Catholics are, without question, facing the worst scandal since the Arian heresy if not in the history of the Church. It seems that every day some new horror is released from the Vatican, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) or even in one’s local parish. Stories of sexual abuse, financial malfeasance and even occultism and Satanism among the Catholic hierarchy make reading the daily Catholic news little different than listening to reruns of Art Bell’s classic conspiracy show Coast to Coast AM.
However, as many Catholic commentators have noted, much of the diabolical trickery at work in the contemporary Church has been present in much of the post-Vatican II and even pre-Vatican II Church. Indeed, just because Our Lord promised the gates of Hell would not prevail against His Holy Church doesn’t mean that the devil would not at least try to destroy it.
One of the key nodal points from which we can start unraveling the story of how the “mystery of iniquity” appears to have infiltrated the Church is the mysterious death of Italian banker Roberto Calvi on June 17, 1982.
Known as “God’s Banker,” Calvi was the head of the Banco Ambrosiano, which itself was partially owned by the Vatican Bank (Institute for the Works of Religion). Prior to his strange death, Calvi had been under investigation for nearly $1.3 billion that was missing from the Banco Ambrosiano.
The story of Roberto Calvi’s life and death runs the gambit of 20th-century Cold War intrigue, including stories of freemasonic rituals, escaped Nazis and former fascists, as well connections to moneylaundering, drug running and Western intelligence.
Calvi himself was a member of the P2 (Propaganda Due) Masonic Lodge, what was one of the most powerful centers of European Freemasonry and was ruled at its 20th century height by the archmason and spy master Licio Gelli.
Many claim that Gelli’s P2 was intimately involved with the CIA’s Operation Gladio, a network of paramilitary groups responsible for a host of terrorist acts in NATO countries in the 1970s and 80s.
While such a statement may seem outlandish, Italian officials publicly pulled the mask off of Gladio in 1990, revealing its clandestine activities to the entire world, as even the Washington Post has admitted.
Gelli himself was investigated for his involvement in Gladio as well as the poisoning of Michele “the Shark” Sidona, a banker who died in jail after drinking a cup of strangely tainted coffee.
Sidona himself was friends with Giovanni Battista Montini, the archbishop of Milan. Later, as Pope Paul VI, Montini would reward Sidona with a powerful position in the Vatican Bank for a large loan Sidona had given to the then-archbishop of Milan.
Sidona, like Gelli, and possibly Calvi himself, worked with American intelligence throughout the Cold War.
Gelli, who evaded true justice his entire life, was also one of the prime suspects in Calvi's death.
The murder of Robert Calvi, however, appears to be about more than personal and financial disputes between Gelli and himelf. The mainstream press covering a 2005 investigation of Calvi's murder noted that it had been alleged that Calvi was financing the Solidarity movement in Poland at the request of John Paul II.
Indeed, Gelli made the claim in court that the Holy Father had owed Calvi $80 million for his work supporting solidarity. Gelli further stated that Calvi had threatened John Paul that “if he did not get the money everything would blow up ... ."
Roberto Calvi was later found by a postal worker hanging under London’s Blackfriars Bridge located near the Inns of Court. In Calvi’s pockets, investigators found several bricks as well as $15,000 in cash.
Although his death was ruled a suicide in 1982, Calvi’s body was exhumed in 1998, and a 2002 report revealed that it was very unlikely for Calvi to have hanged himself and stuffed his own pocket with bricks.
To this very day, however, Calvi’s death remains unsolved, and the connections between the banker, the papacy, American intelligence and Freemasonry, despite mainstream media investigation, are still hazy at best.
The ghost of Roberto Calvi lingers in our own day as questions of Vatican finances as well as ties between the Vatican, high finance and the big movers and shakers of geopolitics garner near-daily media attention.
One of the most pronounced echoes of the Calvi case is the odd trial and imprisonment of Australian Cdl. George Pell.
On Feb. 2, 2019 Cdl. Pell was found guilty of sodomizing a 13-year-old boy, including four other counts of “indecent acts” with the aforementioned boy, as well as another who had served in the choir of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Melbourne.
Cardinal Pell’s trial is unusual for a variety of reasons. To this day, Pell maintains his innocence, and there are a few odd details about the accusations that remain unresolved.
Moreover, Pell is especially hated by both the liberal Catholic and secular media for his strongly Catholic moral positions as archbishop of Melbourne and Sidney.
The most curious fact about the Pell case is that he was nearly immediately brought under investigation after he began to discover irregularities in Vatican finances as head of the Vatican’s Secretariat for the Economy.
Is it possible that, while cleaning up Vatican finances, Cdl. Pell uncovered things that very important people wanted to remain hidden? Is it possible that the very same generational forces that took the life of Roberto Calvi still operate in perhaps mutated and variant form in the Vatican and murky world of banking and intelligence today?
This speculation, however, is not to make a judgment on whether or not Cdl. Pell is innocent or guilty of sexual abuse. Rather, we must raise the possibility that the primary reason why Cdl. Pell is in prison may not be due to whatever sexual crimes he may or may not have committed, but because he may have crossed some powerful people who wanted to let sleeping dogs lie.
Finally, this reflection on the legacy of Roberto Calvi and the nefarious forces at work behind the Vatican Bank should prompt us to consider what was really going on behind the scenes at the Amazon Synod.
Is it possible that the Pachamama affair, as grievous a scandal and sacrilege as it is, was a distraction for us to mask darker geopolitical, financial and, ultimately, diabolical machinations behind the scenes?