Pope Names Two Americans As Cardinals
By Jay Lindsay
The Associated Press, carried in In-Forum [United States]
February 22, 2006
Two American archbishops involved in the response to the clergy sex abuse scandal - one praised for his efforts to heal wounds in the Boston Archdiocese and the other now overseeing worldwide abuse claims - were among 15 men named cardinals Wednesday by Pope Benedict XVI.
Sean P. O'Malley, 61, became archbishop in Boston three years ago after Cardinal Bernard Law was pressured to resign over his handling of priest abuse allegations.
William Levada, 69, had been spiritual leader for Catholics in Portland, Ore., from 1986-1995, and then in San Francisco until last year, when he was named to the most influential Vatican post ever held by an American - prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the position last held by the current pope.
At the Vatican, Levada's role includes reviewing abuse allegations against priests worldwide.
Priest abuse victims had criticized the appointment last year, saying Levada had done a poor job dealing with the abuse crisis at home. The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests said he was "slow to act, harsh to victims and committed to secrecy" in responding to molestation claims.
Levada has said the criticism was off the mark and his experience dealing with the issue was an advantage for the church.
Catholic experts have praised Levada for being able to uphold orthodox church teaching without creating controversy.
He served on a commission that oversaw revisions to the discipline plan U.S. bishops adopted for sexually abusive priests in 2002, with changes meant to protect clergy due process rights. He also served on a task force to address the debate over whether politicians who support abortion rights should receive Communion; the panel left it to individual bishops to decide.
Last month, he returned to the U.S. for a seven-hour deposition on abuse allegations in the Portland Diocese, which declared bankruptcy in 2004, citing sex abuse lawsuits seeking more than $155 million in damages.
In Boston, O'Malley negotiated an $85 million settlement with 554 people who had been molested by priests, and started a financial reorganization of the archdiocese that included closing more than 80 churches.
He was praised for his compassion and willingness to acknowledge the mistakes made by the church, but the church closings that followed sparked angry protests.
A Capuchin Franciscan friar, O'Malley has been known for a low-key style, including wearing his order's simple brown robe and sandals.
He lives in the rectory of the city's Cathedral of the Holy Cross and sold the opulent mansion that had been used by his predecessors to raise money. He has also been known for his conservative stand on church doctrine, including opposition to gay marriage.
O'Malley previously led the neighboring Diocese of Fall River through a scandal in the early 1990s involving pedophile priest James R. Porter, convicted of molesting dozens of children. He also spent nine months at the Diocese of Palm Beach, Fla., where his two immediate predecessors resigned after admitting they had molested minors.
The 15 men named Wednesday will be elevated during a ceremony at the Vatican on March 24. Twelve of them, including the two Americans, are under the age of 80 and thus eligible to vote in a conclave to select Benedict's successor.
Prior to Wednesday's announcement, there were 178 cardinals.
Any original material on these pages is copyright © BishopAccountability.org 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.
money guide of hospital products guide of international market guide of repair roof before winter guide of website income guide of secure your business guide of face makeup tools guide of jewellery arts guide of tv shows guide of best places on earth guide of job plans guide of cheap cars guide of creating products guide of women tools guide of eat less guide of car insurance process guide of sport stuff guide of garden home guide of cheap insurances guide of electronic tech guide of healthy feeding guide of what is next in fashion guide of improve company guide of tactical insurance guide of make money at home guide of development in business guide of dept loan guide of cooking secrets guide of correct companies guide of jobs with more income guide of reviews o general products guide of improving technology guide of ideal job guide of business sectors guide of dept problem guide of unlimited business guide of suitable insurance company guide of money cars guide of how to market guide of heatlhy diet tips guide of decoration tipse guide of security problems money guide of hospital products guide of international market guide of repair roof before winter guide of website income guide of secure your business guide of face makeup tools guide of jewellery arts guide of tv shows guide of best places on earth guide of job plans guide of cheap cars guide of creating products guide of women tools guide of eat less guide of car insurance process guide of sport stuff guide of garden home guide of cheap insurances guide of electronic tech guide of healthy feeding guide of what is next in fashion guide of improve company guide of tactical insurance guide of make money at home guide of development in business guide of dept