Viganò claims vindication after cardinal dubs accusations ‘false’

Viganò claims vindication after cardinal dubs accusations ‘false’ Archbishop Carlo Viganò

Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò said he is convinced he was right to accuse Pope Francis and Church officials of failing to act on accusations that then-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick engaged in sexual misconduct and sexual harassment.

Archbishop Viganò, the former nuncio to the US, said an open letter released on October 7 by Cardinal Marc Ouellet confirmed many of the allegations he first made in late August, when he called on Francis to resign.

The archbishop’s response to Cardinal Ouellet was published on October 19 by Italian blogger Marco Tosatti.

“Cardinal Ouellet has written to rebuke me for my temerity in breaking silence and levelling such grave accusations against my brothers and superiors, but in truth his remonstrance confirms me in my decision and, even more, serves to vindicate my claims,” Archbishop Viganò said.

The archbishop had issued an open letter to Cardinal Ouellet in late September urging him to tell what he knew about now-Archbishop McCarrick.


Archbishop Vigano’s letter followed a massive statement in mid-August calling on Pope Francis to resign because, he claimed, Pope Francis had known there were sanctions on Cardinal McCarrick and not only did he lift them, he allegedly made Cardinal McCarrick a trusted confidante and adviser on bishops’ appointments in the United States.

Cardinal Ouellet’s responded saying there were only rumours and no proof of Cardinal McCarrick’s impropriety, and that then-Pope Benedict XVI never imposed formal sanctions on the retired Washington prelate, which meant Pope Francis never lifted them.

Cardinal McCarrick “was strongly exhorted not to travel and not to appear in public so as not to provoke further rumors,” Cardinal Ouellet said, but “it is false to present these measures taken in his regard as ‘sanctions’ decreed by Pope Benedict XVI and annulled by Pope Francis”.

“After re-examining the archives, I certify that there are no such documents signed by either Pope.”

Archbishop Viganò’s latest letter said the measures were “not technically ‘sanctions’ but provisions, ‘conditions and restrictions’. To quibble whether they were sanctions or provisions or something else is pure legalism. From a pastoral point of view, they are exactly the same thing”.