Tuesday, July 7, 2015

THE BRONZE SHOE - CHECKMATE


Sometime in  2011. Archbishop Apuron is directed by Giuseppe Gennarini and Pius to convey title to The Property to RMS. (1)

Because of the value of The Property, Canon Law requires the consent of the archdiocesan finance council (as well as the college of consultors and the Holy See), Apuron submits his request to convey title to The Property to the AFC. (2)

September 7, 2011. The AFC places the matter on its agenda for September 7, 2011. (3)

According to the meeting agenda, Apuron is fully aware that he does not have the same "ultimate powers" over RMS as he does over the archdiocese and that a transfer or conveyance of title would mean that he "relinquishes ultimate control of the asset."

He is also aware that his legal counsel, Atty. Ed Terlaje, has advised that should there be a transfer of title, RMS Articles and By-laws would need to be amended in order to keep The Property an archdiocesan asset.

According to the agenda, Apuron, ignoring the advice of his counsel, refused to amend the RMS Articles and By-laws, and required that "the assets be deeded to RMS without modification."

Four of the five members of the AFC vote not to convey title to The Property to RMS.

September 8, 2011. Richard Untalan, then-president of the AFC, writes the rector of RMS the following day, advising him of the AFC's decision. (4)

It is important to note that it was the AFC which notified the RMS rector of the denial of their request and not the archbishop. If the AFC's role was merely consultative - as the Vicar General later alleged - then it would have been the archbishop's responsibility to inform the rector. However, because the AFC's role in this particular matter - as per Can. 1292 - is determinative, then it was appropriate for the AFC president to inform the rector.

November 16, 2011. Archbishop Apuron writes Richard Untalan informing him that the matter...
...is not clearly "alienation" but an assigning of title of a property that is transferred and renamed from one public juridic person subject to the Ordinary to another public juridic person subject to the same Ordinary. (5)
In short, Apuron attempts to make the case that both the archdiocese ("one public juridic person") and RMS ("another public juridic person") are both equally subject to him. Apuron attempts to make this distinction because as long as the matter can be considered "alienation", he cannot move forward without the consent of the AFC.

Apuron also knows that what he states is not true. As per the Sept 7 agenda Apuron's legal counsel made it perfectly clear to him that as regards his control of RMS he was only "one of six votes," which is why his Counsel advised that the Articles and By-laws be amended if he wished to retain control of The Property.

Apparently Apuron knew his attempt to play fast and loose with legal language would be challenged so he decided not to send the letter until after he had already transferred title to the property.

November 21, 2011. A day that will live in Infamy. Archbishop Apuron signs the deed conveying title to The Property to RMS. The deed is recorded at Land Management the next day. (6)

November 25, 2011. Apuron has his letter delivered to Richard Untalan and does not tell Untalan that he has already recorded the deed.

Richard Untalan assumes that Apuron wants the AFC to revisit the issue so he calls a meeting for December 6, 2011.

December 6, 2011. For placing the matter on the agenda, Untalan is accused by the Vicar General of a "vulnus" towards the archbishop, of disrespecting his person, and harming "the dignity of the Ordinary." Apuron himself accuses Untalan of creating "nonsense." (7)

It was obvious why the Vicar General and Apuron went ballistic. They had already recorded the deed and they both knew they had done wrong. We know that because if they hadn't done wrong they would have happily informed the AFC and the rest of the diocese of what they had done. But they did not.

January 12, 2012. Apuron subsequently terminates the membership of the four members of the AFC who voted against the transfer. (8)

The matter remains a secret until...

January 5, 2015. The deed conveying title to The Property is discovered at Land Management, cleverly disguised only as a deed restricting the use of the property to the Redemptoris Mater Seminary.

However, in the language of the deed, operative words such as transfer, convey, and deed, are used. These are words used to transfer title to real property.

Because the consent of the Holy See was required to transfer title (alienate) property of that value, Apuron knows he is in trouble now with Rome.

January 29, 2015. To cover himself he sends a letter to the representative of the donor who, in 2003, gave the archdiocese two million dollars to pay off the note on the property. Apuron includes a self-addressed letter stating that the donation was for the specific purpose of purchasing the property for the Redemptoris Mater Seminary and the Blessed Diego institute. 

