Cardinal Confesses to 'Mafia' Club Against Pope Benedict XVI and for Jorge Bergoglio ('Pope Francis')


Catholic mafia

St. Gallen Mafia: Cardinal Martini, Cardinal Kasper, Cardinal Danneels

On September 24, 2015 journalist and 'Vatican insider' Edward Pentin released the article below on the National Catholic Register titled:  "Cardinal Danneels Admits to Being Part of 'Mafia' Club Opposed to Benedict XVI".  We hope you will take the time to read the articles below in full.

In brief:
At the launch of his new authorized biography Cardinal Danneels confessed to being part of a secret club of cardinals, a radical "mafia" reformist group opposed to Pope Benedict XVI. He called it a "mafia" club that bore the name of St. Gallen. The group wanted a drastic reform of the Church, to make it "much more modern", and for Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio (now Pope Francis) to head it. The group, which also comprised Cardinal Walter Kasper and the late Jesuit Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini, has been documented in Austen Ivereigh's biography  The Great Reformer: Francis and the Making of a Radical Pope.



"Cardinal Danneels Admits to Being Part of 'Mafia' Club Opposed to Benedict XVI"
by Edward Pentin, National Catholic Register – September 24, 2015

Further serious concerns are being raised about Cardinal Godfried Danneels, one of the papal delegates chosen to attend the upcoming Ordinary Synod on the Family, after the archbishop emeritus of Brussels confessed this week to being part of a radical "mafia" reformist group opposed to Benedict XVI.

It was also revealed this week that he once wrote a letter to the Belgium government favoring same-sex "marriage" legislation because it ended discrimination against LGBT groups.

The cardinal is already known for having once advised the king of Belgium to sign an abortion law in 1990, for telling a victim of clerical sex abuse to keep quiet, and for refusing to forbid pornographic, “educational” materials being used in Belgian Catholic schools.

He also once said same-sex “marriage” was a “positive development,” although he has sought to distinguish such a union from the Church’s understanding of marriage.

According to a forthcoming authorized biography on the cardinal co-written by Jürgen Mettepenningen, a former spokesman for Cardinal Danneels' successor, Archbishop Andre Joseph Leonard, and Karim Schelkens, a Church historian and theologian, the cardinal expressed satisfaction over the disappearance of “discrimination” against LGBT couples after legislation was passed approving same-sex "marriage" in 2003.

The authors of the biography, to be published Sept. 29, reveal that the cardinal wrote a letter on May 28, 2003, to then-Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt, who at that time was putting together his second government.

In the letter, the cardinal wrote favorably about "one of the last achievements of Verhofstadt’s first governments, the approval of a legal statute for a stable relationship between partners of the same sex." Verhofstadt’s government introduced same sex-‘marriage’ into Belgium in 2003.

"He wanted to stop discrimination between married heterosexuals and homosexuals who had a long-term relationship," write the two authors of the biography. "But there should be no confusion between the use of the term ‘marriage’."

Asked about the letter, Verhofstadt said he did not recall it, but added: “I never had any problem with the cardinal. Our relationship was good.”

Under Verhofstadt’s leadership, from 1999 to 2007, the Belgian government not only introduced same sex “marriage”, but also laws on euthanasia, experiments on human embryos, and IVF.

Despite the poor record of the Belgian Church in resisting these laws, and the country being far smaller than many African countries that have one delegate representing them, Cardinal Danneels, 82, will be one of three Belgian prelates to attend the synod in October.

The Vatican listed him second in importance out of 45 delegates personally chosen by Pope Francis to participate in the upcoming meeting. He also took part in last year’s Extraordinary Synod as a papal delegate.

At the launch of the book in Brussels this week, the cardinal said he was part of a secret club of cardinals opposed to Pope Benedict XVI.

