Who’s Carrying Water For Crux and Allen In 2020?
Now that the Knights of Columbus have cut off their financial support of Crux, who has picked up the financial slack for John L. Allen, Jr.? The answer is the same – Opus Dei. In the case of the Knights, Opus Dei was able to control and finance Crux without paying the bill by acting through Supreme Knight Carl Anderson, a high level operative of Opus Dei. Today, however, the major funding apparatus for Crux and Allen has shifted from the Knights to the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and its clueless pewsitters under Opus Dei Archbishop José Gómez, and the Archdiocese of Brooklyn under Opus Dei Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio, and its likewise clueless pewsitters.
If the reader scrolls down to the bottom of the current Crux website, he will see a list of Crux’s current financial sponsors. There are six sponsors listed as of March 1, 2020: (1) The Tablet (2) DeSales Media Group in the Diocese of Brooklyn (3) Angelus News (4) The Catholic Channel on Sirius XM (5) Catholic Standard and (6) Catholic TV. There used to be more, but the list of sponsors has shrunk since 2019.
The Catholic TV Network is a long-term enterprise of the Archdiocese of Boston under Cardinal Sean O’Malley, for whom Allen has always played the adoring publicist. This writer remembers the buzz that Allen created when reporting for the NCReporter back in February 2013, that O’Malley was a serious contender for the papacy. Allen’s obvious fawning and adulation over O’Malley was embarrassing. In any case, the funds provided by O’Malley to sustain Crux may be substantial, but they are not determinant.
Lesser amounts have been forthcoming from the Archdiocese of New York under Timothy Dolan. The Archdiocese funds the Sirius XM Catholic Channel and The Catholic Standard, the diocesan paper of the Archdiocese of Washington D.C. under Archbishop Wilton Gregory. Neither can be labeled as primary donors.
This leaves just two other sources – the Archdiocese of Los Angeles (Angelus News) under Archbishop José H. Gómez and the Diocese of Brooklyn (The Tablet, and the DeSales Media Group) under Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio. Both are Opus Dei bishops – Gómez was a numerary and priest of the Work, and DiMarzio is an Associate of the Work.
A Biographical Sketch of Archbishop José H. Gomez
Archbishop José Horacio Gómez Velasco of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, the largest archdiocese in the United States, is the first Opus Dei numerary to be consecrated a bishop in the United States.
Archbishop Gómez is also the current President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishop (USCCB) in Washington, D.C., which makes him one of the most influential and powerful Hispanic bishops in the world today. Indeed, his appointment to the USCCB, represents a significant paradigm shift of Catholic Ecclesiastical Power from the East Coast New York and Boston Archdioceses to the West Coast and the Archdiocese of Los Angeles with its burgeoning Hispanic population.
Born on December 26, 1951, in the Archdiocese of Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, he was groomed and recruited at an early age by Opus Dei, although he was not formally accepted as a celibate numerary and committed to “the Fidelity” until he reached the age of 23 years. He attended the Monterrey Institute of Technology before entering the National University of Mexico, where he earned a BS in Accounting (1974) and a BA in Philosophy in 1975. That year, he was selected by the reigning Opus Dei Council to enter the priesthood to serve the Work, which necessitated his travel to Spain to attend the University of Navarra, where he earned his BS in Theology (1975-1978).
Gómez Ordained by Cardinal Franz König of Austria
The ordination took place August 1, 1978, at the Marian Shrine of Torreciudad in Aragon, Spain, built by Escrivá and “entrusted” aka owned and operated by the Opus Dei Prelature. That the 26-year-old Gómez was ordained to the Priestly Society of the Holy Cross by Cardinal Franz König, a 1st class Modernist, should come as no surprise to anyone who has studied Opus Dei as a creature of the Second Vatican Council. After all, the very concept of Opus Dei as a Personal Prelature was a jurisdictional configuration proposed by Vatican II and Opus has always promoted the active participation of the laity in the Liturgy and the integration of priests and laymen in Church life.]
As an advocate of Church “reform,” König played a decisive role in the declaration on non-Christian religions, Nostra aetate, and was a dissenter from Humanae Vitae.
