Bishop Edward Hughes McCarrick
WASHINGTON (CNS) — When the papal nuncio to the United States was asked to investigate rumors about Theodore E. McCarrick’s sexual activities, he consulted the bishops who had lived in close contact with, or lived in close quarters with the archbishop, on the theory that they would be the people most likely to hear or know something of substance.
Three of the four bishops did not tell what they knew, according to the McCarrick Report released Nov. 10.
(Read the full report here. Note: The introduction of the report cautions survivors of abuse that certain sections “could prove traumatizing” and warns that some portions of the document are “inappropriate for minors.”)
That has led to a lack of trust in the church among priests and seminarians, said one of the priests interviewed and a current seminary instructor.
In 2000, Archbishop Gabriel Montalvo, apostolic nuncio, was investigating whether Pope John Paul II should promote McCarrick, then the archbishop of Newark, N.J., to Washington. He asked the bishops “to give me in writing, in the strictest observance of the pontifical secret, any factual information you have relative to any serious moral weakness shown by Archbishop McCarrick, either in the past or in the present. Such factual information may include direct knowledge of times or places, as well as the names, and if possible, the addresses of persons who might have that knowledge. Every other remark or observation that you consider as just and appropriate in an effort to obtain as objective a clarification as possible of this question will, of course, be appreciated.”