Blackmail and Gaslighting in the Archdiocese of Denver

As I said in My Response to Archbishop Aquila, I never agreed to bury the reports of misconduct. In this 21 June 2018 letter, Bishop Rodriguez seems to imply that at some point, I considered the issues of misconduct to be a closed case. I never did. Nor did I agree to live at my parents’ home past my 4 June meeting on my future assignment. Rather, the Archdiocese in this letter is essentially telling me that I was to live at my parents’ home until I could say that the reports of child misconduct were a closed case. I never did.

This is called blackmail, as pious the language may seem to be:

They never answered me or gave me a residence. Is this because I never agreed to their claims that the issues of misconduct were to be considered a closed case?  1

As far as the claim that there is blackmail in my initial letters to the Archdiocese weighing my future assignment against children’ safety, as Archbishop Aquila claimed here in his public libel statement against me, then I challenge Archbishop Aquila to print my blackmail in full without redactions of names, instead of questioning my sanity.  2

Questioning the sanity of someone standing up for victims’ rights and protection of the Eucharist is called gaslighting even when done in a manner that can only be described as pseudo-fatherly.


  1. “House arrest at a priest’s parents’ home” is not a canonical term, and thus not one that must be obeyed.  St. Alphonsus Liguori teaches that the worst thing for the vocation of a priest is an extremely extended stay at his parents’ place.  This is further reason that canon law must be obeyed by the diocese, namely, that a priest may never be left “destitute.”

  2. Yes, I have my shortcomings in patience.  But I have not been sent back to Denver by all these dioceses as the Archbishop claimed against me. That is a complete lie.  In fact, the only assignment I was kicked out of from another diocese was my assignment in Virginia with the FSSP, for which I was booted for an issue of anger.  I am sorry to the FSSP for this, and I take responsibility for it.

My Response to Archbishop Aquila

In response to my blog post Homeless After Whistleblowing, Archbishop Aquila wrote all the priests of Northern Colorado about me and then published it on the website belonging to the Archdiocese of Denver.

I’d like to highlight a few sentences that Archbishop Aquila wrote about me: “Since Fr. Nix was asked to leave his most recent assignment at the end of March, we have not given up, but his behavior has made it difficult to even establish a dialogue with him…Fr. Nix’s statement that he has been forced to be homeless and has been ignored by the Archdiocese is just another sad chapter in this long saga…We have tried to speak with Fr. Nix, but he fails to show up for scheduled meetings, is hard to get ahold of, and even just yesterday he rebuked Bishop Rodriguez. We will continue to try to help Fr. Nix, if he will let us.”

The truth is that I actually chose to leave my last assignment in Florida via a meeting on 26 March 2018 with Bishop Felipe Estevez.  I left Florida to take care of an injured family member in Denver, which I did faithfully for two months.

While living at my parents’ in Denver, I asked Archbishop Aquila to meet about my future. I did indeed have this meeting on 4 June 2018 with Archbishop Aquila and Fr. Capucci (his judicial vicar.)  They let me speak for a long time about my desire to be a diocesan hermit, but ultimately, they wanted me to assure them that what I had relayed regarding news of priestly and seminarian misconduct with children would be considered a completely “closed case.” I did not agree to that. Archbishop Aquila then told me not to contact him again. He told me that his vicar for clergy, the auxiliary Bishop Rodriguez, would contact me regarding my request to be a diocesan hermit.

Every month since June (meaning we are now at four months out from my last meeting with Archbishop and a full six months out from my March request of being a diocesan hermit to both bishops) I have been obedient to emailing Bishop Rodriguez (exclusively) regarding my future.  Every single month, Bishop Rodriguez emails me back, saying that Archbishop Aquila has not got back to him.

I wish to again highlight that Archbishop Aquila publicly said of me on social media that I “fail to show up for scheduled meetings” and that I am “hard to get a hold of” and that I am being “paid the full salary due to him.”

How could any of these accusations be true with the battery of emails that I sent to Bishop Rodriguez like the one below?  I sent this one one 29 August 2018:

But I sent many emails like that and never received any guidance or meetings or help.

