Pope, "servant of Satan", Archbishop Excommunicated By The Vatican
 General News
Monday 8th, July 2024
Carlo Maria Viganò, a former Vatican ambassador to the United States, has been excommunicated by the Vatican after being found guilty of schism. Schism, one of the gravest crimes in canon law, occurs when an individual withdraws submission to the Pope or his Catholic subjects.

Viganò, who served as the Vatican's envoy to the US from 2011 to 2016, went into hiding in 2018 after making explosive allegations against Pope Francis. He claimed that the Pope was aware of US Cardinal Theodore McCarrick's sexual misconduct and failed to act. The Vatican has categorically denied these allegations.

The 83 year old archbishop has not shied away from controversy. He labelled Pope Francis a "false prophet" and a "servant of Satan", even calling for his resignation. These actions have garnered him a following among like minded ultra conservatives, especially as he delved into coronavirus conspiracy theories and criticised the Church's efforts to modernise.

The Vatican's doctrinal office announced Viganò's excommunication on Friday, citing his refusal "to recognise and submit" to the head of the Roman Catholic Church. The statement noted that Viganò also rejected the legitimacy of liberal reforms implemented by the Church in the 1960s.

"At the conclusion of the penal process, the Most Reverend Carlo Maria Viganò was found guilty of the reserved delict (violation of the law) of schism", the statement read.

As a result of his excommunication, Viganò is now formally outside the Church and cannot celebrate or receive its sacraments, including communion. Typically, such rulings are signed by the head of the Doctrine of the Faith office rather than the Pope himself, but it is highly unlikely that this decision was made without Pope Francis's approval.

Despite this severe sanction, Viganò remains unrepentant. Posting on X, he urged Catholics to support him, quoting Jesus from the New Testament, "If they keep quiet, the stones themselves will start shouting".

Viganò has used his platform on X to rally his supporters and propagate his views. Last month, he criticised the Vatican's proceedings against him and accused Pope Francis of leading an "inclusive, immigrationist, eco-sustainable, and gay-friendly" church.

The excommunication of such a high profile figure underscores the deepening divisions within the Catholic Church as it navigates the challenges of modernity and tradition.
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