Monday, June 20, 2011

Imitate Christ or Imitate the blacksheepdog, the priest formerly known as Fr. Corapi

This is the new John Corapi as the black sheepdog logo. I kid you not.
John Corapi choose to deal with these matters in a public way and this invites our responding to him publicly. If he hadn’t made a big melodramatic public announcement, then I wouldn’t be making any public comment about it. I didn't say a word about the allegations when they first came to light months ago. But this is a different moment, a teaching moment and a prayerful moment.

If imitatio Christi means renouncing worldly ambition and seeking salvation by deeds of private virtue, imitatio black sheepdog means

• splitting from communion with one’s confreres and brother priests,

• abandoning the canonical disciplinary process to injustice and incompetence so that others will be left to correct it or be victimized by it

• announcing that your "fans" (his word) can now stay in touch with you through social media and, BTW, offering one’s materials in a fire sale for fifty percent off.

I don’t see a renunciation of worldly ambition nor do I see the longsuffering that characterizes the saints, in particular, Padre Pio. Rather, I see someone who, by his own admission, is trying to expand his audience and the range of topics he will address. What is lacking is submission to the dying and rising that is the pattern of the Christian life. Where are his statements about joining his sufferings with those of Christ. I don’t see them.

It may be true that he has been wronged by the system. Many of us have watched and or been the victim of diocesan administrative bungles. But even if sheepdog Corapi has been done wrong by the system, then he still bears responsibility for correcting it.

To give him, the greatest benefit of the doubt, this is his moment to use his remarkable gifts to challenge incompetence and injustice. But rather he resembles the rape victim who won’t testify in spite of the fact that her words might save other women from being raped. Her refusal to subject herself to the system leaves other women imperiled. His flight from the process hardly seems to consider the lives of those who will be subjected to future injustice at the hands of incompetent investigators and jurists.
This is giving him the greatest benefit of the doubt. Perhaps he is ill and erratic. Perhaps he is fighting a losing battle against self-pity. Perhaps he is cynically playing the system himself through civil law suits intended to silence his accusers. I don't know.

It’s just hard to see Fulton Sheen or Mother Angelica going off licking their wounds and, essentially, shelving the exercise of their office or charism, while they go off to invent some new media identity as the black Irishmen or risible Rita the righteous…

His cold embrace of self-pity and self-reliance leaves the rest of us without the warm hug of a priest many of us looked to as a model of imitating Christ. Now he’s the one who has given us the best reason to dismiss him with “yesterday’s garbage” as he puts it: he’s broken faith with the bishops, the successors to the apostles; he’s broken faith with his religious community; he’s broken faith with the imitation of Christ. Many who have worked with him say that he’s always been a lone wolf so, I suppose, being the black sheepdog won’t be nearly the painful transition that he would have us believe.



  1. wowsah mr kresta. i respect your comments. i think everyone who loves (should we now call him "mister"?) corapi is hungry for more information about his struggles and his motives in this situation. he has long been a lonely voice for priests falsely accused and has been a great champion of the authority, and the mercy, of our mother church. could it be that, analogous to those bishops who got bad advice from psychotherapists/academic authorities vis a vis sex offenders, fr john got poor counsel from those who sought to protect him but did not understand fully the nature of the evil at the heart of this matter? that is the best i can assume. every dog has a master; i wonder who's been whispering in the ear of the black sheepdog?

  2. "The scribes and Pharisees brought a woman to Jesus who had been caught in adultery. According to Moses’ law she should be stoned. But Jesus said, “Let him who is without sin among you cast the first stone.”

    Guess it's time to stop looking to and at Fr. Corapi and start looking to and at Jesus!

  3. looks like you and Akin and others are all joining in the fray. Sorry, Al, you are no one to talk.

  4. I'm as troubled as the next by this development, But I think we do need to be clear about one thing...

    You state "he’s broken faith with the bishops, the successors to the apostles; he’s broken faith with his religious community; he’s broken faith with the imitation of Christ."

    I understand that this may be true in one sense of speaking, but your article may leave the impression that somehow Fr. Corapi has renounced his Catholic faith or communion with Rome, which I haven't seen him say yet. As far as I can tell, it looks like Fr. Corapi thinks he can walk away from the clerical state and live as a lay person. While not to be encouraged, isn't such an action within the realm of things one is free ultimately free to do so without necessarily leaving communion?

    If a priest, for whatever reason, stops celebrating mass, praying the office, etc, would he not still be able to receive communion (emphasizing the remedial aspect of the sacrament) or is he in fact possibly in an irregular state (similar to the lay person who deliberately misses Sunday mass without good cause)? Anyway, I ask because I do not know...
    Keep up the good work Mr. Kresta.

