The Chairman of the Zambia Episcopal Conference, it is with regret that I ought to answer you briefly on your document, which is officially known as a statement. It may mean your standpoint, which has shown some personal feelings from some of you. You are aware yourselves that I never quarreled with you as individuals, nor with the whole Episcopal Conference. The receptions I gave you when you came to Rome proved to you that I had no grudge against the Z.E.C. I was sincere, just as I am today.
I am sorry that you have been pushed to hurry up to produce such a wrong statement. Moreover as an Elder in Zambia, it was your duty to come to me and say: "You, as our Elder Brother, should now listen to us, or tell us why you have taken this decision. We and the people of Zambia are concerned."
You have made four mistakes. If you are humble you will see them veryclearly.
Here they are:
1. The Vatican spokesman says that they will not publish any sanctions against Archbishop Milingo before first sending them to him or informing him. Ref: Catholic News Services by Tracy Earl: http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/20010529.htm [note: the link is no longer active].
2. I am not a member of the Z.E.C. since 1983. I have been in Curia Romana, under Secretariat of State, up to November 2000, whereby I was under Cardinal Prefect of the Congregation of Bishops up until now.
3. I have never been advised on the matter of the healing ministry by you since 1983. I have never attended any of your Z.E.C. meetings since then. To say you have advised me on the matter is a white lie.
4. Since 1983 the Holy Father cleared me from all the accusations leveled against me by the Apostolic Nuncio George Zur and the Z.E.C. Since 1983 there was no case between you and me. The official document released from the Secretariat was that I should relate with the Diocese where I was to conduct the healing mass.
As from the Holy Father, here is what he said: "You should not be surprised with the treatment you have received. It is the routine duty of the church to conduct inquiries to clarify situations for the protection and the defense of faith. The church did the same for Father Pio. However we should do all we can to safeguard your charisma." Then he sent me to see Cardinal Casaroli, Secretary of State then. Cardinal gave me three possible appointments. As usual the church has a final choice, even if I had made my own. Immediately after that I went to Canada, Australia, and other countries.
Even as I had been under trial, ecclesiastical tribunal in the Propaganda Fide, I was questioned on the healing ministry. When I was released after one year and three months, the matter at issue was always "the healing services during mass, or healing service."
I wonder why, you my dear brothers of Z.E.C. have hurriedly come out with a statement defaming me, even going so far as judging my faith. I regret that you are still so totally geared to a submissive attitude which is so clear that you suspended your true identity, and forced to write a document, which I believe has shocked even the Vatican. Who pushed you to judge a person who does not fall under your jurisdiction? I can truly say like St. Paul, "that I am a Roman, I appeal to Caesar." Anyway you have made a historical mistake. I hope you will amend publicly to the people of Zambia, whom you have scandalized and penalized.
Praying for you,
Yours Most Respectfully,
Archbishop E. Milingo
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