The attacks get loonier and loonier – but here’s the thing. Someone, someday, will seriously attempt this.
From CathNewsUSA: Prosecute Pope, UN Judge Proposes
United Nations judge Geoffrey Robertson has called on the British government to detain Pope Benedict during his upcoming visit to Britain, and send him to trial in the International Criminal Court for “crimes against humanity.”In an article published last week, Robertson said that jurists should invoke the same procedures that have been used to indict war criminals such as Slobodan Milosevic, C-Fam reports.
Robertson is one of five select jurists in the UN’s internal justice system responsible for holding UN officials accountable for corruption and mismanagement. His article was published in several countries and reported on by the Associated Press.Professor Hurst Hannum of the Fletcher School at Tufts University told the Friday Fax that it would be a “real stretch” to use the ICC since that court’s jurisdiction is mainly reserved for crimes during war.
More likely, Hannum said, is that experts would invoke the principle of “universal jurisdiction” so that national courts all over the world could detain the pope whenever he stepped foot on their soil.
Yet Robertson insisted that the ICC could be used as long as the Pope’s sovereign immunity was waived and as long as jurists can show that the sex abuse scandal was carried out on a “widespread or systematic scale.”
Anti-Catholics and secularists across the globe would love nothing better than to see the Holy Father in handcuffs, led away to court and found guilty of perpetuating the sex abuse scandal. I predict it would lead to a full-scale worldwide investigation of every cardinal, bishop, priest and deacon, which in effect would bring the work of the Church to a standstill. The goal, of course, being the destruction of the Church. This has nothing to do about children.
This judge’s opinion is not so far-fetched. There are lawyers in Kentucky who want to question the Holy Father under oath. There are reports that lawyers in Australia are keeping a close eye on this case, and will consider similar tactics if this is successful.
But for crimes against humanity, in the ICC? With these folks, anything is possible.
When he became Pope in 2005, the Holy Father asked that we pray he not flee from the wolves. That he will stand strong to defend the Church. So keep praying, and when you’re done, pray some more.
And let’s not forget – the world has been battling against the Church since the beginning. Nearly every Pope for the first three centuries or so were martyred. Part of the job description is persecution. It comes with being a Catholic. We’re not to actively seek out persecution, but we aren’t permitted to run away from it either. That’s why I have little respect for those who are abandoning the Church – oh, I understand why they do it. It’s a weakness, a condition of our humanity. They feel betrayed, or overwhelmed with disillusionment. For many, it’s the primeval ‘fight or flight’ response. In this case, though – in the all-important matter of salvation – flight is the wrong response. This isn’t akin to abandoning your hometown baseball team because they traded your favorite player, or boycotting a manufacturer’s product because they use slave labor, or even switching political parties over ideological issues. Leaving the Church over the sex abuse scandal is an abandonment of faith. Leaving the Church over the media’s spin on the sex abuse scandal is an abandonment of reason. There is no excuse for either.
Someday, down the road, some Eurocrat or bureaucratic anti-religionist may get their wish, and have the Holy Father arrested. I pray it doesn’t happen. But for those who understand the nature of the battle we’re engaged in, such a development ought not surprise us. “Strike the shepherd and scatter the sheep” is the strategy of the enemy. Right now the Church needs fighters. The Holy Father needs his defenders. The weak are running away, leaving fewer soldiers in the ranks to battle it out.
So will you be scattered, or will you stand?