  5. To the second Anonymous,
    I have no idea what you are referring to. Normally I don't respond or even permit anonymous postings. If a person doesn't have the courage to put their name on their opinion they shouldn't be heard.

  6. ex-Fr. Corapi is no St Gerard Majella. *Read about St Gerard Majella and similar accusations against him*


  7. Al, I agree that a person who is unwilling to put their name to an accusation, they should not be heard. I would add that our venerable pastors should apply this principle to their handling of accused clergy.

  8. To Alex,
    Thanks. I have no idea where he will end up in terms of the Faith. For all I know, we may come to find out that he's been ill and in need of hospitalization and a year from now he will be restored to a fruitful ministry.

    At this moment, however, he has opted out of
    1) the juridical/disciplinary process and
    2) the privilege of making the sacraments available. As far as we can find out, he no longer has his priestly faculties available for licit use.
    3) he has filed a civil lawsuit against his accuser. There is nothing necessarily wrong with this except it hampers his community from doing the investigation they are supposed to carry out. The leader of the community has said that he cannot call the witnesses for deposition as long as they are under pressure from these lawsuits. This means that John Corapi has himself hampered the process by which the truth would win out. This troubles me.

    There are a few similar difficulties that lead me to believe that John Corapi, formerly known as a priest, is not modeling the kind of submission that Padre Pio demonstrated when he was falsely accused.

    I am told by priests that I respect that Cardinal Burke would ultimately oversee this process and he is a stickler for procedure. If this is the case then John Corapi would have had a friend at the Vatican.

    The heart of my concern is that he intends to exercise some kind of non-ecclesiastical pastoral oversight.

    Let me say again: this is not a personal matter that his critics have elevated into a public hanging. He has chosen to make this a public melodrama and he is tightly controlling the information. So he wants it both ways. He wants public support and sympathy and he also wants to control the process and avoid serious investigation.
    I'm glad to be convinced that one of the finest Catholic communicators of this generation will be restored to service within the Church. But he seems to be making it impossible.

    Al Kresta

  9. To Ryan,
    Thanks, I agree that a man has the right to face his accusers in a civil court of law.

    In this case, however, Corapi knows his accuser. He just hasn't released her name. Nor has anybody else. He has filed a civil lawsuit against her and describes how much he has done to serve her in his blacksheepdog remarks.

    So Corapi knows. We shouldn't conflate his situation with that of clergy accused of abuse of young man or women.

    I understand there are problems in many cases as we've broadcast at least a half a dozen times in the last few years including a recent interview with Richard Fitzgibbons.

  10. "But rather he resembles the rape victim who won’t testify in spite of the fact that her words might save other women from being raped. Her refusal to subject herself to the system leaves other women imperiled."

    Wow. As a former rape victim, I find this to be a rather insensitive statement and an unfair comparison.

    I believe the reasons that a rape victim might have in not testifying are vastly different for Fr. Corapi's reasons for his "flight from the process," as you say.

    Personally, I did not testify, but this was because there was not a way, in the community in which I lived that this would not have gotten out. And the person who raped me would certainly have been killed by friends of mine. I did not think he deserved to die, and I also did not want that kind of violence to be on my friends.

    Believe me, every day I wonder if I had done the right thing and worry about the women he might have hurt. But I did not will for their potential harm, and I think it's unfair to put the possibility of his future sins at my door, or at the door of other rape victims.

    Is this really what you think? That if I was unable to testify for whatever reason, that I am responsible for his actions?

    Okay, and if you require that I put my name on this in order to have my view posted as well, I will.

  11. Everyone needs to remember that it is Corapi - not anyone else - who has turned this into a public melodrama.


  12. This comment has been removed by the author.

  13. Slander is a sin in the catechism, I believe. And if the Bishop of Corpus Christi goes along with the slander of his accuser, then that bishop has aided and abetted in that sin.

    Bishops are not infallible, and a lot of them are politicians as well as Church leaders. Good priests are in jail today because their bishop didn't do anything to protect them. But, in Fr. Corapi's case, the Bishop somehow gets a pass on his actions, which I find to be strange.

  14. Please pray for Fr. John Corapi. He has been an inspiration to so many. Only God knows the pain he is going through.

    Al - I don't know what to put as my "profile" but if you need my name and e mail, it is: Ann Chastain,

  15. *On gossip, slander, and libel. I have not heard the Bishop of Corpus Cristi or the acting superior of S.O.L.T. speak an uncharitable word about John Corapi. John Corapi, on the other hand, has been making unsubstantiated claims about the men and women involved in this process. He has presented no evidence to indicate that the Bishop of Corpus Christi or his superior have acted improperly. He is simply asserting that his lawyers advised him that he couldn't count on winning.

