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Vatican City, Feb 16, 2019 / 01:41 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith ordered this week the laicization of Theodore McCarrick, a former cardinal and archbishop emeritus of Washington, and a once powerful figure in ecclesiastical, diplomatic, and political circles in the U.S. and around the world.
The decision followed an administrative penal process conducted by the CDF, which found McCarrick guilty of “solicitation in the Sacrament of Confession, and sins against the Sixth Commandment with minors and with adults, with the aggravating factor of the abuse of power,” according to a Feb. 16 Vatican communique.
Conviction - Process - Mechanism - Cases - Evidence
The conviction was made following an “administrative penal process,” which is a much-abbreviated penal mechanism used in cases in which the evidence is so clear that a full trial is unnecessary.
Because Pope Francis personally approved the guilty verdict and the penalty of laicization, it is formally impossible for the decision to be appealed.
Statement - Vatican - Feb - Finding - McCarrick
According to a statement from the Vatican Feb. 16, the decree finding McCarrick guilty was issued Jan. 11 and followed by an appeal, which was rejected by the CDF Feb. 13.
McCarrick was notified of the decision Feb. 15 and Pope Francis “has recognized the definitive nature of this decision made in accord with law, rendering it a res iudicata (i.e., admitting of no further recourse.)”
CNA - Week - McCarrick - Advocate - Case
CNA contacted this week McCarrick’s canonical advocate, who declined to comment on the case.
McCarrick, 88, was publicly accused last year of sexually abusing at least two adolescent boys, and of engaging for decades in coercive sexual behavior toward priests and seminarians.
Allegations - Public - June - Archdiocese - New
The allegations were first made public in June 2018, when the Archdiocese of New York reported that it had received a “credible” allegation that McCarrick sexually abused a teenage boy in the 1970s, while serving as a New York priest. The same...
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