ROME – As the case of ex-cardinal and ex-priest Theodore McCarrick makes fresh waves in the media, Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin has said an investigation into who knew what and how McCarrick rose to power despite open rumors of sexual misconduct is ongoing, but he was vague on a timeline.
Speaking to the press May 29, Parolin insisted that the Holy See “has said many times that they are making an investigation, which consists of gathering together all of the documentation regarding this case.”
In early October 2018, the Vatican released a statement saying Pope Francis had ordered a “thorough study” of its archives with regard to McCarrick and indicating that results would be released in “due course.” To date, no results of that review have been made public.
The statement came in the aftermath of a bombshell letter published last year by former Vatican envoy to the United States, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, insisting that Francis and a slew of other Vatican officials knew of allegations of misconduct against McCarrick.
Parolin offered no clarification about his own awareness of the restrictions or the timeline of the investigation, saying only that “once this work is done, there will be a declaration.”
Parolin’s words came a day after Crux and CBS published correspondence confirming that informal restrictions had been imposed on McCarrick by the Vatican in 2008, and that Cardinal Donald Wuerl, then the Archbishop of Washington, seemed to be aware and involved in conversations about their implementation.
The correspondence was between McCarrick and Monsignor Anthony Figueredo, a priest of the Archdiocese of Newark who was ordained by McCarrick and served as his personal secretary from September 1994 to June 1995. He also served as a personal aid to the former prelate in Rome for nearly 20 years.
The correspondence also indicates that several high-ranking Vatican officials were aware of McCarrick’s restrictions and alleged misconduct, despite the fact that he continued to travel and played an increasingly active role in Vatican diplomacy, particularly with China.
In an interview with Mexican journalist Valentina Alazraki published the same day, Pope Francis touched on the McCarrick case, insisting he did not know about the restrictions or McCarrick’s misdeeds.
Follow Elise Harris on Twitter: @eharris_it
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