Former bishops’ aide calls on Pope Francis to break silence on abuse


By Christopher White

September 26, 2018

One of ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick’s former closest collaborators and one of the U.S. Church’s leading crusaders for sex abuse reform, is calling on Pope Francis to break his silence about what the Vatican knew about the previous archbishop of Washington’s history of abuse and to act more decisively on the issue.

In the hope of ending the “silence and secrecy” surrounding the Church’s handling of abuse, John Carr – who served for two decades as the Capitol Hill point man for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) – also revealed that he was abused by priests while in high school seminary.

“Pope Francis has been too slow to understand and act on the moral and spiritual consequences of abuse. I believe his recent efforts to listen to victims/survivors, challenge destructive clericalism and call leaders of the entire church to Rome offer steps forward,” Carr told a crowd of over 500 attendees at Georgetown University’s Initiative for Catholic Social Thought and Public Life panel discussion on “Confronting a Moral Catastrophe: Lay Leadership, Catholic Social Teaching, and the Sexual Abuse Crisis.”

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