He called it a "mafia" club that bore the name of St. Gallen. The group wanted a drastic reform of the Church, to make it "much more modern", and for Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio to head it. The group, which also comprised Cardinal Walter Kasper and the late Jesuit Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini, has been documented in Austen Ivereigh's biography of Pope Francis, The Great Reformer.


This story was also covered in La Stampa.


"The election of Jorge Bergoglio by the Martini-led “Mafia
by Marco Tosatti, La Stampa – September 24, 2015
(english translation by Rorate Caeli)

The election of Jorge Bergoglio was the fruit of secret meetings that cardinals and bishops, organized by Carlo Maria Martini, held for years at St. Gall in Switzerland. This is what is claimed by Jürgen Mettepenningen and Karim Schelkens, the authors of a just published biography of the Belgian Cardinal Godfried Danneels, who refer to the group of cardinals and bishops as the “Mafia-club”.

Danneels, according to the authors, had worked for years in preparation for the election of Pope Francis, which happened in 2013. He himself, however, in a video recorded during the presentation of the book admits that he had taken part in a secret club of cardinals that were in opposition to Joseph Ratzinger. While laughing he calls it “a Mafia club whose name was St. Gall”.

The group wanted a drastic reform of the Church, much more modern and up to date, with Jorge Bergoglio as Pope Francis at the head. And this is just as things turned out. In addition to Danneels and Martini, among the others who made up the group according to the book were the Dutch bishop Adriaan Van Luyn, the German cardinals Walter Kasper and Karl Lehman, the Italian cardinal Achille Silvestrini and the English cardinal Basil Hume. [Rorate note: from the earliest days of the group, later replaced after his death.]

The Belgian newspaper “Le Vif” wrote: “On March 13, 2013, an old acquaintance was at the side of the new Pope [at the St. Peter’s Basilica loggia], Francis: Godfried Danneels. Officially he stood there in his role as the dean of the cardinal-priests, but actually he had operated for years in secret as the king-maker.”
Danneels has been invited again by Pope Francis to attend the Synod on the Family that will take place in October in Rome. But he has been severely criticized. He tried to dissuade a victim of sexual abuse from accusing the man who abused him, a bishop, who was the uncle of the victim, and because of this, at the time of the Conclave in 2013 there were those in Belgium who asked that he not be allowed to elect the new Pope.

In addition, his positions on homosexual marriage and on abortion, (according to the revelations of two parliamentarians Danneels had written to the king of Belgium urging him to sign the law that permitted it) do not seem to be in harmony with the Magisterium of the Church. And not in harmony as well with what Pope Francis affirms.


Lifesitenews ran a story titled "Swiss bishops confirm existence of Cardinal Danneels’ ‘mafia’ against Benedict XVI" on September 29.


Swiss bishops confirm existence of Cardinal Danneels’ ‘mafia’ against Benedict XVI
by Maike Hickson, Lifesitenews – September 29, 2015

While correcting local media reports, the Swiss bishops today confirmed the existence of the so-called “mafia” of bishops that aimed to counter the influence of Cardinal Ratzinger during the pontificate of John Paul II.

The confirmation came amid intense discussion in Switzerland about the question of the now well-known group of cardinals, called the “St. Gallen Group,” about which Cardinal Godfried Danneels recently made some disturbing, even embarrassing revelations.

This morning, the local radio station FM1 Today in Sankt Gallen, Switerland, reported on the alleged secret meetings of this “St. Gallen Group” that supposedly worked both on making Pope Benedict XVI resign and on getting Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio then elected for the Papal office. As sources for their claims, the radio station cited a new biography about Bishop Danneels, as well as a candid public statement that the cardinal himself made. Summing up their claims about this seeming conspiracy, the radio station said:
Karim Schelkens, historian and co-author of the biography, said in an interview that the election of Bergoglio has been without doubt prepared in St. Gallen in the middle of the “mafia” and also that Ratzinger resigned because of it [this “mafia”].