February 2, 2015. The donor wrote Apuron back stating that she had never heard of either institution and refused to sign stating that what Apuron wanted her to sign was "not true." (9)

April 2015. Desperate, Apuron is set up (probably by Gennarini) with a Denver law firm, which we are told opines in Apuron's favor. However, if this were true, Apuron would have published the report in the U Matuna or at least posted it to his website. He did neither. In fact, Attorney Bronze, who is the only person we know who was able to view the report, writes:
The Archdiocese through its “Civil Law Report” which no church member can get a copy of, but can only stand and read a 19-page document... (10)
And, after Bronze viewed the Report, Apuron had it withdrawn completely from public view.

Why, if the report exonerates him, did he do this? 

It's rather simple:
  1. Knowing that it was not licensed to practice law in Guam, the firm most likely wrote the opinion on the condition that Apuron would not publish it or present it as an authentic legal opinion. And, given what we know of the report, it appears it was written only to convince Roman authorities that Apuron had not violated Canon Law.
  2. However, Apuron, anxious to redeem himself at home, opted to publish a portion of the report in the U Matuna, and then to give it credence, pretended to make the full report available at the chancery, not thinking anyone would dare come and look. 
  3. However, the CCOG had Attorney Bronze take a look. Upon his first visit he was told to come back. Apparently they weren't ready for him. Upon his second visit he was made to stand at a counter and read the entire 19 page document in the presence of a chancery watchdog, and was not allowed to make copies, take pictures, or even write notes.
  4. The report was then withdrawn from public view 1) because making the report public probably violated the original terms of the Denver law firm - creating a huge potential liability for them; and 2) because the report did not exonerate Apuron as he has intimated.
May-June 2015. The Denver opinion was Apuron's last available move, which explains why "the Dianas" are clinging to it. The Bronze opinion is simply "checkmate". It
  1. demonstrates the deed to be an "absolute conveyance" of title
  2. demonstrates that Apuron does not control RMS (which we will see soon)
  3. demonstrates that the transaction is not just a church matter and is not exempt from civil law 
However, even though it is checkmate, the game isn't over until the checkmated king is taken off the board. How that happens will be Apuron's choice. He can leave now under his own free will, or he will be made to leave - if not by Church authority, then by what will happen after a civil suit.

Footnotes
(1) "The Property" is the former Accion Hotel property currently occupied by the Redemptoris Mater Seminary.
(2) Canon 1292
(10) The Bronze opinion will be published in full soon.

23 comments:

  1. A stunning and impressive summary, Tim. Thank you.

    It's also very sad. Deliberate attempts to conceal the truth, mislead the faithful, discredit those who work to serve others, etc. There are no words to adequately describe this situation.

    I pray that when all is said and done, when it is time to pick up the pieces and move forward, we have the strength to forgive.

    Soli Deo Gloria

    ReplyDelete
  2. although my main interest is obviously in seeing that the Church on guam is cleansed of these shenanigans and the perps, i'm also intrigued by the possible civil case.

    to me, the other thing about this is that it shows an exploitable gap between canon law and civil law. canon law requires the approval of the archdiocesan finance council and the holy see, but yet civil law only looks at the corporation sole, the archbishop. so there's the exploitable gap, and sure enough, it was exploited. could there have been a way to set up a safeguard against this sort of thing?

    i would guess that what has kept this abuse from becoming more widespread worldwide is that most bishops in modern times tend to be honorable men and actually care about the patrimony of their dioceses. not so with guam, eh?

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  3. The Church has placed the necessary safeguards, I guess, after these types of things have happened time and again before. Unfortunately, AAA removed those safeguards. He chose to believe the leaders of the Way instead of his own finance council and lawyer. He thought wrong that the leaders of the Way had his well being in mind and would not put him in this predicament. He thought wrong. He just listened to them and forgot these safeguards are there precisely to protect him from this. He thought wrong. Sad. Very sad.

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  4. John C. Ada Toves "Typhoon"July 7, 2015 at 4:13 PM

    Tim, thank you truly. I am forever indebted to your family. I will do my best. Tks u for my filter. The greatest admiration and I hope u post this because I truly have your back, they can feel free to f me.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I have mailed my donation to CCOG to help fund the civil lawsuit.

    What I have been withholding from the Sunday collections will now go to the CCOG civil lawsuit fund on a weekly basis.

    If all the "Anonymous" like me out there will do likewise, it won't be long before we can proceed with the civil lawsuit against these "azoles" (pronounced with two syllables) like apuron.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. John C. Ada Toves "Typhoon"July 7, 2015 at 5:30 PM

      Take back Yona!!!

      Delete
    2. Lets take back the island from these imbeciles! Biba Katoliku, Biba!

      James T.

