The Case against Archbishop John Favalora of Miami: Why He Must Resign

By Eric Giunta
Renew America
September 21, 2009

RenewAmerica readers who have followed the column of my colleague Matt C. Abbott are well aware of the spiritual travails afflicting what Abbott has rightfully called "one of the worst if not the worst archdiocese in terms of the presence of non-celibate homosexual clergy."

I thought of titling this article, "Call for a Catholic Tea Party." For precisely what the Church in America needs is for Catholics, and all concerned Christian conservatives, to make their voices heard, to demonstrate and to petition for the removal of spiritually negligent pastors, especially the bishops. There are ways to do this without degenerating into schism or affiliating with "irregular" factions of the Catholic far-right.

For those who have not been following the tawdry saga, let me take the time to recapitulate it.

In 2004, a group of concerned lay Catholics of the Miami Archdiocese constituted themselves a lay "watchdog" organization, under the name Christifidelis. They were moved to do so by what they have alleged is a gay superculture running the archdiocese.

Attorney Sharon Bourassa, a member of Christifidelis, was counsel for The Rev. Andrew Dowgiert in a lawsuit filed against the Archdiocese in May of 2005. Fr. Dowgiert, on loan from a Polish archdiocese and soon to be incardinated in Miami, alleged that he was "fired" from active ministry in the Miami Archdiocese after whistle-blowing on homosexual activity by several pastors of the Archdiocese (particularly that of Fr. Anibal Morales of All Saints Parish [in Sunrise]).

In 2005 and 2006, Matt Abbott published several articles tracing developments in what became known as the "Miami Vice" scandal. Bourassa claimed that several "straight" priests were feeding her information on a culture of sodomy and theological heterodoxy on the part of priests of the Miami Archdiocese. Among the allegations: 70 to 90 percent of the Archdiocese's priests are sexually active gays; Archbishop Favalora and Catholic Charities of Miami owned several thousand shares in stock for a liquid aphrodisiac popularly sold in gay clubs and strip joints; at least 70 percent of the United States bishops are sexually active gays; many parish priests were misappropriating parish funds to live exorbitant lifestyles, and Archbishop Favalora and vicar-general Msgr. William J. Hennessey are in some way implicated in this superculture.

The lawsuit was eventually dismissed, on the grounds that it involved "separation of church and state" issues. The court refused to determine whether a religious employer wrongfully terminated the ministerial employment of an ordained cleric. In dismissing the case, the court made no determination on the veracity of the above allegations.

This writer can personally testify to the truth of at least one of the above allegations, namely, that the vast majority of the Archdiocese's pastors are homosexuals. Yours truly applied to the seminary formation program of the Miami Archdiocese in the Spring of 2005. I was immediately blacklisted as an ultraconservative "traditionalist" for my regular assistance at the Latin Mass Community at Miami's St Robert Bellarmine parish.

During my course of interviews with priests from the Archdiocese's vocations admissions board, one priest volunteered to me (with absolutely no prompting on my part) the fact that "if the new Holy Father [i.e., Pope Benedict XVI] were to get rid of every gay priest, this Archdiocese could run maybe . . . ten parishes." The Archdiocese,at the time, operated at least 121 parishes and/or missions.

At the end of the day, I was refused admission to the Miami seminary, and advised to seek out a more "conservative" diocese or religious order. I applied, and was accepted, to the formation program of another Diocese, a "conservative" (read: orthodox) one in the Midwest. This Midwestern Diocese used to send its Hispanic men to the seminaries in Florida, but stopped doing so owing to the rampant homosexuality tolerated and inculcated, particularly at St John Vianney in Miami.

Two years ago I and several other Catholics sent to Rome an exhaustive report (hundreds of pages of text, documentation, eye witness accounts) detailing and documenting all these allegations and more. Rome responded to the report. I am not at liberty to divulge how she responded; I'll simply note that all the above allegations were vindicated, and we were promised reforms would be forthcoming.

South Florida's Catholics are still waiting.

[For my readers' convenience, I append below an exhaustive compilation of all news articles documenting the corruption of the Miami Archdiocese. Read them, along with my personal testimonial, and come to your own conclusions.]

And now, a new breakthrough:

"The Priest, the Stripper, and Their Baby"

Yes, yet another sex scandal in the Miami Archdiocese but take heart! The stripper Father David Dueppen's been having an affair with . . . is a woman! Praise be to God! Te Deum Laudaumus!

By the standards of the Miami Archdiocese, this good Father is an ultra-conservative rad-trad! Maybe he will tapped to be Archbishop Favalora's new coadjutor!

For my non-Catholic readers, I'm joking, but only in part. Let me let you in on a little in-house secret: I promise you that when most practicing Catholics in South Florida hear a priest has had an affair with a mistress, the first thing that comes to their minds is, Phew! Thank God it's a woman! Once that novelty sets in, then we bemoan yet another scandal for our local church.

A sad, sad state we're in.

And this latest scandal adds to the growing list of reasons why Archbishop Favalora should hang up his mitre and let the Pope appoint a replacement ASAP. Let's review, shall we?

1) The Miami Archdiocese has a history of sex scandal, most of it homosexual in nature.

2) It is an open secret that the vast majority of the Archdiocese's pastors are active homosexuals, and another open secret that this sexual corruption goes up to . . . ahem! . . . the very top.

