Cap., D.D. METROPOLITAN ARCHBISHOP OF AGANA
Your Excellency:
We the undersigned hereby petition you:
I. To restore Monsignor James Benavente to the position of Rector of the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica by September 1, 2014.
II. To restore Monsignor James Benavente to the position of Director of Catholic Cemeteries by September 1, 2014
III. To restore the Archdiocesan Development Group with Monsignor Benavente as its head by September 1, 2014
Go here to sign the petition.

40 comments:

  1. What a wonderful idea! I signed immediately.
    Eileen Benavente-Blas

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  2. If Fr. Adrian says that the archbishop didn't know who closed the museum (in today's guam variety) and why was it done- why didn't they say or do anything when they first got wind of it on Sunday? Why wait several days to make a comment? It was announced at the Cathedral Masses- is the "new rector" Asleep at the wheel? I suspect he doesn't care or WANTED this to happen to over throw Apuron and tarnish AAA credibility. Apuron who is in charge? You? Pius? Adrian? David? Dominic Kim? For Pete's sake- someone take the wheel!

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  3. I wish we had done this — or could do this — for Fr. Paul, too.

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    1. The idea came from Msgr. Jame's supporters, not me. I'm just posting and Chuck is hosting. There is also a paper petition that is being circulated. I don't know why Dededo parishioners have not come forward to do the same. Take the lead. I've been working a whole year to support Fr. Paul and the most we can get from Dededo parishioners is anonymous comments. What's up with that?

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    2. I know that neither you nor Chuck initiated this petition, Tim. It just saddens me that, other than the letter circulated last year requesting the Archbishop to reinstate Fr. Paul at Sta. Barbara — and even that did not get as many signatures, despite the verbal outcry from the parishioners — nothing was done on his behalf. Many people were too afraid to be identified as supporters of Fr. Paul because they did not want "the Archbishop to get mad."

      I'm reaching out to parishioners from SBCC to see if they will be willing to do something, albeit late, to demonstrate their support for Fr. Paul. I'm so glad that Patti Arroyo acknowledged recently that, which much attention has been focused on the removal of Msgr. James, Fr. Paul Gofigan was actually the first "target" of the Archbishop last year.

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    3. Wish to have one for Fr.Paul also...if possible.....or must we wait for the Vatican decision.

      -Alex

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    4. I signed the letter that circulated last year as did many others. This is more visible though so Mary Lou I will sign it if an online one former Paul gets posted. Let's do it.

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    5. Meant father Paul. Auto correct I think messed that up. Pls correct.

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    6. Anonymous/Alex and Anonymous (August 8, 2014 at 6:52 PM), I have drafted a petition in support of Fr. Paul, thanks to indications that there are still people like you — and parishioners from Dededo — who are willing to sign it. I will ask Chuck White to host it as he has done with the one for Msgr. James. Let’s hope that people do come forward!

      As for the 2013 letters requesting Archbishop Anthony Sablan Apuron to reinstate Fr. Paul as the Pastor of Sta. Barbara Church — I don’t know what happened to many of them. I just know that after I wrote the letter and had copies made, we had a hard time collecting signatures. People were very vocal about their displeasure over the Archbishop’s actions, but many refused to sign because “the Archbishop will get mad.”

      On 16 August 2013 a friend and I went up to the Chancery to deliver 30+ letters. When we arrived, we were told that the Archbishop was on the phone and that he would be with us momentarily. We were instructed to sign in, which we did. Since we wanted to hand deliver the original letters to the Archbishop, we sat and waited for him to get off the phone. However the Archbishop’s Secretary came out and told us the Archbishop was “unavailable” and that she could take a message.

      She escorted us into her office and we informed her that we were there to deliver letters. We explained that we had made copies of the originals and wanted our copies to be acknowledged as having been received. She enumerated, stamped and initialed our copies as being received and then scanned our copies before we left. Whether the Archbishop ever looked at them, I have no idea. We did what we could; I don't know if other letters were delivered to the Chancery.

