Archive for category Pope Francis
Cardinal Pell, top advisor to Pope Francis, found guilty of ‘historical sexual offenses’ / America: The Jesuit review
The cardinal is the most senior churchman yet to be convicted of such offenses, though he is not the third-ranking Vatican official, as some media have reported. His conviction is a grave blow not only to the church in Australia but also to the Vatican and to Pope Francis … (America: The Jesuit Review)
An Australian jury has found Cardinal George Pell, 77, guilty on five charges of “historical child sexual offenses” that go back decades, according to various media reports and confirmed by America. The 12-member jury gave their unanimous verdict in the County Court of the State of Victoria in Melbourne on Tuesday, Dec. 11.
“The judge decided that the sentencing will take place in early February 2019 and released the cardinal on bail.
“Little is known about the nature of the charges on which Cardinal Pell has been condemned because the entire trial and a second trial that has yet to take place are covered by a strict suppression order issued by the presiding judge, Peter Kidd. The order prohibits reporting on the case in any of the country’s media until the second trial has taken place to avoid prejudicing his case in both instances. The judge has prohibited the publication of the number of complainants in either of the two trials as well as the number and nature of the charges, except for the fact that the charges relate to ‘historical child sexual offenses.’
“The cardinal is the most senior churchman yet to be convicted of such offenses, though he is not the third-ranking Vatican official, as some media have reported. His conviction is a grave blow not only to the church in Australia but also to the Vatican and to Pope Francis, who placed great trust in him by nominating the Australian prelate to his nine-member Council of Cardinal Advisors (he was the only cardinal from Oceania at that time, and Francis chose one cardinal from each continent) and by appointing him as prefect of the Secretariat of the Economy with a sweeping mandate to reform Vatican finances.”
By Gerard O’Connell, America: The Jesuit Review — Read more …
Their continued presence on the C-9 had been a source of scandal for Francis, given the explosion of the abuse and cover-up crisis this year. (Associated Press)
Pope Francis has removed two cardinals from his informal cabinet after they were implicated in the Catholic Church’s sex abuse and cover-up scandal, shedding embarrassing advisers ahead of a high-stakes Vatican summit on abuse early next year.
“The Vatican said Wednesday (Dec. 12) that Francis in October had written to Chilean Cardinal Javier Errazuriz and Australian Cardinal George Pell thanking them for their five years of service on the so-called Group of Nine, or C-9.
“Francis also bid farewell to Congolese Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo Pasinya, who hasn’t been implicated in the scandal but at age 79 recently retired as archbishop of Kinshasa.
“Errazuriz, 85, has been accused by Chilean abuse survivors of having covered up for predator priests while he was archbishop of Santiago, a charge he has denied. Pell, 77, took leave from his job as the Vatican’s economy minister to stand trial in his native Australia on historic charges of sex abuse, which he denies.
“Their continued presence on the C-9 had been a source of scandal for Francis, given the explosion of the abuse and cover-up crisis this year.”
By Nicole Winfield, Associated Press — Read more …
According to the survivor and activist (Marie Collins), the February gathering must be three-pronged. (Cruxnow.com)
A clerical sexual abuse survivor calls a summit on child protection that will take place at the Vatican Feb. 21-24, involving presidents of all bishops’ conferences around the world as well as the pope’s own top aides, a “last chance” for the Vatican to be taken seriously.
“‘If this 2019 meeting ends with nothing more than enthusiastic words about the discussions which have taken place and promises for the future, it will be the end of the road for many who have waited years for the Church to take concrete action,’ said Marie Collins, Irish clerical sexual abuse survivor, in a Nov. 23 interview with Crux.
“The interview took place via email.
“Collins, a former member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, has been steadfast throughout the years in holding the Church accountable and calling for reform.
“On Nov. 23, the Vatican announced the planning committee for the summit, composed of Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago; Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta, the Vatican’s leading prosecutor on child abuse; German Jesuit Father Hans Zollner, a member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors and head of the Center for Child Protection at the Pontifical Gregorian University; and Cardinal Oswald Gracias of Mumbai, India, who also serves on Francis’s “C-9” council of cardinal advisors.”
By Clare Giangrave, Cruxnow.com — Read more …
Vatican’s delay of US bishops’ abuse measures leaves even some prelates confused / National Catholic Reporter
The prelates had been set to vote Nov. 14 on two specific proposals: a new code of conduct for bishops and creation of a “special commission” to review complaints made against bishops. (National Catholic Reporter)
A surprise Vatican request that the annual gathering of U.S. Catholic bishops delay planned votes on proposals to address clergy sexual abuse has evoked outcry, even leaving some of the prelates at the meeting confused.
“Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, president of the bishops’ conference, announced the request at the opening of the gathering Nov. 12. He told the some 250 prelates taking part that he was ‘disappointed’ but said the Vatican asked for the delay because of Pope Francis’ upcoming February summit on child protection with the heads of all the global conferences.
“The U.S. bishops are facing intense scrutiny over their handling of abuse allegations after revelations this year about the conduct of now ex-cardinal Theodore McCarrick and the release of the shocking Pennsylvania grand jury report.
“The prelates had been set to vote Nov. 14 on two specific proposals: a new code of conduct for bishops and creation of a ‘special commission’ to review complaints made against bishops.”
By Joshua J. McElwee and Heidi Schlumpf, National Catholic Reporter — Read more …
As a class of religious rulers, the loudest among you have become quite good at applying the law and claiming divine authority in marginalizing those who transgress the statutes. The prolonged abuse scandal would suggest, however, that you’ve not done very well taking stock of yourselves. (National Catholic Reporter)
Dear brothers in Christ, shepherds, fellow pilgrims,
“We address you as you approach this year’s national meeting in Baltimore because we know there is nowhere left to hide.
“All the manipulations and contortions of the past 33 years, all the attempts to deflect and equivocate — all of it has brought the church, but especially you, to this moment.
“Even the feds are now on the trail. They’ve ordered that you not destroy any documents. The Department of Justice is conducting a national criminal investigation of how you’ve handled the clergy sex abuse scandal. It is a point in our history without precedent. We want you to know that you aren’t alone in this moment, you’ve not been abandoned. But this time it must be different. This time it won’t be easy.
“From fable to sacred text, we know how this goes. The point is reached where all realize the king wears no clothes, the righteous accusers read the writing in the sand and fade away, the religious authorities receive the Master’s most stinging rebukes. As a class of religious rulers, the loudest among you have become quite good at applying the law and claiming divine authority in marginalizing those who transgress the statutes. The prolonged abuse scandal would suggest, however, that you’ve not done very well taking stock of yourselves.”
By National Catholic Reporter Editorial Staff — Read more …
Facing scandal and division, U.S. Catholic bishops to hold unprecedented retreat / National Catholic Reporter
“What’s important is that we let the differences be expressed, for one thing, but also that we are willing to learn from each other, realizing that not any of us has the total answer,” he (Cardinal Blase Cupich, Archbishop of Chicago) said. “We do need to find a pathway together.” (National Catholic Reporter)
The Catholic bishops of the U.S. announced Oct. 23 that at the behest of Pope Francis they will meet for a weeklong retreat in Chicago in January.
“The unprecedented move reflects the depth of the crisis they are facing with the sexual abuse scandal and the long-standing divisions within their ranks over the broader direction of American Catholicism.
“The pope is even sending an elderly and revered Franciscan priest, the Rev. Raniero Cantalamessa, who holds the title of Preacher of the Papal Household, to lead the retreat — just as he does each year at Lent for the pontiff and the Roman Curia.
“Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, archbishop of Galveston-Houston and president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, issued a statement thanking Francis for sending Cantalamessa, who is 84 and rarely travels abroad, ‘to serve as the retreat director as we come together to pray on the intense matters before us.'”
By David Gibson, Religion News Service, in National Catholic Reporter — Read more …
Three of Karadima’s survivors, James Hamilton, Juan Carlos Cruz and José Andrés Murillo, afterwards decided to sue the Archdiocese of Santiago for covering up for their abuser, specifically naming Cardinals Francisco Javier Errázuriz and Ricardo Ezzati. (Cruxnow.com)
In a decision being hailed as historic, three Chilean survivors of the country’s most infamous pedophile priest reportedly have won a lawsuit against the Archdiocese of Santiago. The court found two Catholic cardinals guilty of covering up for Fernando Karadima.
“The court’s decision hasn’t yet been made official, but it was published on Sunday by local newspaper La Tercera, and the three survivors who were suing the archdiocese quickly released a statement celebrating the decision.
“Assuming the report is correct, the Church either will have to pay the survivors US$600,000 or appeal the decision, which would bring the case to Chile’s Supreme Court. The survivors had previously lost before a lower court, but appealed the ruling citing new evidence discovered by a prosecutor during a raid on the archives of the Archdiocese of Santiago …
“Three of Karadima’s survivors, James Hamilton, Juan Carlos Cruz and José Andrés Murillo, afterwards decided to sue the Archdiocese of Santiago for covering up for their abuser, specifically naming Cardinals Francisco Javier Errázuriz and Ricardo Ezzati.”
By Inés San Martin, Cruxnow.com — Read more …