König first met Fr. Escrivá at the Second Vatican Council and was impressed with the concept of Opus Dei, especially the novel (anti-Scriptural) idea that Opus members are both in the world and of the world.
In 1980, after his ordination to the Priestly Society of the Holy Cross, Gómez returned to the University of Navarra to complete his Doctorate in Theology.
Gómez Grooms and Recruits for the Work
For the next 7 years, from 1980 until 1987, Gómez became an important promoter and recruiter for Opus on college and high school campuses in Spain and Mexico. Then, in 1987 his life took a decisive turnabout. His Opus superiors in Rome sent him to the United States. He became a naturalized citizen of the U.S. in 1995.
Gómez’s early years in this country were spent with family and relatives in San Antonio, Texas, which had long been a second home to the young man. Here he also assisted at Our Lady of Grace Church and later at St. Bartholomew Parish in the Diocese of Galveston-Houston.
Moving up the Opus corporate ladder, Father Gómez became the State Vicar Delegate of the Texas Prelature of Opus Dei, a post he held from 1997 until his consecration as an auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Denver, in 2001.
In 1998, Gómez was named to the Steering Committee of the Encuentro 2000 Movement promoted by Bishop Joseph Fiorenza, the Ordinary of Galveston-Houston, who was also serving as the President of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops (NCCB). Called a “process” as opposed to a singular “event,” Encuentro was organized in 1972 by the Secretariat for Hispanic Affairs of the NCCB to encourage “diversity,” “inculturation” and multicultural liturgies in the Catholic Church. According to Bishop Fiorenza, the major themes of Encuentro (Encounter) are “Recognition, respect and institutional acceptance of discrete cultural, ethnic, and racial identities within the Catholic Church.”
Possessing shades of Saul Alinsky, breakout sessions of Encuentro 2000 included programs devoted to community organizing, networking and advocacy of “a transformational experience offered by the [pro-abortion/pro-contraceptive] Catholic Campaign for Human Development entitled ‘Journey to Justice.’"
Pope John Paul II Appoints Gómez an Auxiliary Bishop
On January 23, 2001, Archbishop of Denver, Charles Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., consecrated the former Opus Dei numerary and priest, Father José Gómez, as an Auxiliary Bishop for the Denver Archdiocese. Chaput was assisted by Bishop Fiorenza and Bishop Javier Echevarria, Prelate of Opus Dei at the Immaculate Conception Cathedral in Denver, where Gómez served as pastor for the next three years. In 2004, Chaput brought Gómez into the Diocesan Chancery as Moderator of the Curia and Vicar General for the Archdiocese of Denver.
On December 29, 2004, Pope John Paul II named Gómez the new Archbishop of San Antonio following the mandatory retirement of Archbishop Patrick Flores.
Six years later, on April 6, 2010, Pope Benedict XVI appointed Gómez Coadjutor Archbishop of Los Angeles with right of succession and the following March 1, 2011, Gómez succeeded Cardinal Mahony as the Archbishop of Los Angeles. Which is where we find him today.
Archbishop Gómez’s Astounding List of Associations
One of the operative features of cults like Opus Dei is the infiltration of organizations which can be of service to them by various means including financing and recruitment.
Archbishop Gómez’s primary agenda for the Los Angeles Archdiocese has thus far centered on (1) Immigration Reform (2) the New Evangelization of Pope John Paul II (3) Vocations in the Contemporary World (4) the Role of Women in the Church and (5) Pro-Life Issues. Conspicuously absent from Gómez’s leadership role in AmChurch is bringing the Homosexual Collective, inside the Church and out, to heel and extinction.
The following list is a sample of Archbishop Gómez’s memberships:
- Episcopal Moderator of La Red – National Catholic Network Pastoral of Juvenil Hispana.
- Board Member of the John G. and Marie Stella Kennedy Memorial Foundation.
- Advisory Board Member Instituto Fe y Vida.
- Ecclesial advisor to NET Ministries, Inc.
- Member of the Mexican American Cultural Center.
- Member, Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc.
