Top bishop denies Viganò claims on pope

'Monstrous accusation, without standing' says Ouellet

(ANSA) - Vatican City, October 8 - A top bishop has denied claims by the Vatican's former US envoy that Pope Francis covered up sex abuse by former Washington Archbishop Theodore McCarrick and should therefore resign.
    Cardinal Marc Ouellet, Prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, wrote an open letter to Bishop Carlo Maria Viganò urging him to retract his claims.
    According to Vatican News, Ouellet wrote to Viganò: "Dear Pontifical Representative Emeritus, I tell you frankly that I believe it is incredible and unlikely from many points of view to accuse Pope Francis of having covered up after having full knowledge of the facts of this presumed sexual predator, and therefore of being an accomplice in the corruption rampant in the Church, to the point of considering him unfit to continue his reforms as the first Shepherd of the Church.
    "I cannot understand how you could have allowed yourself to be convinced of this monstrous accusation which has no standing.
    Francis had nothing to do with the promotion of McCarrick to New York, Metuchen, Newark or Washington. He divested him from the dignity of Cardinal when a credible accusation of the abuse of a minor became evident. "I have never heard Pope Francis allude to this self-styled advisor during his pontificate regarding nominations in America, though he does not hide the trust that he has in some of the Bishops. I presume that they are not preferred by you or by those friends who support your interpretation of the facts. "I therefore consider it to be aberrant that you should profit by the horrible scandal of the sexual abuse of minors in the United States to inflict such an unprecedented and unmerited blow on the moral authority of your Superior, the Supreme Pontiff."

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