Monday, October 31, 2005

The Hireling Report #6

San Diego News Notes
May 2005

Link to Original

Fallout in Fallbrook
Pantheist Pastor Pushes Out Popular Priest


Battle lines have been drawn in the Fallbrook parish of Saint Peter. A group of more than fifty families are accusing Saint Peter's pastor Father Edward "Bud" Kaicher and retired associate Father Bernard Rapp of misleading the parish.

One incident in particular has prompted cries of, "Enough is enough!" from parishioners — Fathers Bud and Bernie's sudden dismissal of Father Ian Taylor, a charismatic missionary priest from Trinidad who has been serving in the parish while on a year's sabbatical.

Father Ian is a diocesan priest from the twin-island republic of Trinidad and Tobago who was ordained in 1988. In Trinidad, he labored as the pastor of 17 parishes, administering up to 10 simultaneously with the help of lay assistants. He directed eight Catholic schools. In his home diocese of Port of Spain, Father Ian has been notable for calling all Catholics to withdraw from pre-Lent Carnival festivities, charging that they have degenerated from Catholic cultural celebrations into debauched occasions of mortal sin. Father Ian enjoys the full support of his ordinary, Archbishop Edward J. Gilbert, and has served on the archbishop's advisory council.

In addition to his diocesan duties, Father Ian has Archbishop Gilbert's permission to do missionary work. As a missionary, Father Ian has gained a reputation for dynamic preaching in the United States, Romania, Slovakia, India, Haiti, Samoa, and other countries.

On a missionary trip to Romania in 2000 Father Ian met Saint Peter's parishioner Dennis Donahue, a resident of Temecula. Donahue arranged for Father Ian to preach in Fallbrook in August 2002. Following this, Donahue spoke to Father Bud about the possibility of Father Ian's spending his upcoming sabbatical in Fallbrook. At that time Father Bud felt that Father Ian would be a great addition to the community.

On June 18, 2004, Father Bud formalized his invitation to Father Ian. This read in part: "We have officially invited Father Ian Taylor to render his priestly ministry for the months of October 2004 through October 2005 at our parish.... He is needed to provide pastoral services, sacraments, and teaching during this time period. Due to the priest shortage in the USA, we have been unable to find assistance of this kind within our own country."

Father Bud assured Father Ian that the chancery had approved this arrangement. Archbishop Gilbert then wrote a letter of approval and commendation concerning Father Ian to the Diocese of San Diego.

Despite this agreement, in a February 18th meeting, Father Bud ordered Father Ian to leave the parish in four weeks. This would be seven months earlier than the full year as planned. Father Ian disclosed to Dennis Donahue that Father Bud, with the assent of Father Bernie, had given as reason for the dismissal: "Our theologies clash and I am taking the community in a different direction."

Within 24 hours, concerned individuals had put up a website: This site informed parishioners of Father Bud's demand that Father Ian leave, and it encouraged members to write Bishop Brom for intervention.

What theology did Father Ian teach that was clashing with that of Fathers Bud and Bernie? Father Ian declined to be interviewed, saying, "Let those who heard me testify."

His preaching has been documented on a web page entitled Theological Differences. According to the page, in one homily Father Ian quoted Pope Pius XII's 1950 encyclical Humani Generis, in which the Pope warned about the dangers of the theory of evolution, especially as it challenges the historicity of Adam and Eve and thereby denies original sin. Father Ian reiterated the Church's teaching on original sin explaining why Catholics must believe in Adam and Eve as our historical first parents. "If there is no Adam," he said, "then there is no original sin. If there is no original sin, then there is no need to be redeemed from original sin. If there is no need for redemption, then what did Our Lord do on Calvary?"

The page relates that Father Ian preached, "We must lament the damage and loss of life in the nations hit by the tsunami. The world has not known a natural disaster of such proportion since the time of Noah's flood." He went on to say that most of the areas hit are territories closed to the Gospel. Some were Muslim, Buddhist and Hindu territories. Father Ian expressed a conviction that God was opening a window of opportunity for the spread of the Gospel.

In another sermon, Father Ian referred to the explanation Jesus gave in Luke 19:41-44 of the destruction of the temple. Father Ian explained that the temple of the Jews was destroyed (and up to today has not been rebuilt) because they failed to recognize and accept the visitation of God when Jesus was sent to them. By analogy, he warned the congregation that our generation must not reject Jesus and His teachings lest we suffer a similar fate.

On the Feast of Christ the King, Father Ian insisted that according to holy scripture and the popes — he especially quoted Pius XI in Quas Primas — Christ is not only the King of individuals but of all nations, which have the duty to acknowledge his kingship in the political, economic, and social sphere.

In contrast to Father Ian's teaching of biblical and Catholic doctrine, Fathers Bud and Bernie, says parishioner Sue Granzella, have made statements savoring of pantheism, the doctrine that the universe is God. At one time Mrs. Granzella asked Father Bernie why he neglects to genuflect after each consecration (as the General Instruction of the Roman Missal requires.) "Father went on a tirade against me as a troublemaker and a member of the 'Vatican Police.' Then he said, 'You can reverence God in everything! God is in the trees; God is in nature; God is in you; why don't you reverence yourself!'