      Now let’s do more and remind people who the Archbishop’s first “target” was on 16 July 2013. Keep your eye out for the petition!

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    7. Mary Lou, great idea! Esp while appeal in Rome is pending.

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  4. i will agree to the idea , but to make the main church of Guam, a place of peace and harmony, i still believe that one must resign out of courtesy. With all the issues on hand, i dont know if they can control themselves when they see each other face to face.

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    1. I tend to agree with 9:28 AM. Ultimately, I think, the Archbishop needs to resign, and let one with more capable hands handle the situation(s); obviously, either he doesn't want to, or just cannot handle it by himself. If he is man enough to give in to the demands of his people (the petition to restore Msgr Benavente and Fr Paul to their rightful positions - which I doubt very much will happen), but he remains in control of the ship, there might be little to no hope that peace will reign on our Church. There's a chance the situation might worsen. I'd prefer to see a petition for the Archbishop's resignation or removal. That way, we are addressing "the root, the cause" of the problem, and not just "the symptoms, the effects"of an inept leadership. Perhaps there is already a plan to do this.

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    2. That's coming. We are just following procedure. We are going to give the Archbishop every possible opportunity to do the right thing. And when he doesn't, then the people will see what they need to do....

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    3. A petition for Apuron's removal will be useless because you'll never get the number of names that would make it meaningful. The Neos would counteract with a petition of support and all you'll have is a petition competition to see which one will outdo the other. Apuron will do everyting in his power with the support of his Neo cohorts to maintain his power and control.

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    4. Right, we know that any petition is useless, but it gives us the clearance we need by showing that we tried. When our efforts prove useless, we have something else that can be sent to Rome. It's all incremental. And I don't mind even exposing the tactic because of how sure I am that the Archbishop will never say he's sorry and put things right.

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    5. Tim, maybe the Archbishop will never say he's sorry because he bought into that line from the 1970s book/movie "Love Story" — "Love means never having to say you're sorry"?

      Just saying …

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    6. Yah, everyone should have the experience of speaking with Ordinary Tony when he arrogantly sniffs after his self rightous statements. SNIF. Bye.

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  5. Although I believe Monsignor James was abruptly removed and treated unfairly, I don't think it is right to restore him as rector of the Cathedral-Basilica. If this is the case, then other parishes whose priests always change should petition as well. I am not against Monsignor James or anything like that. In fact, I truly believe that the fault of many of these problems in our Archdiocese are with the Archbishop and the NCW. I agree that Monsignor James should be restored as director of Catholic Cemeteries and also the the Archdiocesan Development group. However, Monsignor has been at the Cathedral-Basilica for already 20 years. That is unusually long, especially here in Guam. I know there is no canon law or anything that says how long a priest may stay. However, we already see the problem that he has got too comfortable at the Cathedral-Basilica. The same goes for any priest who stays too long at one parish. When they get too comfortable and get reassigned, they have trouble transitioning and are not open to being sent wherever they are needed. Priests must remember that they are not priests to serve a particular group of people or particular parish. They are a priest for all, and as diocesan priests, they are ready to serve wherever they are sent within their diocese or archdiocese. I have the utmost respect for Monsignor James, but I think his time as rector of the Cathedral-Basilica is done. He has done marvelous wonders during his time there. I am sure his gifts can be used to help whatever parish he is assigned at now and in the future.

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    1. The Archbishop used slander and lies to remove Msgr. James. If he wants to remove Msgr. James, then he first needs to restore him to his post and proceed to reassign him in a canonically correct manner and in a manner that respects his dignity as a person and a priest. Also, the reason why Msgr. was at the Cathedral for so long is because there is no other priest who is willing and able to handle the massive amount of projects that he has been assigned to oversee, projects which, with the Archbishop's signature incurred significant debt and that no other priest wanted to manage. Do you really think Msgr. David wants to manage it??? NOT.

