Let’s all agree that Richard Williamson of the schismatic Society of St. Pius X shows no understanding of history that has occurred in his lifetime and is singularly lacking in people skills. That the man ever became a priest, much less a schismatic bishop, boggles the mind. Thus, should it surprise anyone that he waved his fist in the face of a Reuters reporter who pursued him, Hound of Heaven-style, through the international airport in Buenos Aires?
Ruth Gledhill of The Times quotes The Associated Press’ Jeanette Neumann as reporting:
A local television station showed Richard Williamson raising his fist toward a reporter, then shoving him into a pole with his shoulder as he hurried through Buenos Aires’ Ezeiza international airport to catch a flight for London.
Such overly condensed writing makes the reporter’s condition sound far worse than it was. The video shows Williamson attempting to bump the reporter into a collision with a pillar, but the nimble reporter dodges it and keeps hounding Williamson through the airport. A muscleman in Williamson’s entourage attempts to slow the reporter’s pace, but to little avail. Throughout the video, all of civilized society is cheering the reporter along.
With this incident, an understandable loathing of Williamson’s Holocaust denial becomes an occasion to chastise Pope Benedict XVI and the Catholic Church anew. Gledhill writes:
Will the Roman Catholic Church ever admit it was wrong? Never. It would rather die first, and possibly will if it carries on like this. The Holy See will continue to justify the lifting of the excommunications on the technical grounds that they were in the first place unjust, the reasons that persuaded His Holiness to allow the lifting of them in the first place.
Sadly, the Holy See will never understand that as far as the public is concerned, to the millions who will watch this unseemly brawl on television over the next few days, to the thousands of innocent men and women denied communion because of the Church’s inhumane disciplines on remarriage, the Church appears to be descending into a new dark age when anti-Semitic hooded thugs with eyes shielded from the light by dark glasses are welcomed into the fold. Meanwhile ‘ecclesial communities’ such as my own are condemned as ‘not proper churches’ and Archbishops such as Rowan Williams are not permitted to receive communion in Catholic churches.
I see it differently. It’s a pseudo-event when a Holocaust-denying schismatic bishop tries to escape, in an indisputably churlish manner, from a determined reporter. Years ago, a conservative Catholic editor introduced me to the saying that the wheels of the Catholic Church’s justice grind slow but they grind exceedingly fine. I think that Williamson may have just helped those wheels begin grinding a bit more quickly.
About the embedded YouTube video: I chose this version only for its widescreen format. I consider its heading of “Modern witch hunting” another form of hysteria. I’ll happily link to a better version of the same report if I find one, and I welcome readers’ help.