Controversy erupts over HLI’s former chief priest

[Video of the Euteneuer/Sean Hannity exchange and discussion in our forum: MyFrontRoyal.com]

[This story has been updated: Bishop breaks silence on Father Euteneuer]

Controversy erupts over HLI’s former chief priest

Debate, death threats amidst official silence on exorcism sex allegations

By Roger Bianchini
Warren County Report

A priest who gained national notoriety for attacking Sean Hannity as a failed Catholic on the Fox News commentator’s own television show is facing his own rising tide of criticism on Catholic Internet sites five months after his sudden departure from the national pro-life advocacy scene. Then Human Life International President Father Thomas Euteneuer blasted Hannity for his stance on birth control as an acceptable alternative to abortion for non-Catholics.

“Let he who has not sinned cast the first stone,” Hannity repeated several times to Euteneuer during the infamous 2007 TV encounter. Euteneuer dismissed Hannity as a “heretic” and “social Catholic” during his scathing appraisal of the newsman’s stance on birth control among non-Catholics.

Hannity was later reduced to a one-word response – “Wow” – to the priest’s assertion he would refuse Hannity the sacrament of communion for that stance.

On March 15, 2010, Father Euteneuer posted this online reflection on that moment in the national spotlight.

“It was three years ago this week that I sat before the Secular Tribunal of Mr. Sean Hannity in a Fox News interview and inadvertently became the whipping boy for the Catholic Church’s teaching on contraception … As the years go on, and especially during this Lenten season, I hope that the Hannity interview will be a clarion call to Catholics urging them on to greater fidelity to Christ … I still pray for him and hope for his conversion. What I hope and pray for even more is a total return to fidelity of all Catholics to the Truth on the critical issues of life, marriage and family, and the sacrificial commitment that alone will bring America out of its moral decay.”

However it is the alleged moral decay of Father Euteneuer, himself, that has created an increasingly contentious and even threatening online debate over the reason for Father Euteneuer’s sudden and unexpected removal from his decade-old post as President of Human Life International (HLI). Established in 1981, HLI is based in Front Royal, Virginia. It bills itself as the largest pro-life organization in the world with representation in over 100 countries.

That Euteneuer was well thought of in the local Catholic community was illustrated by many online posts and comments, including from local Catholic pro-life activist and Front Royal Town Councilman Tom Sayre to The Northern Virginia Daily at the time of the priest’s recall from HLI.

After fondly recalling playing Men’s Night basketball with the priest at nearby Christendom College, Sayre told the Daily Euteneuer would “be sorely missed by our local and international community because he has traveled the world over spreading the message of love, life and family,” adding that Euteneuer “brought stability to HLI.”

But that stability appears now to have been rocked to its core.

Despite the increasing and shrill debate within the Catholic blogosphere community, the veil of official silence that has surrounded the recall of Father Euteneuer to the Diocese of Palm Beach on Aug. 27, 2010 has not lifted at either HLI headquarters or the Florida diocese.

“We can’t,” HLI Communications Manager Stephen Phelan told us on Jan. 31st when asked for comment on the emerging online controversy over the once, highly visible priest who has vanished into obscurity since his recall by his bishop five months ago.

While our efforts to reach Bishop Barbarito or diocese representatives in Palm Beach about 48-year-old Father Euteneuer’s status and past activities while at HLI were unsuccessful, The Palm Beach Post reported on Jan. 15 “Barbarito is not talking,” adding that a spokesperson said the diocese would not participate in a story on a “matter dealing with priestly personnel.” Palm Beach Post staff writer Lona O’Connor also reported Euteneuer did not respond to a request for an interview.

Front Royal Councilman Sayre and Front Royal’s St. John’s Catholic Church Pastor Father Jerome Fasano could not be reached for comment on the evolving situation (see related story and post by Father Euteneuer) tied closely to their religious community prior to our initial publication.

But if official sources remain silent about Euteneuer’s removal from HLI and now virtual seclusion at his Florida diocese – others are not.