No residence was ever granted me in response to the above email or prior ones. No assignment was ever granted me since my March requests to be a diocesan hermit. No “help” was ever given me for groceries, even as they knew I was “homeless” as stated in the above email.

Archbishop Aquila writes of me “We will continue to try to help Fr. Nix, if he will let us.” That has the ring of fatherly compassion!  However,  I suspect the type of “help” I need is exactly what Fr. Z blogged about last week.

My lawsuit for unlawful discharge after reporting misconduct with children continues against Archbishop Aquila.

Homeless after Whistleblowing

I am a priest of eight years in good standing of the Archdiocese of Denver. About three weeks before the McCarrick scandal broke, I relayed reports of misconduct with children to Archbishop Aquila, and since then, I have been homeless and ignored by his chancery. After months of reaching out to them, I am now forced to go public with these scandals.

After seeking legal counsel, I wrote an email to Archbishop Aquila dated 24 May 2018 that I had heard third-hand that a high-power priest in the 1980s used to share a bed with a boy. That boy is now an adult, and he is a friend of a very good friend. That priest is now an extremely important person in the Archdiocese of Denver. I fear that if one boy was involved with slumber parties with this man, then many others may have had slumber parties, too. I tried to get the victim to talk to me, but he would not. Should the Archbishop retaliate with lies about me for this blog post, I will consider bringing this name to Denver’s 9News.

In that same email dated 24 May 2018 to Archbishop Aquila, I expressed concerns that about five years ago, a seminarian web-cammed or spy-cammed two 12 year old boys in their shower at a private residence. Although the seminary reported this to police, and although the seminarian fled the country, the seminary never apologized officially (except for one holy priest at the seminary who did so on his own.) I expressed my concern at the lack of transparency from the seminary to the family that I know so well.

The day after my report of scandals, the Archdiocese of Denver put $2583.82 into my bank account as seen in this picture.

Notice the date of 25 May 2018. “AoD management corp” stands for “Archdiocese of Denver management corporation.” I believe that $2583.82 is the back pay that would have been owed to me while I was taking care of an injured family member that spring, beginning 24 March 2018.  They had not paid me a single dollar for months prior!

The very next day, 26 May 2018, the threats from the chancery began. Archbishop Aquila wrote me on 26 May: “To be direct, the way you have expressed yourself raises serious civil and canonical implications.” Fr. Capucci, the judicial vicar wrote me: “Please identify your civil lawyer so the Archdiocese’s long-time counsel, Scott Browning of the law firm Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie, can be in touch with these lawyers first thing tomorrow.”

These threats did not stop me from reporting what I had heard. I brought the above potential cases of misconduct with children to the Denver District Attorney.  I met with Beth McCann on 31 May 2018 at 10am.  Ms. McCann and her team were ready for me on the 8th floor of 201 W. Colfax in downtown Denver.  I reported everything that I had heard. Similarly, I had a 42 minute conversation on the phone on 10 Sept 2018 with the Colorado Attorney General, Cynthia Coffman.   Both women were very helpful to me.

As far as my ministry this past summer, I then tried to apply to a religious order in Kentucky. Archbishop Aquila’s team assured me that I was in good standing, and gave me permission for this one week of ministry as seen in this July pdf. It is the last correspondence that I have heard from his office. In fact, one reason I left the religious order in Kentucky to pursue the life of being a diocesan hermit is that I had no proof that the Archdiocese of Denver ever handed over my paperwork of good standing for anything more than one week.  (The other reason is that I have been asking Archbishop Aquila to be a diocesan hermit since 26 March 2018, but had no answer.)  For months after reporting misconduct I have been writing emails to the chancery, asking for a residence or permission to be a diocesan hermit or permission join a religious order.  I was never given any residence or paperwork to go elsewhere since my reporting on misconduct.  Nevertheless, this important pdf from the Archbishop’s office that shows I have never lost my faculties as a priest:

Since reporting scandals, Archbishop Aquila has iced me and I have been homeless and living out of my car.  Here is what my “dresser” now looks like:

Archbishop Aquila recently created a “solemn promise” website  where he said: “I take very seriously all reported incidents of misconduct by members of the clergy or other Church workers, and we will investigate even non-criminal misconduct with great diligence.”