    While it is true that bishops can err in teaching and behavior, yet so can priests, even very talented ones. Bishops are successors to the apostles and deserve the benefit of the doubt until we have evidence that demonstrates otherwise. The assumption that somehow the system is rigged against Corapi is based on his assertion. It may be rigged but show me how.

    *On his options: He says his only two options were to submit and be left to die or to move on with his life. No, there was another option: follow the example of Thomas More, Padre Pio and Christ himself who stayed faithful to the end and whose lives become the standard by which we job true heroism. Submit to the authorities and trust that you will be vindicated either in this world or the age to come. Why do we assume that we must have our justice today?

    His superior makes it clear that he would have had the chance to confront his accuser, receive due process, with appeals to the Holy See. He chose not to avail himself of this process.

    *On the rape victim analogy. Your own experience indicates that you've been ambivalent about not testifying. You also had other considerations which made it imprudent for you to testify. Circumstances do count. But since you brought it up, what would you say to a woman who had been victimized by your rapist?

    While I haven't been raped myself, I've had a friend raped and murdered, another female family member molested by a neighbor and a male friend raped in prison. I've also pastored women who have been victims of domestic violence, including sexual violence. I also spent considerable time sharing the gospel with prostitutes on the Cass Corridor in Detroit and have heard my share of horror stories. From conversations and interviews with rape victims over many years, I don't think what I said was insensitive. Turning one's tragedy into a defense for the vulnerable is good therapy as well as citizenship. If you could have testified without fearing your friends would be provoked to murder, would you have cooperated with the authorities?

  16. i have noyhing but love for father corapi but i do believe he should have stayed within the bounds of the church and trusted in the process.
    we must remember that our preists especially those who stand up and really preach the truth
    are great targets for the devil and he is the ultimate adversary. John Beaudry, Spokane, Wa.

  17. John,
    I couldn't agree more. This is an outbreak of spiritual warfare such that we haven't seen in awhile.

    Think about it. One of the most effective presenters of the Faith and a respected priest has now, before our very eyes, in a matter of months, entered show business and become an entertainer and he shows no sense of how weird this is. Or if he knows how weird it is he is reveling in it.

    If John Corapi is anything, he is a survivor and this seems to me to be a survival strategy rather than a revival strategy. Oh, that's a pretty entertaining way of putting it.

  18. I usually respect your comments Al but NOT HERE!

    I'm so sick of all you " professional Catholics" bashing the man. It's appalling!!! He has said nothing against the magestrium of the Church!!! Period!!

    I think there is alot of jealousy with you, Akins , and Shea to feel the need to bash the man. You guys will never be able to affect the Masses as Father has done. I think theirs a little jealousy there.Plus you guys making a living of being professional Catholics and not even bothering to make a move in the Church i.e. Becoming deacons or priests!!! Dr Scott Hahn is a different kind he TEACHES!

    Stop your bashing Al it's uncalled for! You don't need to speculate what God is asking of him! Not your job as a professional Catholic!!

    For a matter of fact we'd all be a bunch of idiots to think the bishops are rightly ordered. Considering Boston MA archbishop is oking a gay pride Mass! What the heck. If our all our bishops were loyal we would not have the garbage we do these days. Like Our Lady said skulls of bishops are lining the he'll. Very sad!

    Also Al sometimes you need to man up and FIGHT back not roll over and take it unjustly! More priests whom are teaching true doctrine need to fight Back!

    Mother Angelica is essentially a lay person she fought with bishops quite often. She threatened to bomb ewtn then give control to the bishop she was fighting with pubucially on air!!! But no one could touch her due to the fact nuns don't have hy orders!

    Do yourself a favor and be humble and stop beating the man when he's down. You would not like the treatment that your dishing out to him. Get off your pedestal you professional catholic!!!


    You guys are a bunch of gossipers.