For some the official wall of silence is unhappily reminiscent of the church’s reaction to years of accusations about the sexual abuse of children by Catholic clergy that once substantiated worldwide rocked the Vatican seat of world Catholicism to its foundation in recent years. But it is this newest official silence about a former, shining star in the church’s worldwide battle against abortion that has unleashed the Catholic blogosphere “Furies”.

At issue for those posting on numerous Catholic online sites is whether a prominent, international church campaigner for not only the anti-abortion movement, but also sexual restraint and abstinence as the only acceptable means of birth control, did himself succumb to sexual temptation in the conduct of at least one aspect of his priestly duties – exorcisms.

According to Wikipedia, “Exorcism is the religious practice of evicting demons or other spiritual entities from a person or place which they are believed to have possessed … The term became prominent in early Christianity from the early 2nd century onward as the casting out of demons. Nevertheless, the practice is quite ancient and part of the belief system of many cultures and religions.” The online encyclopedia adds that “possessed persons are not regarded as evil – nor wholly responsible for their actions. Therefore, practitioners regard exorcism as more of a cure than a punishment.”

That Father Euteneuer mixed his primary role crusading for anti-abortion causes as president of HLI with trips around the country performing exorcisms gives the controversy swirling around the priest an almost Hollywood screenplay twist. Wikipedia notes in its bio of Father Euteneuer, “After being so public for so long, he has now disappeared. The Palm Beach Diocese will not comment on his present assignment.” – Nor now apparently answer or return phone calls about the priest. Our messages, some repeated, left at the numbers of Bishop Barbarito, his secretary Annette, and Diocese Chancellor Lorraine Sabatello seeking information on the current status of Father Euteneuer went unreturned throughout the week prior to publication.

One fact not in dispute, though debate about the reason continues to swirl, is that Euteneuer’s most recent book about his work as an exorcist, “Exorcism and the Church Militant”, is out of print and like its author, no longer being thrust into the public eye.

We also asked HLI spokesman Phelan if he could elaborate on blog posts indicating a belief there was some sort of mental breakdown or seizure interpreted by some observers as the demonic possession of a woman at HLI headquarters on Thursday, Jan. 27. However he replied, “Same thing,” as in “we cannot comment.”

Post-traumatic stress?

The pace of the online debate over Father Euteneuer’s behavior while at HLI may have been accelerated by the referenced incident at HLI headquarters in Front Royal, Virginia on Jan 27, 2011.

That evening one anonymous blogger posted, “The demons seem to be targeting the same women Fr. Tom was successful in abusing. I witnessed one demonic event just today. It was horrifying. All I can think of is how this poor woman must be feeling so trapped within her skin as the evil uses her voice to roar and curse … The demons, on the other hand, must be loving the irony of possessing the poor, tragic toys of the ‘great exorcist’. Fr. Tom needs our prayers desperately – Desperately, in the truest sense of the word. Even more, his victims need our prayers.”

Posting just four minutes later, at 8:20 p.m. Jan. 27, another “anonymous” blogger added, “There are many of us who witnessed today’s horrible event.”
While other bloggers’ requests for additional information on the referenced event went unanswered, according to Warren County Fire & Rescue Chief Richard Mabie there was a county emergency medical response shortly after noon that day to HLI headquarters for what was officially described as “a medical seizure”. The victim was transported to Warren Memorial Hospital. Further information was not available.

Online debate – accusations

As we perused the Catholic community blog sphere, a string of posts under the name “Adele” at a site titled http://www.journeytotherese.blogspot.com caught our eye – and apparently that of many others as well. “Adele’s” stream created the longest and most vehemently argumentative comments about speculation or even alleged personal knowledge about Father Euteneuer’s activities versus maintaining a code of silence to match that of official sources with past and present authority over the priest. At the center of this Catholic catharsis is a debate over a perceived spiritual betrayal by a clergyman and the enabling silence of his superiors versus a belief by others that a slander, perhaps initiated by Satan himself, against the church and one of its holiest men is under way.