- Episcopal Moderator of the National Association of Hispanic Priests, (Regional Representative 1991, President 1995, Executive Director 1999—2001).
- National Catholic Council of Hispanic Ministry.
- CALL – Catholic Association of Latino Leaders.
- Ecclesiastical Advisory Board Member to the Napa Institute.
- Board member Catholic University American
- Ecclesiastical Advisor to Legatus – “The world’s premier membership organization for Catholic business leaders.
- Advisory Board Member National Conference of Diocesan Vocations Directors
- Board Member – The Papal Foundation
- Member of the St. John Paul II Foundation
- Committees of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops
Committee on migration; Subcommittee Hispanic affairs; Committee priestly formation; Committee priestly life & ministry; Committee doctrine; Ad hoc committee on Spanish language Bible for the Church in America; Committee catechesis; Subcommittee on Hispanics and liturgy; Chair of Committee for Cultural Diversity.
- Consultant to the Vatican Pontifical Commission for Latin America in the Roman Curia
- Member -Special Council for America of the General Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops.
- Member of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications.
- Founding member with Archbishop Chaput of ENDOW – Educating on the Nature and Dignity of Women, originally an “apostolate” of Regnum Christi (Legionaries of Christ).
- Advisory Board Member – “Rome Experience, “ Opus Dei’s program for diocesan priests.
- Board member of EWTN
- Board Member of Relevant Radio
- Board Member – Spanish/Catholic TV Channel El Sembrador Nueva Evangelizacion (ESNE)
- Archbishop Gómez has established his own top-grade, sophisticated, bilingual website on immigration at https://thenextamerica.org/.
Archbishop Gómez Still Connected to Opus Dei
When Gómez was appointed to head the San Antonio Archdiocese, he told the Catholic press that he was no longer affiliated with Opus Dei because once a priest becomes a bishop he reports exclusively to the pope as is the case when a member of a religious order becomes a bishop.
In April of 2010, when Gómez was appointed the Coadjutor Archbishop of Los Angeles, Opus toady John Allen, reporting for the National Catholic Reporter, informed his readers that “Gomez says he is not a "member" of Opus Dei, but rather that he was ordained a priest in Opus Dei and that his spirituality reflects that background. If he's a "member" of anything now, he says, it's the diocese he leads.”
Despite these attempts of Archbishop Gómez to disassociate himself publicly from the Work, I think the record will clearly demonstrate that Gómez is as attached to Opus Dei as he was as a celibate numerary and a member of the Society of Priests of the Holy Cross – perhaps even more due to his growing influence and power in the Catholic Church today. That he reports to the Pope at least once every five years during an ad limina visit to Rome does not preclude Gómez from regularly communicating with Msgr. Fernando Ocáriz Braña, the Prelate of Opus Dei, nor Opus Council officials at Opus’ headquarters in Rome, or from having an Opus confessor and spiritual director or from running various “apostolates” for the Prelature or recruiting potential members of the Prelature or from using archdiocesan monies to fund projects near and dear to Opus Dei’s heart and pocketbook, which brings us full circle to John Allen and Crux.
Proof that there is no mandate of any kind that a bishop automatically severs his known connections to Opus Dei comes directly from Opus Dei Bishop Robert Finn, formerly of the Archdiocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, in an interview he did with the National Catholic Reporter on May 12, 2006.
According to Finn, he first became acquainted with Opus Dei through days of recollection for priests in the mid-1990s. In January 2004, shortly before he was named Coadjutor of the Archdiocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph by Pope John Paul II, he said he was going to apply to be an (Associate) member of the Priestly Society of the Holy Cross. When the appointment was confirmed, Finn said he asked Father Jay Alvarez, his Opus Dei spiritual director if he should pursue membership and was told “Do you want to continue?” Finn replied, yes, that he needed spiritual direction now more,” and became a member of the Work. According to Finn, he traveled 125 miles twice a month to Columbia, Mo. to meet with his Opus Dei spiritual director.
Is it reasonable to assume then, that Gómez, who spent much of his youth and decades as a numerary and priest of Opus Dei, is going to forsake his “vocation” to the Work, and give up his “membership” in Opus, when it is not required either by Opus Dei’s Bylaws or Constitution or by Canon Law?