  19. Al,
    I would say that the lay Catholic media that I once respected prior to this debacle is to blame for an extroardinary sinful actions with far reaching assumptions and gossip. Thus far I've read through Mark Shea, Jimmy Aiken, Catholic News Service, and many others the following statements "Perhaps he's began a coacain habit again", "Abandoning his Fatherhood", "Exciting his "Suckers (Followers), commercializing the situation. This is absolutely ridiculous, and you darn well as I do we have Judas Iscariot's in the seats of the Apostles scattered throughout this country. Tell me one thing that Corapi has done contrary to the Church? Also he's never declared himself a Saint, so don't put him to have to live up to that, shall we listen to the next Kresta in the Afternoon and say, "ah gosh, you know, he just doesn't ring the same as Saint Thomas Acquinas". Please, and don't thing for a second that while you have the luxury of hindsight with Padre pio, a good number of the laity and clergy thought he was a pervert, fake, and a liar. Saints don't come with a Saint stamp on their forehead, or there never would be puersecution by the press. Just like you've stepped your ministry into. The man has broke his silence and come out because he is not submitting to extortion. This is not a matter of church teaching, this is a matter of an extremely unfair process that castrates our priests in fear. Afraid to go out of their homes or preach the truth because of a single accusation will destroy a lifetime of work for Christ in the Church's administrative eyes. Perhaps the best way to fix this broken system, is for somebody as infamous as Corapi to have "the stones" to stand up and walk out on it. If he's innocent, and much indicates that, this process is absurd. To take his faculties away at one whiff of an accusation simply stinks. You wouldn't know anything about that though Al, you make your living pseudo-preaching and free to enjoy a freedom that no liberal bishop can possibly interfer in your work. Why don't you ask the owners of Ave Maria radio to hand the station over to the Bishop of Corpus Christi? Why don't you put your money where your mouth is and go in obedience to THAT bishop as your leader? The lay Catholic media has disgusted me in their response of this faithful catholic priest. Mark Shea was so damn disgusting in his blog referring to Corapi like he was some kind of hooligan, instead of an ordained man "another Christ". This has been a field day for those in your occupation, and you have not played fair. How do you know the best way to fix the system was to sit quiet, and perhaps be suspended until Father Corapi dies quietly?.....

  20. .... Did you not hear whom was advising him? It was a well respected, and faithful Bishop of the United States that encouraged him to just hit the bricks on this as those in power controlling this case are out to screw him, and by the time anything has happened he's done. He and his staff cannot afford for him to just sit idle for years. He runs a major company with dozens of employees to preach the way God intended man to preach, through a Priest in his Church. The man had the stones to stand up for what's right, and dont think for a second that cardinals have not taken notice to this overseas and in the US. Corapi may very well be crating the catalyst that is needed to further examine the case, particularily if the civil authorities deem he wins his civil case, which unfortunately the secular courts seem to be more interested in hearing evidence to vindicate him than the damn diocese of Corpus Christi. You and the other lay Catholics that have thus far been able to rise and make a living, which may actually be a direct result of men like Father Corapi converting millions to create your fanbase, have shown an extroardinary lack of respect to a good and holy priest that has done NOTHING against church teaching, is in the church, is still a priest. Put your money where your mouth is and hand your show's intellectual property over to that Bishop in Corpus Christi, tell him your doing it to raise money in the Diocese or help his flock grow. Place your destiny in a man that seems to be no longer working for Christ, but instead an agenda of liberalism and lack of fidelity to the church. Fould Play Al, nobody, not even the worst sinner should have been taken out in to the public square to be shot the way you and your group of Professional Catholics have done. it sickens me. Oh yes, we all say how great MOther Angelica was in hindsight....but do we remember when she told a Bishop she would rather bomb EWTN studios than give him control of her network?!>?! Do we fault her and say she is unfaithful and having no respect for the apostles? Nope, because without the groundwork of Catholic teaching she laid on my younger generation, none of your groups of lay Professional Catholics would even have their day job. Show some respect to this man, he is still a Priest, and he is very much still in line with the Church.
    John (Buffalo, NY)

  21. Actually to correct your comment Al that forces a living man to live up to the standards of God himself, wow, way to make a fair comparison said "No, there was another option: follow the example of Thomas More, Padre Pio and Christ himself who stayed faithful to the end and whose lives become the standard by which we job true heroism. "

    Actually to correct your thought here, your indicating that Jesus would do this in every situation, which is incorrect because he would not, and he said he would not. He had the loving mission of our salvantion to complete. In Mathew 26:53 he indicates "Or do you think that I cannot appeal to My Father, and He will at once put at My disposal more than twelve legions of angels?" I would like to see somebody try and lance his side now that he has secured our salvation with his blood, not all the nuclear bombs in the world will put down the 12 legions of angels he is alluding to. Don't make assumptions that this path Father Corapi is on is supposed to be a path of becoming a victim by the will of God, You and I both don't know what God is asking of him, only he does. Let's not speculate what we think he should do. I can't imagine the injustice he is feeling when the love of his life "the church of Christ", simply threw him to the side and not assisted him one bit in this matter, or any matter of the diocese for his order. He has been accused of multiple accusation prior, and had to pay hundreds of thousands to protect himself, his company, and his employees. Perhaps immature self righteous fools do not understand that the only reason he sells things, is to get money because traveling everywhere and employeeing people costs money! Money, yes, you need money to travel and hire people. This is not evil folks, we don't have to get all sarcastic about the fact that he advertises his stuff and point and say "Theres a smoking gun, he's no man of God". Give me a freaken break. Next time you ask a radio station to carry your show, tell them you will do it 100% for free, and your buddy Nick Tom. Go and get some staff to produce and work for free too, and then beg for radio tower transmission space for free, since advertising is evil.

