Pope Francis delivers his weekly general audience from the library in the Apostolic Palace at the Vatican, November 11, 2020. Vatican Media/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY.

THE NEUTRAL ZONE

Pope Francis vowed Wednesday to end sexual abuse in the Catholic Church a day after the Vatican released a report into the church coverup of former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick. Francis also offered prayers to victims of McCarrick, who sexually abused children and adults for decades under the eye of the church.

“I renew my closeness to victims of any abuse and commitment of the church to eradicate this evil,” Francis said. Francis defrocked the 90-year-old McCarrick last year and authorized an in-depth study into McCarrick after hearing that McCarrick slept with seminarians in his bed on weekend getaways.

The Vatican blamed bishops, cardinals and even Pope John Paul II, who rose McCarrick to cardinal in 2001 despite commissioning an inquiry that found evidence of abuse. The report found that between 1970-2015, the church received more than 900 complaints involving more than 3,000 instances of child sexual abuse in England and Wales, but the scale was likely to be far higher. The church failed to support victims and instead moved perpetrators to different parishes.

Cardinal Timothy Dolan called the report a possible “black eye” for the church in his blog, as it had yet to be released when he wrote it. “But, better that the story come out, in all its awful detail, to both bring some measure of peace to the victim-survivors, as well as serve as a lesson on how to prevent a similar recurrence in the future,” Dolan wrote. “We can thank Pope Francis for keeping his promise to undertake and release this report.”

MEDIA PERSPECTIVE

Vatican admits Pope John Paul II was warned about abusive archbishop Theodore McCarrick, while clearing Francis – CNN – 11/11/2020
The late Pope John Paul II was warned about allegations of sexual impropriety by Theodore McCarrick, but chose to promote him to Archbishop of Washington anyway following McCarrick’s own denials.

Five Takeaways From the Vatican’s Explosive McCarrick ReportNew York Times – 11/11/2020
On Tuesday the Vatican released a massive report investigating how Theodore E. McCarrick, a disgraced former cardinal and archbishop of Washington, rose to the heights of the Catholic Church, despite leaders receiving reports that he had sexually abused minors and adult seminarians over the course of decades.

Inquiry finds Catholic Church prioritised reputation over the welfare of childrenIndependent Inquiry Child Sexual Abuse – 11/11/2020
The 147 page report finds the Catholic Church’s moral purpose has been betrayed by those who sexually abused children, as well as those who turned a blind eye and failed to take action against perpetrators. 

The McCarrick Report and Pope John Paul II: Confronting a saint’s tarnished legacy – America Magazine – 11/10/2020
The release of the long-awaited “McCarrick Report” by the Vatican this morning provided significant information about Theodore McCarrick’s abuse of minors and adult seminarians, as well as a long and shameful history of church leaders ignoring complaints and concerns about Mr. McCarrick. 

INFLUENCER PERSPECTIVE

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