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Pope Removes Ban on British Holocaust Denier Bishop
Arutz 7 ^ | 1-25-09 | David Shammah

Posted on 01/25/2009 10:32:37 AM PST by Nachum

(IsraelNN.com) In a move that many Jewish community officials said would cause relations between Jews and Catholics to further deteriorate, the Vatican on Saturday lifted an excommunication ban against Bishop Richard Williamson, one of four bishops who were banned in 1988 for taking on the office of bishop against the wishes of then-Pope John Paul II.

Williamson is a Holocaust denier, and has repeatedly said that the gas chambers did not exist and that no more than 300,000 Jews were killed during World War II, mostly of starvation. In addition, Williamson has declared that the Jews are plotting to take over the world, and that the U.S. and Israel were behind 9/11.

In an interview with Swedish television conducted last November but broadcast last week, Williamson said that he believed that there were “no gas chambers."

“Between 200,000-300,000 perished in Nazi concentration camps, but not one of them by gassing in a gas chamber,” he said, adding, “I believe that the historical evidence is hugely against 6 million having been deliberately gassed in gas chambers as a deliberate policy of Adolf Hitler.”

Back to Middle Ages Williamson has had a long history of Holocaust denial. In a 1989 sermon in Sherbrooke, Canada, Williamson said that "there was not one Jew killed in the gas chambers. It was all lies, lies, lies. The Jews created the Holocaust so we would prostrate ourselves on our knees before them and approve of their new State of Israel... Jews made up the Holocaust, Protestants get their orders from the devil, and the Vatican has sold its soul to liberalism." In dozens of sermons and letters, Richardson reiterated the same theme, adding that Hitler “liberated” Germany from the Jews.

Richardson advocates a return to the Middle Ages, with the Inquisition the preferred model of the Catholic relationship to Jews. “As Catholic faith goes up, so Jewish power goes down, while as Catholic faith goes down, so Jewish power goes up. In the Catholic Middle Ages, the Jews were relatively impotent to harm Christendom. But as Catholics have grown over the centuries weaker and weaker in the faith, especially since Vatican II, so the Jews have come closer and closer to fulfilling their substitute-Messianic drive towards world dominion... When Spanish Catholics were truly Catholic, God granted them by 1492 to reconquer Spain from the Arabs, and then granted them to create a Catholic empire in the Americas.”

Jewish community officials have expressed serious concerns over the Pope's move. Rabbi Shmuel Ricardo Di Segni, the Chief Rabbi of Rome, told reporters that the rehabilitation of Williamson opens “a deep wound” in Catholic-Jewish relations.

The Anti-Defamation League, an anti-Semitism watchdog group, said that the reinstatement “could become a source of great tension between Catholics and Jews.” The umbrella group of Jewish communities in France called Williamson “a contemptible liar whose sole objective is to reawaken centuries-old hatred against the Jews.”

In a report, Reuters quoted Mordechai Lewy, Israel's ambassador to the Vatican, as saying that Israel “has no intention of interfering in the internal workings of the Catholic Church. However, the eagerness to bring a Holocaust denier back into the Church will cast a shadow on relations between Jews and the Catholic Church.”

A Vatican spokesman said that the lifting of the ban had nothing to do with Williamson's views. “It has nothing to do with the personal opinions of a person, which are open to criticism, but are not pertinent to this decree.”


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; Philosophy; United Kingdom
KEYWORDS: british; denier; evilpriest; holocaust; ourbusiness; pope; waywardpriest; why

1 posted on 01/25/2009 10:32:37 AM PST by Nachum
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To: Nachum
Question: Is it "Richardson" or "Williamson"? I see both names referred to in the article.

There couldn't possibly be two people that ignorant.

2 posted on 01/25/2009 10:40:00 AM PST by reg45 (Be calm everyone. The idiot child is in charge!)
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To: Nachum
Richardson advocates a return to the Middle Ages, with the Inquisition the preferred model of the Catholic relationship to Jews.

