Vatican officials knew of McCarrick allegations in 2000, letter confirms

  Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, then nuncio to the United States, and then-Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick of Washington, are seen in a combination photo during the beatification Mass of Blessed Miriam Teresa Demjanovich at the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Newark, N.J., Oct. 4, 2014. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz) 

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A top official from the Vatican Secretariat of State acknowledged allegations made by a New York priest in 2000 concerning Archbishop Theodore E. McCarrick, according to a letter obtained by Catholic News Service.

Father Boniface Ramsey, pastor of St. Joseph's Church Yorkville in New York City, told CNS Sept. 7 that he received the letter dated Oct. 11, 2006, from then-Archbishop Leonardo Sandri, the former Vatican substitute for general affairs, asking for information regarding a priest of the Archdiocese of Newark who studied at Immaculate Conception Seminary and was being vetted for a post at a Vatican office. He made the letter available to CNS.

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Then-Archbishop Sandri wrote to Father Ramsey, "I ask with particular reference to the serious matters involving some of the students of the Immaculate Conception Seminary, which in November 2000 you were good enough to bring confidentially to the attention of the then Apostolic Nuncio in the United States, the late Archbishop Gabriel Montalvo."

Father Ramsey had been on the faculty of the seminary from 1986 to 1996 and had sent a letter in 2000 to Archbishop Montalvo informing him of complaints he heard from seminarians studying at the seminary, located in South Orange, New Jersey.

In the letter, Father Ramsey told CNS, "I complained about McCarrick's relationships with seminarians and the whole business with sleeping with seminarians and all of that; the whole business that everyone knows about," Father Ramsey said.

"I complained about McCarrick's relationships with seminarians and the whole business with sleeping with seminarians" Father Ramsey said.

Father Ramsey said he assumed the reason the letter from then-Archbishop Sandri, who is now a cardinal and prefect of the Congregation for Eastern Churches, only mentioned "serious matters involving " seminarians and not McCarrick's behavior was because accusations against the former cardinal were "too sensitive."

"My letter November 22, 2000, was about McCarrick and it wasn't accusing seminarians of anything; it was accusing McCarrick."

A letter dated Oct. 11, 2006 from Archbishop Leonardo Sandri, then substitute for the Vatican Secretariat of State, to Father Boniface Ramsey references a Nov. 2000 letter Father Ramsey had written to Archbishop Gabriel Montalvo, Vatican nuncio to the United States, warning about sexual abuse committed by Archbishop Theodore E. McCarrick.
A letter dated Oct. 11, 2006 from Archbishop Leonardo Sandri, then substitute for the Vatican Secretariat of State, to Father Boniface Ramsey references a Nov. 2000 letter Father Ramsey had written to Archbishop Gabriel Montalvo, Vatican nuncio to the United States, warning about sexual abuse committed by Archbishop Theodore E. McCarrick. (CNS photo/courtesy of Father Boniface Ramsey)

While Father Ramsey has said he never received a formal response to the letter he sent in 2000, he told CNS he was certain the letter had been received because of the note he got from then-Archbishop Sandri in 2006 acknowledging the allegations he had raised in 2000.

The 2006 letter not only confirms past remarks made by Father Ramsey, but also elements of a document written by Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, who served as nuncio to the United States from 2011 to 2016.

"My letter November 22, 2000, was about McCarrick and it wasn't accusing seminarians of anything; it was accusing McCarrick."

In an 11-page statement, published Aug. 26, Archbishop Vigano accused church officials, including Pope Francis, of failing to act on accusations of sexual abuse, as well as abuse of conscience and power by now-Archbishop McCarrick.

Archbishop Vigano stated that the Vatican was informed as early as 2000 -- when he was an official at the Secretariat of State -- of allegations that Archbishop McCarrick "shared his bed with seminarians." Archbishop Vigano said the Vatican heard the allegation from the U.S. nuncios at the time: Archbishop Montalvo, who served from 1998 to 2005 and Archbishop Pietro Sambi, who served from 2005 to 2011.

In late June, Cardinal McCarrick, the 88-year-old retired archbishop of Washington, said he would no longer exercise any public ministry "in obedience" to the Vatican after an allegation he abused a teenager 47 years ago in the Archdiocese of New York was found credible. The cardinal has said he is innocent.

Since then, several former seminarians have claimed that the cardinal would invite groups of them to a beach house and insist individual members of the group share a bed with him.

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Tim O'Leary
2 months 1 week ago

Glad to see that some journalists are following the Pope's request they investigate the Vigano claims. So, the papal Nuncio and some people in the Vatican knew of McCarrick's coercive sexual overtures on seminarians in 2000. This confirms one central thesis of Archbishop Vigano. The next questions are: 1) who in the Vatican knew (did it reach Cardinal Sodano, or the pope), 2) was McCarrick on any papal nuncio list of recommended bishops for Cardinal (Vigano says McCarrick was 14th on a list there), 3) who advocated for McCarrick in the Vatican to get him to the top of the list?