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    2. Fr. Matthew Blockley.August 8, 2014 at 12:05 PM


      The concern is dignity and Respect. Monsignor James should be restored to his post then if archbishop wishese to reassign him he does so according to canonical law. A priest also has rights in canonical law and they should be respected. once again the problem with archbishop apuron is the method. Archbishop Apuron fails to follow canonical law.

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    3. I'll sign the petition just so the Archbishop can restore him and then ask him nicely to transfer. Where Msgr. James really belongs is at the Chancery as Auxiliary Bishop for Administration. That way, he can manage the assets of the Archdiocese the way it's supposed to be. No one else is able to do that.

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    4. I agree that Msgr. Benavente should be made Auxiliary Bishop. The question is, will there be roadblocks and interferences by the NEOS. The answer will be YES! So we gotta do what we gotta do until they come to their senses.

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    5. With much appreciation for Msgr James, I Agee time to move.

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    6. Glad to be Back in Holy Mother ChurchAugust 8, 2014 at 7:14 PM

      We could all debate whether or not Monsignor James should stay at the Cathedral. The reality is that position is the most challenging and difficult position on Guam for a priest in a parish. Tim is correct that no other priest wants the headache, nor are there priests capable of handling it in the way Monsignor James did.

      However, if the Archbishop felt that it was time to move Monsignor James, there was certainly a way to do this. Call him in, explain why it is time, and then get his feedback. If the decision is still to move him, then simply ask him where he wants to go next.

      SHAME on Archbishop for doing otherwise. He has purposely tried to destroy this priest that is his son. He has refused to give a formal listing of charges, but has gladly revealed everything to the media. DOUBLE SHAME because as we have finally learned, thanks to some brave financial experts, it was all much to do about nothing.

      Archbishop was sadistic and heartless in how he dealt with his son. Somebody please show me where I am wrong.

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  6. There was early on a signature campaign for the restoration of Fr. Paul to his post which I believed was addressed to the Archbishop. Was it taken seriously or even read? The only thing we know that after that injustice was done on Fr. Paul, he is still not back to his position. Good luck with your petition. I hope it gets somewhere. The reason why I am not so confident with that is because the Archbishop will have to accept his was wrong. But wait, he is washing his hand on the closure of the museum. Maybe there is hope.
    It is a little more complicated with Fr. Paul because it is not merely restoring him to his position but also allowing him to continue to disallow the Neo to establish in Santa Barbara if they don't accede to his two reasonable requests of having their mass in the chapel/church and welcome other parishioners to their mass. I still wonder why they have not established in Santa Barbara after more than 2 years. Please when I say Neo here I refer to the leaders and not to the members.

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    1. Santa Barbara structure can accommodate over 1,500 attendees sitting and with 8 masses through-out Sunday, not to mention Saturday evening, with a Sunday's cash collections over $15,000 ( on Holidays, exceeds $25,000), i.e $30,000 plus per month-- such an establishments "attractive to the Neo-way"-- without a doubt, this is the underlying reasons for "getting rid of Fr. Ray Cepeda, Fr. Paul Gofigan: AND the pride and native son of Dededo, Monsignor James Benavente is the latest victims of this "purging". At the moment, Parishioners are being "deprived" of limited pastorial services- to demonstrate the strengths of "neo-way" getting their way, one or another- "spiritual starvation"

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    2. Accdg to fr adrian on k57 the masses are open to all. What bs.

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    3. I agree... alot of BULL!

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  7. This is a great way to show our support, I ask for others to also support this petition as well.
    Thanks for the initiative and spreading the word

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  8. its ironic that FrAdrian and that other guy spoke to K57 defending the NCW....when he should be defending the Archbishop and the Diocese which is in the brink of disaster.......so now...FrAdrian is the spokesperson for the NCW.....no longer the Archdiocese or NCW is the Archdiocese...Im confused!