"Father Bud is more subtle," she added. "Concerning the Real Presence of Our Lord in the Eucharist, his actions clearly demonstrate his refusal to differentiate it from the 'Presence of God in the people.'"

Long-time member Carol Lackey spoke of Eucharistic heresy she heard from Father Bernie when she asked him, "Father, when exactly does the transubstantiation take place?" Father Bernie paused, and then shot back, "It doesn't!" and walked away. She characterized Father Bud's statements about the Eucharist as "ambiguous."

According to Dana Morgan, a 21-year-old Thomas Aquinas College senior and Saint Peter's parishioner, Father Ian preached powerfully about the reality of hell and what we must do to be saved. This was a theme that Fathers Bud and Bernie never touched. "Heresy is also promoted by what they don't preach," Morgan said noting that a week after a sermon by Father Ian on the consequences of sin Father Bud preached that God does not punish.

For parishioner Dave Swanson a small book called Christ Denied by Father Paul Wickens explained much about Father Bud. The 49-page booklet exposes the errors of two influential Jesuits: Pierre Teilhard de Chardin and Karl Rahner, the architects of Neo-Modernism. In it, Swanson read that de Chardin denied that Jesus is the eternal Son of God, and instead regarded him as "the Omega Point of human evolution." Then he saw Father Bud's "Omega Point" parish retreats in a whole new way. He looked at de Chardin's statement, "I am essentially pantheist in my thinking and temperament," and was reminded of Father Bud's refusal to differentiate between the presence of Christ in the Eucharist and in people. He learned about Rahner's theory of the "Anonymous Christian" and thought he understood why Father Bud will not preach about hell or the narrow path to salvation.

In addition to, a major letter writing campaign has begun on behalf of the priest from Trinidad. Bishop Cordileone acknowledged that the stack of letters he has received from Saint Peter's parishioners on the matter has grown past two inches and continues to grow.

In the March 13 bulletin, Father Bud acknowledged that Father Ian "is a good man, holy priest, and a gifted preacher," and thanked him for his service. Then he claimed that Father Ian is no longer needed in the parish because of the return to health of Monsignor Mel Young after heart bypass surgery and Father Charlie Sheslo after knee replacement surgery — a strange claim as both of these unforeseen surgeries took place after his June 18, 2004 invitation to Father Ian.

Father Ian is not the first priest whom Father Bud has driven from Saint Peter's. Reverend Humberto Zanetti, a Franciscan from Italy, was assistant pastor at Saint Peter's from 1975 until 1992. Father Zanetti was renowned as an uncompromising preacher of the Word of God. He was also known as a discerning confessor. Bishop Maher wrote to Zanetti's superior in 1977, saying of Zannetti, "He is filled with zeal and love of the Church and is very devoted to his duties. He relates exceptionally well to the people and they seek him out for counsel and advice. Not only does he preach with great effectiveness, but his material — being biblically oriented — is both instructive and convincing."

According to Edith Watts, a senior parishioner at Saint Peters, Monsignor Medaer, the former pastor, told her and others, "Father Bud demanded as a condition of his coming here that Father Zanetti would have to go."

More than twenty former and current parishioners interviewed for this story believe that the Catholic orthodoxy of Father Ian and Father Zanetti stand in the way of Father Bud's goal of a liberal interfaith community subject only to his own decisions. Tim Walker and his wife Pat have been parishioners for 14 years. Tim stated, "It's his way or the highway and he has no open mind whatsoever. He's got an agenda and it is so set and so solid that there's no moving it at all."

Pat added as an example: "Father Bud knowingly gave communion to Protestants and we confronted him in a meeting. We explained to him that it was forbidden to give the Eucharist to non-Catholics and that Pat had confirmed it with the diocese. Father Bud refused to listen. Pat said, "He basically told us that we were wrong, he had a theology background, and he could decide who could receive or not."

Father Ian's dismissal has been the "last straw" for people who have suffered under Father Bud's pastoral style. Some who have been hurt by Father Bud's behavior have said they will withhold financial support from the parish and the diocese until Father Bud and Father Bernie have been replaced. Bill and Peggy Hukill, parishioners at Saint Peter's for 15 years, have cancelled their remaining pledge balance of $3, 916. Peggy stated, "We refuse to give any financial support to Saint Peter's until our current liberal priests of 13 years are replaced with a holy priest who adheres to Catholic theology and teaching."

Despite his expulsion from Saint Peters, Father Taylor is still living in Fallbrook in a house lent to him by a man touring in Spain for a year. Father Taylor will finish his sabbatical there. He spends his time praying, teaching in small groups, and on missions. He just returned from Haiti and will be going on missions to Samoa and Hawaii.


Post a Comment

<< Home