Fr. Timothy Scott Removed as Basilian Spokesperson After Hurling Obscenity Toward Cardinal Burke

Fr. Timothy Scott Removed as Basilian Spokesperson After Hurling Obscenity Toward Cardinal Burke February 24, 2015
Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only what is useful for building up, as there is need, so that your words may give grace to those who hear.
–Ephesians 4:29
Fr. Timothy Scott, C.S.B. should have read that verse over once or twice, before posting a tweet February 7 about His Eminence Raymond Cardinal Burke, patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta.  Unhappy with Cardinal Burke’s outspoken remarks about a feminized Church and his apparent criticism of Pope Francis, Father Scott tweeted an obscene acronym, urging Cardinal Burke to quiet down. 
In what could only be seen as blatant disrespect toward an American Cardinal of the Church, he said:
Fr Tim Scott tweet
The strong language from a Catholic priest is unattractive, to be sure.  It’s also ironic, following closely on the heels of a threatened lawsuit by another Basilian priest, Fr. Thomas Rosica, who threatened to sue Canadian blogger David Domet, who blogs at the Vox Cantoris website, for certain blog posts which, according to Father Rosica, demean his character.  Breitbart reports that
“…though Rosica publicly defends the right to freedom of speech and press, he is attempting to silence the blogger who has criticized him.”
The outcry from Catholics–particularly conservatives–was strong, with numerous bloggers demanding that he be disciplined; and today we learned the consequences of Fr. Scott’s irreverent reproof of the cardinal.  According to the Radical Conservative blog, Father Scott has been removed from his position as spokesman for the Basilian Fathers.  
The blog quotes a letter from Fr. David Katulski which says
“Thank you for your concern about the misconduct of Fr. Scott.  I assure you that he is no longer spokesperson for the Basilian Fathers.”
Father Scott holds another position of responsibility, as well.  In November 2014, he was appointed Executive Director of the Canadian Religious Conference (CRC), for an initial three-year term beginning on January 1, 2015.   
He is a member of the CRC Theological Commission and also a delegate of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops on the Catholic-Lutheran Church-Canada dialogue.  
There is no word yet whether he will also be removed from those positions of influence.
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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • niknac

    I’m not sure Cardinal Burke is the proper focus of objections against inflammatory speech.

    • Tweck

      Dictating how I should dress (!!), the obvious sexism in his use of the term “feminization,” and his divisive comments about Pope Francis… are not inflammatory?

  • johnnysc

    It is good Cardinal Burke continues to speak the Truth as it seems to draw the ire of liberals thereby making it easier to identify.

    Hopefully the good Father will reflect through Lent and come to the realization that he is in danger of placing more importance on his political ideology than on the teachings of Jesus.

  • DJ1960

    So the same people who regularly defamed Cardinal Bernardin and now regularly defame Cardinals Kasper, Rodriguez-Maradiaga, Wuerl and Dolan are shocked–shocked, I tell you!–and outraged that a priest uses an unseemly but common acronym to criticize Cardinal Burke. And there is no rational connection whatsoever between Father Rosica’s threatening a lawsuit and Father Scott’s expressing his opinion. You self-appointed members of an alternative magisterium sure feel persecuted a lot. You dish it out but think you don’t deserve it back. And none of this does anything to proclaim the gospel of Jesus or build up the church.

    • kathyschiffer

      An “unseemly acronym”? Try it around here, DJ; you’ll be blocked in a heartbeat.

      I agree that ALL members of the clergy are deserving of respect. One can, however, respectfully disagree. That’s not what this priest did, and with his foul language, he proved himself too crude to have anything to offer me.

      I’m actually feeling bad about this article. I don’t like to be the bearer of bad news within the Church. I pray for Father Scott, and hope that he takes a time-out for reflection, then returns to preach the gospel. We need more priests, not fewer, in the vineyard.

  • His Will

    When one is lost spiritually and embraces the world, he has lost the kingdom. Fr Timothy Scott speaks his own judgment and against God….how pompus and arrogant as pride is at the top of the list of ‘deadly’ sins.

  • Brother Rolf

    Why is it the left almost always attacks the messenger?

    • Tweck

      Funny, one could accuse Cardinal Burke of the same thing. Is not the Pope the messenger of Christ? Or does it only count as an attack when someone who leans to the left politically does it?

  • Percy Gryce

    Why does a men’s order have a “spokesperson”?

    • kathyschiffer

      Well now, if society recognized only spokesmen (who are male) and spokespersons (who are female), we wouldn’t have come very far, would we?

  • RaymondNicholas

    I think the essayist got it right. Until the priest is removed from those other offices, his removal from talking in public on behalf of his Order is meaningless. But I also believe His Will got it right. The motivation for the priest’s actions is deep; his “good shepherding” seems lost. For that reason he needs a year off and removal from all duties except scrubbing the floors and bathrooms, prayer, solitude, and the sacraments. If its good enough for Sister Jane, who did nothing wrong, figuratively speaking, then its good enough for this priest. Am I too harsh?

  • bosco49

    “Canon 212 §3. According to the knowledge, competence, and prestige which they (i.e. laymen and women)possess, they have the right and even at times the duty to manifest to the sacred pastors their opinion on matters which pertain to the good of the Church and to make their opinion known to the rest of the Christian faithful, without prejudice to the integrity of faith and morals, with reverence toward their pastors, and attentive to common advantage and the dignity of persons.”

    Note ‘duty’.

    The entire legislative and judicial history of the Catholic Church (including the counsels of the New Testament) urges the members of the Church to resolve differences within the Church rather than at common law, Canadian or otherwise.

    This Catholic Blogger appears to have relied on the letter of Canon Law (above) and therefore under civil/tort/common law ‘detrimentally relied’ on the Church Herself, i.e. Father Rosica’s employer, to speak boldly. Therefore I believe the matter is (equitably) estopped on the civil side and must proceed to be heard in the ecclesiastical courts.

    As most know or suspect, initiating and rigorously prosecuting a libel/defamation law suit can be frightfully costly for both Plaintiff and Defendant alike. ‘Deep pockets’ are de rigueur.

    I gather Catholic Blogger is an average Joe with precious little resources and assets to defend himself.

    The breadth, depth, and sources of Rev. Rosica’s income and assets do not appear to be public knowledge at this point, however, if damages are alleged, the microscopes will be out for evidences of loss of income.

  • Dave

    They have Cardinal Burke isolated on Malta (I assume that is close to Elba and Patmos) yet they just can’t let him be. He must be a real threat to someone.

    • Simon D

      Cardinal Burke isn’t “isolated on Malta,” he is the Cardinal Patron of the Order of Malta, an organization headquartered in Rome, where Card. Burke’s office is located.

      • Dave

        I actually knew that Simon. Just using a little symbolism and humor to show that EVEN IF THEY DID EXILE CARDINAL BURKE TO THE ISLAND OF MALTA (thus the reference to Elba and Patmos) he would still be thorn in their side.

  • MeanLizzie

    Kathy, I got a statement from Fr. David Katulski (Vicar General) saying that Scott has not been spokesman since July of 2014. Just as an update.

  • Simon D
    • kathyschiffer

      Thank you to both you and Mean Lizzie. I’m looking into this.