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Appalled by anti-Semitism

February 02, 2009

Re "Vatican resolute on Holocaust denier," Jan. 28

I was astonished to read that the pope has rescinded the excommunication of anti-Semitic Bishop Richard Williamson, who claims the Holocaust never happened.

As a cradle Catholic, I am appalled that the prelate of my church would hide behind the legal technicalities of canon law to allow this obviously loathsome man to resume his affiliation with Catholicism. This is as horrifying to me as learning that Pope Pius XII at the time of the Holocaust turned a blind eye to the annihilation of Jews, Gypsies and anyone else who did not measure up to the Third Reich standards.

If our papal leaders are not courageous and honorable during true tests of faith and morals, why should anyone believe in their infallibility in ordinary times?

How could this pope not know this unfortunate decision would cause the world to wonder what has happened to the Catholic Church?

Maureen Ardron

Yorba Linda


The Jesuits have a saying, "Give me the boy until he is 7, and I will give you the man." You can now add, "Give Adolf Hitler the boy until he is 7, and he will give you the pope."

Ralph Wetterhahn

Long Beach


Re "Display of papal fallibility," Opinion, Jan. 28

Excommunication from the Roman Catholic Church, to a believing Roman Catholic, means being cut off from eternal life in God's kingdom. Williamson's contemptible, outrageously false comments are vile and deserving of severe consequences -- but not a sentence of death instead of eternal life.

Pope Benedict XVI has recognized this inequity. He has condemned Williamson's statements and denounced them, as have Roman Catholic leaders in the United States. Williamson's own order, the Society of St. Pius X, has also condemned and refuted his statements.

Left-wing thinking is quick to demand tolerance, and frequently, as in this case, just as quick to exhibit its own overt commitment to intolerance.

Tim Rutten's assault on the Roman Catholic Church is political and not thoroughly informed.

Jack V. Fogarty

Los Angeles

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