For some reason, only a few hours later, that same radio station softened some of its claims. The second report, entitled “There were meetings, but no secret meetings,” now said: “It is wrong to put the St. Gallen circle of Cardinals in the connection with the resignation of Pope Benedict, since the meetings did not take place any more after the year 2006.”

The official website of the Swiss Bishops' Conference,, subsequently published today their own article about this matter, pointing out the fact that the Diocese of St. Gallen, whose bishop is the president of the Bishops' Conference, has now made a public statement refuting the claims of the radio station.

On the website of the Diocese of St. Gallen, a summarizing statement quotes the different radio reports and then refers to its own statement. This statement is mainly based on the witness of the former bishop of St. Gallen, Bishop Ivo Fürer. The statement says:
This group [St. Gallen Group] met on a regular basis in St. Gallen for the sake of a friendly exchange. The rest is speculation, as will become clear in the following sentences: […]

Bishop Ivo Fürer, the former bishop of St. Gallen, explains the situation as follows:

A private circle met on a regular basis from 1996 until 2006. It was now-deceased Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini and the then-bishop of St. Gallen, Ivo Fürer who initiated these meetings. Neither Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini nor Bishop Ivo Fürer were at the time members of the Council of the European Bishops' Conferences (CCEE), but the members of the circle of friends had first met in part through the CCEE. Some of the bishops and cardinals who were friends desired a continued exchange among each other. Of course they also spoke about the situation in the Church at their yearly gatherings in St. Gallen. They also spoke – when the health of Pope John Paul II was continuously declining – about the question as to which qualities a new pope should have.

During the election of Joseph Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI/2005/115 Cardinals), the cardinals who regularly met in St. Gallen had discussions during the pre-conclave. According to some reports, Cardinal Bergoglio already received a significant number of votes [at the conclave].

The election of Pope Francis in 2013 (115 Cardinals) corresponded to the goals of the group in St. Gallen – so it says in the biography of Cardinal Danneels. This is being confirmed by Bishop Ivo Fürer who never hid his joy about the election of the Argentine.

But it is wrong to draw a connection between the group of St. Gallen with the resignation of Pope Benedict, since the meetings did not take place any more after 2006; the resignation of Pope Benedict took place in 2013.

The official report of the Diocese of St. Gallen, therefore, has admitted that such a “St. Gallen Group” existed. Bishop Fürer also admits to his own approval of the election of Cardinal Bergoglio but insists that the meetings ceased in 2006. Ivo Fürer was Bishop of St. Gallen from 1995 until 2005. He was prominently involved, as its President from 1995-2009, with the Swiss Catholic Lenten Fund which has come under strong international criticism for its funding of LGBT activists, as well for its funding of the Swiss Institute for Pastoral Sociology whose president, Dr. Arnd Bünker, is himself an active promoter of the homosexual agenda.


A story by Louie Verrocchio in Renew America discussing the Galen Group, Vatileaks, and the allegation that Pope Benedict XVI was blackmailed into abdication through manipulations by SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication) who shut down all Vatican ATM's and credit card transactions on January 1, 2013 and reinstated them on February 12, 2013 – one day after Pope Benedict XVI announced his resignation.


Money, sex and modernism
by Louie Verrocchio, Renew America – October 1, 2015

An article by Italian journalist Maurizio Blondet is making the rounds alleging that Pope Benedict XVI was blackmailed into abdication by forces allied with SWIFT (the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication), which had a hand in the shutdown of ATM and bank card services at the Vatican in January of 2012.

According to Blondet:

"There was a blackmail of Benedict XVI, coming from who knows where, through SWIFT. The underlying reasons for this have not been clarified, but it is clear that SWIFT has intervened directly in the management of affairs of the Church."

This particular theory is not entirely new. It has long been running concurrent with another theory; namely, that Pope Benedict XVI abdicated in sheer horror at the contents of the infamous 300 page report, given to him in December of 2012, detailing the activities of a Vatican "gay mafia."

Which one, if either, is correct?

