On April 12, 2023, Bishop Jacques Gaillot died of pancreatic cancer, at the age of 87. He had been removed from his position as Bishop of Evreux in 1997, but he continued his destructive activity until the end. For instance, in autumn 2021 he asked for the secrecy of confession to be lifted, because it “cannot be above the secularism of the Republic.”
On katholisches.info of April 13, Giuseppe Nardi comments: “Once again, he echoed the forces hostile to the Church who want to suppress the secrecy of confession under the pretext of ‘fighting against abuse.’”
During his carefully publicized career, Msgr. Gaillot spoke out in favor of the recognition of divorce and remarriage, the abolition of priestly celibacy, the recognition of homosexuality and euthanasia, as well as the introduction of the female priesthood.
He has supported the cause of migrants and has been hailed by left-leaning media as a “defender of minorities.” On August 30, 2015, Msgr. Gaillot was received in audience by Francis.
The pope devoted three quarters of an hour to him at St. Martha’s House, “in a relaxed atmosphere,” and he declared to him: “We are brothers.” The entourage of the ultra-progressive prelate described this interview as a “meeting of like-minded people.”
In the French weekly Le Point of September 1, 2015, Jérôme Cordelier gave the following account of the interview: “Francis listened, his gaze very lively, one sensed that he stuck to the words. He apologized for his bad French. It was above all Bishop Gaillot who spoke.
“I told him,” says the “Bishop of Partenia” [a now defunct ancient diocese which existed in the early centuries of the Church, the name of which the protesting bishop took after his forced resignation from Evreaux. Ed.], that I happened to bless divorced-remarried couples and even homosexual couples. I added: “We have the right to bless many houses, so we can bless people.”
“This sentence made the pope smile. He agreed with me and said, ‘God's blessing is for everyone.’ When the migrant issue came up, for which the two priests have been fighting for years, Francis said: ‘Migrants are the flesh of the Church.’”
Giuseppe Nardi concludes: “Jacques Gaillot is part of a whole series of controversial churchmen whom Francis has in fact rehabilitated or honored directly or indirectly, or whom he has brought from the margins to the center, among them Ernesto Cardenal, Leonardo Boff, Gustavo Gutierrez, Eugen Drewermann, Pedro Arrupe, etc.”
“This gallery of ‘like-minded’ people is both very disturbing and revealing of the current pontificate.”