At 8:21pm local time on Sunday, May 14, 2017, one day after the one hundredth anniversary of the first appearance of the Blessed Virgin Mary to the three shepherd children in Fatima, an American tour guide in Rome tweeted the following about her husband after he delivered a speech at a small conference in Milan that he organized on the “future of the European Union”:
Who was that hot american guy making subsidiarity sexy? Oh, wait, it was my husband @tdwilliamsrome! #luckywife
At first glance, this might seem merely tacky in an adolescent sort of way, especially coming from a woman in her fifties. But the truth is that this tweet sums up the extreme danger the Church finds herself in today, both with regards to moral and sacramental theology, and with regards to the ongoing war against the priesthood itself, almost certainly set to escalate with the 2018 Synod called by Francis, the agenda of which will revolve around the priesthood, and it is greatly feared, an attack on priestly celibacy.
The woman who made the tweet is Elizabeth Lev. She is the daughter of former ambassador to the Holy See and Harvard Law professor Mary Ann Glendon, a darling of the neo-conservative wing of the American Catholic Church. The “hot American guy” is Lev’s husband, Brietbart columnist Thomas Williams. Williams is actually the longtime public face of the Legion of Christ, Father Thomas Williams, who married Lev in a lavish New York City wedding in December of 2013, after carrying on a notorious “open secret” sexual affair with Lev for well over a decade, and fathering Lev’s fourth and youngest child in the early 2000s.
Given fallen human nature, there have always been a small number of priests who, in a moment of weakness, or, in cold calculation and contempt of their priestly vows to Jesus Christ and His Church, have kept concubines and fathered children. This is nothing new. What is new is the utter shamelessness with which such scandals are now treated – by the sacrilegious fornicating priest and his concubine. Up until the post-conciliar era, when a priest would be laicized and leave the priesthood to marry his concubine, the couple would move far away and live a very quiet life of sober repentance, presumably in the sole interest of raising their children, never drawing attention to themselves or the circumstances surrounding their marriage. This was done to protect from scandal the surrounding community. Any appearance of a priest or a woman flaunting or luxuriating in having committed the grave sin of not merely fornication, but also of sacrilege, as all sins against the 6th Commandment by or with a priest under vows of celibacy are, was to be assiduously avoided by the couple themselves, and insisted upon by the Church in order to protect the community from scandal, be it the scandal of inciting others to sin, or the scandal of causing people to lose their faith when confronted by the horror of such human depravity.
Secondly, up until just a few short decades ago, shame was a powerful, healthy presence in people’s lives. The Church teaches that shame and sorrow for sin are utterly essential in the Christian life, pointing directly towards both a servile and filial fear of the Lord. Shame, especially for sins so grave as sacrilegious fornication, is spiritually profitable. The Church knows this, and would thus expect such persons to order their lives in the most spiritually profitable way possible, which included shame, for the rest of their lives, for what they had done.
If there is one thing that both Lev and Williams have made clear over the years, it is that they are stunningly deficient in shame.
-Lev and Williams began their sexual affair sometime in the late 1990s or very early 2000s after Williams was sent by the Legion of Christ with the encouragement of Lev’s mother, Mary Ann Glendon, to recruit the at-the-time apostatized Lev, becoming her “spiritual director”. Lev had already established a reputation in Rome for her career ambition as an art historian and lax morality.
-When Lev fell pregnant with Fr. Williams’ child and Lev’s fourth child – her first three children, two daughters, and an infant son who fell into and drowned in a swimming pool while left unsupervised, being born while she lived as the public mistress of married Italian lawyer Paolo Giangrave in Bologna – Lev and Williams attempted to deceive the surrounding community into believing by calculated implication that the father of the child was Lev’s omnipresent male homosexual confidant, by calling the conception of the child “a one night stand”, and having the homosexual confidant attend the birth and stand prominently as godfather at the child’s baptism, and spend the next several years as the child’s co-caregiver. The fact that the child was born with a severe case of Down Syndrome obscured any clearly identifiable resemblance to the father, making any false assignation of paternity plausible.
-Far more scandalously, Lev and Williams further conspired to use the very Sacrament of Baptism to cover their tracks, having Fr. Thomas Williams baptize his own son, thinking that the surrounding community would discount the possibility of Williams being the father of the child, thinking that no one, much less a moral theologian, could possibly be so shameless and depraved to use the Sacrament of Baptism in such a mendacious way.
