I welcome the report of the Holy See’s investigation into its knowledge and decision-making regarding Theodore McCarrick during his long career as a priest, bishop, and cardinal. We are studying these findings, and we are grateful to our Holy Father Pope Francis for his pastoral concern for the family of God in the United States and his leadership in calling the Church to greater accountability and transparency in addressing issues of abuse and the mishandling of abuse claims at every level.
This is another tragic chapter in the Church’s long struggle to confront the crimes of sexual abuse by clergy. To McCarrick’s victims and their families, and to every victim-survivor of sexual abuse by the clergy, I express my profound sorrow and deepest apologies. Please know that my brother bishops and I are committed to doing whatever is in our power to help you move forward and to ensure that no one suffers what you have been forced to suffer.
To all those who have suffered abuse by a priest, bishop, or someone in the Church, I urge you to report this abuse to law enforcement and to Church authorities. You can find detailed information on how and where to report abuse at www.usccb.org/committees/protection-children-young-people/how-report-abuse.
This report underscores the need for us to repent and grow in our commitment to serve the people of God. Let us all continue to pray and strive for the conversion of our hearts, and that we might follow Jesus Christ with integrity and humility.