I think not.
Archbishop Gómez Underwrites Allen and Crux
In keeping with Opus Dei’s 4th charism of communications and public relations, in 2016, Archbishop Gómez undertook a major multi-million dollar campaign designed to modernize the entire L.A. Archdiocesan media and communications system on a scale comparable to that of Opus Dei’s Vatican Press Officer, Navarro Valls’s complete overhaul of the Holy See’s communications network under the pontificate of Pope John Paul II.
The stunningly beautiful and unique portrait of Archbishop Gómez that accompanies his official biography found at https://www.archbishopgomez.org/about-archbishopi is characteristic of the heavy financial investment in new and sophisticated means of public relations that the pew sitters of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles (and the Tidings Corporation ) have been funding since Archbishop Gómez took office.
On June 29, 2016, just about four months after the Knights of Columbus had announced that they were entering into a “partnership” with John Allen’s Crux, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles issued a press release announcing the launching of a new multimedia platform, Angelus News, designed to serve “millions of Catholics and non-Catholics, not only in the Archdiocese, but around the world.” The L.A. Archdiocese is also publishing a Catholic Spanish newspaper Vida Nueva.
Missed by most journalists who were critical of the Knights/Crux “partnership,” including myself, was a key addendum to the Gómez’s L. A. Archdiocesan media empire’s press release stating that it also would serve as the “print home of renowned Vatican reporter John Allen and his Crux colleague (Opus Dei) Inés San Martin.”
The same day, Crux issued an almost identical press statement to that of the tax-exempt L.A. Archdiocese confirming that Angelus News would coordinate and produce the digital publication of Allen’s profit-making Crux news service.
What this announcement, in plain brown paper language meant was that at the same time that Opus Dei Supreme Knight, Carl Anderson, got his fellow Knights to financially underwrite Allen and Crux, Opus Dei’s Archbishop Gómez was also planning on backing Allen and Crux via the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.
Adding more fuel to the fire, both press releases stated that “in addition to having Crux feature writers Allen and San Martín (Opus Dei), Angelus News would also employ other “top nationally known Catholic journalists” including Ruben Navarrette (pro-abortion); Kathryn Lopez (Opus Dei); Mike Aquilina (Opus Dei), Scott Hahn (Opus Dei) and Russell Shaw (Knights of Columbus and Opus Dei who joined the Angelus News team later).
The Ties That Bind – Opus Dei –Knights –Crux–Allen– Gómez
Two years later, on June 3, 2018, in an “Open Letter” from John Allen to Crux readers and contributors, Allen announced that Crux was “entering into deeper relationship with Angelus News… led by my old friend David Scott, now the Vice Chancellor for Communications in L.A.” (emphasis added). 
According to Allen, “Under the agreement, Angelus will supply original reporting and other content for use on Crux as well as support for Crux’s social media operations (at no cost to Crux).” On the other hand, the profit-making Crux will deliver original work for use in Angelus, and be compensated for it by Angelus, the L.A. Archdiocese and L.A. pewsitters (emphasis added). “The arrangement is editorial in nature only, meaning both Crux and Angelus retain their full independence, journalistically and financially[?],” said Allen.
Apparently, L.A. Archdiocesan employee, David Scott didn’t seem troubled by the obvious one-way financial discrepancy of the new arrangement between Crux and Angelus because he wrote:
We admire and share John Allen’s vision for a Catholic journalism that is smart, independent, and free of ideology and bias. We are honored to be able to offer Angelus readers exclusive original reporting on the global Church every week from John and his collaborators, including Inés San Martin, Christopher White and Claire Giangravè, all with Opus connections (emphasis added).
Gómez and DiMarzio Hold Crux’s Money Bag
On September 24, 2019, months after the Knights of Columbus pulled their financial rug out from Crux, the Archdiocese of L.A.’s Newsroom issued its final statement to date that Angelus News was being “redesigned,” to accommodate Archbishop Gómez’s “courageous vision for Catholic journalism here in LA (emphasis added).”
