I never heard of him but I suppose some of you have. He’s Father George William Rutler the 75-year-old pastor of St,. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church in Midtown Manhattan. He is known for his outspoken criticism of Pope Francis and liberalism. He compared on his television show on Eternal Word Television Network Pope Francis to Neville Chamberlain .He said liberals don’t believe in love because they have no souls. He said abortionists and sodomites are united in a commitment to death and to self destruction. He complained that those with recovered memory of abuse by priests were exploiting the Church scandal to make money.
He has had been pastor of St. Michael’s since 2013 and over his days as priest has written dozens of books and was host to his own program on EWTN. He is a well regarded member of the Adamantine group in the Catholic Church who look upon Pope Francis with great skepticism.
Sadly, although he appeared to be a priest one could admire and respect a twenty-two year old woman named Ashley Gonzalez after encountering him had this to say: “It affected me in a way where I never want to go to church again.”
Ashley had a job as a security guard at St. Michael’s during election week. Father Rutler told he she could use the coach in his office to rest whenever she desired. Election evening November 3 she took the opportunity to do so around 1:00 a.m. While there Father Rutler entered the office telling her he wanted to see the results of the election on his desktop computer. Unconcerned she sat there but then began to hear what she called “sexual noises.” Looking up she saw Father Rutler was watching gay pornographic videos and he had his right hand in his pants.
Extremely frightened she thought to defend herself she’d need proof so she took a 19 second video and then texted to her mother she feared she was going to be raped. She got up to leave and he blocked her exit, fondled her breasts, and pushed her up against the office wall before she managed to flee. She went right to the local police station reporting the incident.
She said no one would believe her over the word of a priest if she did not have the video. Even with it little seems to have been done. Father Rutler denied assaulting her but said nothing about the video incident. He has relinquished his duties as pastor and like the Manhattan DA the church is investigating the allegations. You wonder what the investigation is about. The matter seems simple and straightforward.
But all that aside, what Catholic needs this to be happening again. How many blows can the Church stand from errant priests. On December 1 Father William McCandless, 56, of Wilmington, Delaware was arrested entering the United States with thousands of child pornography images including ones described “as the torture of very young children.”
It is unconscionable that these two priests would act acting in this manner knowing the serious damage inflicted on the Church already by wayward clergy from cardinals to brothers. What trust can we have in any of them? Where does it end?