  22. Here's what bugs me about the situation:
    Up to three months ago, I'd never heard any concern at all regarding (now Mr.) Corapi's actions or intentions. Then, because of an apparent allegation related to possible misconduct, he vanished from view almost overnight. Even his very few statements have been critiqued as though he must surely be guilty of something.

    Now, with his announcement of his leaving the active priesthood, we have whole hordes of people insistent that this somehow demonstates that he's definitely done something wrong.

    Given how much we don't know, I'm pretty bothered by the view that he should've done something different. If the appropriate authorities had reasonable cause to charge him with something substantial or had reasonable cause to do anything, I would think they would've done so by now. This has, after all, been a major news story--in Catholic circles anyway--since Friday afternoon.

    If this (now) former priest genuinely had cause to be chastised, you'd think either his Order or their counterparts from Corpus Christi would've said something.
    I haven't heard much of anything.

    As to why (Father/Mr.) Corapi said anything, I for one, have been wondering what on earth has been going on.

    I'm not happy with this result, but at least we know more than before.

  23. Another fruitful Vatican II, JP2 vocation.

  24. Hi Al,

    I too came to some similar conclusions in my post yesterday, but it was made before the National Catholic Register piece which offered the other side of the story from Sheehan and SOLT's official response: What if Christ quit because of injustices?

  25. "*On the rape victim analogy. Your own experience indicates that you've been ambivalent about not testifying. You also had other considerations which made it imprudent for you to testify. Circumstances do count. But since you brought it up, what would you say to a woman who had been victimized by your rapist?"

    This is closer to what needs to happen in any of these cases. It is because circumstances matter that I am hesitant to claim or imply that every woman who does not testify should bear the guilt for any future sin her attacker may inflict upon others. So, too, perhaps Fr. Corapi is or is not the vehicle for discussion of whether or not the current investigative process is fair to clergy.

    Certainly, it is a delicate situation, because by all means we do not want abuses and crimes to continue. However, neither do we want to destroy the lives and ministries of men who may be innocent of what they are accused of doing.

    I do not know all the facts of the case, but it doesn't appear that Fr. Corapi is handling the situation with the dignity and integrity that he should. It feels as if he is turning his back on and defaming the Church, perhaps in retaliation to feeling that the Church is turning her back on and defaming him. I pray for Jesus' healing and peace upon the situation and all those involved, which includes all of us, as well.

    As for my situation, I was not the only witness to the events, but was aided by someone. The man who helped saw that my attacker was sent into a psychiatric rehab program and got the help that he needed. So the issue was resolved without it becoming a public mess. If I felt it was possible to "turn him in" without worse things happening as a consequence, I think I would have done that, because I wouldn't want him to hurt others. At the time, I was a teen living away from home for the first time after high school. One always hopes that she can live with integrity and do what is right for society, but how do you make these choices? How do you judge the morality of possibly allowing a criminal to continue to harm others versus the value of that man's life and the lives of people you love spending time in prison?

    What would I say to another person who was victimized by him? I don't know. That I was profoundly sorry that it happened and that I made the best decision I felt I could make at the time. That I'm far from perfect. Ask her forgiveness, and probably tell her that if I could have stood in her place and been victimized twice so it wouldn't have happened to her, I would do so.

  26. To Jen M.
    Very well said. I probably won't use the rape analogy when I publish the commentary. It probably distracts readers like you and you are not few. My daughter thought it was insensitive or something nearly like that. What can I say? At least it got us to talk and I appreciate your story and your overall perspective. These are truly difficult situations.
    The black sheepdog is called to be a saint. He has urged all of us to become saints. I want to be a saint. St. Paul calls us saints in anticipation of what we are meant to become. I hate to see someone put his "ministry" above his "sanctification." It's true I don't know God's will for him other than the universal call to holiness. I just don't see the imitation of Christ in what he is doing.

  27. One of the most distressing issues before us, is the ease with which followers of the black sheepdog tolerate and quickly express hostility toward the Church and her bishops. Some of them even foment it.

    I ask you to compare Corapi's comments directed toward the bishops and the Church with the statements of Fr. Sheehan of S.O.L.T. and ask yourself who is breeding division.

    St. Paul in 1 Cor 3 warned "You are still of the flesh. While there is jealousy and rivalry among you are you not behaving in an ordinary human way? Whenever someone says, 'I belong to Paul,' and another, 'I belong to Apollos,' are you not merely human. Are you not acting like mere men? For when one says, 'I follow Paul,' and another, 'I follow Apollos,' 'I follow Corapi', 'I follow Luther' are you not mere men?"

