Parish removes priest who asked middle school students during confession if they masturbated or watched porn

“I think he was trying to get them to really discern and be in touch with any sinful behavior they had,” McNeil said. “So I think it was a case of, from what we know right now, a case of trying to be too helpful.”

An associate pastor at St. Robert Bellarmine Catholic Church has been dismissed from the parish after asking middle school students during confession if they masturbated or watched pornography.

Deacon Tim McNeil, chancellor and spokesman for the Archdiocese of Omaha, said the Rev. Nicholas Mishek, 26, is an inexperienced priest who was overzealous in his questioning and made a lapse in judgment. He has been removed from St. Robert Bellarmine, but the archdiocese will work with him to review the training he received in the seminary.

“There was this line of questioning that’s unacceptable, and he asked two questions that are particularly unacceptable,” McNeil said. “And parents reacted strongly, and should have, and we responded to that.”

 

Mishek was ordained in June and received a favorable report from the seminary, McNeil said. There are no prior complaints or incidents involving him, McNeil said.  

Parents at St. Robert Bellarmine Catholic School received a letter Monday signed by Principal Sandra Suiter and the Rev. Steven Stillmunks, the parish pastor, outlining the incident that happened last week and the school’s response. The K-8 school is near 120th and Pacific Streets.

 

According to the letter, on Friday morning, a parent notified Suiter that Mishek had asked inappropriate questions of seventh- and eighth-graders during confession Thursday.  Several parents stepped forward with similar stories..

 

The letter states that during confession, Mishek asked seventh- and eighth-graders if they cheated, lied, watched pornography or masturbated.

It was later discovered that he had asked fifth- and sixth-graders “similar inappropriate questions” during confession Wednesday, though those questions were worded more vaguely, such as “have you ever viewed or watched inappropriate shows or videos?”

The letter says that within 10 minutes of the first parent complaint, Suiter reported the allegations to Stillmunks. He was traveling out of town but turned around to return to the parish and contacted the archdiocese.

By 1 p.m. that day, Stillmunks dismissed Mishek from his duties at St. Robert Bellarmine, a decision supported by Archbishop George Lucas, McNeil said.

“We are grateful to those parents who came forward and notified us in such a timely way,” Suiter and Stillmunks wrote in the letter. “Because of their quick response, we were able to take necessary steps immediately. We especially want to thank our brave students who knew this was inappropriate and voiced their concerns to their parents.”

Mishek did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The World-Herald.

A parent meeting is scheduled for tonight at the Mainelli Center at the church. Officials from the school and parish and the manager of the Archdiocesan Office of Victim Outreach and Prevention will attend.

Homeroom teachers talked to students in grades 5 through 8 to let them know whom they could talk to if they had any concerns or questions.  “In future days, additional conversations will take place with our students about the sacrament of reconciliation,” the letter said.  

McNeil said confession is not supposed to be an interrogation, and priests are trained to let whoever is confessing lead the conversation.

“There are parents who are Catholic who have experiences of their own with the sacrament of reconciliation who know questioning is not a usual or encouraged practice,” McNeil said. “The nature of those two questions, they thought that was a little personal and maybe too invasive.”

Students at Catholic schools may go to confession weekly, monthly or around holy holidays, McNeil said. Kids are often given a handout to prompt reflection, called the examination of conscience.

 

“I think he was trying to get them to really discern and be in touch with any sinful behavior they had,” McNeil said. “So I think it was a case of, from what we know right now, a case of trying to be too helpful.”

 

No decisions have been made about Mishek’s next assignment, and there’s no effort underway to remove him from the priesthood, McNeil said.

“There wasn’t a civil offense, not a canonical offense, not a criminal offense, none of that,” he said.

[written by Erin Duffy]

Sexual Scandals in the Roman Catholic Church

The priest, Jozef Wesolowski, was charged with paying boys to perform sexual acts, of downloading and buying pedophile material. He died before a verdict was reached.

VATICAN CITY — A Vatican diplomat working in Washington has been recalled to the Holy See after the U.S. State Department said the priest may have violated child pornography laws, the Vatican said on Friday.