Stephen de Weger
2 months 1 week ago

Yes, great comment and even better questions.

Jorge Luis Luaces Rabaza
2 months ago

“A growing number of conservative Catholics no longer accept the pope’s legitimacy. What happened in the past few weeks exacerbated tensions that have been building for years. In truth, the people behind this attempt to force Francis to resign are a small minority of Catholics in the United States; they do not reflect Francis’s relationship with the whole U.S. church, much less the Catholic Church globally....The Catholic media outlets that have been an integral part of the Viganò operation want to recapture Rome but have little knowledge of Rome or, for that matter, the global church. For them, the whole Catholic Church is the American Catholic Church writ large.”

“Flirting with Schism: The Right-Wing Effort to Delegitimize Pope Francis” By Massimo Faggioli
September 6, 2018
https://www.commonwealmagazine.org/flirting-schism

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Guill-te Lucre - you are so clueless of what's going on.

Vincent Couling
2 months ago

Thanks for the link to an excellent article by the indubitable Massimo Faggioli, Guillermo! Michael Sean Winters picks up on Massimo's theme, explaining how these ultra-conservative blowhards didn't reckon with the brutal law of unintended consequences ... "in seeking to de-legitimize Francis, they have de-legitimized all popes and more." https://www.ncronline.org/news/accountability/distinctly-catholic/bruis…

Ed Dem
2 months ago

To Guillermo Luaces and Vincent Couling: Thank you both for eloquently speaking the truth and for providing the links for us.

Gideon Aves
2 months ago

The fall of Babylon the Great, the world empire of false religion is very near. Its time for sincere people of faith to heed the warning prophecy at Revelation 18:4, 5: "Get out of her, my people, if you do not want to share with her sins, and if you do not want to receive part of her plagues. For her sins have massed together clear up to heaven, and God has called her acts of injustice to mind." The entire chapter 18 of Revelation must be read prayerfully.

Mike Macrie
2 months ago

Where was the Conservative Pope Benedict ? Was he asleep at the wheel. Nice of Pope Benedict and his Conservative Cardinals to dump this scandal on a new Pope who they have judge too Liberal for their taste. Interesting that these Conservative Cardinals sent a CYA letter but failed to follow up and only now when they have been demoted by Pope Francis are calling for his Resignation. These scandals were in the US, I wonder why Archbishop Vigano did not have a private meeting with the American Conference of Bishops and the group as a whole bring it to the Vatican ? Sounds like the case of Joe Peterno to me, not wanting to jeopardize his own standing and walking away and saying I did my job.

Mike Macrie
2 months ago

Where was the Conservative Pope Benedict ? Was he asleep at the wheel. Nice of Pope Benedict and his Conservative Cardinals to dump this scandal on a new Pope who they have judge too Liberal for their taste. Interesting that these Conservative Cardinals sent a CYA letter but failed to follow up and only now when they have been demoted by Pope Francis are calling for his Resignation. These scandals were in the US, I wonder why Archbishop Vigano did not have a private meeting with the American Conference of Bishops and the group as a whole bring it to the Vatican ? Sounds like the case of Joe Peterno to me, not wanting to jeopardize his own standing and walking away and saying I did my job.

A Fielder
2 months 1 week ago

If these revelations came about during the pontificate of JPII and then Benedict served as Pope from 2005-13, why is Vigano calling for Francis' resignation? Very strange.

Theodore Seeber
2 months 1 week ago

This article from the Washington Post says why:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/religion/globe-trotting-cardina…

JPII was already old and sick at that time. Benedict, once he became Pope, moved against liberals like McCarrick, but didn't say why he was. Francis reinstated McCarrick and allowed him to live around seminarians again.

Vincent Couling
2 months 1 week ago

The investigation needs to go well beyond McCarrick. JPII most certainly wasn't too old and too sick when, in 1998, he discontinued investigations into sexual misconduct by the leader of the Legionaries of Christ, Marcial Maciel Degollado. And we know how that ended!

And as concerns BXVI, there is a curious case which parallels McCarrick's. A quick search reveals that "In 2002, Archbishop Juliusz Paetz, the Catholic Archbishop of Poznań, was accused of molesting seminarians. Pope John Paul II accepted his resignation, and placed sanctions on him, prohibiting Paetz from exercising his ministry as bishop. These restrictions were lifted in 2010 by Pope Benedict XVI."

"Yesterday [17 June 2010], prominent reports in the Polish press circulated that, in recent weeks, the Vatican dicastery quietly removed the suspension from ministry of a Polish archbishop who resigned in disgrace in 2002 after allegations came to light that he had abused teenage seminarians in his local church.

While Archbishop Juliusz Paetz has categorically declared his innocence over the last decade, his departure from the helm of the 1.5 million-member church in Poznan was forced after a Vatican investigation concluded that the prelate's misconduct was well known to the degree that, years earlier, Paetz had been banned from visiting his seminary given its rector's finding that, as the latter put it, the archbishop had "not changed his ways."