After she posted contact information in one online conversation we were able to reach “Adele” directly. She verified her posts, claiming both a two-plus-year direct relationship with Father Euteneuer based on an ongoing exorcism case involving a family member, as well as what both she and her husband claim was a Dec. 23rd phone conversation with an HLI board member who told them that Euteneuer’s Aug. 27 recall from HLI came as a result of letters sent by two women to the priest’s presiding bishop claiming sexual indiscretions by Euteneuer against them.

“He was recalled to prevent that from going public,” Adele asserts based on the information she says she was given from inside HLI. Adele said the information she received indicated the alleged abuse involved Euteneuer’s conduct of exorcisms involving the women.

Death threat?

On Jan. 30th “Adele” told us she did have some concern about the tone of some posts both attacking alleged victims and those posting about their plight. She said she had removed one as too troubling in a threatening way. The following day we encountered this post from “Adele” citing an earlier receipt from one “Anonymous” blogger dated Jan. 28:

“Everything comes in God’s time, not your time..didn’t Jesus have to wait for His Father on the Cross???… but you’re looking for blood…you’ll get it but it will be yours.”

Adele prefaced the post noting it sounded like “a death threat” and that it had originated from a woman in Florida – “I will be reporting this to the proper authorities,” she added.

Personal experience

Between April 2008 and prior to Father Euteneuer’s 2010 departure from HLI Adele’s family paid Euteneuer directly for as many as 15 visits to their mid-east home to deal with what they believed was the demonic possession of a family member, she told us.

While they experienced nothing that could be termed sexually abusive, both Adele and her family now wonder if their trust in the priest and his healing abilities wasn’t misplaced idealism of a man one blogger observed was treated within the pro-life community “like a rock star”.

Adele reflects on episodes she now perceives to have been counterproductive and emotionally bullying. Those incidents varied from threats to withdraw from the exorcism process due to the subject’s heightened emotional state; to several closed door accusations that the female subject “had a problem with men” due to her jerking her hand away from Euteneuer’s as they prayed together during the exorcism ritual. She added that after such episodes and tensions surrounding the family, the next time Euteneuer was in direct contact with them “it was like nothing had happened.”

Both Adele and her husband agreed the family saw little positive impact from Euteneuer’s repeated exorcism interventions. However they added that once another priest became involved the situation seemed to reach a positive conclusion in fairly short order.

“One reason for failure of such church rituals is a priest in mortal sin,” Adele’s husband offered.

Admitting to not being familiar with the role of the priest in exorcisms other than the classic 1970’s Hollywood version featuring Max Von Sydow as the exorcist battling a possessed Linda Blair, I can’t say whether Euteneuer’s described behavior could be considered typical of a priest’s battle with demons or not.

Silence is not golden

Moving on, I queried Adele about any knowledge about the referenced Jan. 27th HLI “demonic possession” incident posted on her blog stream.

“I heard from someone who attended that Mass at Front Royal the other day that people were traumatized by what happened – a suddenly screaming, howling, cursing person – and are demanding to know what’s going on.”

However Adele, who asked that her family name and location be kept confidential, said the reported incident at HLI accentuates the need for both HLI and diocese officials to come forward with the truth about Father Euteneuer’s situation.

It is the victims, whoever and wherever they are, with whom she is most concerned, Adele says. “I’d like to add that silence only benefits the perpetrator and only when we bring it to the Light can the healing start. I urge anyone who is struggling or pain because of this man to come forward confidentially and contact David Clohessy of SNAP (Survivor’s Network of those Abused by Priests) at (314) 566-9790.”

Clossey told us his organization was not yet ready to comment on the controversy swirling around Euteneuer. However he added that his organization is available to any victim of abuse from any religious community, publicly acknowledged or not.

“For 21 years, I have been the director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 22 years and have more than 10,000 members across the globe. Despite the word ‘priest’ in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers.”

Father Tom vs. Satan?

