Friday 20th May 2022

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

2019 The Wanderer Printing Co.

Twitter Feed

Load More...

Vatican and USCCB leave transgender policy texts unpublished

While U.S. bishops have made headlines for releasing policies addressing gender identity and pastoral ministry, guidelines on the subject have been drafted but not published by both the U.S. bishops’ conference and the Vatican’s doctrinal office, leaving diocesan bishops to…Continue Reading

Biden says Pope Francis told him to continue receiving communion, amid scrutiny over pro-abortion policies

President Biden said that Pope Francis, during their meeting Friday in Vatican City, told him that he should continue to receive communion, amid heightened scrutiny of the Catholic president’s pro-abortion policies.  The president, following the approximately 90-minute-long meeting, a key…Continue Reading

Federal judge rules in favor of Gov. DeSantis’ mask mandate ban

MIAMI (LifeSiteNews) – A federal judge this week handed Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis another legal victory on his mask mandate ban for schools. On Wednesday, Judge K. Michael Moore of the Southern District of Florida denied a petition from…Continue Reading

The Eucharist should not be received unworthily, says Nigerian cardinal

Priests have a duty to remind Catholics not to receive the Eucharist in a state of serious sin and to make confession easily available, a Nigerian cardinal said at the International Eucharistic Congress on Thursday. “It is still the doctrine…Continue Reading

Donald Trump takes a swipe at Catholics and Jews who did not vote for him

Donald Trump complained about Catholics and Jews who did not vote for him in 2020. The former president made the comments in a conference call featuring religious leaders. The move could be seen to shore up his religious conservative base…Continue Reading

Y Gov. Kathy Hochul Admits Andrew Cuomo Covered Up COVID Deaths, 12,000 More Died Than Reported

When it comes to protecting people from COVID, Andrew Cuomo is already the worst governor in America. New York has the second highest death rate per capita, in part because he signed an executive order putting COVID patients in nursing…Continue Reading

Prayers For Cardinal Burke . . . U.S. Cardinal Burke says he has tested positive for COVID-19

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — U.S. Cardinal Raymond L. Burke said he has tested positive for the virus that causes COVID-19. In an Aug. 10 tweet, he wrote: “Praised be Jesus Christ! I wish to inform you that I have recently…Continue Reading

Democrats Block Amendment Banning Late-Term Abortions, Stopping Abortions Up to Birth

Senate Democrats have blocked an amendment that would ban abortions on babies older than 20 weeks. During consideration of the multi-trillion spending package, pro-life Louisiana Senator John Kennedy filed an amendment to ban late-term abortions, but Democrats steadfastly support killing…Continue Reading

Transgender student wins as U.S. Supreme Court rebuffs bathroom appeal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday handed a victory to a transgender former public high school student who waged a six-year legal battle against a Virginia county school board that had barred him from using the bathroom corresponding…Continue Reading

New York priest accused by security guard of assault confirms charges have now been dropped

NEW YORK, June 17, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — A New York priest has made his first public statement regarding the dismissal of charges against him.  Today Father George W. Rutler reached out to LifeSiteNews and other media today with the following…Continue Reading

21,000 sign petition protesting US Catholic bishops vote on Biden, abortion

More than 21,000 people have signed a letter calling for U.S. Catholic bishops to cancel a planned vote on whether President Biden should receive communion.  Biden, a Catholic, supports abortion rights and has long come under attack from some Catholics over that…Continue Reading

Bishop Gorman seeks candidates to fill two full time AP level teaching positions for the 2021-2022 school year in the subject areas of Calculus/Statistics and Physics

Bishop Thomas K. Gorman Regional Catholic School is a college preparatory school located in Tyler, Texas. It is an educational ministry of the Catholic Diocese of Tyler led by Bishop Joseph Strickland. The sixth through twelfth grade school provides a…Continue Reading

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for 150 years in our weekly print edition.


  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 su
bscribe 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 150 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

Catechism

Today . . .

Justice Clarence Thomas Defends Draft Overturning Roe v. Wade, Tells Abortion Activists We Won’t be “Bullied”

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has a message for the radical abortion activists who think they can bully the Supreme Court into revising its draft opinion overturning Roe v. Wade: You can’t bully us. Abortion activists plan to “raise hell” at churches across the country on Mother’s Day with protests and, some fear, violence as outrage grows in response to a leaked draft opinion from the U.S. Supreme Court that overturns Roe v. Wade. But Justice Thomas…Continue Reading

Supreme Court has voted to overturn abortion rights, draft opinion shows

The Supreme Court has voted to strike down the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, according to an initial draft majority opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito circulated inside the court and obtained by POLITICO. The draft opinion is a full-throated, unflinching repudiation of the 1973 decision which guaranteed federal constitutional protections of abortion rights and a subsequent 1992 decision – Planned Parenthood v. Casey – that largely maintained the right. “Roe was egregiously wrong from the start,” Alito writes.