      Delete
    3. Mary Lou Garcia-PeredaJuly 8, 2015 at 10:36 AM

      Anonymous (July 7, 2015 at 4:47 PM), you've come up with an excellent plan! I hope and pray that other Anonymous — and non-Anonymous — commenters will follow your example.

      As Tim commented in an earlier post, it will take about $20K to get the civil lawsuit started. If people donate the money they have been withholding from the weekly collection baskets as well as from the AAAppeal, there will be enough in the coffer to bring this suit to fruition.

      As we have seen, Rome is in no hurry to take any action against AAA. My guess is that unless their hand is forced, they will just let AAA continue along his merry way. We're into the second week of July, a month during which — for the past 2 years — we witnessed the removal of local priests. Whether AAA has orders to dispose of Fr. Mike Crisostomo — despite his assurance in June that "Pale' Mike is not going anywhere for now anyway" — we shall see.

      Delete
  6. John C. Ada Toves "Typhoon"July 7, 2015 at 5:37 PM

    WWJD

    ReplyDelete
  7. So the Arch has a group of Attorneys eh? Who is paying for their fees? Us? Ai adai, broken ta'lo i piggy bank?

    nonymousJuly 7, 2015 at 2:44 PM

    Hey Diana,

    I do not hate anyone. That's a very strong word. I will admit that I dislike a few decisions being made, but who am I to judge. That's God's job. 

    However, I must respectfully say that you are comparing "apples or oranges". Yes, the Denver law firm indeed specializes in Non profit matters and church related stuff as you mentioned, however, Guam laws are different from Colorado's laws. As you know, in order to practice law in any given place, one must pass the bar of that jurisdiction. If Denver indeed had authority to practice and to issue a legal opinion on Guam matters, then I'm sure it will be revealed. But as of now, many of us were not given proof of that. - just saying. 

    DianaJuly 7, 2015 at 4:48 PM

    Dear Anonymous at 2:44 pm, 

    I think the reason why no further documents are no longer provided is because all the jungle does is twist the documents around to fit their interpretation. I'm also certain that even a prominent law firm such as Lewis Roca Rothgerber LLP is fully aware that they can be penalized for practicing law where they are not supposed to practiced. The Archbishop has a group of attorneys working for him.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "I'm also certain that even a prominent law firm such as Lewis Roca Rothgerber LLP is fully aware that they can be penalized for practicing law where they are not supposed to practiced."

      Huh? Is that an admission?

      Delete
    2. Diana, LMAO! If the jungle is so wrong of the interpretation, PROVE IT!

      Hell would freeze over and I would still not get an answer!

      Delete
    3. It's an admission of defeat. All they have left is to say that I twist things and I hate the bishop, etc., etc., etc. As everyone can plainly see I have simply used the Apuron's own words and actions to expose him. No twisting needed.

      Delete
    4. The best method of exposing the idiocy of the Dianas is just to cut and paste what they post. The ignorance speaks for itself. They are creative enough to be clever.

      The absurdity of their lines of (il)logic is both highly amusing and extremely sad. Amusing in which they really write some great satire and parody of themselves, and sad because some of us know who a few of them are.

      Delete
    5. We do not hate the bishop at all, we care about the future of the local Archdiocese of Agana. We are outraged by the foolishness that he has foisted upon us. He is a non-entity. What we once respected as occupying the chair at the Cathedral-Basilica has been reduced to a helpless puppet. He is but a puny little man whose departure from Guam is much-anticipated so we can heal and move on. He has to bring his pitiful posse along with him. We can no longer trust a leader who lied to us and destroyed others' lives to perpetuate his lies.

      Delete
  8. Is the CCOG planning to have an all-island eaceful rally - maybe in front of the Cathedral - just a suggestion. I think there are still catholics who may not be aware of what is happening right now. A peaceful rally of concerned catholics and a media exposure is just what we need to help us resolve these issues .... again ... a peaceful rally ...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And can we do it on a weekend so everyone can show up.

      Delete
  9. So many versions, so confusing...Untalan letter stating decision not to turn title to NCW ...Diana says AAA has other letter saying selling 75 million property to benefit the Archdiocese to get it out of debt written by Untalan.

    Point two..letter from Terlaje tells Untalan to read his letter concerning the words " assignment " and "alluenation".

    Please clarify..especially the part about selling to get the Archdiocese put of debt...as Diana states, the Cathedral and the Cemetery.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is an old song that the bishop uses. It's one of the saddest lies because even if the AFC did want to sell the property they would have no authority to do so. Only the bishop could sell it....at least until he transferred it to RMS. Now the board of directors can sell it.