However despite Adele and other bloggers calls for transparency from both the church and HLI as a means of reaching out to potential victims; others posting on the blog stream questioned who really is the victim in the Euteneuer debate.

“I think these women are shameful. Their attack will probably backfire on them. They are possessed with evil and it seems that they are getting worse whenever someone disagrees with them. They seem very vindictive in character and self righteous. They don’t seem credible to me,” one retorted against the priest’s accusers.

“I have known Fr. Tom personally for more than 13 years and I can assure you of Father’s devotion to the unborn. I have never seen him falter in his ministry as a priest. Being exposed to demons is not an easy thing. Sometimes the demons will purposely twist the bodies of their victims that will have their sexual parts touch the one who is trying to remove the demons. This, I am sure must have happened several times to Father Tom. Many of the women who are possessed also have other mental problems like ADHD and Bi-polar and these people lie very often just to get attention,” one blogger offered.

That defense of the priest led to this counter post, “What’s this ‘mental problem’ like ADHD – and being mentioned like it was of the same ‘weight’ as bi-polar? Your ignorance is astonishing!! I’ve raised a son with Tourettes and ADHD and let me tell you it’s nothing like bi-polar!”

Another of Euteneuer’s online defenders posted, “I do not believe the voices who speak against Fr Tom at this hour. Has Satan not accused Fr Tom and threatened to kill him? Has Satan not come to steal, kill and destroy? We war not against flesh and blood and we should be mindful of it. God will be glorified in this.”

“Neither are you Adele – above the law. And we sincerely do NOT believe your accusations and false testimony. God is your judge, we will all be praying for your soul,” another posted.

However Adele’s blog stream is not the only Catholic online location expressing concern and personal distress over Euteneuer’s mysterious disappearance from the Catholic activist limelight. Most have attracted varying levels of criticism or agreement and some overlap information addressed by Adele.

Crisis of faith

A January 29th post on the Catholic website “Renew America.com” by Matt C. Abbott was titled, “A difficult time – or my crisis of faith?” It appears a direct reaction to the controversy swirling around Father Euteneuer, who had been a semi-regular contributor to his online columns, Abbott told us.

“I’m drained and depressed, not to mention angry. Cynical as well,” Abbott began in what he said would be his shortest column to date.

“For those who are interested: Yes, I’ve been closely following the Father Tom Euteneuer saga. And, yes, I’ve reached a conclusion — a while ago, as a matter of fact. Some of you know it; others not.

“It’s just a sad situation all the way around. Pray for all those involved. Pray that the truth be known. For those who really don’t care, well … carry on.”

We contacted Abbott directly for further explanation of his “Dark Night of the Soul” referenced in his “Crisis of Faith” post.

“The whole thing is a sad mess,” he e-mailed us back. “My on-the-record comment – I’ve lost my trust in the board of directors of Human Life International and in Father Euteneuer.  Thankfully, I haven’t lost my trust in God.”

Then we discovered another blog link to a Jan. 28th post on another Catholic website, “fighting Irish Thomas: Catholicism, politics, saints, and Notre Dame” copyrighted by Tom O’Toole under the heading “Of Aquinas, Augustine, and Euteneuer: Reflections on Fr. Tom on the Feast of St. Thomas Aquinas”.

“Let’s start with what has already been made known about the fall of Fr. Tom. The Diocese of Palm Beach has acknowledged (privately) ‘at least one inappropriate relationship,’ while the HLI side said (off the record) that ‘Father [reportedly] admitted to having ‘an inappropriate relationship’ with an employee in his letter of resignation [and] a second woman [apparently] came forward to say that Father had engaged in sexual activity with her – not intercourse, but close to it – while he was performing some type of exorcism prayer(s).”

Crisis of facts

However another blogger took O’Toole to task for violating journalistic standards on the accumulation and reporting of factual information. The writer scolds O’Toole for seeming to print information he may have gathered from official sources “off-the-record” and accuses him of passing on Internet rumors as facts, equating the process to a lynch mob.