Above, Archbishop Aquila also promises us priests that he would “ensure your physical, spiritual, and psychological well-being.” Here is me sleeping in my car after my having relayed reports of a priest and a seminarian having a past of potential misconduct with children:

These are very saddening promises, considering that my Archbishop recently built himself a multi-million dollar home as CNN reported here.

Sometimes I stay in my car. Sometimes I stay in a motel (I have gotten bedbugs at least once.) Sometimes I stay with friends.  In defense of the Archdiocese of Denver, I do receive $600 every two months, which is the salary of a retired priest.  However, that is not enough for a motel and groceries every night.

Many of my readers might remember that I have written many times how I had five Novus Ordo parishes in five years under Archbishop Aquila. Wasn’t I in trouble long before the Spring of 2018? Yes, but I can say in good conscience that I was ousted from the Archdiocese of Denver and forced to farm myself out to other dioceses because of how many whistles I had blown on Eucharistic abuses in Denver. To protect the Archbishop’s reputation, I never published all of the Eucharistic abuse that I reported to him, but under Canon 220, I now believe I have a right to a good name, so I have written this new blog post of the letters of Eucharistic abuse that I wrote to Archbishop Aquila in my last two parish assignments that led to my removal from ministry in the Archdiocese of Denver in 2014.

Here is my unpublished (until now) blog post called Unanswered Eucharistic Abuses I reported to Archbishop Aquila to explain why I have had to farm myself out for years with the Traditional Latin Mass to other dioceses.

However, I never lost my faculties as a priest in good standing to hear confessions or offer public Mass. From 2014 to 2018 I have been on loan to other dioceses with all my letters of suitability. Because this on-loan status has stopped after my reporting misconduct, I am now beginning a cause of action of wrongful discharge and violation of public policy against Archbishop Aquila for leaving me without an assignment after reporting misconduct with children. If anyone knows of an employment law firm in Denver that would do this on contingency, or if you are willing to provide the financial retainer to me for this lawsuit, please email me at an email that I opened up for this cause at broen.finn@gmail.com

(Please don’t write me with advice or support. I may begin a Go Fund Me soon enough. At this point, please only write me if you can help with an employment law firm willing to do this on contingency or if you have the money to donate to a retainer for me.  I realize that 1 Cor 6 says believes should not sue believers, but canon law and reasonable discussions have failed me.)

Thus, if this blog post leads to my suspension as a priest under the pretext of anything else in my past, the proof is in the pdf that I again publish below that I remain a priest in good standing. I fully expect Archbishop Aquila to find a “different reason” far in the past to suspend me,  so I again publish again here my proof of being in good standing, sent even after my last time of visiting Colorado, but before having any permanent home:

I have been living out of a car for months. I am not looking for pity among my readers, but I must admit that all these explanations of my vagabond nature are now becoming embarrassing. Anything embarrassing requires me to go public under the Code of Canon Law 220, especially after I have been ignored by my bishop for so many months. Canon 220 reads: “No one is permitted to harm illegitimately the good reputation which a person possesses nor to injure the right of any person to protect his or her own privacy.” And yet my reputation is harmed every time I have to explain to a family why I look like a criminal priest on the road.

After months of being ignored by Archbishop Aquila, I now must go public, for the Code of Canon Law also states in Can. 212 §2: “The Christian faithful are free to make known to the pastors of the Church their needs, especially spiritual ones, and their desires.”

I am being treated as a criminal priest, when there is at least one (and probably several) criminal priests active in Denver.

Denver is the city where I was baptized, confirmed, worked for the City Paramedic Division, and was finally ordained by Archbishop Chaput to the Holy Priesthood of Jesus Christ. I thought of giving up, but I decided I need to fight for this since it is not my priesthood, but Christ’s.

Aware that lying will land me in hell, I sign off with these words from the book of the Apocalypse:

But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, they shall have their portion in the pool burning with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.—Apocalypse 21:8

In Christ,
Fr. David Nix
Roman Catholic priest of the Archdiocese of Denver

The Best Day of my Priesthood

Nota Bene: A few months ago, I was talking to Steve Skojec of OnePeterFive on the phone about potential scandals that I suspected would break. Before we hung up, I had mentioned that it was the one year anniversary of the best day of my priesthood.  I told him the following story. To my surprise, my fellow Catholic-blogger Steve encouraged me to blog about the below. I said that writing about it would be self-centered or narcissistic.  He didnt think so.  So, with all the bad news in the Catholic media,  I want to share a day that was purely a gift from God.  

