The men, in interviews in the United States and Mexico, said the Rev. Marcial Maciel Degollado, the founder of the Legionaries of Christ, molested them in Spain and Italy during the 1940s, ’50s and ’60s. Several said Maciel told them he had permission from Pope Pius XII to seek them out sexually for relief of physical pain.
Bill Donohue wrote a letter to the Courant, saying
To think any priest would tell some other priest that the pope gave him the thumbs up to have sex with another priest–all for the purpose of relieving the poor fellow of some malady–is the kind of balderdash that wouldn’t convince the most unscrupulous editor at any of the weekly tabloids. It is a wonder why The Courant found merit enough to print it.”
(I haven’t been able to find this letter in the Courant. The quoted part above comes from BillDo’s article published on Monday.)
As I understand BillDo’s argument, he’s saying “It’s ridiculous to think a priest (including the pope) would give another priest permission to molest boys. Therefore, it didn’t happen. The people who said that Maciel told them that are lying or mistaken, and Father Maciel is innocent.”
At least, that’s all I can make of it. What’s odd is that BillDo is quoting this in a post entitled “DONOHUE NEVER DEFENDED Fr. MACIEL” (shouty title in the original, as befits his character).
Anyone who’s familiar with BillDo knows that he reflexively leaps to defend the Catholic church against any slight, perceived or real. So all I can figure is that he’s now trying to distance himself from his earlier words through Clintonian parsing (“it depends what the meaning of