“Whether he is guilty or not, a man deserves due process in the course of justice. Not this internet lynch mob – most lynch mobs hung people they believed to be guilty and unworthy of due process under the law, and they had plenty of innocent victims as well as guilty ones.”

The writer then urges patience and an understanding of the timeframe associated with official church investigations of clergy wrongdoings. “As for the silence on the part of Bishop Barbarito in this matter, Catholics should be aware that the diocese is likely in the midst of an investigation, which takes an indeterminate amount of time.”

Crisis of consequences

However, for those on the other side of the debate it is just such an “indeterminate amount of time” to address serious allegations of sexual abuse within the clergy that is unacceptable. For it is during this period of withdrawal of the accused from any public scrutiny or acknowledgment of accusations that additional victims may be claimed, or those already victimized might reach their emotional or spiritual breaking point.

While writing that he was fairly sure that Father Euteneuer’s, “days as the jet-setting performer of ‘exorcisms-plus’ are probably over,” O’Toole adds additional concerns over a specific circumstance also mentioned to us by blog poster “Adele” – a room allegedly rented to one female subject of repeated exorcism rituals presided over by Father Euteneuer at the priest’s parents’ home.

“The following account (brought to my attention by multiple e-mailers) still gives me cause for alarm,” O’Toole wrote. “The claim here is that there is a (possessed) woman who rents a room in Father Euteneuer’s parents’ house, and that Father has gone to perform the prayers of exorcism – ALONE – on her on multiple occasions.”

Adele told us she became aware of this alleged situation directly from the woman in question through Facebook exchanges. – “She told me herself. We had been friends but I cut off contact after she told me that,” Adele said. She added that she feared possible repercussions from the Florida-based woman in question as a result of bringing the situation publicly forward to both the public and concerned officials.

“Even if this incredible situation somehow proves to be perfectly innocent,” O’Toole wrote, “it begs comparison (at least to Chicagoans) to Fr. Daniel McCormack, who after being accused multiple times of being a sex offender, had another priest assigned to monitor him. However, McCormack duped his shadow into letting him perform some seemingly innocuous tasks around the parish alone, which enabled him to molest again. Similarly, while Euteneuer’s bishop is certainly not about to let Father Tom fly across the country now, who’s to say he wouldn’t let him go visit his folks? For this reason, not only does HLI and Bishop Barbarito need to make a statement now, they also need to get Father Tom into 24/7 treatment.”

And it seems if online eyewitness accounts are to be believed, there may be at least one more person in need of 24/7 care and treatment prior to completion of the supposed Palm Beach Diocese investigation of allegations against Father Euteneuer. That person is the female subject transported by Warren County Emergency Services from HLI headquarters the afternoon of Jan. 27th for what was described officially as a “medical seizure” and by others as “a suddenly screaming, howling, cursing person” believed by some of those observers to be a demonically possessed past subject of exorcisms conducted by Father Euteneuer prior to his August 2010 departure from HLI.

Dan McDermott contributed to this story.

[Video of the Euteneuer/Sean Hannity exchange and discussion in our forum: MyFrontRoyal.com]

About these ads
Published in: on February 1, 2011 at 3:39 pm  Comments (38)  

The URI to TrackBack this entry is: http://wcrnews.wordpress.com/2011/02/01/controversy-erupts-over-hli%e2%80%99s-former-chief-priest/trackback/

RSS feed for comments on this post.

38 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. There’s a moral here for concerned Catholics: when victims, witnesses and whistleblowers stay silent, nothing changes. But when those with knowledge or suspicions of clergy misdeeds speak up, sometimes the truth is exposed, victims are vindicated, others are protected and healing can begin. David Clohessy, Director, SNAP, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, (7234 Arsenal Street, St. Louis MO 63143), 314 566 9790 cell(SNAPclohessy@aol.com)

  2. God bless Adele for speaking out on this matter. If bishops and Catholic organizations were more straightforward about these matters from the beginning, it would not be necessary for the lay Catholic faithful to release the information to the public. Unfortunately, when one has been entrusted with information from a reliable and knowledgable source, one cannot remain silent. That would be aiding and abetting an abuser to continue his abuse.