Though the students declined to press charges, following his ouster the Congregation prohibited Paetz from exercising episcopal ministry, just as other accused prelates around the world have been consigned to secluded lives of prayer and penance, with no public presence whatsoever.

According to one unconfirmed report today, Paetz's successor, Archbishop Stanislaw Gadecki, was said to be so "disconcerted" with the reversal of the sanction that he has moved to resign, another daily relayed that the Poznan curia was "fighting for cancellation of the decision," and several other accounts saying that the news of the reprieve was being communicated to all the parishes of Poland."

All of these shenanigans need to be included in a broad, all-encompassing investigation of clerical sex-abuse in the Catholic Church, incorporating the hierarchical cover-up. Vigano's blaming of Pope Francis seems opportunistic, perhaps even a judicious pre-emptive strike to deflect attention from himself and to protect himself ... after all, Vigano knew about McCarrick two pontificates ago and it seems that even as US nuncio he did absolutely nothing about it ... until now, when the McCarrick affair had become red-hot news, McCarrick losing his red hat, and the Pennsylvania H-bomb leading to the massive demand for an all-encompassing investigation of the US hierarchy, which would no-doubt involve in particular the role of Vigano as former US nuncio!!! Pope Francis inherited this almighty mess, and has done more than any previous pontiff to fix it, e.g. the Chilean investigation, the (presumably forced) "offer" of resignation by the entire Chilean bishops' conference, the removal of McCarrick's red hat while he is being investigated ... things unheard of during the previous two pontificates!

Vincent Couling
2 months 1 week ago

Finally Robert Mickens provides a Letter from Rome on this saga ... see "Sex, Lies & Viganò Takes: The real and sinful truth behind the archbishop’s accusations" at La Croix: https://international.la-croix.com/news/sex-lies-vigan-takes/8369

A snippet ...

"As iterated many times before, this pope has shown the extraordinary capacity – especially for a man in his 80s – to change his thinking or alter his approach to issues and situations once he has carefully pondered and prayerfully discerned new information or evidence.Having said that, there is still no material proof that he knew about the sinful and criminal sexual deeds (whether abuse or harassment) perpetrated by Theodore McCarrick. At this point, it is Vigano’s word against the pope’s.All we know is that once the Archdiocese of New York ascertained that charges of McCarrick abusing minors were credible, Francis stripped the former cardinal of his red hat.Archbishop Viganò gives little importance to this extremely rare exercise of papal action against a cardinal-abuser, while instead making some very serious accusations against the pope, a number of cardinals and other high-ranking Church officials.One is absolutely mystified that the archbishop accuses everyone but himself!Why the silence for so long?How can this be? He has been part of the “system” he condemns since the early 1970s when he went to the Academia Ecclesiastica in Rome and became a life-long Vatican diplomat.He served in nunciatures in Iraq, Kuwait and Great Britain. He was appointed papal nuncio to Nigeria in 1992 and, 51 years old at the time, was ordained to the episcopate.Viganò held the key post of delegate for apostolic nunciatures within the Secretariat of State from 1998-2009 and claims to have been in charge of handling “delicate cases” regarding cardinals and bishops, as well as overseeing the hiring and promotion of Roman Curia officials.Is it possible that in those 11 years he was never made aware of a single instance of sexual abuse or its cover-up?He admits in his 11-page statement to having found out only about McCarrick’s sexual improprieties with adult seminarians and priests in 2006 and again in 2008, claiming that he reported this to his superiors who then took no action.He now describes this as a “conspiracy of silence.”It is odd and disconcerting that Viganò did nothing in the face of this inaction. It is also extremely hypocritical of him to accept not a single ounce of blame, especially when one reads this line in his self-serving document:“I implore everyone, especially bishops, to speak up in order to defeat this conspiracy of silence that is so widespread, and to report the cases of abuse they know about to the media and civil authorities.”Archbishop Viganò waited for more than ten years – and after Pope Francis stripped McCarrick of the cardinalate – before he finally decided he was obliged by his conscience to reveal the “truth” about the former Archbishop of Washington’s sordid activities.But did Viganò ever report what he knew to civil authorities, as he now demands of his fellow bishops? No. Instead, he merely supplied his unsubstantiated rants and personal gripes to at least two journalists well known for attacking the current pope.And those journalists helped him edit his lengthy diatribe and carefully timed its release to do maximum damage.Why did Viganò wait so long? Was it because he continued to hold on to the hopes that Pope Francis – whether out of tradition or because of fear of reprisal – would eventually make him a cardinal? Some commentators have suggested this and it should not be too quickly discarded as far-fetched.Viganò claims Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, as Secretary of State, had promised him that he’d become head of the Governorate of Vatican City State (and cardinal) where the archbishop served as secretary general from 2009-2011. Instead, Pope Benedict decided to appoint him to the prestigious post of nuncio to the United States.Rather than seeing this as a promotion, Viganò claimed it was an attempt to stop him from ridding the Vatican of financial mismanagement and corruption.He even lied to Benedict and said he could not leave Italy because he had to care for a sick brother who is a Jesuit priest.The truth is that he had defrauded that brother and other siblings out of their family’s very substantial inheritance. And furthermore the brother was not ill and not even in Italy, but was a biblical researcher in Chicago!Still, Archbishop Viganò kept relative silence over McCarrick’s misdeeds and, though he claims Benedict XVI had slapped sanctions on the former cardinal, he – the papal legate and only one with authority from the Apostolic See to do so – did nothing to enforce the alleged sanctions.Instead, he appeared on several occasions with McCarrick and even praised him in public. Evidently, the archbishop’s conscience was not very operative then. Not even enough to make an anonymous tip to civil authorities.There are so many other holes in Viganò’s “testimony,” which other writers have done a more thorough job in exposing. But one thing is certain, the archbishop did not do all he could to report McCarrick or any other bishop for that matter.And never once does he voice any regret for not doing so, inaction that was obviously motivated by a desire/duty to protect the institution (which makes him complicit in the alleged conspiracy of silence) or in order to advance his own ecclesiastical career.A red hat deniedHe claims he personally told Pope Francis in a conversation in June 2013 of the alleged sanctions against McCarrick, saying the Congregation for Bishops had a “dossier” on him showing “he corrupted generations of seminarians and priests.”Viganò also says he repeated the main substance of this to the pope in conversation the following October.But if this is true and the pope still did nothing, why didn’t Viganò write a formal and official letter to Francis? Instead, he continued for almost three more years as nuncio in Washington and apparently made no further complaints. Why?Rather, he waited. He waited for his most coveted prize – to become a cardinal. With only one very clear exception (and because of the premature deaths of two previous Vatican ambassadors), the red hat is the reward that has been bestowed on every single papal delegate or nuncio to the United States dating back to the very first in 1893. Archbishop Jean Jadot, who first represented Paul VI in Washington since 1973 and then John Paul II until 1980, is the only one who was explicitly kept out of the College of Cardinals.The other two nuncios to the USA – Gabriel Montalvo and Pietro Sambi – died before the pope had a chance to include them in a red-hat ceremony.Pope Francis has held three consistories and created 36 new cardinals since our moralizing, whistle-blowing nuncio retired in 2016 at the age of 75 years and three months.And when the pope several months ago ordered Viganò to move out of his lavish apartment inside the walls of the Vatican and transfer his residence to a Rome palazzo that houses other former nuncios, the sting was apparently too great.A cardinal in Rome claims Viganò vowed that if the pope forced him to move, all hell would break loose. Indeed, it has. And that’s not because of any love for the Church or the pope and his successors, to whom the archbishop promised obedience more than 45 years ago.No matter what is or is not based on fact in Carlo Maria Viganò’s statement, the real and sinful truth in the end is that it’s nothing more than self-serving."