China expert: Dead bodies from Shanghai lockdown will far outnumber COVID casualties

China expert Steve Mosher warned Wednesday that the deadly toll of Shanghai’s ongoing lockdowns will be “much greater” than any potential lives lost due to COVID-19. “I don’t know how many lives they’re going to save from coronavirus in Shanghai, but I guarantee when they finally go into some of these apartments where people have been locked up for three or four weeks, they’re going to find dead bodies of people who’ve starved to death,…Continue Reading

Colorado legalizes abortion until the moment of birth

DENVER (LifeSiteNews) — Democrat Gov. Jared Polis of Colorado signed a bill into law on Monday that allows babies to be killed in the womb up until the moment of birth. “No matter what the Supreme Court does in the future, people in Colorado will be able to choose when and if they have children,” Polis said at the signing ceremony in downtown Denver, referencing the possible reversal of Roe v. Wade in the coming weeks.

Emails Show Cardinal Cupich Complicit In Mayor’s Draconian Lockdown Policies for Chicago Churches

In May 2020, Mayor Lori Lightfoot was drawing considerable flak over her stance against churches and other places of worship reopening for services amid the COVID-19 pandemic. But she found a behind-the-scenes ally to help her face the backlash from faith communities: Cardinal Blase Cupich, the top Catholic cleric in the Chicago region. Newly obtained emails between Cupich and Lightfoot show the cardinal advised the mayor on May 13, 2020, about how to craft a…Continue Reading

Justice Clarence Thomas Defends Draft Overturning Roe v. Wade

By STEVEN ERTELT WASHINGTON, D.C. (LifeNews) — Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has a message for the radical abortion activists who think they can bully the Supreme Court into revising its draft opinion overturning Roe v. Wade: You can’t bully us.Abortion activists “raised hell” at some churches across the country on Mother’s Day with protests.…Continue Reading

Deicide: The Ultimate Fraud

By DEACON JAMES H. TONER “Since these people did not see fit to acknowledge God, He abandoned them to their depraved way of thinking and to all types of vile behavior” (Romans 1:28). + + With broken hearts and with more than a little anger, we survey the Church’s wreckage and chaos, and we ask,…Continue Reading

Ignores Brutality Of Abortion…. Joe Biden Slams “Brutality” Of Draft To Overturn Roe

By STEVEN ERTELT CHICAGO (LifeNews) — During a fundraising speech to top Democrat donors on May 11, Joe Biden slammed the “brutality” of the Supreme Court’s draft ruling overturning Roe v. Wade but ignored the brutality of how babies are dismembered in abortions.Biden spoke at a Democratic National Committee Fundraiser that Wednesday night at the…Continue Reading

U.S. Trade Deficit With Communist China Is Climbing

By TERENCE P. JEFFREY At the White House press briefing last December 6, press secretary Jen Psaki made it clear that President Joe Biden wanted the People’s Republic of China to pay a price for its human rights abuses.He would do so by declining to send any U.S. government officials to the Beijing Winter Olympics,…Continue Reading

The Narrow Gate

By DONALD DeMARCO In Matt. 7:13-14, Christ tells us something we need to know but are reluctant to accept: “Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, tt leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Liturgy Unites, Gaslighting Divides

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK Guns don’t kill people, people do. People are the source of division, not the things they use to bring about violence. The voice is one of the most beautiful gifts given to men, and yet men use their voices all too frequently in sinful ways to divide and to hate. This is not the fault…Continue Reading

Do You Fear The Right Thing? A Meditation On The Story Of Chicken Little

By MSGR. CHARLES POPE (Editor’s Note: Msgr. Charles Pope posted this article on May 9, 2022 and it is reprinted here with permission.) + + In the wake of the COVID-19 explosion of fear, we do well to begin reflecting on fear. Fear is a complex passion. On the one hand, there are things that we ought to fear such…Continue Reading

God’s Ways Are Not Our Ways

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Sixth Sunday Of Easter (YR C) Readings: Acts 15:1-2, 22-29Rev. 21:10-14, 22-23John 14:23-29 In the Gospel reading today, our Lord tells us that He leaves us with peace, but not just any peace, rather, “My peace I give to you.” He makes the distinction between the peace He gives and the peace the world gives, then…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Editor’s Note: This series on Apologetics is based on the book Catholicism & Reason. Please feel free to use the series for high schoolers or adults. We will continue to welcome your questions for the column as well. You can send them either to the postal mailing address or to the email address below, and we will interrupt this series…Continue Reading

Liturgical And Cultural Diversity

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK The same Church leaders calling for cultural diversity are proposing to injure it through a plan to eliminate the liturgical diversity which underlies it.Cultural diversity is a current touchstone in the Church. The Archdiocese of Washington has planned a high visibility meeting about the matter this month. Each parish in the archdiocese has been tasked…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Joseph Of Cupertino

By DEB PIROCH St. Joseph, born in 1603, experienced his first ecstatic vision when he was only elementary school age and, his jaw dropping in astonishment, he was in utter amazement at what was shown him. Classmates not surprisingly bestowed on him the name of “bocca aperta,” or “open mouthed.” The only son of Felix and Frances Desa, he was…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Agnes

By DEB PIROCH “What threats the executioner used to make her fear him, what allurements to persuade her, how many desired that she would come to them in marriage! But she answered: ‘It would be an injury to my spouse to look on any one as likely to please me. He who chose me first for Himself shall receive me. Why…Continue Reading

Advertisement(2)