      Selling it is a good idea and I can see why the AFC might have suggested it. First of all it is the AFC's job to advise the bishop on the best financial practices for the diocese. The property at minimum is probably worth 40 million. The diocese is approx 20 million in debt. Pay off all the debt and have another 20 million to put towards the building of a new state of the art seminary instead of an aging hotel that always needs fixing. A new seminary at most would cost about a million, so there would be many millions left over to hire an actual faculty instead of this round robin of visiting professors.

      So who is greedy here? AAA and his boys want to hang on to the property NOT because it is a seminary but because of what it is worth to them down the road when a new bishop won't be so friendly. You will learn more about that in my next post.

      Meanwhile, tell The Diana to post the letter from the bishop. She should have no problem getting it.

      Delete
  10. “There are only three possible endings —aren't there? — to any story: revenge, tragedy or forgiveness. That’s it. All stories end like that.”
    ― Jeanette Winterson

    Should there be a poll on how this will end?

    ReplyDelete
  11. Janet B - MangilaoJuly 7, 2015 at 11:52 PM

    NEWS FLASH - DIANA
    A lot of people now hate the Archbishop, Tony, the baloney. He has lied to us, he has deceived us, he has abused our beloved priests, he has refused good young men to enter formation, he has propped up seminarians with questionable pasts because they are kikos, he has stolen millions of dollars from our Archdiocese. So, yes, I am human, and I have my weaknesses, but tell me why I shouldn't hate the thief in shepherds clothing?

    If the kikos of Guam refuse to admit that big crimes have been committed, then so be it. You are only sealing your own fate. By condoning his actions, you become complicit to his criminal activity. Is that really how you all want to be remembered when your asses are kicked out of the temple?

    Your pleadings make no difference, because you have failed to convince us that Tony has acted for the benefit of the people of God in Guam. He has been a total failure and his legacy is now cast in stone. There is nothing he can do at this point to change his history as a failure. He can slip away to his refuge in San Francisco with his pare, or to his homes in various places, but his memory will not change.

    As true kikos, you should strongly advise his to get the hell out before the judge throws an orange jump suit that will be constantly jumped in prison. Otherwise, he faces the consequences he deserves.

    Not sorry to be so blunt, as I am sick and tired of people feeling sorry for our sorry excuse of a shepherd!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Fr. Matthew BlockleyJuly 8, 2015 at 12:08 AM

    Dear Tim.

    Thank you for the excellent work you have undertaken for the church on Guam and the western pacific. In yeas to come the church will thank you for your dedicated commitment to the catholic faith and to truth and justice.

    Nineteen years ago today on the island of Saipan I was ordained a priest. I served four years on the island where I had hoped to spend my life in service of the local church. 15 years have been spent living out of the diocese here in my place of exile the Philippines. But today tremendous peace and gratitude fills ,y heart for the countless blessings received. My life has had the very best and the very worst but what a blessing it has been.

    I'm often told of the problems some people have with me on the islands. But today I share with our readers that I do not have a problem with anyone . I send my best wishes to former bishop camacho wishing him good health and happiness. I send good wished to Tony wishing him good health and happiness. But at the same time I stand firm in my belief that he has led the church of Guam and the entire western pacific into a pit of destruction. He created a divided church which he fails to heal and reconcile. For this reason I continue to call for his resignation and for the appointment of a new bishop who will lead with honesty and integrity.

    At this time there is no bishop in the western pacific with integrity or dignity character and values to give the spiritual leadership urgently needed. There is a great poverty of spirit on the islands in our leaders and we pray in time Rome will appoint men who can reconcile and heal the disaster created by camacho and tony. Camacho left such a disaster in Saipan five years after him it remains impossible to appoint a new bishop. But we continue to pray for the region above all for healing and reconciliation from the disaster and the reckless and callous leadership of these two failed catholic bishops. The Islands urgently need a leader like cardinal Tagle to restore dignity and honor to the pacific church.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Best wishes on the 19th anniversary of your presbyteral ordination, Father Matthew! My family will continue to keep you in our prayers, along with Father Ryan, Father Charlie, and Bishop Camacho, and all the clergy of the Diocese of Chalan Kanoa.

    Let us give praise and thanks to God that the 2011 Archdiocesan Finance Council performed their duties with such diligence, and followed their consciences. May St. Thomas More continue to bless and inspire Attorney Edward S. Terlaje.

    ReplyDelete

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