US bishops urge Vatican to investigate former DC cardinal

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U.S. Catholic bishops are reportedly calling for an investigation into sexual abuse allegations against Theodore McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington, D.C., who resigned last month.

Reuters reported Thursday that the bishops called for the Vatican to lead a probe backed by lay investigators.

“Whatever the details may turn out to be regarding Archbishop McCarrick or the many abuses in Pennsylvania (or anywhere else), we already know that one root cause is the failure of episcopal leadership,” Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, said in a statement to Reuters.


The call for the probe comes two days after the release of a Pennsylvania grand jury report alleging that more than 300 Catholic priests in the state committed more than 1,000 total instances of sexual abuse.

McCarrick, a prominent figure in the Catholic Church, resigned last month following sexual abuse allegations against him. In June, he was removed from public ministry  after church officials determined allegations that he sexually abused a teenager decades ago were “credible.”

At the time, McCarrick said he had no recollection of the abuse.

“While I have absolutely no recollection of this reported abuse, and believe in my innocence, I am sorry for the pain the person who brought the charges has gone through, as well as for the scandal such charges cause our people,” he said.

Several other men have made additional allegations against McCarrick in recent weeks, according to Reuters.

Cardinal Donald Wuerl, the current Roman Catholic archbishop of Washington, has also faced scrutiny over his claims that he was unaware of the allegations against McCarrick, the Associated Press reported Thursday.

McCarrick served as D.C.’s archbishop from 2001 to 2006.

Tags D.C. Roman Catholic Church Vatican
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