The L.A. Newsroom release indicated that the new and revised Angelus would continue to feature “contributors loved by its readership…” including “the respected Catholic writers John L. Allen, Jr. …”
Today’s Angelus/Crux contributors include John Allen’s present wife, Elise Harris Allen, Opus Dei supernumeraries Russell Shaw, Mike Aquilina, and Scott Hahn, as well as Kathryn Lopez, Dr. Grazie Pozo Christie, and Inés San Martin reporting from her home base in Argentina, and, of course, Archbishop Gómez.
Bishop DiMarzio Closes the Opus Dei Media Circle
While Archbishop Gómez was building Opus Dei’s media empire on the West Coast, Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio was building up the DeSales Media Group, the communications and technical arm of the Diocese of Brooklyn. DeSales properties, that is, the properties of the Brooklyn Diocese, include NET TV cable network, New York’s Catholic news program, Currents News; The Tablet, the only weekly Catholic newspaper in the Archdiocese of New York under Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the Nuestra Voz monthly Spanish-language newspaper, and the Catholic Telemedia Network, which provides instructional Media resources. A long-time guest columnist for The Tablet has been John Allen of Crux.
Bishop DiMarzio, a priest of the Newark Diocese was consecrated an Auxiliary bishop by then Archbishop Theodore McCarrick in October 1996. When Bishop James T. McHugh, a homosexual protegee of McCarrick was appointed Coadjutor bishop of Rockville Centre, N.Y. on December 7, 1998, DiMarzio replaced him on June 22, 1999. On October 3, 2003, DiMarzio was appointed by Pope John Paul II to oversee the homosexual and sexual abuse – dominated Diocese of Brooklyn.
The reader may recall that the St. Matthew Community, the first Roman Catholic religious community of homosexual men for homosexual men was established in late 1978, in the Brooklyn Diocese, under homosexual Bishop Francis Mugavero, author of “Sexuality – God’s Gift, a pastoral apologia for sodomy.
Not surprisingly, DiMarzio had been a leading opponent of the recently passed “Child Victims Act” which opens up the statute of limitations in New York State for sex abuse survivors. The Brooklyn Diocese already has received valid ex abuse complaints against 100 of its priests and there are many more abuse survivors prepared to file lawsuits in 2020.
On November 13, 2019, the New York Post broke the story that Bishop DiMarzio had himself been accused of repeatedly molesting a young altar boy at St. Nicholas Church in Jersey City between 1974 and 1975. A second priest, the late Rev. Albert Mark, was also accused of participating in the criminal acts by the same alleged victim Mark Matzek, now 56.
DiMarzio publicly denied the accusation and said he was confident that he would be fully vindicated.
On January 18, 2020, the Post reported that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith had notified Carinal Timothy Dolan of the New York Archdiocese that he (Dolan) was to begin an “Vos Estis Lux Mundi” investigation of the allegations against Bishop DiMarzio.
Bishop DiMarzio – An Associate Priest of Opus Dei
The first time this writer heard that DiMarzio was associated with Opus Dei was on September 30, 2005 when the blogger of Vaticanisti “outed” all four American Opus Dei Bishops. Among those whose Opus affiliations were well known or at least publicly known (and identified by John Allen in his Opus Dei book) were Archbishop Gómez of the San Antonio Archdiocese, and Archbishop John J. Myers of Newark. However, there were two bishops who had managed to keep their affiliation “very private.” One was Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City-St. Joseph in Missouri. The other was Bishop DiMarzio of Brooklyn.
It wasn’t until five years later, in April 2010, that Cindy Wooden of Catholic News Service, the official media outlet of the USCCB, mentioned DiMarzio as an Opus Dei Bishop in connection with Archbishop Gómez’s appointment to the L.A. Archdiocese. Even though Bishop DiMarzio is known to celebrate Mass to mark the feast day of Opus Dei founder, Josemaría Escrivá, recent press releases on the DiMarzio sex abuse investigation have not mentioned his Opus Dei connections.
