Archbishop Charles Palmer-Buckle

Archbishop Charles Gabriel Palmer-Buckle is a well-known clergyman and prelate of the Holy Roman Catholic Church. He was ordained a priest on Sunday December 12, 1976 and was consecrated a bishop on Wednesday January 6, 1993 and installed archbishop on Saturday May 28, 2005.

Lately Most Rev. Charles Palmer-Buckle had twice appeared in the news and in my opinion today, I thought I should share my comments.

Firstly, the Roman prelate, advised H.E. President Nana Akufo Addo, to review the Free SHS policy. This very harmless advice rather incited the ever-spiteful Kevin Taylor to spew uncultured and uncouth language at the archbishop, someone who is more knowledgeable and experienced than this self-acclaimed Ghanaian journalist, who has gone on self-imposed exile in the United States.

The words Kevin used cannot be repeated in a decent paper like the Ghanaian Chronicle, and to me all I can say to his family especially his parents is that they did their best and also that their home is not the only good home that wayward children come from.

Kevin’s problem, and no one seems to understand him, was that Archbishop Palmer-Buckle, made the same suggestion, Ex-President Mahama did, which he supported very much, however in the case of the archbishop, he did not make it in 2020, when Mahama, did. And this called for foul language. I only hope, Kevin’s children will not adopt this kind of hare-brained kind of life of their father’s.

The next thing that came out about Archbishop Charles Palmer-Buckle was a letter he authored, in which he suspended one Rev. Fr. Robert A.K. Oduro from the ministry of the holy priesthood.

From the reasons given by the archbishop, the priest in question had violated his vow of obedience to his bishop. This is a very serious offense that any priest can commit. It is like a minister or any government appointee flatly disobeying orders from the president.

The reason for Fr. Oduro’s suspension was that he had set up an unauthorised prayer camp and even though he was invited for discussions and even visited on site for deliberations on his prayer camp, he flatly ignored his bishop.

Some comments on social media on this issue especially against the archbishop clearly shows that lots of people do not understand how the Catholic Church operates. The most decent attack on the archbishop was that he is not the owner of the Holy Spirit and that Fr. Oduro could apply for retirement and concentrate on his Jesus’ ministry.

The Holy Catholic Church of which the Holy Roman Catholic Church is one and in fact the largest, has been through lots of experiences these almost two thousand odd years. Events throughout her history have guided the Church in taking up certain decisions that would maintain some orderliness in its mission to win souls for Christ. Since the Holy Trinity is a God of Orderliness, the Holy Spirit which blows within the Church, requires some form of decorum and nothing that will create confusion.

Setting up a prayer camp without authorisation, and there are authorised Catholic prayer camps across the country, means the priest wanted to operate without supervision of the Church, represented by the archbishop. It also means that he has some hidden agenda which he may want to promote under the guise of a Catholic priest. Nothing stopped him from applying to his bishop to set up a prayer camp and to wait patiently to be granted permission.

We all know what mostly transpire in such camps: healing and deliverance, prophecies and what have you. One essential thing especially to the Catholic Church is to test the spirit behind such activities.

The Catholic Church had faced such challenges before and one such person who threw the whole community of guard, for over forty years, making almost everyone believe she was working with the Holy Spirit when in fact she was a devil’s saint was Sister Magdalena of the Cross (1487-1560).

Before she was five, she started seeing visions and was almost always in church praying. Before age ten she performed her first miraculous healing and things kept happening with almost the whole of Christendom, believing she was indeed a living saint. Only a few people like St, Ignatius of Loyola and St. John of Avila would not be fooled.

It was in 1543, during a long ailment that it was detected that Sr. Magdalene of the Cross was actually operating under the influence of demons. During her exorcism she admitted having a forty-year pact with Satan. She repented and gave her life to Christ.

The important missing element which allowed for the ongoing demonic deceptions in the life of Sr. Magdalena was the absence of a priest spiritual director to guide and discern her alleged mystical gifts and supernatural graces. Obedience is the “litmus test” of the Church, and it seems that Sr. Magdalena was never subjected to obedience to a spiritual director.

To curb such occasions of fake mystics, the Church would suspend that particular clergy or religious to test the spirit. The great mystic of modern times, St. Padre Pio of San Giovanni Rotondo was suspended from saying mass publicly or even meeting people for over ten years. He passed the test and was allowed back to continue his public service to the faithful and today he has been canonised a saint.

Without such measures, the Catholic Church could become like a circus and no one would know who are the good and genuine priests. Today, we have some men of God doing things that are very alien to the mind of Jesus Christ, like sleeping with junior pastors’ wives, bathing women in public, giving out lotto numbers, etc., etc.

A Catholic Priest, who cannot obey his Bishop, even if that bishop, himself is a problem, cannot obey the Church. Pride and disobedience are the signs of the evil one. Pride brought the fall of Lucifer and disobedience, the fall of Adam and Eve.

What Archbishop Charles Palmer-Buckle did was right. It is more essential to maintain the sanctity of the Catholic Church at all times, after all, generally, Catholic priests are the most holy in the Christendom and filled with the Holy Spirit.

Archbishop Palmer-Buckle needs support in prayers as a shepherd of the faithful.

Hon Daniel Dugan


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