No one knows for certain, but my money is on both, though not to the exclusion of other unknown factors.

Let's recap.

In 2009, Pope Benedict XVI launched an aggressive reform of the Istituto per le Opere di Religione (IOR), often referred to as the Vatican Bank, appointing Ettore Gotti Tedeschi as President of its Board of Superintendence in order to spearhead the project.

Throughout his tenure, Gotti Tedeschi's efforts to bring the IOR up to international banking standards based upon financial transparency (aimed at eliminating money laundering and other criminal activities) met with much resistance from within.

In May of 2012, he was ousted following a "no confidence" vote on the part of the Board of Directors, after which he faced a number of criminal charges on which he has since been exonerated in the Italian courts.

At this point, it seems rather clear that Gotti Tedeschi was railroaded by men in powerful positions who, for reasons unknown, wanted him out of the way.

Following Gotti Tedeschi's ouster, Ronaldo Hermann Schmitz, the Board's second in command, became acting head of the IOR until a process of finding Tedeschi's replacement could be completed.

News reports issued after the Board's unanimous no-confidence vote have drawn my attention squarely to the person of Tedeschi's interim replacement, Schmitz, the former Deutsche Bank Executive Director who allegedly drove the process that led to his removal.

Following the Board's no-confidence vote, it was then left up to the IOR's Supervisory Commission of Cardinals to either act, or not, upon the Board's recommendation to formally remove Gotti Tedeschi.

As the cardinals deliberated, Schmitz reportedly delivered an ultimatum to Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone (Secretary of State and head of the Cardinal's Commission) that either Gotti Tedeschi be relieved of his position, or he himself would resign.

Though it was widely reported that the Commission of Cardinals was split as to how to respond, ultimately, they removed Gotti Tedeschi in May of 2012.

The result?

With Gotti Tedeschi gone and Schmitz acting as caretaker until a new President could be found, the reform of the IOR, if not effectively put on hold, brought to a veritable crawl.

It was during this period of time that the Council of Europe's Committee of Experts on the Evaluation of Anti-Money Laundering Measures and the Financing of Terrorism (Moneyval) determined that the IOR lacked appropriate oversight, and was, according to a report in the Financial Times, "compliant or largely compliant on only nine out of 16 core standards."

This set the stage for Italian banking regulators to pressure Deutsche Bank, which managed the Vatican's ATM machines and credit card payment services, to cease their services to the Holy See.

According to the Times:

"Deutsche did what regulators had hoped it would. On January 1 2013, a peak holiday time, there were no ATMs functioning anywhere inside Vatican City. Lines of visitors to the Sistine Chapel were unable to enter unless they paid in cash. "The message sent was simple: if you want to participate in the modern world, you have to adopt modern rules," says a senior banker at another correspondent bank."

It was reported that the move took the Vatican by surprise.


It strikes me as interesting that more attention isn't being paid to the role played by Ronaldo Hermann Schmitz, the acting President of the IOR Board at the time, given his ties to Deutsche Bank.

I mean, one would think that the former Deutsche Bank Executive Director, even if unable to leverage his contacts within the German banking giant to forestall such a drastic move, would have at the very least been well aware of what was coming and could have perhaps taken steps to secure the services of another financial institution, as happened in short order soon afterwards.

This leads me to wonder where Ronaldo Hermann Schmitz's own interests may have lied as this was taking place.

Let me be clear; I have no information implicating Schmitz in any nefarious activity; I am simply making common sense observations and asking questions that, curiously enough, have apparently never been addresses by those in the media; in spite of the extensive coverage these events received.

In any case, one is still left to wonder what motivated Gotti Tedeschi's removal.

Given that the reform of the IOR, for all intents and purposes, was all but halted while interim President Schmitz acted as caretaker until a new President could be found, one might assume that this interruption alone was the primary motive.

