Administrator named for Lyon as cardinal appeals conviction

Catholic News Service

June 24, 2019

By Cindy Wooden

Pope Francis has named a retired bishop to serve as apostolic administrator of the Archdiocese of Lyon, France, three months after refusing to accept the resignation of Cardinal Philippe Barbarin.

In early March, a French court gave the 68-year-old cardinal a six-month suspended sentence after finding him guilty of covering up sexual abuse by a priest.

The Vatican announced June 24 that Pope Francis had appointed retired Bishop Michel Dubost of Evry-Corbeil-Essonnes, France, to serve as apostolic administrator “sede plena,” meaning Bishop Dubost will be in charge of the archdiocese while Cardinal Barbarin retains the title of archbishop.

Although Cardinal Barbarin’s lawyers had announced almost immediately that their client would appeal his conviction, the cardinal came to Rome in March and personally asked Pope Francis to accept his resignation.

After meeting the pope, the cardinal said Pope Francis, “invoking the presumption of innocence,” declined to accept his resignation before the appeal was heard.

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