Conservative Catholics, this is your in-flight advisory. You need to bail out now, you're headed for a socialist super cell.
3 posted on 01/25/2009 10:40:21 AM PST by arderkrag (Liberty Walking (www.geocities.com/arderkrag))
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To: Nachum

“Williamson is a Holocaust denier, and has repeatedly said that the gas chambers did not exist and that no more than 300,000 Jews were killed during World War II, mostly of starvation. In addition, Williamson has declared that the Jews are plotting to take over the world, and that the U.S. and Israel were behind 9/11.”

The Pope needs to get this man to go to the holocaust museum or help dig up a mass grave.


4 posted on 01/25/2009 10:41:03 AM PST by huldah1776 ( Worthy is the Lamb)
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To: Nachum

God bless the Pope!


5 posted on 01/25/2009 10:44:20 AM PST by Lukasz
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To: Nachum

This guy’s reinstatement to the Church has nothing to do with his position on the Holocaust, as wrongheaded as he may be.

His excommunication had nothing to do with his Holocast fantasies, but with his conflicts with certain Church doctrine.

Israeli and Jewish press need to knock off playing politics with something that is (1) theological, and (2) none of their business.


6 posted on 01/25/2009 10:50:24 AM PST by oldbill
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To: Nachum

how did this cretin become a bishop in the first place?


7 posted on 01/25/2009 10:50:28 AM PST by kms61
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To: kms61

A good question. This guy should be defrocked. Not happy with this move.


8 posted on 01/25/2009 10:55:05 AM PST by tdewey10 (Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!)
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To: Nachum

I read this twice. Where does it say his holocaust denial was the reason for his excommunication? Anyone...?


9 posted on 01/25/2009 11:10:04 AM PST by beelzepug (the Gadsden flag is now flying in my front yard)
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To: Nachum

There is a good Q&A article on Reuters about exactly what the Pope is doing. The Pope is trying to heal our church with the means of more of a conservative element. The harm that has been done by the so called spirit of Vatican II has been horrendous. Pope Benedict is NOT going to lead anyone to think the Holocaust did not happen for heaven’s sake. But I would like to ask those who are Jewish why do so many Jews vote for the dems when they clearly have a negative view of Isreal? Do they really trust Obama? Now that would concern me more.


10 posted on 01/25/2009 11:26:09 AM PST by red irish (Gods Children in the womb are to be loved too!)
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To: Nachum
Boy is this guy going to be surprised when he departs this world and gets to meet a certain Jewish carpenter face to face. It will be kind of hard to explain or justify his anti Semitism then. I can just imagine what that conversation might sound like.

Seriously, though, it will probably be a very quiet, one-sided conversation, as he will be without excuse (as will we all be in regards to our sins).

11 posted on 01/25/2009 11:26:35 AM PST by Pablo64 (Political Correctness is a DISEASE. <==> TRUTH is the CURE.)
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To: Nachum

This article is short on facts. Will he be recognized as a bishop, or even a priest, in the Roman Catholic Church? Or is he just getting his membership back? It’s also not clear how he got to be a bishop in the first place, if the man who was Pope at the time actively disagreed with the plan for him to become a bishop. If he’s just getting his membership back, fine — it’s reasonable for a church not to treat mental illness as a barrier to membership, no matter how onerous the symptoms. But if this Pope is letting him back in as a still-frocked priest, or as a bishop, that’s appalling. I have a low opinion of the Catholic Church to begin with (promoter of socialism and illegal immigration, enabler of large-scale child molestation, etc), but if the current Pope is willing to let this nut be recognized as a priest in the RC Church, I will downgrade my already low opinion of the Church, and classify it as an outright enemy of civilization.


12 posted on 01/25/2009 11:47:30 AM PST by GovernmentShrinker
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To: Nachum

Whether or not Holocaust denial is an excommunicable offense, he should not be allowed to remain a bishop unless the Catholic Church wants people to very reasonably attribute his views to the Catholic Church to some extent.


13 posted on 01/25/2009 11:52:54 AM PST by Arguendo
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To: kms61
I have it on good authority that this guy may well be certifiably crazy.