Tim O'Leary
2 months 1 week ago

Vincent - a good article, but we need documents, and an investigation. Could there be some connection to the recent dustup with the Papal Foundation (affiliate of the USCCB, since 1940s). An organization that has provided over $120 million in scholarships and grants since 1990. It typically gives grants for under $200,000 was pressured by Pope Francis to give one for $25M to a failing Roman hospital, an eighth of its assets, completely undermining its standards and financial controls. When they reduced it to under $10 million, - still an extra-ordinary high amount - Pope Francis cancels the annual audience. Why? In 2016, it received contributions of $6 million, $3 million of that from new “stewards,” and granted out almost $10 million.

https://nonprofitquarterly.org/2018/04/02/pope-pulls-rank-papal-foundat…

arthur mccaffrey
2 months 1 week ago

I don't think Francis "stripped McCarrick of his cardinalate"-- McCarrick was allowed to resign, he was never "fired" (at least not publicly), before Francis ordered him off stage

Vincent Couling
2 months 1 week ago

I, for one, don't believe that McCarrick handed back his red hat voluntarily. I would suggest that it is fairly accurate to say that Pope Francis stripped McCarrick of his cardinalate ... though doing it in a pastoral way, allowing him the option of resigning (or else). Perhaps a small concession to a broken man. We might argue that someone credibly accused of child abuse should not be granted such a privilege ... but I am inclined to admire Pope Francis for his pastoral way of handling even the most difficult of matters. It speaks to his fidelity to the Good News.

Tim O'Leary
2 months 1 week ago

A Fielder - I am not a proponent of resignation at all, but I think Vigano's argument is that things were kept from JPII, Benedict found out as pope and took some action (even if weak and insufficient) and Pope Francis knew the full story and still resuscitated McCarrick. That would explain different levels of culpability. Pope Francis has asked the journalists to look into everything, so he seems to support digging into all this. But, he should be more active in forcing the Curia to open their files. The list of documents around the appointment of McCarrick might shed some light.

