Pope accepts Washington cardinal's resignation amid scandal

Pope accepts Washington cardinal's resignation amid scandal

Pope accepts Washington cardinal's resignation amid scandal

Cardinal Wuerl, 77, who was bishop of Pittsburgh between 1988 and 2006, has been under scrutiny over his handling of sexual abuse cases during that period. The pope indicated his full support for the outgoing archbishop, saying Wuerl made his request to stand down - amid mounting pressure - based, "on two pillars that have marked and continue to mark your ministry: to seek in all things the greater glory of God, and to procure the good of the people trusted to your care".

"However, your nobility has led you not to choose this way of defence". Once again for any past errors in judgment I apologize and ask for pardon.

The report is thought to be the most comprehensive to date into abuse in the USA church, and it covered six diocese in Pennsylvania, including Pittsburgh.

Francis also asked Wuerl to stay on as administrator until another archbishop is appointed.

The case triggered a storm in August when Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, a former Vatican envoy to Washington, accused the pope of ignoring allegations that McCarrick had abused a teenager decades ago.

"Would you please", he told the priests, "let the faithful you serve know of my love, my commitment to do whatever is necessary to right what is wrong and my honest solidarity with you and them".

In the U.S. capital last month, Wuerl prostrated himself in a sign of repentance at a mass dedicated to victims of abuse.

"When Cardinal Wuerl traveled to Rome to meet with Pope Francis in August about this future, the Holy Father told him to return home and consult with his priests", De Souza wrote.

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Wuerl said in a statement Friday the pope's acceptance of his resignation could help pave a new way forward for the church.

Pope Francis's letter was far from accusatory against Cardinal Wuerl.

However, Wuerl did indeed justify his actions as Bishop of Pittsburgh. Francis has said the devil is ultimately behind sex abuse of children by priests and current divisions in the Church. He joined the priesthood in 1966, was ordained a bishop by Pope John Paul II in 1986, and served briefly as auxiliary bishop in Seattle before going to Pittsburgh.

It is my hope and prayer that Our Lord Jesus will bless Cardinal Wuerl and all those in the Archdiocese of Washington with grace, peace and strength today and always. They included a letter from the archdiocesan chancellor, Kim Vitti Fiorentino, who lamented that Wuerl's "pioneering leadership in the enhancement, implementation and enforcement of historically innovative child protection policies was overshadowed by the (Pennsylvania grand jury) report's flaws and its interpretation by the media". The appointment generated serious conflict among Archbishop Hunthausen's supporters, and Bishop Wuerl was relieved of his responsibility in 1987. Pope Francis has asked that Wuerl remain in his role as archbishop of Washington until a successor can be named.

Cardinal Wuerl is a member of several Vatican departments, including the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and the Congregation for Bishops. "Whether people want to defend him or not for Pittsburgh, the Church has still been severely damaged".

Wuerl's archdiocese issued a series of similar plaudits on Friday, coinciding with the Vatican announcement.

Despite a personal formality that sometimes struck observers as aloofness, McGuire said she found Cardinal Wuerl to be self-effacing, humble, approachable and genuinely interested in people.

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