It seems rather clear for reasons addressed below, however, that the motive went well beyond simply protecting the interests of those whose financial improprieties Gotti Tedeschi was laboring to uncover, making it seem far more likely Gotti Tedeshi's demise was undertaken in order to set in motion the events that would secure the abdication of the man who appointed him.

Circumstantial evidence strongly attesting to this being the case can be found in the fact that the Vatican reached an agreement with a Swiss firm to resume ATM and other bank card transactions effective February 12, 2013, just one day after Benedict XVI announced his intention to abdicate.

Indeed, as far as I can tell, nothing of note had changed between the cessation of bank card operations on January 1st and their resumption on February 12th relative to the Vatican Bank's compliance with international banking standards. Rather, the only noteworthy thing to change was the status of Benedict's pontificate.

Further evidence suggesting that the motives for Gotti Tedeschi's removal extended beyond mere financial concerns can be found in the fact that Pope Francis has since resumed the process of reforming the IOR, arguably, even more aggressively than his predecessor.

In truth, the process resumed in earnest even before Francis was elected.

On February 15, 2013, just four days after Pope Benedict XVI announced his abdication, a new IOR Board President was appointed, one Ernst von Freyberg, thus setting the reform process back in motion.

Once again, we see evidence that securing the abdication of the reigning pontiff was the real goal all along; i.e., hampering the IOR's reform was simply a means to an end, with Gotti Tedeschi being little more than a casualty of a much bigger war.

The question remains, if not exclusively to protect the interests of those who profited from the Vatican Bank's lack of transparency, what exactly was the primary motivation for those who wished to see Pope Benedict XVI removed?

The general answer, it seems, was to promote doctrinal and liturgical liberalism, but the more specific and far more relevant answer can be summed up in a word: homosexuality.

In the contents of a newly published authorized biography, Cardinal Godfried Danneels admitted to membership in a so-called "mafia club" that was organized to oppose the pontificate of Pope Benedict XVI .

As reported by Edward Pentin of National Catholic Register:

"At the launch of the book in Brussels this week, the cardinal said he was part of a secret club of cardinals opposed to Pope Benedict XVI. The group wanted a drastic reform of the Church, to make it "much more modern," and for Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio to head it. The group, which also comprised Cardinal Walter Kasper and the late Jesuit Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini, has been documented in Austen Ivereigh's biography of Pope Francis, The Great Reformer."

Cardinal Danneels, Kasper, and Martini never made any bones about their desire to see the Church modernized, in particular as it concerns the matter of homosexuality.

On June 5, 2013, with his dream of a Bergoglian pontificate realized, Cardinal Danneels, for his part, apparently felt empowered to speak with stunning candor to the Dutch language newspaper De Tijd saying:

"I think it's a positive development that states are free to open up civil marriage for gays if they want."

One wonders if he would have been quite so bold just a year earlier when Benedict XVI was still on the throne of St. Peter. I, for one, tend to doubt it.

In any case, with two and half years having passed since his elevation to the papacy, one can easily understand why Jorge Bergoglio was the "mafia club's" leader of choice, and furthermore, why Cardinal Danneels felt empowered to speak as candidly he did.

Pope Francis has clearly demonstrated his worthiness of Danneels' confidence since taking office, most notably in the publication of the interim relatio of Extraordinary Synod 2014; a document that hails the "gifts and qualities that homosexuals have to offer to the Christian community," and even goes so far as to challenge the faithful to "accept and value their sexual orientation."

Even so, I am not convinced that promoting the homosexual agenda is truly one of Francis' pet causes, though his sympathies toward it are obvious enough.

In a conversation with a fellow speaker at this past weekend's Catholic Identity Conference, a man with considerable international contacts, he informed me that he had spoken with a priest in Argentina shortly after the last papal election, asking him how the new pope is likely to treat the rumored Vatican "gay network."

To paraphrase the answer he was given: If it furthers his own interests to clamp down on it, he will; if not, he'll largely leave them alone.

