Devoted Trump supporter priest impeached by Vatican for ‘blasphemous social media post’
A high-profile priest who served as national co-chair of Trump’s ProLife Voices has been impeached by the Vatican for “blasphemous communications on social media” and “continued disobedience” to the diocese.
Frank Pavone, 63, was dismissed as a priest by the Rome-based prefect of the Dicastery for the Clergy on November 9, and the decision was communicated to all US clergy on December 13.
“Father Pavone was given ample opportunity to defend himself in the canonical procedures and he was also given several opportunities to submit to the authority of his diocesan bishop,” the Vatican said in a letter from Archbishop Christophe Pierre, the apostolic nuncio to the United States states.
“It was found that Father Pavone had no reasonable justification for his actions.”
Pavone told the Catholic News Agency he was not informed of the Vatican’s verdict.
He tweeted in response: “Hello friends… So if you defend the #unborn in any profession, including the priesthood, you will be treated like them! The only difference is that when we are ‘abortioned’ we continue to speak loudly and clearly.’
He then recorded a video, posted to social media on Saturday, in which he denounced the “continuous persecution” and said he was expelled because most Catholic priests are Democrats and his pro-Trump and pro- Life attitude did not like.
Frank Pavone recorded a video Saturday saying he had faced “continuous persecution” from the Vatican over his views
Pavone worked for Trump as co-chair of ProLife Voices and remains a staunch supporter
Pavone is pictured with Donald Trump Jr. at the Conservative Political Action Committee meeting
The fiercely political Pavone has previously caused controversy with “lucrative” work at an outside organization, and by placing a dead fetus on an altar in Amarillo, Texas, in November 2016, he was removed from the diocese in 2019.
In September 2020, he was accused by the diocese of using “scandalous words unfit for a Catholic priest”.
Pavone called then-nominee Joe Biden a “fucking loser” in his tweets, which the diocese condemned in a statement, saying the Democratic Party is “God-hating” and “America-hating.”
He stated that Biden’s supporters “can’t say anything in support of their losing candidate without using the word Trump.”
‘What the hell do you have to say yourself, losers?’ asked Pavone in the now-deleted tweets.
His Twitter bio lists his location as Florida, but it’s unclear if he still served a fixed community.
On Saturday night, Pavone said he was pushed out because of his views.
Pavone is seen in Naples, Florida in March 2009. He relocated from New York to the Diocese of Amarillo, Texas in 2005 but left in 2019
Pavone can be seen in his MAGA hat. Clergymen are not allowed to campaign for political candidates
“The Biden administration is coming and other radical crackpots are coming and trying to get you to cooperate in killing babies,” he said in a leather jacket on his YouTube set.
“Politicians opposed because of their pro-life stance. People kick themselves out of their committees because they’re too vocal and too conservative.
“It happens in the church. It’s part of the same dynamic — an attempt to silence us about it,” he said, holding up a graphic chart of an abortion.
“Could be your employer, could be my bishop. And if you don’t shut up, ‘you’re not listening to me’.’
He added, pointing to the image of the Vatican behind him: “Don’t be surprised that the battle is also taking place within the walls of this building you see behind me.”
Pavone has a long history of fighting against the church hierarchy.
Pavone is very active on social media and insists he will continue
Pavone retweeted messages of support from those who shared his views
He had previously faced questions about his role with Priests for Life (PFL), a Florida-based group of which he has been national director since 1993.
In 2012, Bishop Patrick J. Zurek wrote to bishops nationwide, advising that Pavone had been suspended from public service outside of the Diocese of Amarillo and was “calling him back to the diocese to spend time in prayer and reflection.”
Zurek wrote, “The PFL has become quite a lucrative business, giving Father Pavone financial independence from any legitimate ecclesiastical oversight.”
Zurek said he was “concerned by the potential financial scandal that could arise if it were the result of my failure to correct Father Pavone’s irremediable disregard for my legitimate authority as his bishop.”
He became a strong supporter of Donald Trump during the 2016 campaign and orchestrated the fetus stunt just before the election.
The video, which was filmed at Priests for Life headquarters, was met with anger by the church.
Zurek said shortly after the video was released that he would launch an investigation into the incident, calling it “against the dignity of human life” and “a desecration of the altar.”
He added that “Father Pavone’s action and portrayal in this video is not consistent with the beliefs of the Catholic Church.”
Pavone said the table is not an altar and not in a church, but admitted he should have made it clearer.
He said the fetus was given to him for burial and he buried it after filming the clip.
“A lot of the criticism revolved around me putting the baby on an ‘altar,’ and some started complaining technically about what should or shouldn’t be done with an altar,” he said on his social media -Channel.
“But to the extent that they want to get technical, so can I, and I pointed out that this is a table in our office, not a consecrated altar in a chapel.
“This table, sometimes used for Mass, was also where all of my videos were shot in this educational series of election broadcasts.
“In hindsight, I should have shot the baby video somewhere else to avoid confusion in the first place.”
Pavone resigned from the two positions involved in Trump’s 2020 re-election campaign at the request of what he called “the competent ecclesiastical authority.”
But he continued to use his social media platforms to champion Trump and denounce the Democratic Party, particularly on Twitter.
He said he would hear the Catholic Democrats’ confession but could not forgive their “sin” for voting for Biden.
“We are trained that without remorse absolution must be withheld,” Pavone said.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11551433/Devoted-Trump-supporter-priest-defrocked-Vatican-blasphemous-social-media-posts.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Devoted Trump supporter priest impeached by Vatican for ‘blasphemous social media post’