3) The Fr.Cutie fiasco occurred under Favalora's watch.

4) In the present story, Favalora's Archdiocese of Miami coughed up $60,000 of parishioner's hush-monies to Fr.Dueppen's stripper, and then readmitted him to active ministry.

5) Since Favalora assumed the Chair of the Archdiocese of Miami in 1994, the Archdiocese has experienced no increase in numbers (in terms of statistical ration of Catholics to non-Catholics), no notable increase in level of evangelical fervour (ask your average South Florida non-Catholic what they're experiences of Catholics is), no renewal in dynamic orthodoxy, etc.

6) In fact, the Church of the Archdiocese is barely clinging to survival, thanks to the influx of immigrants (for most of whom the Faith is mere cultural baggage).

7) Theological dissent thrives at the parish level and in both "Catholic" universities located in the Archdiocese.

8) In many parts of the Archdiocese, the Catholic religion is dwindling, as evidenced by Favalora's recent closure of some ten percent of the Archdiocese's parishes.

9) Favalora has never been a culture warrior. He's content to give eloquent lip service to Church orthodoxy, but is nowhere near the calibre of a Wenski (of Orlando) or Dewane (of Venice). Quite frankly, he's a Chair-warmer, serves no purpose to his flock, is no appreciable standard-bearer of counter-cultural Christian orthodoxy. He has never given his flock any serious guidance on how they are to behave in the voting booth, and has never told pro-abortion,pro-gay Catholic politicians that they are barred from receiving Communion in his territory.

10) Finally, as my Sicilian mother always says, "Shit floats." Favalora's chickens are coming home to roost, and there will be more scandal to come to light in the years ahead. These latest stories are just the tips of the iceberg, and Rome knows this is the case. Rome also believes keeping matters quiet, and allowing Don Favalora to retire quietly when he turns 75 will bring less scandal to the faithful .Rome still hasn't learned its lessons from Boston 2002. Very well, the ball's in Favalora's court: The sooner he resigns, the less embarrassment he gets to experience when the full truth of the moral state of his clergy is no longer an open "secret."

Don "Ayatollah-Favalora" should step down as soon as possible, if there is any semblance of love for his Church left in him.

P.S. Did I mention that His Grace is no friend of traditional Catholic liturgy, let alone Pope Benedict's liturgical "reform of the reform"?

What You Can DO!

1. Tell the Pope's ambassador to America, Archbishop Pietro Sambi, why Favalora should be made to resign:

His Excellency Pietro Sambi
Apostolic Nuncio
3339 Massachusets Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20008-3687
202-337-4036 FAX

2. Be sure to send a copy of what you write to the Nuncio, to Archbishop Favalora himself:

Archbishop John C. Favalora
9401 Biscayne Boulevard
Miami Shores, FL 33138
Phone: (305) 757-6241
Fax: (305) 754-1797
// and //

3. If you do not receive a satisfactory response from the Nuncio within three weeks, write directly to Rome:

His Eminence Giovanni Battista Cardinal Re
Prefect, Congregation For Bishops
Piazza Pio XII #10
00193 Rome
011 39 06 6988 4217
011 39 06 6988 4300 FAX
011-39-0669-885303 FAX

4. If you still do not receive a satisfactory reply, after three weeks, contact the Pope directly:

His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI
Apostolic Palace
Via Del Pellegrino
Citta Del Vaticano 00120
Vatican City State
011.3906. FAX

ADDENDUM: Documenting the Corruption (This list will be constantly updated, a standing testimonial to the episcopate of John C. Favalora of Miami)

1. Attorney E-mails Pope, Defends Fired Priest

2. Archdiocese of Miami Sued

3. Archbishop's "XStream" Investment

4. Attorney: Archbishop Is Friend of Pedophile

5. Whistleblower Priest's Lawsuit Dismissed

6. Attorney: Vatican Upset with Miami Archdiocese

7. Attorney: Pope Aware of Miami Priest's Case

8. Attorney: Gay Priest Gave Dog Communion

9. CPA, Priest's Attorney Spar in Miami

10. Accusations at Fever Pitch in Miami Archdiocese

11. Priest Drops Lawsuit Against Miami Archdiocese

12. Miami Priest, Deacon Guilty of Embezzlement, Extortion?

13. Attorney: Priests Claim 70 Percent of U.S. Bishops Are Gay

14. Catholics Continue to Clash in Miami archdiocese

15. Grievance Filed Against Catholic Attorney, Lay Activist, and Columnist

16. Girl, Parents Sue Miami Archdiocese

17. Wikipedia User Wrongly Cites Priest as "Accused Molester"

18. Seminary Mag's 'Gay' Ads Cause Stir

19. Miami Archdiocese Sued

20. Catholic University to Give Award to Goddess-Worshipping Theologian

21. Lambs to Slaughter: Again and Again, Local Claims of Abuse Point to One Priest, the Rev. Neil Doherty, and the Catholic Archdiocese that Protected Him

22. Speak No Evil: When a Margate Priest Misbehaved, the Archdiocese Punished His Secretary

23. "Gay-Friendly" Miami Archdiocese Features Goddess-Worshipping Nun at Diocesan University

24. Miami Archdiocese Sponsors Concert by Gay Men's Chorus

25. Monsignor Defends 'Gay Chorus'

26. 'The Virtuous One'

27. "The Priest, the Stripper, and Their Baby"


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