Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Bishop Louis Responds concerning Fr. Neil Webster

This a review of Vezelis' response from ForChrist Contra Mundum, a blog affiliated with the bishop Louis Vezelis in response to an interview posted at Most Holy Family Monastery with the Father Neil Webster on the bishop Thuc issue.

Brief response to a diatribe.
By Bishop Louis Vezelis, OFM, D.D.

The story is told of the sad experience of an opossum in being kind to a snake. It seems the snake was in a bad situation: Its tail end was pinned under a rock. An opossum came along and the snake said:
“Please help me. I cannot get out from under this rock.”
But the opossum said: “ I don’t know if I should help you.”
The snake answers with pitiful sobs: “Oh, please help me or I will be killed or die of hunger.”
So, the opossum, out of pity and kindness, moves the rock and frees the snake.
Now, you’d think the snake was grateful, wouldn’t you.
Then the snake said; “ I’m cold. Please let me get into your pouch just for a little while so I might warm up.”
The opossum was getting a bit uneasy, and said, “Oh, no. I can’t let you do that.”
To which the snake replied: “Oh, please. I’m so cold. Let me in your pouch just for a little while.”
Hesitatingly, the kind opossum agreed – but just for a little while. So the snake crawled into the opossum’s pouch. No sooner did he get in when he bit the kind opossum.
Painfully shocked, the opossum protested: “Why did you bite me?”
“Why did you let me in? You knew I was a snake.”

Unfortunately, although we can usually distinguish between a snake and opossum, it is not always that easy when dealing with people.

The non-Catholic heretical mini-sect operated by Mr. Fred Dimond and his brother featured an “interview” for the purpose of vilifying Bishop Louis Vezelis, OFM, a bishop of the Roman Catholic Church.

What we have here is nothing but an ad hominum attack, we have no real reasons to suspect Fr. Webster or others involved in this interview other than the allegations of this bishop. Notice that he begins by denigrating a monastery by labelling them a "non-Catholic mini-sect", and he says that it is he who has been vilified; however, he does not bother to demonstrate this allegation. The interview was posted and probably made by MHFM to tell a story about an event that concerns many Traditional Catholics, and the validity of the sacraments they recieve. This is due to the fact that there are those who doubt the validity of the bishop on the grounds that he was somehow not mentally capable when he consecrated several bishops to the bishopric.
This interview from a first-hand witness goes to show, that these accusations are wrong.

What motivated this diatribe was the fact that Bishop Vezelis unmasked the Fred Dimond heretical religious sect operating under the guise of a Roman Catholic religious order.

First of all he comes in saying that he has been so maliciously maligned, then neglects to demonstrate this by pointing out why he thinks that he has been so denigrated, and then turns around and pretends that the whole world knows the facts of the matter already, and that anything untrue or falsely stated about him is done in full cognizence of matter, and thus wholly guilty of a grievous sin; a fallacious assumption. Why? Simply because of the fact that we would have no need of any interview if the facts were already plainly known and thus public, there, then, should never have been an interview at all, then. Since the facts are so concealed in this manner, the accuracy of this account is simply a matter of faith in the integrity of the priest who tells it, the bishop knows this and is why he is attacking the integrity of this priest, since there is no other account that can be consulted at this time. The bishop here does not add clarity, and is not offering to expound the facts of the situation, but rather, to turn this whole account into an ad hominum ad nauseam accusation against a character herein involved. He is not offering what he believes to be the truth, nor to explain why he thinks that he has been vilified.

For this “interview,” Mr. Dimond stumbled onto a strange character, member of the anti-American “John Birch Society” that styles itself as a kind of “mystical body” comparing itself to the Catholic Church. This fellow’s name is Neal Webster.
More ad nauseam ad hominum attacks; we see here a denigration of Fr. Webster again, calling him a "strange character". Now we see that the bishop wants to denigrate the father because of a prior political association of which apparently Vezelis does not approve; is this the basis upon which this whole absurd argument is being waged?

Who is Neal Webster and what was his relation to the Franciscan Friars whom he pretends to “know” so well?