With this in mind, I think it's reasonable to believe that Pope Francis is not so much a warrior in the cause of homo-militantism, but rather a modernist who is willing to make whatever concessions may be necessary in order to promote his own (aka the Council's) vision for a church-of-man; one in which temporal concerns, like poverty, reign supreme, and matters of doctrine and religious affiliation are of little importance.

As for the homosexual agenda itself, Pope Francis seems to knows very well, thanks in part to the example of his predecessor, that placating its powerful Vatican allies is imperative lest his own pontificate come to an untimely end.

Whether or not he agreed to such a pact prior to his election is not clear, but apparently he received some on-the-job instruction as to its tenets.

For instance, On June 11, 2013, Pope Francis reportedly said:

"The 'gay lobby' is spoken of, and it's true … we need to see what we can do."

And yet, just over a month later, during an in-flight press conference, he said:

"So much is written about the gay lobby. I have yet to find on a Vatican identity card the word 'gay.' They say there are some gay people here. I think that when we encounter a gay person, we must make the distinction between the fact of a person being gay and the fact of a lobby, because lobbies are not good."

Apparently, the lesson had been learned; when it comes to the "gay" agenda, essentially nothing of note is to be done.

In any case, this brings me to the smoking gun in this nasty affair; that long since forgotten 300 page report detailing the Vatican's "gay mafia" as delivered to Pope Benedict in December of 2012.

At this, let's recap events while attempting to connect some of the dots such as we are able…

The Commission of Cardinals that generated the storied 300 page report was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI in March of 2012.

Having witnessed the degree to which Pope Benedict was willing to act motu proprio in matters about which he feels strongly (lifting the excommunications from the SSPX bishops, Summorum Pontificum), there can be no doubt that the caporegime of the so-called "gay mafia" quickly identified an urgent need to formulate a response.

Two months later, in May of 2012, the IOR Board of Directors issued the "no-confidence" vote that led to the ouster of Ettore Gotti Tedeschi as its President; a move that not only halted his efforts to bring the Vatican Bank into compliance with international banking standards, but cleared the way for former Deutsche Bank executive Ronaldo Hermann Schmitz to take over in the interim.

On December 17th of that same year, the Commission of Cardinals handed the 300 page report detailing the Vatican gay lobby's influence to Pope Benedict XVI.

Just two weeks later, on January 1, 2013, Schmitz's former employer, Deutsche Bank, suspended ATM and bank card operations at the Vatican, effectively creating a situation described by Maurizio Blondet as rendering the pope "unable to buy or sell," a Biblical reference to those faithful ones who refuse the mark of the beast in the end times.

The shutting down of ATM and bank card services was serious enough, but surely Pope Benedict understood that if the Holy See was to find itself further isolated from the international banking community, the mission of the Catholic Church throughout the world would be crippled in an unprecedented way.

Having gotten the message loud and clear, on February 11, 2013, the Holy Father made the announcement that his adversaries – homosexualists Danneels, Kasper and Martini among them – dreamed about; he was abdicating the throne of Peter.

Within 24 hours the Vatican was back in business; its ability to conduct ATM and bank card transactions restored.

A mere three days later, a new President was named to the IOR Board of Directors, thus setting its reform in motion in earnest once more.

Pope Francis, for his part, in his first major act in the reform of the IOR on his watch named a notorious homosexual cleric, Monsignor Battista Ricca, as the prelate-liaison between the Vatican Bank Board of Directors and its Commission of Cardinals.

It was in answer to a question that clearly referred to Monsignor Ricca that Francis famously replied, "Who am I to judge?"

Since then, Pope Francis has shaken up the IOR's Commission of Cardinals (six in total), including among its appointees Cardinal Christoph Schonborn, and man with a homo-friendly track record of his own and who recently said of so-called "stable" gay relationships:

"It's an improvement. [The partners] share a life, they share their joys and sufferings, they help one another. It must be recognized that this person took an important step for his own good and the good of others, even though it certainly is not a situation the Church can consider 'regular' … Instead of talking about everything that is missing, we can draw close to this reality, noting what is positive in this love that is establishing itself."

