"It's paradoxal - and for informed people ridiculous - to attribute to Cardinal Ratzinger the reponsibility of covering-up or concealing of any kind," Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi said today. His remarks were in response to an article in the German weekly Stern on the founder of the Legionaries of Christ, Fr. Marcial Maciel.
"All informed people know that it was the merit of Cardinal Ratzinger that promoted the canonical investigation of the accusations referring to Marcial Maciel" until they were able to reach a level of certainty as to his culpability, continued Fr. Lombardi.
In this week's edition, released on Thursday, the German magazine accuses then-Cardinal Ratzinger of having played a role in blocking the investigation into the Legion founder.
Fr. Lombardi refuted this claim, stating that "The conclusion, with the imposition of retirement from every public activity, taking into account age and health conditions and the publication of this by the Press Office in a communique, are also deserving of the line of coherent rigor by Cardinal Ratzinger, [who has] in the meantime become Pope."