Having said that, it's important to note that his "holocaust denial" never had anything to do with his excommunication -- and therefore has nothing to do with his reinstatement.

14 posted on 01/25/2009 11:55:34 AM PST by Alberta's Child (I'm out on the outskirts of nowhere . . . with ghosts on my trail, chasing me there.)
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To: Nachum
Here is a segment of an interview with Williamson on the subject of the Holocaust:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k6C9BuXe2RM

He seems to take issue with the gas chamber story, not the Holocaust itself.

15 posted on 01/25/2009 12:25:30 PM PST by Obamageddon (Birth certificate and college transcripts will be required for Federal employment, Mr. Soetero)
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To: Obamageddon
He seems to take issue with the gas chamber story, not the Holocaust itself.

No, it simply didn't happen, maybe 300,000 Jews died. At best.

Besides, what difference does it make? Jews are the enemies of Christians, on earth to establish the reign of the anti-Christ, based in Jerusalem. Thus the imperative that the Catholic Church convert them.

His beliefs are not relevant to the Pope's actions, but are vile and shouldn't be minimized.

16 posted on 01/25/2009 12:34:19 PM PST by SJackson (The American people are wise in wanting change, 2 terms is plenty, Condi Rice)
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To: GovernmentShrinker
Will he be recognized as a bishop, or even a priest, in the Roman Catholic Church? Or is he just getting his membership back? It’s also not clear how he got to be a bishop in the first place, if the man who was Pope at the time actively disagreed with the plan for him to become a bishop.

All that has been done is to lift his excommunication, effective this week. He remains suspended a divinis. which means he cannot confer any of the sacraments, establish new parishes, or employ any of the other powers of bishops. That remains true of all other SSPX bishops and priests - further talks are needed to fully regularize their position with the Church.

Williamson (and the other SSPX bishops) were excommunicated in the first place precisely for being ordained. Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre consecrated these four bishops in June 1988 without any authorization by the Pope, and in so doing all involved automatically incurred late sententiae excommunication.

Because Lefebvre had the power to consecrate new bishops, Williams (alas) is technically a valid bishop, but he is not a licit one, because he was not authorized to become one by Rome.

As for his ideas on the Holocaust, they are ludicrous but not technically heresy and therefore don't affect his excommunication. But I dare say he will have to recant before he is regularized as part of any deal with the SSPX, assuming he is regularized at all.

17 posted on 01/26/2009 2:27:09 AM PST by The Iguana
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To: SJackson
No, it simply didn't happen, maybe 300,000 Jews died. At best.

You're saying the Holocaust did not happen?

18 posted on 01/26/2009 2:28:05 AM PST by The Iguana
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To: The Iguana

Responding to the poster upthread who suggested he wasn’t a Holocaust Denier, only questioned the gas chambers, itself an absurdity. In the Bishop’s own words. He goes much farther than that when it comes to Jews, his Holocaust denial is only the tip of the iceberg.


19 posted on 01/26/2009 4:59:19 AM PST by SJackson (The American people are wise in wanting change, 2 terms is plenty, Condi Rice)
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To: Alberta's Child
Having said that, it's important to note that his "holocaust denial" never had anything to do with his excommunication -- and therefore has nothing to do with his reinstatement.

I'm sure your comment will be an easier sell to Catholics than it will be to non-Catholics, who might have a harder time reconciling his views with those of the Church.

I think that most people will not find it quite so easy to separate the man's theology from the rest of his personal views. JMO.

20 posted on 01/26/2009 9:53:03 AM PST by dmz
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To: oldbill
His excommunication had nothing to do with his Holocast fantasies, but with his conflicts with certain Church doctrine.

So what? He acted in a way that caused the Church to boot him out. Being allowed back in is a privilege, and the Church can and should require more than a murmurred (and almost certainly insincere) "my bad" on the technical doctrinal issues in question.

By letting him back in, the Church chose to associate themselves with him. One is known by what one chooses to associate oneself with.