    "What, after all, is Apollos? And what is Paul? Only servants through whom you came to believe- as the Lord has assigned to each his task. I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God made it grow. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who makes things grow...So then no more boasting about men! All things are yours, whether Paul or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world or life or death or the presnt or the future- all are yours, and you are of Christ, and Christ is of God."

    Many, not all, of the black sheepdog's defenders sound like Corapiites rather than Catholics. Again and again, we must remember: Who decided to make this a public issue??? Not me or any of those who think the black sheepdog has taken the wrong path and is leading others down it. It is Corapi who has decided to live this out as a public melodrama and now trades off some deep resentments and disappointments many Catholics are feeling toward Christ's Church. He has even posted pingbacks so that his devotees can defend him at blogs that are dismayed by his framing of this matter.

    He has engineered this situation so that he is no longer accountable to the bishops or anyone but his own corporation. HIs filing of the lawsuits against the primary witness means that canonically S.O.L.T. cannot depose her or others who signed non-disclosure pacts when they left his employ. His refusal to work through the canonical process means that the charges lodged against him will never be investigated. Truly the sheepdog has been unleashed. His for-profit media company Santa Cruz Media said baldly last March that it had no obligation to heed the bishops and that it was a secular organization.

    He has, by making this a public matter, and expressing such rejection of the judicial and canonical process set up a false dichotomy between him and those, unnamed, who are conspiring against him.

    I urge you as a brother, take your stand with Christ who commissioned the apostles and those who are their successors. This doesn't mean that bishops are without fault. It does mean that they deserve our respect in concrete, practical ways. In this situation, for instance, given how little information Corapi has disclosed why would you give him the benefit of the doubt rather than those who have the fullness of the priesthood? By his own admission to S.O.L.T. he has been spiritually, emotionally and physically distressed for quite awhile. Is this the kind of decision he should have made under these conditions?

    May all of us breath the Divine Mercy poured out by the Most Holy Trinity and find ourselves graced and renewed as we heed the call to holiness.

  28. To Diane: Your basic point is exactly what I'm trying to get across as my knock down drag out bottom line can't do without it fundamental point. I hope everyone will read your full comments.

  29. @ AL:

    Your post above which starts with: One of the most distressing issues before us, is the ease with which followers of the black sheepdog tolerate and quickly express hostility toward the Church and her bishops. Some of them even foment it.

    I ask you to compare Corapi's comments directed toward the bishops and the Church with the statements of Fr. Sheehan of S.O.L.T. and ask yourself who is breeding division.

    The division has been the most problematic part of this whole thing. Division is not a fruit of the Holy Spirit.

    Thank you also for having read my post: What if Christ had quit because of injustice?

    Here is a live url: for those wanting to consider what some of the saints had to say about false accusations.

  30. One more illustration concerns the printing of Saint Faustina's materials. Father Mitch Pacwa, recently fielding a question on his show (I think this past Wednesday) in which a caller stated that her works were on the "Forbidden Index" at one time, corrected him.

    Father Mitch explained that they were never added to the Forbidden Index because they did not need to be. When the sisters who were printing the materials learned that Church authorities wanted printing and distribution to cease, they quietly folded up operations, without complaint, and went on with life. They did not stew or criticize Church authorities.

    Of course, years later, we learned that the problem was rooted in changes made to the works by another sister who attempted to "flower-them-up", caused the problem (likely well-intended, but very misguided).

    So, Church authorities were justified to halt the printing based on the errors they saw, which did not originate with St. Faustina. They could not have known. When the truth came out later, we see that the Church fixed it.

    This required extraordinary patience on the part of her fellow sisters and followers. Saint Faustina's steadfast obedience and long-suffering (patient endurance) in the face of persecution from within also proved out heroic virtue which would later contribute to her cause being approved.

    St. John Bosco also had to endure persecution from within.

    The list could go on and on. It is obvious that the path Christ wishes us to take, is the path that Christ Himself took.

    Unfortunately, Father Corapi's five university degrees, which he mentioned in so many shows, either failed him in this most important lesson, or he did not pick up on it.

    The greatest knowledge of the CCC, Church Fathers, Sacred Scripture, Church documents, will not get a person there. Even the dissidents who promote visible "strange teachings" can do these things.

    In the end, it is how well we understand Christ fully, including His passion and death on a Cross. For most of us, that means a white martyrdom borne out with the practice of heroic virtue. Anyone who thinks that such things are just for the saints does not understand we are all called to be saints.

  31. I should add that while Church authorities who halted the printing of Faustina's material did so based on problems caused by another nun's "editing" of the materials, are often demonized by followers of supporters of those who have fallen from some level of grace.

    It is found among supporters of Nadine Brown, the foundress of the now suppressed Intercessors of the Lamb.