A Review and Concluding Remarks
- Part I of this series focuses on the controversial role of the Knights of Columbus’ bailout of John L. Allen’s news service Crux and the semi-secret withdrawal of its financial support in 2019. There are still many unanswered questions surrounding the Knights Executive Board actions with regard to this latest misadventure. I trust the rank and file members of the Knights will demand an answer to these questions.
- Part II of this series zeros in on the Man of the Hour, so to speak, John L. Allen Jr. and his long and friendly relationship with Opus Dei – the hidden hand in the Crux affair. Whatever the media hype, the terms “smart, wired and independent” is surely not an honest description of the Opus Dei – dominated news service.
- Part III provides evidence on the concrete connections between Crux key staff and contributors and Opus Dei.
- Part IV provides further information on Crux’s two current primary financial backers – the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and the Diocese of Brooklyn.
The bottom line of this series is short, but not very sweet.
With Opus Dei’s control of Crux by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles under the new USCCB King Maker Archbishop José H. Gómez and to a much lesser degree the Diocese of Brooklyn under Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio, the Prelature has pretty much completed its takeover of the Catholic media not only in the United States but in Rome and at the Vatican and most of the Spanish-speaking World.
Catholic religious orders and organizations still have their publications, but they generally serve a select readership, and pose no threat to Opus Dei’s dominance of the Catholic media.
It also looks like Opus Dei’s only real competitor from the past, Catholic News Service, the official and liberal voice of the USCCB in Washington, D.C. has fallen under the Angelus spell as more and more dioceses are trading in their diocesan newspapers for electronic versions of their weekly communications.
In any case, today, most Catholics, outside the Traditionalist Movement, get their religious news electronically from Opus Dei’s popular and free Catholic News Agency (CNA) or Crux.
Some Traditionalists still cling to once truly Catholic newspapers like Our Sunday Visitor or the National Catholic Register , both of which were scooped up by Opus Dei years ago.
This leaves Michael Matt’s The Remnant, Matt Gasper’s Catholic Family News, that has supported the League of St. Peter Damian from day one, and the newest kid on the Catholic media block, The Catholic Inquisitor, publisher and editor Louie Verrecchio.
Obviously, the reader knows I write regularly for Louie’s The Catholic Inquisitor and AKA Catholic. This series is my way of thanking both Louie and the readers of The Catholic Inquisitor and AKA Catholic for their support over the years.
To paraphrase Mr. John Allen, “Yes, you can still get ‘smart, wired and independent’ Catholic news.” Just subscribed to The Catholic Inquisitor!
 Vittorio Messori, Opus Dei, Regnery Publishing, Washington, D.C., 1994, p. 126.
 See https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?recnum=3121. Christopher Cummings’s critical article, “Encuentro 2000 – Something For Everyone?” offers an excellent summary of the organization.
 See https://josephsciambra.com/catholic-dissenters-on-homosexuality-take-center-stage-at-2017-la-congress/ and LA Catholic Ministry with Lesbians & Gay persons at https://lacatholics.org/departments-ministries/catholic-ministry-with-lesbian-gay-persons/.
 Joan Fawley, “New L.A. Leader’s Focus Is on Evangelization,” NCRegister, April 8, 2010 at https://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/archbishop_gomez.
 Dennis Coday, “Finn one of four Opus Dei bishops in SA,” NCReporter, May 12,2006. Finn said he kept his association with Opus Dei secret until the Kansas City Star broke the story in October 2005.
 The Tidings Corporation, created in 1895, is the publishing firm of the L.A. Archdiocese. It became Angelus/ Angelus News in July 2016.
 “L.A. Archdiocese Launches New Multimedia Platform,” Angelus News, To Serve Millions of Catholics,” L.A. Archdiocesan Press Release, June 29, 2016.
 Crux Staff, “New L.A. media platform to feature Crux writes,” June 29, 2016.
 John Allen, “An open letter from John Allen to Crux readers,” Crux, June 3, 2018.
 Randy Engel, The Rite of Sodomy,” Export, PA, pp. 665-668.
 “American Opus Dei Bishops Outed!,” Vaticanisti, September 30, 2005.© Randy Engel
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