July 28, 2018
Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Theodore McCarrick as a cardinal, the Vatican has confirmed in a statement. The former archbishop of Washington, DC and one of the US Catholic Church's most prominent figures has been at the centre of allegations of sex abuse with minors and young seminarians.
Pope Francis accepts resignation of Cardinal Theodore McCarrick over sex abuse allegations
The Pope ordered McCarrick's suspension from public ministry following a decades-old allegation of sexual abuse of a teenage altar boy.
Earlier this year the 88-year-old was informed the Archdiocese of New York, where he was ordained in 1958, was investigating an allegation of abuse from a teenager "from almost fifty years ago”.
The Archdiocese of New York said it would not release specific details about the allegation to protect the victim's privacy.
However, it said a review board had found the allegations to be "credible and substantiated".
McCarrick has said he had "absolutely no recollection" of the alleged abuse of the teenager 50 years ago but has not commented on the allegations of abuse of adult men and another minor that were brought forward later.
"Pope Francis accepted his resignation from the cardinalate and has ordered his suspension from the exercise of any public ministry, together with the obligation to remain in a house yet to be indicated to him, for a life of prayer and penance until the accusations made against him are examined in a regular canonical trial," a statement said.
The scandal surrounding him has stunned the American Church because he was a widely respected leader for decades and was a confidant of popes and presidents.
Last month, American Church officials said allegations he sexually abused a teenager almost 50 years ago were credible.
Since then, several men have come forward to allege that McCarrick had forced them to sleep with him at a beach house in New Jersey when they were adult seminarians studying for the priesthood.
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