Patrick Conroy, a Jesuit Catholic, has been sworn back into office this week as the US House Chaplain after a couple of turbulent weeks. Paul Ryan met significant criticism from the Catholic members of Congress after asking for Conroy’s resignation in April. Initially, Conroy conceded and he turned in a resignation letter. Conroy rescinded his letter last week after receiving significant support from Nancy Pelosi and others. His on-again, off-again position in this role has brought the House Chaplain role to the front pages. What is this role all about and who is Patrick Conroy? The findings are alarming and full of hypocrisy!
Separation of Church and State
The chaplain role dates back to 1774. Today, this is a paid position to an individual who is chosen to “perform ceremonial, symbolic and pastoral duties.” Most publicly, the Chaplain opens the congressional sessions with a prayer, but there is also the lesser known role of providing guidance to the politicians in both political and personal issues. There is a separate chaplain for the Senate and both receive a salary of $160,000+ for their services. John Boehner had the following to say about Conroy back in 2011.
A few highlights from that speech are that, according to John Boehner, the US Chaplain role and Conroy are “one of the most important members of the House…whose members… look to for advice and counsel…” and “the chaplain is the anchor of the house…”.
How is this separation of church and state?!? Laws limit tax-exempt religious organizations, such as the Jesuits, from influencing politics. In complete contradiction, a Jesuit Catholic opens House meetings with a prayer and provides guidance to Congress members. This is his full-time, paid occupation! What hypocrisy!
It is no surprise that the issue of separation of church and state has been brought up in the past with this role, as it should be!
Patrick Conroy House Chaplain
A short-lived controversy surrounded Patrick Conroy’s nomination by John Boehner in 2011. During the vetting process, Nancy Pelosi slowed the approval after learning that Conroy was coming from the Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus. This Jesuit organization had just agreed to pay $166.1 Million to victims of sexual and physical abuse. Pelosi and Boehner did not hold Conroy “Guilty by Association” because they reasoned that Conroy was not with the Oregon Jesuits when the incidents in question occurred. But what if this IS a “Guilty Association”?!
Jesuit Abuse Scandals
The State of Oregon is not the only location of Jesuit abuse scandals. In addition, abuse by this Catholic Order did not end in the 70’s. Following is a short list of additional Jesuit specific scandals:
- $7.5M Settlement in California in 2002
- $5.7M Settlement in Boston in 2003
- $20M Settlement in Chicago to 6 men in 2013
- $281K Settlement against Saint Louis University in 2016
- $925K Settlement against Loyola Academy in Chicago-Detroit Province
- Jesuit Cover-up In Germany, Chile, and Spain from 70’s and 80’s
In God’s Word, there is no such thing as “one bad apple”, the whole tree is rotten! That would be “guilty by association”!
“Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. You shall know them by their fruits… A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.”
Abuse by the Catholic Church as a whole, not just the Jesuits, goes way back. An internal Vatican document written in 1922 and revised in 1962 gives instructions “On the Manner of Proceeding in Cases of Solicitation”. This document outlines the Vatican process for internal investigations into abusive priests and specifically covers the “inquisition” procedure.
More specifically, guidance is given in paragraph 4 for the option to “transfer him to another assignment”. Strict secrecy is a theme throughout the document and paragraph 52 states that “In every way the judge is to remember that it is never right for him to bind the accused by an oath to tell the truth (Cfr. Canon 1744).” Paragraph 73 specifically mentions obscene acts with “youths of either sex or with brute animals (bestiality).” The bestiality bit hasn’t come to light yet, but it’s only a matter of time considering they felt the need to include this in a document from 1962!
This document makes it apparent that the greatest concern is to protect the image of the church. Absolutely NO concern is made for the victims, of which there are thousands and thousands and thousands!
Canon Law vs. Civil Law
The Vatican document also makes clear that at no point does the church intend to notify the civil authorities. The actions of the bishops and cardinals, or lack thereof, are additional proof of their cover-up of these abuse scandals. In 2002, the Vatican claimed it issued “new rules” for handling abuse cases. The abuse cases would be handled by Secret Vatican Trials. That sure doesn’t sound any different from the guidance they had in 1962! After the most recent Inquiry into abuse in Australia, one archbishop responded that he would rather go to jail than reveal confessions of abuse. This organization clearly puts themselves above any Civil Law.
Jesus warned of false prophets and described the Catholic Church perfectly!
“Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so you also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within you are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.”
The Jesuits are influencing decisions of the House on a daily basis. Catholic members of Congress are supporting an organization that has abused their own religious congregations and constituents. The Jesuits, along with the entire leadership of the Catholic Church, are the hypocrites Jesus spoke about. In other words, the whole association is GUILTY and should have no influence with leaders of any government!
Is there more? Yes! The next article in this “mini-series” will go back a little further into the history of the Jesuits, especially as it relates to their role with governments. Stay tuned!