(CNSNews.com) -- Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò said Pope Francis “put in place a subtle slander” against him by comparing him to “the great accuser, Satan” in a homily, according to an open letter released by LifeSiteNews which is dated Sept. 29 but was released Sept. 27.
Vigano made his remarks in this letter following an Aug. 22 “Testimony,” in which the archbishop, the former papal nuncio to the United States, detailed the corruption and predatory homosexuals in the episcopacy and how Pope Francis covered-up the homosexual abuses perpetrated by Cardinal Theodore McCarrick. In the Testimony, Vigano called on Pope Francis to resign.
Vigano was made an archbishop by Pope St. John Paul II in 1992. He has worked at the highest levels of the Vatican and for the Vatican Secretary of State since 1978. He served as the apostolic nuncio (ambassador) to the United States from 2011 to 2016, under both Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis.
“Now, the Pope’s reply to my testimony was: ‘I will not say a word!’” Viganó wrote in the Sept. 29 letter. “But then, contradicting himself, he has compared his silence to that of Jesus in Nazareth and before Pilate, and compared me to the great accuser, Satan, who sows scandal and division in the Church – though without ever uttering my name.”
Vigano continued, “If he had said: ‘Viganó lied,’ he would have challenged my credibility while trying to affirm his own. In so doing he would have intensified the demand of the people of God and the world for the documentation needed to determine who has told the truth. Instead, he put in place a subtle slander against me – slander being an offense he has often compared to the gravity of murder.”
In his new letter, Viganó repeated his allegation against Pope Francis and condemned the Pope’s failure to offer any substantial confirmation or denial of the allegation.
“Neither the pope, nor any of the cardinals in Rome have denied the facts I asserted in my testimony,” Viganó stated. “‘Qui tacet consentit’ surely applies here, for if they deny my testimony, they have only to say so, and provide documentation to support that denial. How can one avoid concluding that the reason they do not provide the documentation is that they know it confirms my testimony?”
‘Qui tacet consentit’ is a Latin phrase that means ‘Who keeps silent, consents.’
Viganó criticized the Pope for “perhaps” being “tempted to try to act as a substitute” for God.
“Has Christ perhaps become invisible to his vicar?” Viganó asked. “Perhaps is he being tempted to try to act as a substitute of our only Master and Lord?”
Viganó also appealed to Cardinal Marc Ouellet, who allegedly told him about Pope Benedict’s sanctions on McCarrick in 2013, asking Ouellet to “bear witness to the truth.”
“Your Eminence, before I left for Washington, you were the one who told me of Pope Benedict’s sanctions on McCarrick. You have at your complete disposal key documents incriminating McCarrick and many in the curia for their cover-ups. Your Eminence, I urge you to bear witness to the truth,” Viganó wrote.
In his letter, Viganó admitted that his decision to publish the original Testimony with the allegations against the Pope was “the most painful and serious decision” he had ever made.
“My decision to reveal those grave facts was for me the most painful and serious decision that I have ever made in my life. I made it after long reflection and prayer,” Viganó wrote.
“Well aware of the enormous consequences that my testimony could have, because what I was about to reveal involved the successor of Peter himself, I nonetheless chose to speak in order to protect the Church, and I declare with a clear conscience before God that my testimony is true,” he added.
The Archbishop also provided a justification for his decision to break the “pontifical secret” that he had “promised to observe.”
“The purpose of any secret, including the pontifical secret, is to protect the Church from her enemies, not to cover up and become complicit in crimes committed by some of her members,” Vigano wrote. “I was a witness, not by my choice, of shocking facts and, as the Catechism of the Catholic Church states (par. 2491), the seal of secrecy is not binding when very grave harms can be avoided only by divulging the truth.”
Viganó ended the letter with an appeal to Catholics to “never be despondent” and to maintain “complete confidence in Christ Jesus.”
“Finally, I wish to encourage you, dear faithful, my brothers and sisters in Christ: never be despondent! Make your own the act of faith and complete confidence in Christ Jesus, our Savior, of Saint Paul in his second Letter to Timothy, Scio cui credidi, which I choose as my episcopal motto,” Viganó wrote.
‘Scio cui credidi’ is Latin for ‘I know whom I have believed.’