I spent 2017 as the parish priest in a small bayou parish in south Louisiana. Their normal pastor was serving as a chaplain for the US Army for a year, and he needed someone who knew the Traditional Latin Mass. His tiny bayou parish was very unusual insofar as it was under the jurisdiction of the diocese of Houma-Thibodaux, but was 1962-sacraments-only. The bishop down there was very good to me. Like most “Latin ghettos” in other dioceses, this Latin Mass parish was found in a poor part of the state, in this case on Tiger Bayou, full of gators and ditched oil rigs. I describe Louisiana as a “Catholic Texas” and I very much fell in love with Louisiana and her people. For example, when my neighbors across the bayou found out that my sister’s family was coming out from Colorado to visit me for a week, they immediately put out big speakers for zydeco music and fired up a crawfish boil for us:

Every Tuesday night, I would head to New Orleans and stay with a very gracious family on Esplanade. Wednesday morning, I woke up to go counsel at a very nasty abortion center called “Women’s Health Care Center” on 2701 General Pershing. By “counsel” we in the pro-life movement of course mean that we compassionately and peacefully ask couples who are going into an abortion center to reconsider life for their child. We offer free medical care, adoption, financial support and anything needed… so that the woman entering the abortion center does not have a “doctor” inside kill her living, child with a heartbeat and eyes and toes, all to end up in the dumpster behind General Pershing.  We call it “a save” when someone decides not to kill their child. In all honesty, I don’t have many “saves,” which is why I usually just do the Leo XIII chapter 3 minor exorcism prayers in front of the abortion centers (something the bishop of New Orleans gave me permission to do.)

But Wednesday, 24 May 2017 was a bit different. It was the vigil of the Ascension of Our Lord.  Several of us pro-lifers were outside General Pershing, counseling women going inside, begging them not to kill their children, but usually with more attractive vocabulary than that. Most of my sidewalk counseling team is usually women about ten to twenty years older than me. My friend Clemmie is one example.  That day, she spoke to a 20 year old woman who was about 8 to 10 weeks pregnant.  She was going inside the abortion center, and it seemed like a good conversation because the young woman said she’d go back to her car and think about it. She did return to her car, but then, disaster: She decided to keep her abortion appointment.

As she was walking back inside, Clemmie was on the other side of the building, unable to intercept her. However, the young woman accidentally ran into me! Here I was in my cassock (Roman Collar) with a book in hand and everything. A thousand pro-life phrases ran through my head, in order to save this baby. But something stupid came out of my mouth.  I said: “Honey, it doesn’t look like you want to go in there, do you?” She said “I don’t know.” I said, “Let’s go get breakfast.” She said, “Ok.” So, I quickly invited Clemmie to come with us. There, over Mexican eggs and shrimp, the gal agreed to go with us to get her a free ultrasound at a Crisis Pregnancy Center (CPCs) in Metarie. (It’s very hard for women to abort their baby when they see it for the first time on ultrasound, even when they have an abortion appointment, as it was in this case.) So, our new friend quickly followed us over to a Metarie CPC. There, she got her ultrasound as we prayed before the Blessed Sacrament.

Now, you have to understand:  CPCs treat us sidewalk counselors about in the the same manner that well-groomed Emergency Department physicians treat gruff street-paramedics: “Thanks for your work, now please leave the patient alone.” In defense of CPCs, they have good reason for this protective strategy: Abortion-minded women need one and only one lifeline of support when they choose life, not numerous pro-lifers checking up on her. So, Clemmie and I went to get lunch in obedience to the CPC. However, as we were leaving, our new friend was looking at us. We knew the CPC didn’t want us to talk to her much anymore, but she clearly needed us as friends at that moment. I sheepishly invited her to lunch.  She answered in a sweet Louisiana drawl: “Well, I wouldn’t want to impose…”

By the end of the day, Clemmie and I had spent about 7 hours with our new friend, and her unborn baby.  She had decided on life!