  3. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Dan McDermott, Newspaper News. Newspaper News said: Controversy erupts over HLI's former chief priest « Warren County …: After fondly recalling playing Men's Nigh… http://bit.ly/fvZeAm [...]

  4. Thank you for this posting. Our flesh is weak. No man or woman is perfect except for the Lord Jesus Christ. There is no sin if you have not fornicated with this woman and if you have fornicated with this woman it is between you and God. St. Paul wrote“Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I am. But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion” (1 Corinthians 7:8-9). Conclusion: Priests should be allowed to marry. Let it be optional. Rev. Euteneuer, it seems to me that God is leading you out of the confines of the priesthood albeit not the way you would have desired, perhaps causing you to bear even more fruit in a lay ministry. Why were your books taken off the shelves??? They seem like valuable assets to the pro-life community… Good night.

    • As a non-catholic, you are a child in the faith. The ancient church, the catholic church, has been there from the start of Christianity, your church just a few years. So priests are human yes, but as Paul said it’s best they not marry. Go sit with a priest and talk to him, ask him why The Church lives like he does. Sometime it’s best to learn before you speak.

  5. [...] blogger I linked to earlier, the one who is angry? Her family paid Euteneuer a fair sum of money for an exorcism on a family member. His visits did not help and the family received intervention [...]

  6. ok folks after Fr.Toms statement its fairly obvious this Adele blogger is at the very least very confused or at worst mentally ill. she says she knew this girl over at Toms parents place she “spoke with her” and “only quit being her friend on facebook” ect.. ect.. ok folks there was no girl at Fr. Toms place at ALL. i can name other blogger’s and others who’s statements were so over the top it was insane, lets remember Fr. Toms statement was of course cleared with his Diocese. and im sure it wouldn’t be released unless they knew the investigation was resolved totally and completely, they investigated 6 months. lets face it people wanted his blood. its real simple. people wanted his blood.but by Gods grace they wont get it. its fairly obvious who the liars were. just read his statement and then read the accusations on the blogs. its defamation based on speculation and its horrible it happened.

    • The only thing that happened was that another charlatan was exposed.

  7. Thank you for posting something that actually reads like a news article. Especially thank you for digging in and trying to find the how’s and why’s.

  8. none of this is new and none of it is news and none of this is fact. we want to know what really is going on – and this just adds to the question and does no one any good. it is a horribly long aggregation of on-line searches any interested party can find on line. sooner or later we will hear the facts. patience.

  9. After reading Father Euteneuer’s statement and apology this morning I am more than sad that the devil was able to tempt this priest to something that, while not actual sexual intercourse, was bad enough for him to be taken out of service. The devil was successful in removing a person who could do exorcisms from the very small group of exorcists in this country and the world. Who wins? Satan. Who loses? We all do, including the woman involved. In Christian charity we should pray for this priest who has done so much good. He is in need himself. I am confident that he will spend the rest of his life making reparation for his offense. We should all remember this: “Let he among you who is without sin cast the first stone.” Let us also pray that God will raise up another priest in his place who will be faithful to the Commandments.

    • Exorcists are charlatans!

  10. “It is charity to cry out against the wolf when he is among the sheep.” St. Francis de Sales

    The investigation that needs to happen is this: WHAT was Bishop Loverde and HLI aware of and WHEN? Also, was anyone paid off or threatened to keep silent? If you think this could not have happened, think again about what has happened to priests and laypeople in the Diocese of Arlington when they have brought scandalous behavior to the attention of the bishop: they were ignored or worse… Don’t take my word for it: dig a little deeper yourselves. Our Lady of Good Success, pray for us.

  11. It does not read like a responsible news story to me but a lot of hearsay and rumormongering that may be circling dire deeds of one kind or another or several without ever determining conclusively what has happened and to what degree the central figure in the story is responsible and what the responsibility of his superiors is.