Prosecutors in the Vatican have opened an investigation into the case, which represents a fresh blow to the Roman Catholic Church as it struggles to overcome repeated sex abuse scandals among its clergy.

The State Department notified the Holy See in August “of a possible violation of laws relating to child pornography images by a member of the diplomatic corps of the Holy See to ensure full implementation of its reforms and policies designed to protect minors and provide justice regarding allegations” the spokesman said.

A State Department spokesman said the United States had requested that the man’s diplomatic immunity be waived to open the way for possible prosecution, but the Vatican refused.

The priest, who was not named, has returned to Vatican City and is awaiting the outcome of the Holy See investigation, which could lead to a trial in the tiny city state.

The U.S.-based Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests said possession of child pornography was not a victimless crime because the children involved were being abused.

“(Pope Francis) must bring the diplomat back to the United States in order to adhere to his promises of complying with investigations by civil authorities in cases of child sexual abuse,” SNAP managing director Barbara Dorris said.

Pope Francis has declared zero tolerance over abuse scandals that have beset the Church for decades, but has appeared to struggle to overcome resistance within the Vatican hierarchy.

The State Department spokesman said the pope had promised to “act decisively with regard to cases of sexual abuse” and punish those found guilty of wrongdoing.

“The United States encourages the Holy See to ensure full implementation of its reforms and policies designed to protect minors and provide justice regarding allegations,” the spokesman said.

Two years ago the Vatican put the former papal ambassador to the Dominican Republic on trial for child sex offences, a case that was seen as showing the pope’s determination to clean up the Church.

The priest, Jozef Wesolowski, was charged with paying boys to perform sexual acts, of downloading and buying pedophile material. He died before a verdict was reached.

He was the first high-ranking Catholic official to stand trial in the Vatican on such sex charges and the case was closely watched by victims of priestly abuse, who have accused the Vatican of repeatedly hushing up previous scandals.

Just last month, in the foreword to a new book written by a Swiss man who was raped by a priest when he was 8 years old, Pope Francis said sexual abuse of children by priests was a “monstrosity” and pledged to take action against perpetrators.

[Reporting by Crispian Balmer; Additional reporting by Steve Scherer in Rome and David Alexander in Washington; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg]

‘Satanic’ fake rosaries are bringing evil spirits into Catholic homes, says exorcist

A rosary crucifix confiscated during a recent case handled by Libera Nox. When the photo’s exposure is adjusted to make it dimmer using an image editor (R), the Iluminati insignia of the sun with its rays and the snake at the back of the Crucified Christ becomes visible to the naked eye.
[Photo by Philippe de Guzman]

An exorcist in the Philippines has warned against the circulation of fake ‘Satanic’ rosaries and crucifixes he said were designed to ‘deceive Catholics…so that evil spirits will haunt them’.

Speaking on the Diocese of Novaliches’ Radio Veritas programme ‘Hello Father 911’, Fr Ambrosio Nonato Legaspi, chief exorcist of the diocese’s ‘Libera Nox’ department, warned listeners to ‘be careful as the rosaries you might be using could actually be infested or cursed’.

According to the Philippines Catholic website CBCP News, Legaspi said the rosaries has been ‘prayed over’ by a group called the Illuminati and consecrated to evil, so anyone who uses them will be followed by evil spirits.

Another Libera Nox priest, Philippe de Guzman, said during the radio show that Satanic rosaries have emblems on them such as a snake wrapped around the cross, a pentagram or a sun with rays, an occult symbol.

Legaspi urged priests to bless religious items according to Catholic rituals. especially if its owners have experienced paranormal occurrences.

‘Not just a blessing, these items should be exorcised. Not just an ordinary blessing where water is just sprinkled – as most priests commonly do – but to use the Catholic ritual…that would frighten the demon away,’ he said.

He also warned about Masonic medals that are also in circulation, made to look like that of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, also known as the Medal of the Immaculate Conception. A compass, which is the insignia of the Freemasons, can be found at the bottom.  [Story by Christian Today staff writer]

  • All that I have to say about this is that the Catholics problem is much bigger than tainted rosaries!