Jorge Luis Luaces Rabaza
2 months 1 week ago

That is a fantastic photo of Vigano and Uncle Teddy. Sadly, this article is literally ancient news ......16+ years old

“Pope summons U.S. cardinals over scandal. Theologian calls it trip 'to the woodshed'
April 15, 2002 Posted: 9:03 PM EDT (0103 GMT)
VATICAN CITY (CNN) -- Stepping into a controversy that has rocked the Roman Catholic Church, Pope John Paul II has summoned U.S. cardinals to Rome for a meeting at the Vatican to discuss the problem of priests who molest children, a Vatican official said Monday.”
http://www.cnn.com/2002/US/04/15/vatican.cardinals/

Worse, Carlo Vigano also knew of this spectacle that Benedict XVI inherited and Vigano did nothing. Then again Vigano just wanted his red hat.

We can let the Catholic fundamentalists bury their heads and demand the papal tiara be placed on their pope in waiting, Raymond Burke. But even Burke knows of this flagrant misuse of power by JPII and B16 for doing absoluelty nothing. Catholic fundamentalists are the true liars here and scapegoating homosexuals because many of them are self-loathing closeted homosexuals themselves

Tim O'Leary
2 months 1 week ago

Guill-ty Lucre - why so defensive. You are the only one recommending Cardinal Burke. You seem to agree that any Cardinal or Pope who misuses power should be investigated. So, what's the problem? Is it the whole closeted homosexual thing that has you behaving so oddly?

Vincent Couling
2 months 1 week ago

"Is it the whole closeted homosexual thing that has you behaving so oddly?"

I'm sorry Tim, I really am ... I have no fondness for ad hominem attacks ... but if anyone has an unhealthy obsession with homosexuality, it is you! As belied by your incessant (and generally repugnant) comments on matters gay on these America Magazine threads. Fr James Alison has suggested that the most homophobic amongst us are often deeply closeted gay men who are simply protesting tooooo much! And that profile doesn't fit Guillermo so much as someone much closer to home.

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Vincent - no surprise that the gay-is-ok crowd try to change the subject from predatory pederasty to "no healthy heterosexual should be outraged by this."
1) It seems very pathological that the worst insult a gay man can hurl at an intellectual adversary is that "you are so bad, you must be one of us." Those who use it, like James Alison, are recognizing something inherently wrong with their sexual proclivities.
2) Disdain for same-sex sex makes perfect sense from a scientific evolutionary standpoint. As to a possible sign of unrealized homosexuality blocked by a psychological defect, the reverse is much more likely - that disdain for normal male-female sex is a sign of unrealized heterosexuality blocked by a psychological defect.
3) Gay victimhood is built on the fact that most men find the idea of gay sex repugnant, but it would upend evolutionary biology if repugnance was evidence of homosexuality, since it would make homosexuality a majority.
While this crisis in the Church right now is uniquely wrapped up in infidelity because of sexual heresy, this will pass. Most of my energy and blogging has been on the pro-life issues and with the doctrinal aspects of the faith. But, I recognize that you probably have not seen that, which is ok.
A message for you. Biology is not predestination. An alcoholic by biology doesn't have to act like one. A violent person can learn to control his impulses. Some men with "deep-seated homosexual tendencies" have come to reject their impulses as bad for the body, mind and soul, like Joseph Sciambra, Dan Mattson, the Courage members, etc., and are ridiculed by the gay-is-ok crowd. They are welcomed home to the Church and heaven. Even Oscar Wilde came home on his death bed. Do not be afraid. Hope in the Lord to heal you and bring you home.

Jorge Luis Luaces Rabaza
2 months ago

Thanks for the links Vincent. I appreciate evidence based data published in scholarly academic peer review sources.

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Vincent - thanks for the links. (Funny, Guillermo didn't seem to know one is a video). I've seen the TED talk before and, while well-meaning (a predisposed father's response to his child's homosexuality), it doesn't get at any hard science. I will finish the second 57-page review article when I have time. However, did you know how controversial the lead author, Michael Bailey, is? He is author of the “The Man Who Would Be Queen” and his class at NWU was cancelled after he had a couple perform sex before students in his human sexuality class.

Harvey Milk, MD
2 months ago

“someone much closer to home”
Vincent, that was what I have been saying for a while. I have already disclosed on these boards that I am a homosexual, married, and my husband and I attend Mass regularly. Tim is very much a self-loathing homosexual. You are right: he is obsessed with homophobia which is found in homosexuals who hate themselves. Touche. Good call. Treat Tim with compassion and pity. He probably acts out privately his homosexual behaviors in dark places, gay bars, porn stores and of course online. Count on it. It takes one to know one. Lol

Vincent Couling
2 months ago

Thanks for the honesty, George. I, too, am a gay Catholic. I wish you and your husband God's richest blessings in your married life together!