As for the 300 page dossier detailing the activities of a gay lobby in the Vatican, it was reportedly turned over directly from the hands of Benedict to his successor, Pope Francis, never to be mentioned again.

As Maurizio Blondet wrote, "the underlying reasons" for the events that led to the abdication of Pope Benedict XVI are not clear, but what does seem clear enough is that money, sex and modernism are somewhere in the mix.


The Remnant Newspaper also published an article with more background on Cardinal Danneels and questions that need answered.


The Gall of the St. Gallen Mafia
by Elizabeth Yore, The Remnant Newspaper – July 1, 2016

“Never let anyone know what you are thinking.”
~Mario Puzo, The Godfather

Darkness descended onto Piazza di San Pietro into the evening hours of March 13, 2013, as the successor to the resigned Benedict XVI, was introduced to the Catholic Church.

Invited onto the balcony, a mere arm’s length from the new Pontiff, Cardinal Godfried Danneels surveyed the massive crowd during the announcement of the papal election of Jorge Bergoglio. There, on the Loggia of St. Peter’s, he stood, sending a message with his smug triumphant gaze.

Rewarded for his unstinting loyalty and ecclesial political prowess, he stands prominently with the Pontiff, as an acknowledgement from his peers that Danneels’ handpicked choice is finally elevated to the Chair of St. Peter.

Decked out in his ceremonial scarlet, Belgian Cardinal Danneels proudly stood as the victorious mastermind behind the clandestine St. Gallen group of European prelates who plotted since 1996 to elect a radical reformer pope. Early on, the St. Gallen group identified their prime papal contender as Jorge Bergoglio of Argentina, confident that he would radically transform and modernize the Catholic Church in their image and likeness. They kept their scheme and racket carefully under wraps.

They nearly won the turf war in 2005 when John Paul II died. The St. Gallen group scrambled for their opportunity to install their man, yet fell short. Their papal politicking tallied a second place papal ballot finish for Bergoglio, but ultimately he lost out to the conservative Car dinal Ratzinger. Media reports state that the St. Gallen group never met after 2006. Perhaps, they never met again in St. Gallen, or possibly they changed their name and met elsewhere.

Frustration was building. They were running out of precious time, as the St. Gallen group aged and, more importantly, Jorge Bergoglio was rapidly growing too old for papabile. The dream of modernizing the Church was slipping through their ecclesial fingers. Worst of all, a relatively healthy Benedict occupied the Chair of Peter as an impenetrable impediment to their plans.

Apart from the devil, there is no more unforgiving enemy, than random Father Time.

The clock was ticking. Without divine intervention, Benedict appeared firmly ensconced in the Seat of Peter. The St. Gallen Prelates couldn’t wait another 3 or 4 years for his earthly demise. Besides Cardinal Bergoglio was already 76, and soon, he would be too old to be elected Pope.

Then, the unthinkable happened. Lightening struck St. Peter’s.

“You can’t hide the thunderbolt. When it hits you, everybody can see it. Christ, man, don’t be ashamed of it, some men pray for the thunderbolt. You’re a very lucky fellow.”  ~Mario Puzo,The Godfather

Lightning struck, when Pope Benedict, the man who had stood in the way of Bergoglio’s papal fortunes, abdicated the throne of Peter. With a crack of thunder out of the dark blue sky, the long-awaited plans of St. Gallen would enfold behind the conclave curtain.

Danneels and his St. Gallen co-conspirators quickly and skillfully engineered the election of their designated pope-in-waiting, the Cardinal of Buenos Aires. Bergoglio was elected Pope by the College of Cardinals, and the rest, is heresy.