Actually, the Friars never heard of this fellow until he showed up with Rev. Fidelis McKenna, O.P. at the first anniversary of Bishop Vezelis’ consecration. That’s about twenty-four years ago. Only now does Webster surface with his horror script probably seen on some late show horror film.

This is a red herring, this is a distraction from the main issue at hand, which is Bishop Thuc. The bishop now continues with this ridiculous contention by accusing the Father of making it all up, but then they claim that the majority of the story is true, while only contesting the bit about their bishop, but then the bishop says it's all from a horror show. This is such a ridiculous and contradictory dispute.

Webster was outfitted in the traditional garb of the Dominican Order and from this it was assumed that his Novice Master, Rev.McKenna, O.P. vouched for the authenticity of the man as a Roman Catholic. The Friars accepted this implicitly on the fact that Webster was dressed as a Domican Friar. We are not certain how long he was a “Dominican.” What can be attested is that McKenna was living like a mini-despot with “nuns running hither and thither from kitchen to table. Having eaten at the profuse table of this Dominican Friar, it is not difficult to see the difference reflected in the Franciscan Friars humble but healthy fare. But, we are getting ahead of ourselves. Let’s first find out something about our ungrateful guest.
Ok, so now we see this guy dislikes the bishop McKenna even, so who does this man favour? And now Fr. Webster, according to Vezelis, is ungrateful; now let us all keep in mind the fact that this Vezelis still has not given us his account, so we are still in the dark as to what is and is not true in this man's mind.

Not long after first meeting this fellow, Webster, he appeared on the doorstep of the Friary located in Greece, NY. His story was that he had left Rev. McKenna because “he McKenna) tried to make me a Dominican nun.” We did not inquire into this strange avowal. The main point was that he had no where to go. Consequently, we invited him to stay with us as our guest until he decided where he would go.
Contrary to
Actually, we would not receive him as any kind of seminarian because of his bizarre behavior. He revealed to one of the Friars that he drank Lourde’s water so that he would not say anything wrong. Apparently, he must have run out of Lourde’s water ….
How can we expect to get a fair view out of this man who apparently dislikes Webster and thus has a bias directed against him and his account, which is detectable through the above statement, and has no interest in telling the facts about the issue at hand, which is bishop Thuc; these sarcastic jokes are not a fair and accurate opinion or story.

He was never asked for any kind of financial reimbursement for the expense of his meals. Although he did not spend much time with the Friars, about two and a half months – it seemed like a rather lengthy time for him to make up his mind to do something.
Those deciding to become a monk usually get around four years to make up their mind as to whether that is their desire; nowhere near two and a half months.

While staying with the Friars, Webster told them of his exploits in Bishop Musey’s “seminary’ conducted by the laicized Mr. Thomas Fouhy of New Zealand. According to Webster, Mr.Fouhy aka Rev. Fouhy became “like a madman, screaming at me because I wanted to leave.” Whether Fouhy did get excited about Webster’s decision to leave that “seminary,” may now be questioned in view of the erratic and unstable conduct of Webster.
Mr.Webster’s animosity towards Bishop Vezelis may have been triggered when the Bishop made the observation during one meal that “Catholics could not be members of the John Birch Society.” Whereupon, Webster rudely shouted: “Who said so?!” Observing the untoward emotional outburst, Bishop Vezelis simply confirmed his research into that organization by responding: “I said so.”

Animosity? I detected that not in the interview, I heard a story of an event, not a bashing party for the bishop. This is absolutely preposterous, completely unfounded, and totally without substantiation.