  12. I agree with Bill2.
    This article mentions various semi-anonymous “sources”, most–if not all–of whom appear to be running about on the internet. I see no evidence here of anything very credible: No story of an arrest warrant having been served, no Grand Jury indictment regarding credible charges. Nothing.
    While attempting to present “fact”, this article seems to posit something more like the average conspiracy theory.

    In all seriousness, people need to cool it. If not, I’d say Fr Euteneuer, HLI, and the Diocese of Palm Beach could consider lawsuits on grounds of intentional defamation of character.
    Likely they wouldn’t, but that doesn’t mean that any of the content I’ve been reading has anything close to moral justification.

    Knock it off with the BS people!

    • Yes definitely! When all else fails…Sue the victims!

  13. Reading the information available, it seems that HLI requested a resignation after learning of one case of impropriety. After that additional allegations were made, however this is after speculation began to circle in the blogosphere. Obviously it’s possible that there were other situations of impropriety, however it’s also very possible that there are opportunists out there seeking to capitalize from the situation or further defame the Father. It’s obvious that agents of chaos sometimes just like “to see the world burn.”. I’m not sure why so much weight is put on Adele’s comments when there was no impropriety but rather a retrospective analysis of Father based on negative outcomes or questions on his pastoral approach. She really doesn’t seem to be a hero but someone who is fueling the fire of speculation at best and at worst someone with “sour grapes” who seeks to defame Father. Having been accused of false allegations (not of a sexual nature) I can empathize with Fatber on the sense of injustice if they are truly false. However, it is obviously possible that Father is not been honest, but I don’t see how speculation outside of concrete allegations is helpful or charitable.

  14. How any of you can come to the defense of an morally indefensible “priest”, I’ll never know. And you’re more than culpable when you don’t speak out. Oh well, it was a WOMAN and it was a HETEROSEXUAL relationship. That’s fine. At least he’s not messing with children, which is ok in the eyes of the church.

    It’s you who have mental problems, not the victims in these fake exorcisms. Possessed by demons? Please. Such things don’t exist & you people who promote this are sick.

    YOU are the liars in this scenario, to get attention for yourselves. Not the women abused by this disgusting man.

    • QFT!

  15. Wow. I’ve had some women cry out “Oh, God!” during sex, but I’ve never cast out a demon when doing it!

  16. Demons? Excorcisms?
    Oh dear, the world is not a fantasy novel, grow up people. We don’t live in the 12th century anymore, we know better. Choosing to remain ignorant and superstitious is your prerogative – but it also makes you part of the problem, not the solution.

  17. Well, we see how the pedophile priest scandals can happen. Look at these disgusting Catholics who blame the victims of predators like this moron exorcist–they blame his alleged victims, call them liars and, most retarded of all, claim they’re possessed by demons.

    Stupidity squared–that’s the average demon-believing, misogynistic bully Catholic for you.

  18. it’s absolutely mind-blowing how many americans are eager authoritarians, willing to accept the fallacy of a blameless master, gleeful that they can give up their autonomy to follow a man who claims to speak to god (“what, proof? no we don’t need any of that…”). Of course most of these devout catholics who assure us that priests can do no wrong probably identify as anti-government, right wing, individualists and of course they can’t see the irony.

  19. Interesting how we faithful Catholics are obviously guilty as sin of abuse, coverup, belief in fairy tales, and all manner of malfeasance…

    Meanwhile, our public judge, jury, and audience seem wholly incapable of remembering even the most basic concepts of trial by jury, conviction based on discernable fact, and the concepts of government that our Founding Fathers actually proposed.

    Does anyone remember the Constitution?

  20. Can someone explain or provide details about this so-called “exorcism ministry”? I only know exorcism to be a cult-like practice. Is this something that the Catholic Church condones? Or am I misunderstanding the definition of what an “exorcism ministry” is?