Having successfully engineered their papal takeover, Cardinal Danneels couldn’t contain his bravado. The pompous prelate needed public credit for his masterful plot. At the release of his biography, the Belgian Cardinal broke the cardinal (‘scuse the pun) rule of Omertà, the strict code of silence, by proudly bragging that the St. Gallen group anointed Bergoglio.   Daneels laughingly disclosed at the book press conference that the St. Gallen group was dubiously christened by the group as the “mafia.”

For nearly 2 decades, this secret cabal schemed and plotted to install Jorge Bergolio of Buenos Aires as the 266th pontiff to drastically reform the Catholic Church.

Godfried, the Godfather sought acclaim for the Bergoglio election, thus demonstrating the famous line of the Godfather, “vanity is my favorite sin.”

What does it say about the papal selection of Bergoglio that one of his chief promoters characterizes the papal plotters as mafia?

What kind of man, a Prince of the Church, no less, flippantly brags about being a member of the St. Gallen group which he describes as the ‘mafia’?

What kind of man, a Cardinal, proudly proclaims that he and his clandestine group of prelates named themselves after the violent criminal organization that kills for money and power, terrorizes and blackmails ordinary citizens, and dominates with murderous savagery and intimidation?

What kind of papabile surrounds himself with supporters who boast that they are the mafia?

What manner of high Church officials call themselves the mafia, after the criminal organization that strong arms the weak, silences the vocal, and flexes political muscle with intimidation?

It’s not the first time that Danneels, the Bergoglio kingmaker and St. Gallen Don, tried to silence a victim. In 2010, he attempted to cover up years of sex abuse involving his close friend and fellow bishop. Worse yet, the child abuser was the victim’s uncle, Roger Vangheluwe, Bishop of Bruges, Belgium. In the meeting with the victim, the intimidating Cardinal Danneels directed the abuse victim to remain silent about the abuse and “ask for forgiveness” and to “acknowledge your own guilt.”

Danneels got caught covering up this clergy sex scandal when the victim secretly recorded the conversation (a successful government tactic often used against the mafia). Over the years, Danneels honed his intimidation skills to silencing victims and covering up clergy abuse. Yet the powerful Cardinal suffered no consequences and continued to plot and scheme for the election of Jorge Bergoglio as Pope.

This man fears no one and is not constrained by Church doctrine, biblical teaching or the Magisterium, all of which he swore to uphold in his episcopal vows. Despite that solemn vow, Danneels encouraged the Belgian King to sign an abortion law and supported a gay marriage amendment in Belgium. Yet, despite Danneels’ public scandals, Francis chooses him as his personal representative to the Synod on the Family!

Loyalty is the most prized virtue in the Mafia, “Loyalty is everything, Loyalty is royalty,” apparently, also among the Princes of the Church.

Others of the St. Gallen members have been rewarded for their loyalty to Jorge Bergoglio: in particular, German Cardinal Walter Kasper who serves as powerful doctrinal capo in the Francis papacy.

The haunting question still lingers: what caused Pope Benedict to abdicate?
Did the St. Gallen Mafia put heat on Ratzinger to step down?
Did the Mafia Monsignors make Benedict an offer he couldn’t refuse?
Did the St. Gallen Mafia strong arm Benedict?
Did they blackmail Benedict?
Pope Francis remains in the Seat of Peter, as the hand picked choice of the St. Gallen Mafia.
In every mafia, there lurks a mole, a man with a nagging conscience.
Someone knows what happened the night that lightening struck St. Peter’s.
Be not afraid to speak.

“Team Bergoglio” is the name coined by Dr. Austen Ivereigh in his book, The Great Reformer: Francis and the Making of a Radical Pope. It is a group of Cardinals whom Dr. Ivereigh alleges, conspired together to promote the candidacy of Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio by means of an organized vote-canvassing campaign.  For a detailed chronology of events and much more detailed information on "Team Bergoglio", please see "The Chronology of Reports on 'Team Bergoglio'"


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