Trump-Supporting Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò Officially Excommunicated By Pope Francis

Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons
American Liberty News
- July 12, 2024
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ANALYSIS – “The big lie.” No. It's not election denial. It's a truly big lie. As early as 2016, Democrats have been peddling the absolute nonsense “big lie” that electing former President would be an existential threat to American democracy.

Since his challenging of the 2020 election, and the Capitol riot, those hysterical claims have only gotten shriller and more strident.

It's also a great way to mobilize their rabid base and avoid having to defend their abysmal record on everything from illegal immigration, crime and inflation to foreign.

On the Fourth of July…

The Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith has declared Archbishop excommunicated latae sententiae. A latae sententiae penalty is inflicted automatically, by force of the law itself, at the very moment a law is contravened.

What Does Excommunication Mean in the ?

Excommunication is the most severe ecclesiastical penalty and is used as a last resort for grave offenses. It excludes the individual from participating in the sacraments and the communal life of the Church.

As the Daily Beast reports:

Carlo Maria Vigano, an ultra-conservative who served as the Vatican's diplomat to Washington, D.C. between 2011 and 2016, was formally accused last month of schism, which is one of the most serious offenses in canon law. Schism is “the refusal of submission to the Supreme Pontiff or of communion with the members of the Church subject to him,” according to the Vatican.

Tânia Rêgo/ABr, CC BY 3.0 BR , via Wikimedia Commons

Vigano said in a lengthy statement last month that he considered it “an honor” to be accused. “On the day on which I was supposed to present myself to defend myself before the Dicastery for the Doctrine of Faith, I have decided to make public this declaration of mine, to which I add a denunciation of my accusers, their ‘council,' and their ‘pope,'” he wrote. He also attacked Francis' church for being “inclusive, immigrationist, eco-sustainable, and gay-friendly.”

Expelling the cardinal is likely to increase tensions between Francis and conservative American Catholics, a group he as described as having “a very, strong, organized, reactionary attitude,” and whom he accused in 2023 of replacing faith with “ideologies.”

Vigano has been increasingly hostile to Francis since making the explosive allegation in 2018 that the pope had known for years about claims of sexual misconduct against U.S. Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, but had “continued to cover” for him. Vigano called for Francis to resign, later accusing the pope of being a “servant of Satan.”

Notable historical figures who have faced excommunication include:

  • Martin Luther: Leader of the Protestant Reformation, excommunicated by Pope Leo X in 1521.
  • King Henry VIII: Excommunicated by Pope Clement VII in 1533 after he separated the Church of England from the Roman Catholic Church.
  • Napoleon Bonaparte: Excommunicated by Pope Pius VII in 1809 after his forces occupied Rome and took the Pope prisoner.
  • Juan Perón: Argentine President, excommunicated in 1955 for expelling two Catholic priests and attempting to legalize divorce in Argentina.

“His public statements manifesting his refusal to recognize and submit to the Supreme Pontiff, his rejection of communion with the members of the Church subject to him, and of the legitimacy and magisterial authority of the Second Vatican Council are well known,” a press release read, explaining the rationale behind the dramatic decision.

Canon 1364 § 1 CIC Reference

At the conclusion of the penal process, the Most Reverend Carlo Maria Viganò was found guilty of the reserved delict of schism. The Dicastery declared the latae sententiae excommunication in accordance with canon 1364 § 1 CIC. Canon 1364 § 1 of the Code of Canon Law (CIC) states that an apostate from the faith, a heretic or a schismatic incurs a latae sententiae excommunication.

Connection to Former President

Archbishop Viganò has been a vocal supporter of former President Donald Trump. He gained attention for his open letters to Trump, in which he praised Trump's leadership and criticized what he described as a global conspiracy against him.

Viganò's statements often aligned with conservative political views, making him a controversial figure within the Church and the broader political landscape.

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