Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta, who handles abuse cases as adjunct secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, was part of a panel of speakers at a news conference Feb. 18 to outline the Vatican’s plans and hopes for the summit meeting on the protection of minors in the church.
Here is a timeline of key events in the life of Theodore E. McCarrick, beginning with his ordination as a priest for the Archdiocese of New York more than 60 years ago and ending with the Vatican’s announcement Feb. 16.
Pope Francis told reporters he is more afraid of the consequences of not engaging in interreligious dialogue than he is of being manipulated by some Muslim leaders.
Galvanized by the #MeToo movement and the sex abuse crisis commanding the attention of the Vatican, women religious are now openly discussing a subject that was once taboo — sexual harassment, abuse and rape of sisters by clergy — in congregational motherhouses and national conference offices.
At the upcoming meeting on protecting minors, Pope Francis wants leaders of the world’s bishops’ conferences to clearly understand what must be done to prevent abuse, care for victims and ensure no case is whitewashed or covered up.
Without a clear and decisive focus on spiritual conversion and Gospel-inspired ways of responding to victims and exercising ministry, “everything we do risks being tainted by self-referentiality, self-preservation and defensiveness, and thus doomed from the start,” Pope Francis wrote to U.S. bishops.
Pope Francis named U.S. Cardinal Blase J. Cupich of Chicago to be part of the organizing committee preparing for a meeting of the world’s bishops’ conferences and representatives of religious orders to address the abuse and protection of minors.
Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, said Nov. 14 he had opened the bishops’ fall general assembly “expressing some disappointment,” but “I end it with hope.”
The Boston Globe and the Philadelphia Inquirer newspapers teamed up for an article published in both daily papers Nov. 4 that examined ways it said the U.S. bishops have failed to police themselves even since their 2002 gathering in Dallas about clergy sex abuse when they “promised that the church’s days of concealment and inaction were over.”
A New York auxiliary bishop has been removed from public ministry pending a Vatican review of a decades-old accusation of sexual abuse against him, a claim he denies, the Archdiocese of New York said in a letter released Oct. 31.