Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Vatican Publishes Lengthy Report On Its Handling Of Abuse Accusations Against Former Cardinal McCarrick

The Vatican yesterday released a 461-page report titled The Holy See's Institutional Knowledge and Decision-Making Related to Former Cardinal Theodore Edgar McCarrick. (Full text). A statement (full text) by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin says in part:

The Report ..., which the Secretariat of State drew up on the Pope's mandate, is published today. It is a substantial text, which has involved a careful examination of all the relevant documentation of the archives in the Holy See, at the Nunciature in Washington and in the dioceses of the United States involved in various ways. The complex investigation was also integrated with information obtained from interviews with witnesses and persons with knowledge of the facts, in order to obtain as complete a picture as possible and a more detailed and accurate knowledge of the relevant information.

We publish the Report with sorrow for the wounds that these events have caused to the victims, their families, the Church in the United States, and the Universal Church.

CBS News, summarizing details of the Report, said in part:

Pope Francis kept a promise by releasing the 461-page report, which attempts to answer a troubling question about McCarrick.

“How a man who had rumors swirling about him, about how he liked to sleep with seminarians could nevertheless rise to the top of the Catholic church,” AP religion writer Nicole Winfield said.

Charming and well-spoken in five languages, McCarrick was a leading figure in American Catholicism for years. He was the Bishop of Metuchen, Archbishop of Newark, and Cardinal of Washington D.C. Now, the 90-year-old is disgraced, defrocked, and widely viewed as a deceiver....

The report says Pope John Paul II believed McCarrick’s denial, after New York’s John Cardinal O’Connor raised red flags in a 1999 letter.

It also faults several bishops for providing incomplete information about McCarrick to the Vatican.