Cardinal Donald Wuerl resigns – CNN


However Francis additionally has requested Wuerl to stay because the archdiocese’s apostolic administrator — akin to an interim supervisor — till a successor is known as. And in a letter released Friday, the pope praised Wuerl for his “the Aristocracy” in dealing with the criticism in opposition to him.

The Pope wrote that Wuerl has “adequate components to ‘justify'” his actions “and distinguish between what it means to cowl up crimes or to not cope with issues, and to commit some errors.”

“Nonetheless, your the Aristocracy has led you not to decide on this manner of protection. Of this, I’m proud and thanks,” the pope wrote.

The tone of Francis’ letter “would point out … that though Cardinal Wuerl as of at this time is now not the archbishop of Washington, he actually does not appear to be out of favor with the boss,” CNN senior Vatican analyst John Allen mentioned.

Wuerl, who turns 78 in November, technically tendered his resignation upon reaching age 75, as all Catholic bishops and cardinals do. However cardinals are sometimes allowed to serve till they’re 80.

Wuerl mentioned Friday that he was deeply touched by the pope’s “gracious phrases of understanding” in Friday’s letter, and he requested for forgiveness for “previous errors.”

“The Holy Father’s resolution to supply new management to the Archdiocese can permit all the trustworthy, clergy, non secular and lay, to concentrate on therapeutic and the long run,” Wuerl mentioned in an announcement launched by the archdiocese. “It permits this native Church to maneuver ahead.

“As soon as once more for any previous errors in judgment I apologize and ask for pardon. My resignation is one option to specific my nice and abiding love for you the individuals of the Church of Washington.”

Whereas he maintained a comparatively low political profile in Washington, Wuerl’s resignation caps a surprising fall from grace for one of many world’s strongest Catholic leaders.

Cardinal Wuerl asks priests to forgive his 'errors in judgment' amid clergy abuse furor

The Pittsburgh native spent greater than 50 years climbing the ranks of the Catholic Church, constructing a status as a loyal churchman and scrupulous instructor. Referred to as a key ally of Pope Francis, Wuerl sits on the Vatican committee that vets and appoints bishops around the globe.

However after a damning 900-page report by a grand jury in Pennsylvania and a letter from a former high Vatican official accusing Wuerl of overlaying up for his disgraced predecessor, the cardinal confronted growing strain to step down from his perch atop the church’s hierarchy.

The Archdiocese of Washington vigorously defended Wuerl, sending detailed explanations of his actions to space clergy and pushing again in opposition to accusations that he did not deal adequately with pedophile clergymen whereas he was the bishop of Pittsburgh.

Wuerl additionally confronted accusations from a former papal diplomat that he knew about accusations that his predecessor in Washington, former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, had sexually abused seminarians.

In a letter revealed in August, Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, the Vatican’s former US ambassador, mentioned Wuerl was “nicely conscious of the continual abuses dedicated by Cardinal McCarrick and the sanctions imposed on him by Pope Benedict.”

The Archdiocese of Washington denied Vigano’s allegations, saying, “Cardinal Wuerl has categorically denied that any of this info was communicated to him. Archbishop Viganò at no time offered Cardinal Wuerl any details about an alleged doc from Pope Benedict XVI with directives of any type from Rome relating to Archbishop McCarrick.”

CNN’s Hada Messia and Jason Hanna contributed to this report.

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