Clemmie and me on that providential day.

By now, it was almost rush hour, and I had to get Clemmie back from Metarie to General Pershing. We were pretty confident our new friend was going to stick with the growing unborn baby inside of her, so we zipped back home. Clem and I got on a crowded Eastbound I-10 when, all of a sudden, the traffic went from 60mph to 0mph. As an ex-paramedic, I had an immediate spidey-sense that something very bad had just happened. My peripheral vision caught a wave of cars piling up behind a downed motorcyclist. I jacked the wheel hard to the right to pull into the emergency lane. “Stay right here Clemmie,” I said, as I grabbed blue latex gloves from my car door pocket to go investigate.

In the middle of New Orleans’ biggest interstate, I found a 17 year old boy, lying on his back and bleeding with his motorcycle next to him. There were probably 1000 cars behind him, and there was an eerie silence because there were no sirens yet. I got his helmet off and began talking to him. I had to make an immediate decision whether I would leave him in the dangerous interstate, or move him to the jersey barrier, a move that might compromise his cervical spine if there were a fracture. I decided to move him. We got him to the jersey barrier there on I-10 and I began working him up as the ex- paramedic that I was. I found a pelvis fracture that New Orleans EMS would later miss, and my informing EMS of this find probably bumped up his treatment to a Trauma I or Trauma II center. In any case, as I was doing all my medicine, but before EMS arrived, there were bystanders watching all of this, and in the far distance, you could start to hear the sirens. 1

The kid started to wake up. Remembering that this was New Orleans, and how many Catholics were in town, I asked him if he would like to go to confession. To my shock, he said “Yes.” So…I sent away all of the bystanders.  The Fire Department was not yet there, either. There, as he leaned against the cement bleeding, with his motorcycle still in the middle of I-10, he confessed his sins. As I raised my hand to give him absolution, I saw the kid’s blood all over my latex glove. I watched my right hand, full of blood, go up-and-down, left-and-right, as the instrument of the blood of Jesus Christ, forgiving his sins.

At that moment, I remembered the words of Archbishop Fulton Sheen:

“We don’t realize that the very Blood of Christ is dripping from our fingers onto their heads, washing the penitent clean.”

A few minutes later, NOLA EMS arrived, and I transferred my patient, broken but cleaned.  I never saw that kid again.  I don’t even remember his name.  Later in that day, I found out that the General Pershing abortion center had sent hired armed bounty hunters to look for me, claiming I kidnapped their client!  I know this story is hard to believe, but I promise all of it is true (except the above three pictures of the Motorcycle Accident, I-10 and bloody gloves are just random shots off of Google images.)  Everything else, including the pictures at the top, and of course the picture below, are real.

But, the best part of this story is this:  Seven months later, our little “save” was born:

 


  1. I realize how much this story sounds like the Grassroots production of “Fishers of Men,” and the eerie silence of working over this kid was exactly what you’ll find in this video from minute 2:20 onwards  

Rescue Lea

My friend Fr. Robert received this message from Bishop Mamza of Nigeria:

“The 110 school girls abducted by Boko Haram here in Nigeria about one month ago were all returned except for five of them who died and one of them, Lea Sharibu who happens to be a Christian. They refused to release Lea because she refused to denounce Christianity for Islam. Please pray for her immediate release.”

We would like to get 100 Masses offered for her rescue before Easter.

If you are a priest, please email us at massforsharibu@gmail.com to pledge one or more Masses for the rescue of this fearless Catholic girl who will not deny Jesus Christ. Nothing is more powerful for her rescue than the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass offered 100 or even 1000 times for her.  (In the email, please include the date(s) that Holy Mass will be offered.)

If you are a layman or lay woman, please email us at prayersforsharibu@gmail.com to pledge fasting or Rosaries or Adoration time or Bible reading time for the rescue of this fearless Christian captive girl.  Miss Sharibu values the truth of the Gospel and the Church more than her own life. We want her rescued and re-united with her family .  We very much believe God will hear our prayers.

We want her returned by Easter and we will send this spiritual bouquet to her bishop on Easter Week.