If you haven't already come across it, you might be interested in Eugene Rogers Jr's reflection "Sanctified Unions: a reflection on gay marriage" ... he is a professor of religious studies and a gifted theologian: http://faculty.smu.edu/jmwilson/r26.pdf

Fr James Alison is also a treasure beyond compare! http://jamesalison.co.uk/

Henry Brown
2 months 1 week ago

Evidently, then, the Vatican knew of claims that McCarrick "invited" Seminarians to
the Beach-house. Yet he remained a priest/bishop/cardinal.

Do we know if Pope John Paul II, Benedict and Francis knew that McCarrick
was doing these things before Francis explicitly took action.

If they knew, why did they not laicise him and why is he now not laicised ?

If they did not know, what is the chain of command in the Vatican to inform the Pope
that a Bishop/Cardinal has gone rogue ?

I will no longer give money to the Church until the House of God is washed clean
and to me that means the Pope, all the Cardinals and all the Bishops must resign
and the Laity will elect Bishops for 10 years terms and a Lay Board, wholly independent of
the Bishop will watch, quite closely, over the diocesan finances to make sure "Hush Money"
is not paid up to cover up these abuses.

We are all sinners but we do not have to condone such sins and such an abuse of
Church power to abuse the innocent.

Michael Barberi
2 months 1 week ago

I remember quite well the health of JP iI in the year 2000. This was the year he visited Israel/Holy Land. Just after his visit, my wife and I also visited both Egypt and the Holy Land because it was considered 'safe' at that time. . The national media was following Pope JP II when he visited Israel and he seemed quite vigorous and energetic.

If Pope JP iI knew about MaCarrick's immoral sexual behavior with seminarians, why did he promote him to Cardinal in the year 2000? We need to know if these things were brought to JP II's attention or not? If senior Vatican officials withheld this information from JP II, then we have a more serious problem. If true, how many other types of important information were intentionally withheld, minimized or distorted from past popes?

McCarrick should have never been promoted to Cardinal but defrocked. Let's hope a national lay-led committee approved by Pope Francis will get to the bottom of all these accusations and questions and not just about McCarrick but all the other recent revelations, accusations, et al involving priests, bishops, cardinal and the past 3 popes. We need to know the truth.

Tim O'Leary
2 months 1 week ago

Michael - you are right, all the way up to the Pope. McCarrick should have been defrocked and all his recommendations re-evaluated. All this needs to come out into the open air. I do not think the US Lay committee will get at the Vatican intrigues, unless Pope Francis authorizes it. Every day Pope Francis stays silent this crisis will grow worse.

Harvey Milk, MD
2 months 1 week ago

“Every day Pope Francis stays silent”....
We get it Dr Tim OLeary, DC. Your medical career is nil and you troll these forums because you have no wife, no kids, no life and are waiting for Charles Chaput to elevate you to the Philly Chancery. Till then, regards to your chaste life. ha

ron chandonia
2 months 1 week ago

Malicious personal attacks seem to be the style in the Vatican these days too.

Jorge Luis Luaces Rabaza
2 months ago

“Malicious personal attacks seem to be the style in conservative echo chambers these days too.”

FTFY

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Sorry to disappoint, Georgie, but every facet of your charge is wrong, except for my attempt to lead a chaste life in a marriage. But, you probably don't understand what that means.

Jorge Luis Luaces Rabaza
2 months ago

“lead a chaste life in a marriage”
We always suspected you were gay and married, Tim. Self-loathing closeted homosexuals are quite common. No heterosexual married male would spend the time you do on these boards never mind a father.

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Guillermo - By your comment, I expect you are an active homosexual along with George and Vincent. Given that only 2% of the population are homosexual, having 3 of you in this combox is over-representation. In any case, don't you think active homosexuals should recuse themselves from blogging on the McCarrick events, given their conflict of interest?

Vincent Couling
2 months 1 week ago

And yet, Tim, you know full well that McCarrick is being investigated ... he is no longer a cardinal (a stunning sanction! Even Hans Hermann Groër and Keith O'Brien got to keep their precious red hats!), and is, for the first time, publicly sanctioned by a Pope (i.e. by Pope Francis) {in spite of Vatican Officials having been aware of his abuse of seminarians since at least 2000} ... Pope Francis' sanctions hold while the accusation of child abuse is being investigated. If found guilty, he might quite well face laicization, and lose his frock. I have every confidence in Pope Francis ... but he must be allowed time to follow due process. Howling for red meat like a bunch of wolves solves absolutely nothing! Vigano's spectacular breach of trust has presented Pope Francis with an array of profound issues that need to be resolved, as even the conservative press admits ... "After Viganò’s testimony, the ‘pontifical secret’ will never be the same again" http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/commentandblogs/2018/09/05/after-vigano…

Vincent Couling
2 months 1 week ago

"I do not think the US Lay committee will get at the Vatican intrigues, unless Pope Francis authorizes it. Every day Pope Francis stays silent this crisis will grow worse." I agree, Tim! I think that Pope Francis is perhaps wasting time covering for his two predecessors, JPII and BXVI ... for he realizes that a comprehensive investigation of McCarrick (who was made Cardinal by JPII in spite of his knowledge of McCarrick's fondness for handsome young seminarians) will necessitate a much broader investigation of JPII and BXVI, where the rot set in, and might even mean the precedent-setting rescindment of a Sainthood!:

"After an outcry, Groer was replaced and made the prior of a convent. He was never punished and issued only a vague apology in 1998 before retreating to a nunnery where he lived until his death in 2003. Some of his victims were offered “hush money” from the church.

