Vatican City, Sep 13, 2018 / 09:10 am
Cardinal Daniel DiNardo has called a Sept. 13 meeting between Pope Francis and leaders from the Church in United States “lengthy and fruitful.”
The cardinal, who is Archbishop of Galveston-Houston and president of the U.S. bishops’ conference, travelled to Rome together with Archbishop José Gomez of Los Angeles, the vice-president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, and USCCB General Secretary Msgr. Brian Bransfield.
Also present at the meeting was Cardinal Séan O’Malley of Boston, who serves as president of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors and is a member of the C9 Council of Cardinals charged with advising the pope on the governance of the universal Church.
DiNardo requested the meeting with Francis to discuss the ongoing sexual abuse scandals which have rocked the Church in America, in particular the case of Archbishop Theodore McCarrick. Cardinal DiNardo had previously pledged to investigate the case of Archbishop McCarrick to “the full extent of the USCCB’s authority.”
Following a private audience with Pope Francis this morning, DiNardo released a brief statement through the U.S. bishops’ conference.
"We are grateful to the Holy Father for receiving us in audience. We shared with Pope Francis our situation in the United States – how the Body of Christ is lacerated by the evil of sexual abuse. He listened very deeply from the heart. It was a lengthy, fruitful, and good exchange.”
The meeting follows a series of calls by commentators for the Pope Francis to release files held on Archbishop McCarrick in Rome and at the apostolic nunciature in Washington, D.C.
While the statement did not specify if McCarrick’s case or Vatican files related to it were discussed during the meeting, DiNardo has previously called for greater transparency by Church authorities on matters of sexual abuse, and especially that case of Archbishop McCarrick.