The Vatican on today demanded that a prelate who denied the Holocaust recant his positions before being fully admitted as a bishop into the Roman Catholic Church.
It also said Pope Benedict XVI had not known about Bishop Richard Williamson’s views when he agreed to lift his excommunication and that of three other ultraconservative bishops Jan. 21.
…Williamson has since apologized to the German-born pope for having stirred controversy, but he did not repudiate his comments, in which he also said only 200,000 to 300,000 Jews were killed during World War II and none were gassed.
Though the Vatican said it did not share Williamson’s views, Jewish groups voiced outrage at his rehabilitation and demanded the prelate recant…
Well, it’s good and decent thing that the Catholic Church has updated their position, but of course it would have far been better if the Pope didn’t lift the Bishop Williamson’s excommunication — in ignorance of Williamson’s history as a Holocaust Denier — in the first place.
Marble sharp, that Vatican has been here.
NOTE FROM PAM: I listened to a great report on this by National Public Radio’s Sylvia Poggioli and Renee Montagne. It’s worth the click. One of the key points made is that Papa Ratzi rammed the lifting of the excommunication through without running it past the Vatican’s liaison to the Jewish community, who was interviewed in the piece. This undermines the flaccid Vatican position that Papa Ratzi was not aware of Bishop Richard Williamson’s denial of the Holocaust. He didn’t bother asking around because he had made up his mind.
Mike Tidmus, as usual, uses PShop to enhance Papa Ratzi’s rep. See it below the fold. You have to click over to read his whole post.
Threatened with yet another round of lay-offs, Slime magazine’s already over-worked editorial staff, one beleaguered art director and Mila the faithful coffee girl worked into the wee hours of the morning to produce what is being hailed as the latest special edition of Slime magazine. Slime’s Special Papal Apology Issue was deemed necessary, and a potential best seller, in light of the storm clouds that have been massing over Vatican City for the past week or so.
* Pope Benedict lifts excommunication of Holocaust denier