The Holocaust-denying Catholic bishop who was reinstated last month by the pope, only to embroil the Catholic Church in quite the controversy, and who was booted from the seminary he led and subsequently his home in Argentina, has apologized for comments. He didn’t, however, recant them as Pope Benedict XVI had demanded.
“If I had known beforehand the full harm and hurt to which they would give rise, especially to the church, but also to survivors and relatives of victims of injustice under the Third Reich, I would not have made them,” Williamson was quoted as saying in the statement carried by the Zenit Catholic news agency.
Last month the pope, seeking to help heal a rift with ultra-traditionalists, lifted a 20-year-old excommunication decree imposed on Williamson and three other bishops who had been consecrated without Vatican approval.
The move immediately caused an uproar among Jewish groups. Benedict later condemned Williamson’s remarks and spoke out against anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial.
“Observing these consequences I can truthfully say that I regret having made such remarks,” Williamson added, according to Zenit.