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Sacred Betrayals

A widow raises her voice against the corruption of the Francis papacy

The widow of the Dean of the Vatican Ambassador Corps uncovers a web of financial and sex abuse coverups that leads to the top of the Vatican hierarchy

For almost forty years, Martha Alegría Reichmann and her husband, Ambassador Alejandro Valladares, were among the closest friends of Óscar Andrés Rodríguez Maradiaga, the influential archbishop and cardinal appointed to lead Pope Francis’ elite Council of Cardinal Advisers, and dubbed the "vice pope" by the Italian media. They were equally close friends with his auxiliary bishop and close companion, Juan José Pineda Fasquelle. They shared their home and their lives with the duo, and Valladares was instrumental in obtaining Maradiaga's appointment to the cardinalate.

In the space of a few short years their illusions about the two prelates would be shattered completely. The Valladares' life savings would be lost in a fraudulent investment scheme promoted to them by the cardinal, who had suddenly begun to act as if he did not know them. After falling afoul of a close male friend of Bishop Pineda, the prelate would refuse to return precious historical documents that they had lent to him, and would begin a whispering campaign to end Valladares’s ambassadorship.

As Martha Alegría, finally widowed and desperate, searched for answers and sought justice from the Holy See, reporters would uncover evidence that Maradiaga himself had lost over a million dollars in the same financial scam, and that the pair had taken millions more unaccounted-for funds from the University of Honduras and the Honduran government. Even worse, large sums had been spent by Bishop Pineda on close male friends who lived with him at the bishop's residence, and he was now accused of sexual predation against seminarians. 


However, Alegría's worst shock was still to come. After she took her case to the highest prelates in the Vatican, and ultimately to Pope Francis himself, she found that Maradiaga was untouchable, and despite his promises to Alegría, the pope would not, or could not, do anything to correct his lieutenant. Maradiaga was untouchable, enjoying absolute impunity under the protection of Pope Francis. "Sacred Betrayals: A widow raises her voice against the corruption of the Francis papacy" tells Martha Alegría's story of betrayal and her painful realization regarding the true state of the Holy See.

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Sacred Betrayals paperback front cover i

Sacred Betrayals: A widow raises her voice against the corruption of the Francis papacy

“Alegría’s testimony regarding Cardinal Maradiaga’s involvement of their family in a fraudulent financial scheme, as well as his defense and cover-ups of his auxiliary bishop is deeply shocking. More disturbing is her revelation that Francis continues to protect Maradiaga despite all the misdeeds for which Maradiaga has made himself personally responsible.”


— From the foreword by Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the former Apostolic Nuncio to the United States


“This book is dynamite! The compelling testimony of Martha Alegria Reichmann — a widow betrayed by a powerful cardinal she had once considered a close friend — has the power to break down the wall of silence that protects Cardinal Óscar Rodríguez Maradiaga, and expose the corruption that reaches to the very top of the Vatican.”

— Philip Lawler, editor of Catholic World News, author of Lost Shepherd: How Pope Francis is Misleading his Flock

“We have here just one case study of the vast corruption in the Church that flourishes under Pope Francis, and of the Pope's hypocrisy in promoting it. As the author remarks: ‘One gets the impression that the devil is gradually taking over the institutions of the Church.’”

— H.J.A. Sire, author of The Dictator Pope

Paperback, 175 pages     ISBN 978-1-7352671-0-4

Kindle E-Book                  ISBN 978-1-7352671-1-1

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