Webster seems to have such a high opinion of himself (A characteristic of most, if not all, members of this Masonic-instituted organization that subjects its members to brainwashing) and seems to consider whatever his undisciplined imagination suggests is therefore true. As far as objective reality is concerned, it is doubtful if this man is capable of distinguishing reality from his emotionally configured imaginings.
Because there is no desire to waste time refuting the lies of this pitiful soul whose eternal damnation is assured because of his insidious detraction of a Roman Catholic Bishop, or anyone for that matter, it is deemed sufficient for any inquirer to know that this man has spun the wildest tales from innocent remarks all the way to outright falsehoods. It is safe to say that whatever this man, Neal Webster, has stated publicly is libelous detraction.
Vezelis now says that Webster is going to Hell for not speaking favorably of Vezelis. Further, we still have no evidence that Webster's account is not what happened, so we can't really judge that Webster's account is not true. We don't have another account to which to contrast it with, thus, this being our only evidence, we can only operate based on the evidence at hand, thus, this is simply an absurd ad nauseam, ad hominum, red herring. It's ad nauseam because it is simply the restating of the allegation that Webster is maligning the bishop, without any substantiation.
It is clearly an ad hominum fallacious argument because of the fact that this is simply a whole denigration of the character of this priest, and it is a red herring because this bishop is spending all this effort attacking this priest, rather than addressing the issue that is being discussed, and that is the abduction and validity of Archbishop Ngo dinh Thuc.

The heart-breaking episode of the abduction of Archbishop Ngo is particularly painful to the Friars because Webster has so distorted the facts that the only possible conclusion of his falsehoods is that perhaps he needs psychiatric help. From beginning to end, Webster has presented himself as the “star performer” – the great “crusader” … a kind of Batman or Superman – or even as a kind of Spiderman, judging from the webs of deceit he spins - fighting the forces of evil wherever he decides to find them. Perhaps even a Don Quixote minus his donkey…..
It has been reported that someone has actually “ordained” the man. Whether this is true or not makes little difference because Neal Webster is not in the Roman Catholic Church.
Now we have more baseless claims that Webster is not in the Church because he is not under the bishopric jurisdiction of Vezelis, who apparently thinks that he is the bishop of the US Catholic Church. This bishop is acting in a kind of Cult-like behaviour, as he believes that he is the bishop of the entire eastern US, and that the only Catholics under his "jurisdiction" are true Catholic, how can we expect a fair account from him?

We pray for this poor soul and hope that God will not permit him to lead unwary souls astray. The Friars do not seek revenge against this pitiable fellow for the ugly vilifications they suffer from the likes of Webster. But, they do expect that the Lord will settle matters: “Vengeance is mine, saith the Lord, I will repay!” And so we merely say: “Amen!”

So, rather than give us an account of the story, this bishop goes off on a tirade about Fr. Webster. He could've given us all an idea of why he thinks Fr. Webster's interview to be flawed in some way, but obviously he is more intersted in denigrating Fr. Webster's character. It is very interesting how Fr. Webser says something about Vezelis, and then Vezelis' group interprets this as detraction, while they say things that are nothing but an out right denigration and detraction of Fr. Webster, and it is not considered detraction by them; are we seeing a double standard?
They accuse him of detraction, deception, libel, obviously they think he needs some mental help, so they must think he is not mentally stable or something, distorting facts, and lying. Not one word of substantiation or consideration of the events that took place; but we get a comparison of the teller of this story to a snake. Obviously they are not being just, as they are making accusations without producing any evidence, and are not even volunteering any. So, what we see here is not a kind response and an account of the events that they claim happened, or did not happen, but rather, we see them attacking the character and mental capacity of the man who happens to disagree with them in an ad nauseam belligerent defamation of one's integrity. This simply emphasises the amount of insincerity on the account of the Vezelis faction, because if they had any sincerity to them at all, they would have produced their stories on how they claim it happened, and would then demonstrate to us why they believe that Fr. Webster is wrong. Now, if Fr. Webster were to counter this, by disclaiming everything that they say, we would all be left wondering, who's right, for the reason that we would have two conflicting accounts of two eye witnesses, who would not be able to agree on the facts, thus much of it would then be unreliable as to an accurate account.
These are the facts: Rather than having two accounts which we can compare and contrast, we have one account, and a set of accusations against that account.
So, whether the Vezelis clique likes it or not, the only facts we have come from the man whom they claim to be a liar, and a deceiver, ect. So what it all comes down to is this: Fr. Webster had provided us with his first hand account of the last days of Bishop Ngo Thuc, while Vezelis has left us with an ad hominum rant against his integrity; now plainly put, which is more credible, Vezelis' own denigration of Fr. Webster, or Webster's acount of the events? You decide.