21 posted on 01/26/2009 1:09:28 PM PST by steve-b (Intelligent design is to evolutionary biology what socialism is to free-market economics.)
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To: Alberta's Child
Having said that, it's important to note that his "holocaust denial" never had anything to do with his excommunication -- and therefore has nothing to do with his reinstatement.

See previous message for why this argument is in error.

To illustrate by analogy: Suppose a drunken lout keeps showing up at your restaurant. Getting drunk and rowdy is not in and of itself sufficient reason for you to keep him out -- but then one day he grab-asses one of your waitresses and that gets him banned. Do you let him back in if he promises only to keep his hands to himself, or do you demand that he behave himself in general?

22 posted on 01/26/2009 1:13:16 PM PST by steve-b (Intelligent design is to evolutionary biology what socialism is to free-market economics.)
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To: steve-b
That's not a good analogy. Here's a better example:

A guy who regularly patronizes your restaurant has a serious problem with the IRS and is facing tax evasion charges. If he gets drunk one day and grabs one of your waitresses, he may very well face potential criminal charges for sexual assault, etc.

When he stands trial for tax evasion, I can assure you that the assault on your waitress will have absolutely no bearing on how his Federal tax case is adjudicated. The regular customer of yours who keeps his hands to himself will be no better off in tax court than the drunken lout . . . because the charges have nothing to do with each other even if they are strong indicators of the character of the person or people in question.

23 posted on 01/26/2009 1:30:12 PM PST by Alberta's Child (I'm out on the outskirts of nowhere . . . with ghosts on my trail, chasing me there.)
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To: Alberta's Child

Your analogy fails because it involves two separate adjudicating authorities. Last time I looked, there weren’t two independent Popes making two independent sets of decisions for the Church.


24 posted on 01/26/2009 1:39:43 PM PST by steve-b (Intelligent design is to evolutionary biology what socialism is to free-market economics.)
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To: steve-b
OK . . . then consider an example involving the SAME adjudicating authorities.

If a person is a defendant in two different criminal trials, judges will go to great lengths to ensure that the facts of one case cannot even be brought up in the other case . . . so as to avoid having any of the facts from one trial serve as prejudicial information in the other.

25 posted on 01/26/2009 1:48:24 PM PST by Alberta's Child (I'm out on the outskirts of nowhere . . . with ghosts on my trail, chasing me there.)
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To: Nachum

There are times I am very happy and proud my ancestors became Protestant...


26 posted on 01/28/2009 5:35:48 AM PST by the scotsman
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To: Arguendo

The point is, it branches him back into the apostolic sucession, and thus retrieves the people he ordained. He can still be punished by the pope for his other errors - before he could not. In fact, he has been instructed not to teach (I think).

You need to understand the apostolic sucession and how it works to understand the mechanics of this.


27 posted on 01/28/2009 5:38:41 AM PST by Puddleglum (this space for rent)
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To: The Iguana

All that has been done is to lift his excommunication, effective this week. He remains suspended a divinis. which means he cannot confer any of the sacraments, establish new parishes, or employ any of the other powers of bishops. That remains true of all other SSPX bishops and priests - further talks are needed to fully regularize their position with the Church.

Williamson (and the other SSPX bishops) were excommunicated in the first place precisely for being ordained. Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre consecrated these four bishops in June 1988 without any authorization by the Pope, and in so doing all involved automatically incurred late sententiae excommunication.

Because Lefebvre had the power to consecrate new bishops, Williams (alas) is technically a valid bishop, but he is not a licit one, because he was not authorized to become one by Rome.

As for his ideas on the Holocaust, they are ludicrous but not technically heresy and therefore don't affect his excommunication. But I dare say he will have to recant before he is regularized as part of any deal with the SSPX, assuming he is regularized at all.

Excellent answer - much better than mine.

28 posted on 01/28/2009 5:40:13 AM PST by Puddleglum (this space for rent)
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To: Arguendo
...unless the Catholic Church wants people to very reasonably attribute his views to the Catholic Church to some extent.

FAIL

29 posted on 01/28/2009 5:43:44 AM PST by Petronski (For the next few years, Gethsemane will not be marginal. We will know that garden. -- Cdl. Stafford)
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