Michael Tfirst, 54, one of Groer’s victims, claims to have reported the abuse to highranking church officials from the 1970s onwards. He says the church paid him £3,300 in 2004 under a contract that obliged him to keep quiet.

“There is no question that Ratzinger knew all the details of reports on abuse within the church, as there is no doubt that John Paul, his superior, took part in a massive and systematic cover-up,” Tfirst said.

John Paul also faced criticism last week from Poland for protecting Archbishop Juliusz Paetz, who was accused of abusing trainee priests. Letters detailing the charges were sent to John Paul’s office and to Ratzinger in 2000 but were ignored. Paetz resigned in 2002 when the allegations became public.

Stanislaw Obirek, a Polish theologian and a former Jesuit priest, said: “I believe John Paul is the key person responsible for the cover-up of abuse cases because most of it occurred during his papacy. How can someone who is to blame for this be beatified?”

In America critics pointed out that although Benedict has borne the brunt of criticism over ignoring the scandal of Father Lawrence Murphy, accused of molesting 200 deaf boys at a special school in Wisconsin, Ratzinger had acted on the authority of John Paul.

Another beneficiary of John Paul’s discreet approach was Marcial Maciel Degollado, a Mexican priest known as Father Maciel, who founded a conservative religious order. He was accused by former members of abuse in 1998. John Paul blessed Maciel in the Vatican in late 2004, at a time when Ratzinger was investigating him. A year after Ratzinger became pope, the Vatican ordered Maciel to lead “a reserved life of prayer and penance”, effectively removing him from power.

John Paul was also accused of ignoring controversy over John Magee, a former private secretary to three popes including the Polish pontiff, who named him Bishop of Cloyne in 1987. Late last month Magee was forced to resign after an independent report found that his diocese in Ireland had put children at risk.

In the Vatican the spiralling allegations have prompted a siege-like mentality. Father Federico Lombardi, Benedict’s spokesman, declined to comment on John Paul’s handling of abuse cases. “We’re busy with Easter celebrations, let’s focus on the homilies,” he said." https://web.archive.org/web/20100531183440/http://www.timesonline.co.uk…

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Vincent - you really cannot fairly praise Pope Francis for his concern for due process and merciful measures while criticizing his predecessors for theirs. I do praise Pope Francis for his removal of the red hat on McCarrick, but it did take the abuse of a minor to get this. Before this, the Holy Father seems to have wanted to forgive and forget McCarrick's seminarian crimes, and the sexual romps of several gay clergy, includng Inzoli, Ricca, and others. His appointment of Fr. Martin also fits this pattern, given the latter's likely heterodox statements and his involvement with dissident gay organizations. But, I believe he is learning from past errors in judgment and hope he now gets ahead of the crisis.

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Michael - I also want a full investigation of appointments over the last two decades at least, with a view to understanding the role of the popes and cardinals, nuncio and bishops. When Pope JP II elevated McCarrick, the same consistory (Feb-2001) had 44 Cardinals (2 in pectore), and there must have been many other names who were rejected. So a question arises how much information the Holy Father had on each candidate, to make his decision. Coincidentally, it included Walter Kasper, Maradiaga and Bergoglio! There must be some documents on each candidate. My primary goal is not at all a resignation of Pope Francis, but a better selection process of bishops and cardinals in the future, based on fidelity in mind, body and soul.

Crystal Watson
2 months 1 week ago

Doesn't this men that what Vigano alleged is true - that Francis knew about McCarrick but didn't remove him for years, covering up his abuse?

Vincent Couling
2 months 1 week ago

"Doesn't this mean that what Vigano alleged is true - that Francis knew about McCarrick but didn't remove him for years, covering up his abuse?"

Well, Crystal, not necessarily. It certainly means that both JPII and BXVI knew about McCarrick but didn't remove him for years, covering up his abuse (Joe Ratzinger, as JPII's head of CDF, oversaw all sex-abuse allegations, and must surely have informed JPII before he made McCarrick Cardinal!!!). But if no-one personally informed Pope Francis, bringing it to his attention, then why should he have known? Vigano now claims that he personally informed Francis in a conversation in 2013 ... but this becomes an issue of one man's word against another's (which makes things very tricky for Pope Francis, and might explain why he is hesitant to respond ... Vigano has a history of lying, as even his family members attest). Perhaps Vigano's letter was a pre-emptive strike against Pope Francis to implicate him and hence have him proceed with caution against the true guilty parties, namely JPII, BXVI and the former US nuncio Vigano!

