Pope Francis: “about McCarrick I knew nothing, obviously, nothing, nothing.”


American Monsignor Anthony Figueiredo, a priest of Newark, N.J., who was ordained by McCarrick in 1994, served as his personal secretary from September 1994 to June 1995, and later acted as a go-between and personal aide during McCarrick’s multiple visits to Rome over a 19-year period has published correspondence which confirms that restrictions on laicised Cardinal & political manipulator Theodore McCarrick were imposed by the Vatican in 2008 as previously revealed by Archbishop Vigano. In the released correspondence, McCarrick also claims that Cardinal Donald Wuerl, then the Archbishop of Washington, was aware of them and involved in conversations about their implementation.
McCarrick actually asserts that the Vatican wanted to “avoid publicity” and thus kept the restrictions confidential.

The correspondence further confirms that McCarrick gradually resumed travelling and playing prominent diplomatic roles under Pope Benedict XVI (as I reported here - this was reported as a positive thing by the National Catholic Reporter and the restrictions were off when Pope Francis was elected). McCarrick was also involved in talks with China that may have helped shape tragic 2018 deal between Rome and Beijing over the appointment of bishops.

McCarrick’s activities were not carried on in secret, as he regularly wrote to Pope Francis between 2013 and 2017 to brief him on his trips and activities. Unbelievably, the Pope has just denied this categorically in a new interview with Mexican journalist Valentina Alazraki.

A cyber-security expert was engaged by Crux to evaluate the emails and other messages, who found that the emails did originate from McCarrick’s personal account.

The correspondence also illustrates other attempts by McCarrick to exercise influence on Pope Francis, with varying results.

In a November 2013 letter to the pope, McCarrick attempted to have a friend and priest of the Newark, N.J. archdiocese which McCarrick led from 1986 to 2000, Monsignor Robert Fuhrman, appointed as the bishop of Fairbanks, Alaska.

McCarrick also appears to have attempted to influence the selection of the American ambassador to the Vatican under President Donald Trump. Writing to Pope Francs in a January 2017,  McCarrick mentions rumors that the Trump administration might be considering naming George Weigel, a noted Catholic commentator and biographer of St. Pope John Paul II, to the ambassador’s role.

“There were rumors here in Washington that the new U.S. government had submitted a request for an agrement for a new U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See,” McCarrick wrote, using the formal French term in international diplomacy for an understanding between two parties.

“One of the names that was mentioned was that of George Weigel,” McCarrick wrote. “He is very much a leader of the ultra-conservative wing of the Catholic Church in the United States and has been publicly critical of Your Holiness in the past,” he wrote.

“Many of us American bishops would have great concerns about his being named to such a position in which he would have an official voice, in opposition to your teaching,” McCarrick told the pope.

“I would be happy to discuss this with you and also with the high officials of the Curia,” he wrote.

Of all the things revealed by Fr Figueiredo, it is interesting that this is the thing Papal tailgater Austen Ivereigh pulls out and tries to weaponise:
Is Austen suggesting that Weigel's conservatism is more of a threat to the Church than McCarrick's abuse? It does smack somewhat of desperation, but at this stage of proceedings, nothing would surprise me of Austen, who is in so deep, he couldn't possibly extricate himself from this mess.

In early October 2018, the Vatican released a statement saying 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.

Despite the Pope's repeated claims of ignorance in, Alazraki's new interview, the Figueiredo revelations would seem pretty damning. In her piece in Crux, Ines San Martin leaves it up to the reader to decide.
If you remember when Vigano's allegations first broke, Francis said:
“When some time passes and you have drawn your conclusions, I may speak. But I would like your professional maturity to do the work for you. It will be good for you,”
Surely we this now reveals the truth of the situation, will the pope resign?


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