YAOUNDÉ, Cameroon – A leading African Catholic priest and intellectual has publicly lamented the rush of financial support for former U.S. President Donald Trump in the wake of his conviction in a hush money trial, saying the reaction illustrates that “basic moral values no longer seem to matter.”

Father Humphrey Tatah Mbuy of Cameroon, the director of communications for his country’s bishops conference, made the remarks June 2.

“After the former President of the United States, Donald Trump, was found guilty of 34 counts of felony, his supporters took pride in less than six hours to collect a whopping $52 million for his support, as if to tell the world and its children that it doesn’t matter any crime anyone commits, money talks,” Mbuy said.

In a weekly reflection titled Fides Quaerens Intellectum, a classic Latin phrase meaning “faith seeking understanding,” Mbuy argued that Trump’s own reaction to the verdicts in his trial for illegal payoffs to a former porn star, coupled with the wave of popular support for the former president, sends a worrying signal.

“The days are gone when we expected people to show remorse and shame for what they have done, and to indicate that deep within, there is a desire to change,” Mbuy said.

A priest of the Archdiocese of Bamenda in Cameroon, Mbuy has degrees in African literature, communications and cultural anthropology in addition to philosophy and theology, having studied at venues such as Oxford and the Pontifical Salesian University in Rome, and has authored more than 25 books.

In his role as spokesman for the Cameroon bishops, Mbuy has frequently condemned corruption and abuses of power, dramatically warning a year ago that Cameroon was “dangerously dancing toward self-destruction” amid a series of scandals.

In his comments on the Trump verdict, he claimed the corrupting effects of money can be seen there too.

“Our world seems to have been built on the premise that money, and money alone talks or controls the world,” Mbuy said.

“Perhaps the case of Donald Trump is so pertinent because it has been given too much media coverage, but what gives us the shiver is the fact that in our world today, evil no longer frightens, sin has lost its guilt, and basic moral values no longer seem to matter,” he said.

Mbuy also said that the Trump case sets a worrying example for young people.

Such behavior, he said, “is dangerous for the mental well-being and the proper formation of younger generations that are coming after us.”

Because no one seems to feel guilty of sin anymore, Mbuy said, “we can already see what is happening in our homes, and in our schools: unruly and frighteningly rude children, ready to attack and kill parents and teachers with ease and without remorse.”

Mbuy linked the politicized reaction to the Trump verdict to a wider collapse in belief in objective truth, a phenomenon he said was diagnosed in the late Pope John Paul II’s 1993 encyclical letter Veritatis Splendor.

John Paul, Mbuy said, was rightly concerned that certain currents of thoughts today detach human freedom from “its essential and constitutive relationship with the truth,” promoting an ethos in which “every individual makes his or her own decisions and life choices” independent of any sense of a moral or natural law.

As a result, Mbuy said, “our generation seems to have gone completely nuts.”

“It is no longer a matter of limited or occasional dissent but of an overall and systematic calling into question of traditional moral doctrine on the basis of certain anthropological and ethical presuppositions,” Mbuy said.

A west African nation of 30 million people, Cameroon is between 25 and 40 percent Catholic, and the Church has long played an outsized role in national affairs.