Crystal Watson
2 months ago

Francis has been pope for years, the two previous popes knew and apparently the highest echelons of the Vatican knew and so did all the big wigs in the US, but not Francis? That's not believable.

Vincent Couling
2 months ago

My point, Crystal, is that Ratzinger, as prefect of the CDF, was ultimately responsible for investigating ALL sex-abuse cases worldwide. So he would have known about the McCarrick accusations in 2000, and would surely have informed JPII, especially if McCarrick was to be made Cardinal! The US nuncio would also have had intimate knowledge of McCarrick. But Bergoglio, sitting in Argentina? In this global church of over a billion believers, why should he have known what was afoot in the US? Even when appointed pope, why should he have had any special knowledge of McCarrick unless someone specifically drew his attention to it, or unless new investigations came to light (such as the accusations of sex-abuse of minors ... which led to swift public sanctions and an investigation)? Pope Francis is the leader of a global church ... imagine if he was to have knowledge of all the past history of all hierarchs upon becoming pope ... it seems unlikely to me ... that's all I'm saying.

Crystal Watson
2 months ago

I find it hard to believe that Francis,in the 5 years since made pope, was unaware of the fact that McCarrick was an abuser when it seems everyone else knew about it, including Fr. Martin SJ and high ranking US bishops/cardinals/nuncios, and people at the Vatican as well. Francis was in charge of holding bishops accountable with his sex abuse commission, but no one ever mentioned McCarrick to him? Come on.

Vincent Couling
2 months ago

Crystal, perhaps I have a blind spot where Pope Francis is concerned ... I have found him to be a remarkable person, and have had such high hopes for his pontificate. His compassionate words to the Chilean sexual abuse survivor Juan Carlos Cruz filled me with hope: “He told me, ‘Juan Carlos, that you are gay does not matter. God made you like this and loves you like this and I don’t care. The pope loves you like this. You have to be happy with who you are.’” His pastoral approach seems so authentically Christ-like. If Francis did indeed know about McCarrick's goings-on with seminarians, it will be a terrible disappointment.

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Vincent and Crystal - There is no evidence yet that Pope Francis knew McCarrick had abused minors. What was known by Fr. Martin and many others (although his roommate Cardinal Farrell vehemently denies knowing) was that McCarrick was actively gay and, in the 1980s, invited seminarians to his beach house. I expect Pope Francis will have known that Pope Benedict sidelined McCarrick because of that, and chose to be merciful to his long-time friend and "pastoral" ally. This is something Pope Francis can quickly deny or confirm.

Vincent Couling
2 months ago

"Vincent and Crystal - There is no evidence yet that Pope Francis knew McCarrick had abused minors." Tim, I thought it was precisely because Pope Francis became aware that there were credible accusations that McCarrick had abused minors that he has sanctioned him, stripped him of his red hat and socks, and is having the accusations investigated.

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Vincent - I was speaking of the time when he rehabilitated McCarrick, not when he sanctioned McCarrick. I do not think Pope Francis would have rehabilitated him if he knew of the more recent revelation. Pope Francis has erred on rehabilitation with several homosexual priests because 1) he doesn't seem to realize how compulsive the behavior is, 2) he buys into the PC idea that there is no continuum between attraction between young adults and teenagers. The 3 most egregious cases are Inzoli (http://catholicherald.co.uk/news/2017/06/28/pope-francis-laicises-abuse…), Ricca (https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/vaticancityandholysee…) and McCarrick. The pattern is the same: 1) reversal of past discipline for adult homosexual activity, 2) new criminal revelation, 3) re-institution of original sanction. While I think this is naive and negligent behavior, it is not any reason for resigning, but for admission and strict reform. That is what I expect will happen, eventually. Many will likely resign/retire below him first.

Vincent Couling
2 months ago

"I was speaking of the time when he rehabilitated McCarrick" ... and Dr Tim knows that he rehabilitated McCarrick how, precisely?

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Vincent - You agree re Inzoli and Ricca? The evidence for a "rehabilitation" is from Vigano and this article from David Gibson (Religious News Service, Washington Post in June 16, 2014): “McCarrick is one of a number of senior churchmen who were more or less put out to pasture during the eight-year pontificate of Benedict XVI. But now Francis is pope, and prelates like Cardinal Walter Kasper (another old friend of McCarrick’s) and McCarrick himself are back in the mix, and busier than ever.” Not conclusive but pretty likely and fits the pattern. ! https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/religion/globe-trotting-cardina

Also, “The two men had known each other for years, back when the Argentine pope was Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, archbishop of Buenos Aires.” Gibson reports this exchange between Pope Francis and McCarrick when he had a pacemaker put in:
He said “I guess the Lord isn’t done with me yet,”
The pope replied (laughing): “Or the devil doesn’t have your accommodations ready!”.“I guess the Lord isn’t done with me yet,” he told the pope.
“Or the devil doesn’t have your accommodations ready!” Francis shot back with a laugh.”

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