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  9. JUST STOP GIVING APURON AND HIS CRONIES ANY MONEY TO PREAD THEIR VILIFICATIONS!!!

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  10. How do I get approval? None of my comments are ever approved! Due to my health, I no longer can live on Guam but am involved with the people of Guam and love her forever!-Donna Cruse

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    1. This one was approved. So whatever you did with this one, do it the same way. I approve 99.9% of all comments. In fact the few that I don't approve usually make much worse allegations about the Archbishop than even I will allow.

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  11. People's power like what they did in the Philippines. Remove all cronies of the neocrats.

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  12. We have a dictator and Nazi (Hilter) in our Catholic Church... his name is Apruon!

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  13. To those who have expressed interest in signing another Petition to Archbishop Apuron to Restore Fr. Paul Gofigan to His Positions — the petition can be found at

    http://thoughtfulcatholic.com/?page_id=35345

    Please spread the word. Thank you and God bless you!!

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  14. I attended Msgr. James' first mass at Tamuning. The Church was completely filled, with late comers standing in the back and along the side walls. Spoke with an attending Agana parishioner who said that someone in Agana was already questioning why Santa Marian Kamalen's niche is higher than the crucifix. Oh boy, I wonder how this year's December 8th celebration is going to go.

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  15. To all my facebook friends, there is a petition to the Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Agana to Restore Fr. Paul Gofigan to the positions he held before July 16, 2013, one of which is being the pastor of Santa Barbara Church. Kindly go to the website below to sign the petition:

    http://thoughtfulcatholic.com/?page_id=35345

    Let us stop the injustice done to Fr. Paul more than a year ago. If you agree that he acted like the father in the prodigal son story in the Bible when he offered solace to a man who had suffered for his crime. Who for many years after his release was never involved in anything illegal. Who for the years he was working and then volunteering in Santa Barbara, did not do anything wrong. Who was given a police clearance to work at Santa Barbara. Who put back his life in order by marrying his wife in church and brought back his whole family to the Lord. Isn't that a testimony of conversion worthy of any organization here in Guam. If you believe that our Church should not punish Fr Paul for helping bring back this man and his family back to our Lord, then, I humbly ask, that you join us and help us bring Fr. Paul back to Santa Barbara. It is the least that we can do to correct the injustice that was done to him. Join us in this petition. The State has forgiven this man. And yet our Church tells one of our wonderful priests in Guam that he cannot let him work or volunteer. Who is more Christ-like in this situation? The State or the Church? Let us prove to all that our Church welcomes sinners like you and me. Our Lord himself said that He came not for the righteous for the sinners. Come and join us in this petition. May God help us make right this wrong that was done NOT JUST to Fr. Paul, but to this man, his wife and his two children. Let us prove to one and all, our God is a forgiving God. Please do this with urgency as this petition is time-sensitive. Si Yu'os Ma'ase, Thank you and Maraming Salamat po. All glory belongs to Him! (Also you can copy the link above and send it to your own facebook friends.)

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  16. Rector = Msgr James
    Archbishop accusation
    #1= rebutted
    #2 = rebutted
    #3 = rebutted
    #4 = rebutted
    #5 = deadline august 15, 2014; fired july, 2014
    Archbishop = no answer to rebuttal
    Back to first line
    Rector = Msgr. James

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  17. Yes Ebet Sapida, TAMA KA! You are right!

    The sad thing about our situation is that the right is not always followed. They twist it to cater to their diabolical plans and needs. Kawawa talaga tayo. Sana nga maibalik na rin si Fr. Paul sa Dededo, lalo na si Msgr. James sa Agana. Kailangan natin ang mga taong mabuti at tama ang ginagawa! (Translation: We are in such a pitiful state. We hope that Fr. Paul would be reinstated in Dededo, most especially Msgr. James in Agana. We need people that are good and who do what is right.)

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