Pope says holocaust denier must recant

France24 International News reports:

Holocaust-denying bishop Richard Williamson must “unequivocally and

publicly” change his views before he can be admitted to office in the Roman Catholic Church, the Vatican said Wednesday.

Marking a major U-turn for under-pressure Pope Benedict XVI, the Vatican statement also said that Williamson’s remarks were “not known” to the German pontiff “at the moment of lifting the excommunication” of the Englishman and three other renegade bishops last month.

His remarks were made in an interview broadcast on Swedish television on 22 January, the day after a papal decree lifted his excommunication but two days before the pope’s decision was made public.

The Vatican’s change of position Wednesday came after Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the Vatican’s secretary of state, declared the matter “closed” Tuesday in the Catholic daily Avvenire.

Wednesday’s Vatican statement also outlined as an “indispensable condition” of future recognition that the Priestly Society of Saint Pius X, to which the rebel bishops belonged, must “fully recognise” the reformist Vatican II Council of 1962-65 and the popes who followed it.

The New York Times reports that in addition to recanting the denial of the Holocaust,

The statement from the Vatican on Wednesday also sought to address significant lingering questions about what conditions the society would have to meet before being fully welcomed back into the fold. It stated that the society would have to offer its “full recognition of the Second Vatican Council” in order to receive “recognition” by the church


In other news, according to the Catholic News Agency (CNA) “..an official at the Pontifical Council for Christian Unity has denied reports that the Vatican is prepared to accept a large group of conservative Anglicans into the Catholic Church and establish a personal prelature for them.”

Msgr. Marc Langham told the SIR news agency that “media rumors do not correspond with truth.” He added that his dicastery has not been informed of any such Vatican plans– although he conceded that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith could be involved in talks with the Traditional Anglican Communion. Msgr. Langham observed that “conversion is a personal process,” and thus it was highly unlikely that such a large group would be assimilated into the Church. However he also expressed skepticism over claims that the TAC has a membership as large as the 500,000 the movement claims.

Read it here

H/T to Dr. Jim Simons blogging at Three Rivers Episcopal.

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