  21. I have been a member of the Catholic Church all my life and met Father Tom 18 years ago. I heard him speak many times during the years. I believe he is authenntic in his prolife and spiritual beliefs but he is a man! And men will be tempted and fall no matter how strong they may seem. As lay people in the church we have confession to forgive our sins and Father Tom is probably very sorry for his actions. His biggest sin is that he violated the bond between caregiver and client. This has been done before by nurse, doctors, psychologists ect, I am sure it is worse if you are in a private home with someone taunting you during an exorcism. So he needs to be contrite and go into therapy/ counseling. I believe he will. His case is very different than Father Cutie who was deceptive! Father Cutie was living a lie! Father Tom was caught in a sin and I will not throw a stone.

    For those of you who are not aware there apparently are real demons. I have always believed in the devel but not until recently realized that when the devil fell from heaven he took 1/3 of the angels with him as fallen, these are the demons they speak of. Many religions believe in them. In our so called advanced society we have forgotten this. But who could temp the USA to kill so many of its future citizens legally. That is the connection Father Tom was making. I believe there is a connection- 50 million have been aborted here since the 1970’s. It is an entire generation or 1/3 of the X’s and Y’s. Father Tom and his family were involved in this mission. He would never hurt them and himself on purpose.
    I will pray for Father Tom because I have been a sinner too. I will pray for the women involved too.

    Anybody that reads this- just go on google images and type in abortion then you will see what he was fighting and maybe take the fight over for him.

    • “For those of you who are not aware there apparently are real demons.”

      No, apparently there are not, because if there were we would be aware of them. Instead, what we are aware of is mental illness and just plain bad people.

      • Oh?
        I’ve been a scientist myself and have learned just how much science and human reason CAN’T discern.
        Mental illness and plain bad people do indeed exist, but do not make the error of insisting that these alone explain evil.
        I’d say it’s actually the seat of highest arrogance to insist that human beings necessarily discern everything around them.

        Shoot, haven’t you ever heard of “shadow people”? I don’t know that I put much creedence in the idea, but Art Bell, George Noory, and others seem convinced that they might exist….

        Human reason can’t explain all in this universe.

  22. Gianna,

    Can you provide details on what is involved in this “exorcism ministry”. What is involved in these sessions? Does the Catholic Church support this? Please educate us.

    • I believe the Catholic Church does support the ministry. The “Evening with an Exorcist” was held in a church and at least one of his two books was directed at priests to help them understand what is involved.
      Father Tom believed that more and more young people were being affected by demons due to a) lack of belonging to a church 2) secular society 3) the current selection of books and movies for teens were vampire related and the vampire was not bad like years ago.
      Thats about all I know.
      I was thinking- I am sure if he wanted a girlfriend he wouldn’t pick a possessed one. The person this hurts the most is Father Tom, while Father Cutie I hear has his own TV show now. I couldn’t see giving up ones religion so fast esp. when one is a priest.
      we have to pray for father Tom as he wants to stay a priest. ( I believe).

      • “I am sure if he wanted a girlfriend he wouldn’t pick a possessed one.”

        Oh, a priest will total power over a sick women wouldn’t abuse her? That’s new. From quick church reaction we can be sure that “father” tom is predatory and plain hypocritical one, good he is gone for good from HLI.

  23. Its amazing that the editors of this paper haven’t jumped on this. Apparently, there is a certain segment of the local Catholic church that is engaging in cult activity……..and no one is probing or asking questions about this!

    • Cult activity?
      Uh huh. If you insist.

  24. Exorcism = Cult

    • Rationalism = Ignorance

      • Let’s go apeshit and drop rationalism all together. Exorcists for errone! Who needs science and rational life when we can have cultists and abusive priests?

  25. Do you believe people have a soul? I do. We cannot feel it or touch it but it is there? Where does the soul go when we die? Can our soul be hurt by something?

  26. for the record… I witnessed that the hosptial’s official report of the HLI manifestation event was NOT a medical seizure (they realized they could not at all classify the event as a medical seizure), but rather “belief in demonic perceptions.”


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,197 other followers

%d bloggers like this: