Friday 29th May 2015

Home » Frontpage » Currently Reading:

Agony In Albany Revisited . . . Honors Galore For Retiring Bishop Hubbard

November 9, 2013 Frontpage No Comments

By PAUL LIKOUDIS

“This is a time of taking stock for the bishop,” wrote The Albany Times-Union’s Paul Grondahl on September 30.
“Several honorary dinners and liturgies are being planned for [Bishop Howard] Hubbard. Masters of ceremony will strain to find new superlatives.”
On October 20, a crowd packed Immaculate Conception Cathedral in Albany to honor Bishop Hubbard as he celebrated the 50 years of his Ordination as a priest. Among those present were Timothy Cardinal Dolan of New York and his predecessor, Edward Cardinal Egan.
On October 29, Siena College was slated to host an academic symposium in honor of Hubbard, including comments by Archbishop Harry J. Flynn, now retired from the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis.
“The Siena symposium will bring together scholars to speak about central themes of his time as bishop: social justice, lay leadership, and interfaith dialogue,” wrote Grondahl. “‘Those are three things he has always believed in and he supports them in good times and in bad,’ said the Rev. Kenneth Paulli, chief of staff at Siena and an organizer of the symposium. ‘The bishop lives his faith and does not sway with the wind of popularity’.”

+    +    +

In his 36 years as bishop of Albany — more than half of his lifetime — Howard Hubbard and his followers have presented him as the model Vatican II bishop, possessed of a vision of the Church and a steely determination to implement it regardless of any hurdles that might pop up.
For example, in the spring of 2004, when Hubbard was facing allegations from two former male prostitutes that they had had sexual relations with him, was waging a public relations campaign to protect his reputation, and had just retained a former federal prosecutor, Mary Jo White, to clear his name, he charged his critics with trying to derail Vatican II.
As he told Albany Associated Press reporter Michael Gormley:
“It is not just an attack upon myself. It is an agenda about the direction the Church is moving and people want to turn back the clock and renounce the strides we made in ecumenism and religious liberty and liturgical reform and go back to the Church of before the Second Vatican Council. And if they can take down a leader like myself, no matter what means are used, then that’s their goal. I’m not going to allow myself to be used that way. . . . I’m not going to hide.”
Mary Jo White cleared Hubbard of the allegations.
Now, according to the Times-Union’s Paul Grondahl, Hubbard’s reign as bishop “and his entire priesthood [were] shaped by the Second Vatican Council. . . . Hubbard presented a personal reflection on the Second Vatican Council in an hour-long scholarly lecture on September 4 for the St. Bernard’s School of Theology and Ministry opening convocation.
“ ‘This set forth a radically different vision of the church and it became my blueprint for serving people,’ Hubbard said. He praised its more pastoral model, with a greater focus on helping the needy and less rigid structure of Church hierarchy. He said he embraced this new tone of collegiality and collaboration in the motto he took when he was made bishop: ‘Rejoice, we are God’s people.’
“He said he took to heart the council’s call to increase the role of lay people in the Church. ‘As bishops, we were no longer just the branch managers of the Church,’ Hubbard said. ‘It was an inclusive view of mission and ministry’. . . .
“Bishop Emeritus Matthew H. Clark, 76, who retired last year as bishop of the Rochester Diocese, was in the audience. The two met nearly 60 years ago as seminarians at Mater Christi. Clark is Hubbard’s longest and closest personal friend. ‘He’s very much the person I’ve known and began to admire all those years ago. He’s a kind, sensitive, and humble man with a sharp intellect,’ Clark said.
“Nobody can understand the strain of what Hubbard faced as well as Clark, who had to deal with similar issues in Rochester. During the height of the pedophile priest scandal and a 2004 investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct against Hubbard, the two spoke frequently on the phone. An extraordinarily intrusive investigation by former prosecutor Mary Jo White concluded with a 200-page report that found ‘no credible evidence’ to the allegations made by men about sexual encounters with the bishop and left a $2 million legal bill for the diocese.”
When Bishop Hubbard submits his resignation letter on October 31, his 75th birthday, he’ll be stepping down from a diocese that he has, in fact, remade in his own image.
Consider these diocesan statistics from three years, 1965 (Hubbard was ordained to the priesthood in 1963), 1990 (Hubbard had been bishop of Albany since 1977), and 2011:
In 1990, the estimated population within the Diocese of Albany was just over one million, of whom approximately 400,000 were Catholic. Today, the population has grown to just under 1,400,000, of whom 330,000 are Catholics.
Parishes: 207; 196; 127.
Diocesan priests: 426; 255; 106 (and 90 retired priests).
Elementary schools: 106; 44; 19.
High schools: 25; 7; 4.
Total number of students attending Catholic schools, K-12: 51,131; 12,261; 4,527.
Total number of religious brothers and sisters teaching: 1,595; 91; 8.
This sharp decline exemplifies the fears that members of the Coalition of Concerned Catholics in the Diocese of Albany expressed to this reporter for his ten-part Wanderer series “Agony in Albany.” The series was published over ten weeks beginning on March 7, 1991, in anticipation of his 15th anniversary as bishop.
The first installment was headlined: “Catholics Priests and Laity Fear Church Will Not Survive in Albany.”
The series first detailed Hubbard’s early career as an influential chancery operative in Albany — in 1973, he was named chairman of the Priests’ Personnel Board; in 1974, director of the Pastoral Planning Office; in 1976, a member of the Diocesan Board of Consultors, and, in November 1976, he was elected administrator of the diocese to replace Bishop Edwin Broderick — and his numerous, influential positions on various committees of the United States Catholic Conference/National Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Part 1 of the series ended with this quotation from Catholic layman Tom Coffey: “There’s a lot you can say about the bishop’s leadership in Albany: the steady decline of the diocese, the schools and parishes closing….This is a Church that is dying. There is no vitality. That’s worrisome to many here.”

The Problem Of Dissent

Part 2 of “Agony in Albany” was on “The Problem of Dissent” in the diocese, and reported on Hubbard’s support for prominent American dissenters.
One of the first guests Hubbard invited to the diocese was then-Fr. Anthony Kosnick, editor of the notorious Human Sexuality. As “Agony in Albany” reported:
“The year Bishop Howard Hubbard was installed as bishop of Albany was a pivotal year for the Church in the United States. In 1977, the attacks on Pope Paul VI escalated during what would be the last full year of his embattled pontificate, and the Catholic Theological Society of America released the notorious Human Sexuality. Msgr. George Kelly [author of The Battle for the American Church] has described that work as ‘the climax of an orchestrated volley of shots against the Church’s sexual ethics.’
“The book, eventually condemned by the American bishops, sanctioned not only contraception, but sterilization, artificial insemination, mate-swapping, adultery, premarital intercourse, homosexuality, masturbation, patient-therapist sex, and even left the door open for bestiality. . . .
“The chairman of the CTSA committee that wrote the book was Fr. Anthony Kosnick, a professor at Saints Cyril and Methodius Seminary in the Detroit Archdiocese. One of Bishop Howard Hubbard’s first revealing acts as bishop was to sanction Kosnick’s Albany appearance.
“There, Kosnick spoke in a public forum, granted an interview to The Evangelist (the diocesan newspaper), and addressed an assembly of priests. . . .
“When it was reported that Anthony Kosnick would speak in Albany, Coffey wrote a letter informing the bishop that it was highly unlikely that Fr. Kosnick would present the Church’s official teaching on sexuality.
“The bishop replied, ‘To my knowledge, there is no prohibition of workshops dealing with human sexuality. A workshop is not an official teaching medium for the Church in general or this diocese in particular.’
“During his visit to Albany, Kosnick defended the CTSA’s Human Sexuality, asserting that it was ‘a development of the Church’s teaching and is faithful to Church Tradition and Scriptures.’
“In an interview with The Evangelist, Kosnick said that his only regret in releasing the study was that he had not done it 20 years earlier.”
Among other dissenters Hubbard allowed into the diocese in his early years were: Sr. Margaret Farley, RSM; Fr. Charles Curran; Fr. Robert Nugent and Fr. Philip Keane (both homosexual propagandists); Fr. Gregory Baum; Fr. Matthew Fox, OP; the lesbian/witch Mary Hunt.

The Stones Will Cry Out

Part 3 of “Agony in Albany,” “Bishop Hubbard’s Toleration of Dissent,” detailed the large number of dissenters — priests, religious, and laity — in influential positions in the diocese, and its Catholic colleges.
That installment opened:
“In September 1987, when Howard Hubbard had been bishop for ten years, The Albany Times-Union and The Knickerbocker News published the results of a survey on what Catholics believe. The survey showed that Albany-area Catholics ‘don’t toe the papal line.’
“Sixteen percent agreed with the Pope on all issues; 16 percent disagreed with most of the Pope’s positions; and 66 percent agreed with some of his teachings and disagreed with others.
“Nearly 55 percent of Catholics polled approved of divorce and remarriage; 49 percent believed women should be ordained, 41 percent disapproved; almost 63 percent said priests should be allowed to marry; 25 percent believed abortion should remain legal; 72.4 percent approved of artificial birth control, and only 18 percent did not; 45 percent approved of sex between unmarried adults; and 43 percent disapproved of the Church’s teaching on homosexuality.”
The “Agony in Albany” report then named prominent dissenters in Albany:
“On February 22, 1980, a statement titled Even the Stones Will Cry Out, protesting a ‘new pattern of intimidation which is appearing in our Church,’ was published in the National Catholic Reporter.
“The statement expressed the fear many dissenters had that Pope John Paul II was about to lower the boom on major dissenters such as Edward Schillebeeckx, Hans Kung, Charles Curran, Leonardo Boff, and a host of others. It was signed by leading figures in the Albany Church.
“Among those from Albany who told the Pope that ‘we shall not go away’ was Mary Reed Newland, chairman of the Committee on Adult and Home Education for the Diocese of Albany, adviser for the Albany Curriculum sex education program [which was banned in two U.S. dioceses], a nationally known critic of Humanae Vitae, and a member of the National Committee for Human Sexuality.
“Fr. Thomas Berardi, then a judge on the Diocesan Tribunal and a counselor and professor of religious studies at the College of St. Rose, also signed the document. Fr. Berardi, who has signed almost every subsequent expression of dissent, such as The Love of Christ Impels Us (January 9, 1987) and The New York Times ad of February 28, 1990, defended Curran’s visit to the College of St. Rose. . . .
“Also signing were Dennis McDonald, a youth minister for the diocese and an adviser for the Albany sex education program, and ex-Sr. Judith Mazza, a feminist who was involved in parish ministry formation and was a leader in the recent women’s discussion groups for the Albany Women’s Commission. Though an advocate of women’s ordination and a frequent critic of Humanae Vitae, she is still active in religious education programs in the diocese.
“Other signers included Sr. Maria Mercurio, CSJ, catechist at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception; Sr. Barbara DiTomaso, CSJ, of the Diocesan Peace and Justice Committee; Jack Simeone and, his wife Denise…; Fr. Michael Hogan, chaplain at Bishop Maginn School; Fr. Gary Gelfenbein, who was campus minister at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; Fr. Thomas Phelan, also a campus minister and a member of the Diocesan Committee on Ecumenism and Interreligious Affairs and ‘Art and Architecture’; and Fr. Joseph Cotugno, now a campus minister at the State University at Albany.
“This list is by no means exhaustive, but it backs up a claim made by one priest that ‘dissenters get all the key positions in the diocese. It’s not that he just passively allows dissent to go on around him,’ he said, ‘but he willingly promotes people who are not loyal to the Magisterium. It’s so bad, you feel like you don’t belong to the same Church.
“ ‘Bishop Hubbard had a vocations director who used to tell people he didn’t believe in the physical Resurrection of Christ; his vocations co-director was an advocate of women’s ordination; the head of his tribunal is promoting “internal forum” solutions over ecclesiastical annulments’. . . .
“Dissent in Albany is not confined to Humanae Vitae, but covers a wide area, including married priests and women priests, liturgical norms, religious education and the sacraments, especially the Church’s teaching on the indissolubility of marriage.
“Bishop Hubbard’s typical response when confronted with dissent in Albany is, ‘I can only reiterate that I have said nothing which opposes, weakens, or otherwise brings into question the clear teaching of our Church’” — all evidence to the contrary!

Share Button

Comment on this Article:

Untitled 3

Pope FrancisAn Open Letter To His Holiness Pope Francis      Given the controversy and confusion surrounding the 2014 Synod on the Family, the staff of The Wanderer and its supporters thought it appropriate to address Pope Francis with an open letter . . .

Ireland is worse than the pagans for legalising gay marriage, says senior cardinal

Ireland has gone further than paganism and “defied God” by legalising gay marriage, one of the Church’s most senior cardinals has said. Cardinal Raymond Burke, who was recently moved from a senior role in the Vatican to be patron of…Continue Reading

UN Official Reports on Islamic State’s “War on Women”

A United Nations official has painted a chilling picture of how the Islamic State group oversees a vast network of sexual slavery, including an elaborate pricing system, violent treatment by slave masters and casual branding of female bodies and reselling…Continue Reading

Confidential Meeting Seeks to Sway Synod to Accept Same-Sex Unions

ROME — A one-day study meeting — open only to a select group of individuals — took place at the Pontifical Gregorian University on Monday with the aim of urging “pastoral innovations” at the upcoming Synod of Bishops on the…Continue Reading

Ireland has voted to legalize gay marriage, both sides say

DUBLIN (AP) — Irish voters have resoundingly backed amending the constitution to legalize gay marriage, leaders on both sides of the Irish referendum declared Saturday after the world’s first national vote on the issue. As the official ballot counting continued,…Continue Reading

Vatican’s eco guru champions Occupy Wall Street thugs

May 22, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) — Jeffrey Sachs wears many hats. He is known as the architect of the UN Millennium Development Goals, and the proponent of the upcoming UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). His new book, entitled, (what else) The…Continue Reading

Boy Scouts president: We need to allow open homosexual leaders

May 22, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Boy Scouts of America president Robert Gates says the youth organization must change with the times and allow open homosexual men to serve as Scout leaders. Gates, the former U.S. Secretary of Defense and CIA…Continue Reading

Federal Court Forces University of Notre Dame to Obey Pro-Abortion HHS Mandate

A federal appeals court has denied a request by the University of Notre Dame to get out of having to comply with the pro-abortion HHS mandate that is a part of Obamacare and requires businesses and church groups to pay…Continue Reading

The Reception of Holy Communion in the United States

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the close of the Second Vatican Council. Pope Francis has decided to mark the occasion with the “Year of Mercy.” Despite much happy-talk and positive papal press, it is a time of foreboding in…Continue Reading

‘Eleven Christians Killed Every Hour,’ Says Irish Bishop

According to Bishop John McAreavey, the Chair of the Council for Justice & Peace of the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference, statistics show that the situation of Christian persecution in the world is far more dire than most people understand. The…Continue Reading

Africa’s experience of family life must be heard at synod, Pope tells Togo’s bishops

Pope Francis received Togo’s bishops in audience on May 11 as part of their quinquennial ad limina visit to Rome. The West African nation of 6.8 million is 20% Muslim, 15% Protestant, and 14% Catholic, with approximately half of the…Continue Reading

The eco-encyclical won’t commit the Church to unsettled science

By the time the environment encyclical of Pope Francis is released, it will be anti-climactic. Not anti-climate change to be sure, as the Holy See is certainly enthusiastic about the issue. Actually, it is against climate change, but enthusiastic about…Continue Reading

“America’s Changing Religious Landscape.”

The Pew Research Center just released its latest study on “America’s Changing Religious Landscape.” The subtitle tells the story: “Christians Decline Sharply as Share of Population; Unaffiliated and Other Faiths Continue to Grow.” For our purposes, I want to focus…Continue Reading

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our new website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for over 145 years in our weekly print edition. Now we are introducing the online daily version of our print journal.


  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to subscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
 
  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 145 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.

 
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

A Powerful Weapon: 15 Quotes on the Holy Rosary

We live in evil times. I hardly need elaborate the multitude of crises that fill the globe. Sadly, many are being swept away by this flood of evil and are succumbing to an overwhelming anxiety and discouragement. But no matter how tempting it is, we must not shrink back. We must pray and fast with a living faith and a firm confidence—and there is no better way to…Continue Reading

12 Ways to Become a Committed Catholic Man

There is a Catholic “man-crisis.” Large numbers of men who were baptized Catholic have left the Church and the majority of those who remain are “Casual Catholic Men”, men who do not know the Catholic faith and don’t practice it. This large-scale failure of Catholic men to commit themselves to Jesus Christ and His Church has contributed to the accelerating…Continue Reading

Today . . .

Pope Francis: Evangelize with a language of merciful love

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Friday received members of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization at the end of their Plenary session. During the course of their Plenary session the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization has been discussing the relationship between evangelization and catechesis and it was on that theme that Pope Francis addressed members of the Council, including its President Archbishop Rino Fisichella. Speaking to them…Continue Reading

Pope: coherent Christians draw people to Christ

pope788

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis’ homily this morning focused on the Gospel account of Bartimaeus, the blind man who cried out to Jesus to be healed, and whom the disciples called to be silent. The Gospel led the Holy Father to reflect on three different groups of Christians. First, there are Christians who are concerned only with their own relationship with Jesus, a “closed, selfish” relationship, who do not hear the cries of others: “This group…Continue Reading

Pope speaks with open heart to Argentinean newspaper

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis says that being with people does him good. In a long and very personal interview with Juan Beretta, a reporter from the Argentinean newspaper “La Voz Del Pueblo”, the Pope speaks of his feelings of when he was elected Pope, of how he misses walking the streets, using public transport and sitting down for a pizza, of how he feels moved and sad when he meets sick children, prison inmates and…Continue Reading

Pope: worldly Christians can’t have both heaven and earth

pope787

(Vatican Radio)  It’s sad to see a Christian who wants to “follow Jesus and the things of this world.” That’s what Pope Francis said at Tuesday morning’s Mass at the Casa Santa Marta, stressing that a Christian is called to make a radical choice in life:  you can’t be “half” Christian or have both “heaven and earth.” In his homily Pope Francis reflects on Peter’s query to Jesus:  what would he and the disciples get…Continue Reading

Saving The Fourth

By ANDREW P. NAPOLITANO The Patriot Act has a bad pedigree and an evil history. In the fearful days immediately following 9/11, the Department of Justice quickly sent draft legislation to Congress that, if enacted, would have permitted federal agents to violate their oaths to uphold the Constitution by writing their own search warrants. The…Continue Reading

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “How Many People Are Homosexuals?”

By BRIAN CLOWES (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995.) + + + “Homosexuality is one in 10. It’s one in 10 on the football team. It’s one in 10 on the baseball team. It’s one in 10 on the softball team. It’s one in…Continue Reading

It Is A Christian Country: At Least It Used To Be

By JAMES K. FITZPATRICK I realize that there are intelligent commentators on the right who are convinced that homosexual activists are pushing for the day when Christian churches will be compelled by law to perform same-sex marriages. I may be wrong, but I do not think that we will see that dictate anytime soon. It…Continue Reading

Sharper Than A Serpent’s Tooth

By DONALD DeMARCO Commutative justice demands that we repay what we owe. If I owe my brother $10, I should pay him $10. Justice in this sense is a proportion between the debt and the repayment. It is morally and often legally binding. There is a similar proportion on a higher level though it does…Continue Reading

Intense Conflicts . . . Is The Catholic Church In Germany In Danger Of Apostasy?

By MAIKE HICKSON For several weeks now, the German Catholics — bishops and laymen alike — have been in debate and disagreement over Catholic moral teaching and its continuing validity for Catholics today. After the German Bishops’ Conference came out on April 16 with its report to be sent to Rome for the upcoming October…Continue Reading

The Wanderer Interviews His Eminence Raymond Cardinal Burke . . .

burk10

By DON FIER Part 1 (Editor’s Note: Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, who previously served as Prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura in Rome from June 2008 until November 2014, recently visited the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, Wis. Prior to that he served as Archbishop…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Catholic Replies

Q. I like to attend daily Mass, but the town where I live only offers two — at 6:45 and 7:00 a.m. at two different churches. Now that I am getting older and have trouble sleeping, these early Masses are very difficult to attend regularly. I wonder if every parish priest would consider offering at least one Mass per week in the…Continue Reading

The Blood Of Christ Cleanses Our Consciences

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Solemnity Of Corpus Christi (YR B) Readings: Exodus 24:3-8 Heb. 9:11-15 Mark 14:12-16, 22-26 In the first reading today we hear about the covenant that was entered into between God and the people of Israel. Moses was the representative of both God and the people in this case. Consequently, he speaks to the people on behalf…Continue Reading

Archbishop Martin In Lourdes . . . In Defending Marriage, We Are Not Trying To Hurt Or Offend

LOURDES (ZENIT) — Here is a homily given May 13, on the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima, by Archbishop Eamon Martin at Mass in Lourdes on his first pilgrimage to the Marian shrine as archbishop of Armagh, Ireland. + + + At Mass in Lourdes, Archbishop Martin remembered and acknowledged the faithful in Ireland, and around the world, who…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World… Social Networks, Addiction To Images, And Custody Of The Eyes

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK A follower on my Facebook page recently messaged me about a sordid situation arising from an association based on a Facebook “friendship.” She “friended” a man who then used her account to gain access to her daughter. What started out as a hope to meet someone who may become a real friend ended in inappropriate…Continue Reading

An Apologetics Course… The Order Of The Universe Proves God’s Existence

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA Part 3 Let us put our thinking cap on, and reason: Whenever you see something whose parts are arranged in order, following a specific logical pattern, you know that someone did it. Furniture in a living room, chess pieces on a board, books in a library. Orderly arrangement cannot be explained except as being due to…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . St. Ephrem

By CAROLE BRESLIN For centuries — no, for millennia — the Mideast has been the center of tragedy and unrest. Particularly significant in this historical conflict sits the city of Nisibis, now named Nusaybin. Nusaybin is an ancient city which sits on the border between Syria and Turkey. In ancient times this fertile land, located between the Tigris and Euphrates…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Charles Lwanga And Companions

By CAROLE BRESLIN The Catholic Church in Africa has experienced unprecedented growth in the past century. In 1900, shortly after the martyrdom of Charles Lwanga and companions, there were two million Catholics in Africa. When Pope Benedict XVI visited Africa in 2009, the Catholic population was 158 million. Once again the Church has witnessed that the blood of martyrs is…Continue Reading