    It is found among supporters of Holy Love Ministries condemned as not supernatural by Bishop Lennon just a couple of years ago.

    It was likely used by supporters of the disgraced Maciel.

    And it is used extensively in arguments in support of unapproved apparitions and private revelations where a bishop or other authority is not granting first level approval.

    These are very troubling signs because they are the complete opposite of what we see in all that is approved by the Church.

    One more thing about the Faustina case is what my uncle recently told me as we discussed it. He, being polish to the core and very fond of the saint said that when the sisters ceased printing of her materials there, another center here in the US he was familiar with followed suit - quietly ceasing operations and fading into silence just based on the wishes of authorities. No decree had to be written or other formal procedure.

    This, to me, suggests that graces come in abundance to followers and supporters of things which are truly from God.

  32. I've followed this debate with interest, here and elsewhere. I apologize to Mr. Kresta if I say too much here, but it needs to be said.

    Implicit (and sometimes explicit)in many defenses of Fr. Corapi is that the Church needs his ministry, so much so that he is required to disobey.

    If anyone thinks they have become so valuable, that without them, the truth will never get out, perhaps it is time to leave the business. If it be God's will (and let us pray that it is!), He will provide a thousand faithful obedient priests with even more gifts than Fr. Corapi had.

    Many of his defenders would be horrified if anyone else said their priesthood wasn't that important to their life. Yet Fr. Corapi said precisely that.

    There is also a feeling that Fr. Corapi is entitled to use his gifts as he sees fit. Not even laymen are allowed to do that. Priests have an extra layer. Members of the religious life even moreso. If this was truly the test from God or punishment for his past sins Fr. Corapi professes it to be (I for one think that's a little too melodramatic), then he should be submitting humbly to these occurences.

    Finally, perhaps the Church needs to look at the way priests live their life outside of Mass. While not wanting to deny one the fruits of their labor, Fr. Corapi was stupendously wealthy. He lived with extravagance that would make a Borgia blush. I know he didn't take a vow of poverty. But he is still called to a a life of simplicity and restraint that all are called to. Think of how much better the money could've been spent instead of on sports cars, harleys, boats and personal trainers. We don't excuse men for wearing a Roman collar. We should be holding them to a higher standard.

    What use does a priest have for a sports car?

  33. I have no problem with Church Authority, but I do have problems with unfaithful Shepards. In Boston the Archdiocese approved a Gay Pride Mass to take place and is scheduled on the calendar. That I am hostile towards. I am also hostile towards shepards that alledgedly do nothing to assist their priests for fear of being fried. Dozens of good priests have been pulled out of parishes for a lifetime with no evidence of such. If the story is true, no evidence has been submitted to prove guilt, and faculties were just removed by a Bishop that lives thousands of miles from him but in the geographic location of his order SOLT, if that is true, and Corapi does not leave the church or preach against it, good for him. The Black Sheep Dog needs to bite a shepard or two that are not obeying the commands of Christ or the Chair of Peter. What about Saint Nicholas? Was he not immitating Christ when he decked another priest in attendance of the council addressing the current heresy? Perhaps many of you would say he resembled a bully, yet church teaching tells us according to tradition that Christ himself took him out of prison. This is ridiculous, The Black Sheep Dog Supporters, and I prefer calling him Father Corapi respectfully as he is still a priest in the church's eyes, do not blindly support him. Very few would remain with him if he actually speaks out against the church or her teaching. That has not happened, all that has happened is what all of us bigots think he should do with himself, or his company that have saved millions of Catholics by bringing them back into the arms of the church. The Church hasn't given him a penny, so what to become of his company every time a compaint is made in this unholy process that ostricizes too many good priests?

  34. John,

    St. Ignatius of Loyola said he would fret all of 5 minutes if the Pope suppressed the Jesuits.

    Once again, if you really think that what Fr. Corapi and Santa Cruz does is so irreplecable that he needs to adopt a disobedient attitude, perhaps it is time to "leave the business."

    But you hit the nail on the head. "IF" things are true. The simple fact is the only people who know the full truth are Fr. Corapi, the accuser, and God. If he is innocent, he should want to see his name cleared, no matter how long it takes. Yet in the absence of such clear-cut evidence, one trusts Church authority. If people can provide concrete evidence (not just Fr. Corapi's words) that a grave injustice has been committed against him, things might be different. Yet due to Fr. Corapi's actions, the chance of him being vindicated is now literally 0 in Church law, even if he is innocent.

