O’Malley reflects on popes’ canonizations

Boston Globe

By John L. Allen Jr. and Inés San Martin | GLOBE STAFF | GLOBE CORRESPONDENT APRIL 26, 2014

Although the late Pope John Paul II was a revered figure around the world, his elevation as a saint by Pope Francis has drawn fire from critics who charge that the Polish pontiff turned a blind eye to the sexual abuse scandals in the Catholic Church.

Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley of Boston, who’s long been on the front lines of dealing with the fallout from the abuse crisis, believes that a younger John Paul II would have been more vigorous in tackling the problem.

“There were mistakes during his pontificate on this issue, but I don’t think they were made out of malice,” O’Malley told the Globe.

“I like to think that if he had been younger when [the abuse crisis] exploded, he would have come to Boston and dealt with it,” O’Malley said. By the time the scandals erupted, he argued, John Paul II’s “health was deteriorating, and he obviously did not have a full grasp of what was happening in the church.”

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