The fallout from the appointment of a former source of the secret services of the Polish Communist government as Archbishop of Warsaw continues to rock Poland and the Vatican two days before his installation.
From Andrea Tornielli (Rome), in Il Giornale's Friday edition (Italian):
The position of the new archbishop of Warsaw, Stanislaw Wielgus, 67 years old, appointed last December 6 as successor to Cardinal Glemp and who will enter the diocese in two days worsens: new documents from the archives seem to demonstrate, as the authoritative Polish daily Rzeczpospolita affirms, that the prelate was "a secret agent of the Communist services for twenty years".
Now, thanks to a microfilm, new and graver elements emerge. "I, Grey-Stanislaw [one of the supposed pseudonyms used by Wielgus] agree to collaborate with the secret services of the Polish Popular Republic during my time abroad. The collaboration will be based in an offer of intelligence services from Federal Germany and other hostile nations, according to the instructions of the Center for Intelligence Services. The services shall make available all means and eventual legal help for the development of the aforementioned activities." This is the text of the document reported in unabridged format by Rzeczpospolita.
It is probable that the circumstances were not [known to the Vatican] in all their consistency and extent. Anonymous sources from the Polish Church do not hide the embarrassment which this situation is causing, a few hours before the installation of the new archbishop: "It is a grave affair, a sad and delicate story, it is not a pleasant thing."
From The Guardian:
"The new archbishop of Warsaw was a secret and conscious collaborator with the SB [Security Service] for more than 20 years. Documents confirm this," the well-respected Rzeczpospolita newspaper wrote yesterday of Mr Wielgus, who was chosen by Pope Benedict XVI last month to fill one of the most important roles in the Polish church.
Mr Wielgus is accused of spying for the SB from 1967, when he was a philosophy student at Lublin University, until the collapse of communist rule in 1989, and of operating under at least three pseudonyms: "Adam", "Grey" and "Adam Wysocki".
Rzeczpospolita claimed to have unearthed Mr Wielgus' signed agreement to work for the SB, along with documents showing that he gathered information about church matters and students whom he taught, and even papers suggesting that he received "special training" for agents and was given a grant to study in Germany as reward for his collaboration.
More from Rzeczpospolita (in Polish).