  35. He's suffering from burnout after traveling millions of miles to save souls. He's caught people with guns on his property trying to kill him. He's had intruders in his house. He's had women try to set him up, along with photographers hiding in the bushes. He's 64 and he needs a sabbatical to recharge his batteries. I'm amazed at all of the stone throwers telling him he should have done this or that. The man deserves a medal for his evangelization efforts, but so many people seem to want to hang him instead. He'll be back....Give him a break....The desert hermits had to get away from it all for a while, and so does Father Corapi. I'm surprised he hasn't had a nervous breakdown by now with all of the attacks on him over the last 20 years, both from outside AND inside the Church.

  36. Jude,
    Do you know if these stories are documented somewhere? It would be helpful to have them available for a number of reasons.

  37. Hello Al,

    It is quite possible that this Fr. Corapi story is about as big a story in our Catholic Universe as I've seen in years. It might be something akin to this being our own special "Catholic OJ Simpson" saga.

    In the OJ tale of woe, at least we publicly knew who all the players were and the public-at-large could pass judgement accordingly.

    While the Church may respect the confidentiality of the accuser, the public doesn't have to, per se.

    Question for you, Mr. Kresta: As an act of love and respect for all concerned and in terms of your own impartiality and journalistic integrity, if you were presently Facebook "friends" with the accuser, would you think it might be perceived as a vote of your confidence or belief in the accuser and her allegations? Would you think it might contradict or conflict with your journalistic independence and integrity?

    And, if the accuser ran a Catholic website, would you consider your participation and support in her website a sign of allegiance and support for her allegations?

    While Corapi has been under suspension since the allegations have hit the fan, I notice that the accused seems to enjoy a Catholic Church stamp of approval, judging by her Facebook "friends" (such as yourself, bishops, nuns, priests, and other religious). This very act of support, whether intentional or not on your part, aids and abets her actions, couldn't it be interpreted?

    Are you concerned that you may be being used, your good name and reputation and journalistic independence at risk, when you knowingly or unknowingly publicly allow yourself to be associated with her and seemingly approve of her and her websites?

    I would suggest, in the interest of fairness and independence, that you disassociate your name with the accused. By not doing so, your publicly communicated opinions and words are suspect as being partisan.

    Really, it's time for a code of ethics for Catholic Bloggers such as yourself. You need to adhere to some standard of journalistic honesty and full disclosure.

    Don't you think?

    Many thanks for your honest assessments!


    Your Brother Michael

  38. To Michael:

    We really haven't thought about this. We just checked and found out that Fr. Corapi is a "facebook friend." We don't know the accuser's name, but if you do, we would be glad to pursue that. Do you have a code of ethics in mind? The vast majority of our "friends" are listeners and we don't know the personal details of their lives. My facebook page is a function of the program. I don't think much can be concluded from someone being a friend other than that the are a listener or are aware of our apostolate. We have tended to think of facebook friends as listeners who want to be more regularly informed about the program. It makes you think though and I appreciate you trying to boot this to another level of discussion.


  39. What shocks me most about this is how many "fans" of Corapi are willing to make emotional, ridiculous,aggressive statements in his defense. You all realize that just because you've seen the man on TV doesn't men you really know him, right? Even if you do personally know him, we have all known people who appear to be something that, in the end, they are not. The best way to know the character of a person is to watch what they do when their feet are in the flames. Corapi abandoned everything that is really important to save his interests.

  40. Al, et al,

    Why do people assume Fr. Corapi is leaving the priesthood? He has never stated he is leaving the priesthood, only that he will not be involved in "public ministry" as a priest. He has stated this over and over again. It is common for priests on administrative leave. Even the SOLT statement does not say he is leaving the priesthood or seeking laicization.

    I have known a number of priests who remain priests yet do not function publicly as a priest, either it was their decision or their bishop's decision.

    Also, asking to not be publicly called "Father" does not mean he is leaving the priesthood, again, this is in line with an administrative leave when a priest does not function in public ministries, meaning no public Masses, no public confessions, etc, however, he can offer Masses daily privately, and no doubt Fr. Corapi will do that since he is, and always has been, a priest who loves God above all.

    Fr. Corapi is doing nothing wrong, it is the defamation and spreading of lies against his reputation that is wrong.

    Deborah MT

  41. My name is Lisa Adams, and I must say that I find some of these comments beyond disturbing, to say the least. Some of you are confusing and/or attempting to intermix the spirit of this world with the spirit of God, which is not of THIS world. I have been very badly shaken by the path that John Corapi has chosen for himself, cannot you all see that he has forsaken the Kingdom of God for the pleasures and empty joy that THIS world has to offer. I truly believe in the name of Jesus and all that is Holy that this man (Dear John Corapi) needs to be exorcised of the demons that have overpowered and are in control of his soul. We must fast and pray and pray and fast for this once beautiful and enlightened soul. He has, quite obviously lost his way. Let us help him get back on the right path by not pandering or encourging him on this dark path that he is on. Please pray and fast.