-Throughout the early 2000s, Fr. Thomas Williams and his mistress’ mother and grandmother of his child, Mary Ann Glendon, worked in intimate cooperation to publicly assassinate the characters of any whistleblowers that tried to warn of and expose the founder of the Legionaries of Christ, Fr. Marcial Maciel Degollado, who was a drug addict and bisexual incestuous pedophile. Fr. Williams lived with Maciel for many years and was one of the top-ranking and most powerful members of the Legion of Christ. During the same period, Williams put Lev on the payroll of Zenit, the Legion-controlled news agency which Williams helped found and served as the publisher for ten years.
-By Williams’ own admission, and by the admission of his superior Rev Alvaro Corcuera, Williams directly disobeyed orders in 2005 to reduce his public profile after admitting that he had fathered a child that was by now now a toddler.
In the subsequent years, Williams doubled-down on developing his celebrity status, and became a fixture on American mainstream media network newscasts commenting on all-things Catholic, and published numerous mass-market books, including 2008’s cringe-inducing title, “Knowing Right From Wrong”. Katie Couric, apparently sharing Ms. Lev’s shallow and adolescent aesthetic of “hot” and “sexy”, referred to Fr. Williams as “Father What-a-waste”.
-Fr. Williams was the dean of the department of Moral Theology at the Legion of Christ’s Pontifical University in Rome, and was widely seen carrying on physical relationships openly both with Ms. Lev, and with students. Williams continued in that post until February of 2012, when a group of victims of psychological and sexual abuse by the Legion of Christ forwarded an evidentiary dossier to the Vatican demanding action against Fr. Williams.
-In 2013, Williams announced his intention to leave the priesthood, and marry Lev. Williams had not yet been laicized, and remained a Catholic priest. A lavish New York City wedding was scheduled for December of 2013. Lev and Fr. Williams, in an act of brazen shamelessness that to this day beggars belief, began soliciting cash gifts for their wedding, posting pictures of themselves in romantic, intimate poses that were taken while the as-yet Fr. Williams remained a Catholic priest. In Rome, a fellow tour guide acquaintance of Lev’s organized a bachelorette party, which Lev consented to and attended. Many of the guests did not know Lev, nor the circumstances surrounding the engagement. Lev laughed and joked about scandalizing the devout Catholic attendees when she was asked who she was marrying. Fr. Williams had not yet been laicized, and remained, still, a Catholic priest.
-Lev and Williams ordered custom party favors for their New York City wedding reception: wine corkscrews with the words “Love Conquers All” custom-embossed in Latin, which they also distributed at their Rome wedding reception the following week. When the custom-embossed corkscrews were ordered, Williams had not been laicized, and remained, still, a Catholic priest.
-Less than one week before the wedding, Fr. Williams’ laicization had not been signed, and Lev’s mother, the former Ambassador to the Holy See, Mary Ann Glendon, was dispatched to “pull strings” and get the document signed before the wedding, which was only days away.
Since what is sarcastically referred to in Rome as “The Royal Wedding”, Lev and Williams have done anything but live a life of private, sober repentance. They hold themselves out as nouveau-aristocrats, Catholic elites, bragging of their sensuous and decadent lifestyles, going so far as to become certified sommeliers, and by their words and deeds making a mockery of the sacramental priesthood, priestly celibacy, and the entire notion of sorrow for sin, twisting a total lack of shame into a post-modern, neo-pagan virtue. The message of these people’s lives is: Any priest who takes seriously his vows to Christ and His Church is a fool. To abandon the sacramental priesthood is an act of “conquering”. It says so, right there on the corkscrew. And mercy? Mercy according to this warped mindset is a purely legalistic false mercy without sorrow, shame, or most importantly, true repentance and conversion of life.
As the priesthood comes under attack with an eye towards eliminating the grace-conduit of priestly celibacy, the full horror is best summed up by the dismissive words of Thomas Williams himself, quoted in no less than the New York Times in January of 2017:
Rushing to meet his wife at St. Peter’s Square, Thomas Williams walked past priests in black cassocks and said that the only thing he missed from his own decades of wearing a priest’s collar was “a real sense of helping people very directly.”
He paused and added, “I’m sure I’m helping people in some way.”
Perhaps, but not by offering the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, or absolving sins in the confessional. But, at least Thomas Williams knows an ’85 Tignanello from a 2001 Masseto, and his wife thinks he’s “hot”.
….Post submitted by an anonymous eye-witness source from Western Europe