Vatican Corner 09-25-18

(… continued) It is said that one of the most alarming aspects of Archbishop Viganó ’ s 11 page attack letter is the picture it paints of the misgoverning and even sabotage that has taken place by successive Vatican secretaries of state. They are described as doing their duties, or not, depending on if it benefited their interest and the interests of their friends within the Church. Important letters and reports are simply lost or undelivered. The dysfunctionality of the Vatican government has been common knowledge under the last 3 popes, but Viganó ’ s letter may point to some more intentional incompetence intended to make Pope Benedict ’ s and Pope Francis ’ responses to the misdeeds of Cardinal McCarrick look poor or naïve. Author Viganó is in hiding, and one “ rumor ” is that the Vatican security services are being used to try and locate the Archbishop with the intent of charging him with the Vatican crime of revealing state secrets. On September 13, 2018 Pope Francis accepted the resignation of West Virginia Bishop Michael Bransfield and authorized an investigation into allegations he sexually harassed adults. Bransfield ’ s resignation was accepted just eight days after he turned 75, the age at which he is required by canon law to submit a letter of resignation. During a 2012 criminal trial in Philadelphia, two witnesses and a prosecutor alleged that Bransfield “ may have known about sexual misconduct by a priest or abused minors himself. Bishop Bransfield denied the allegations and said “ I have openly been an advocate for the eradication of the abusive behavior of priests in every diocese, and have demonstrated this in the Diocese of Wheeling – Charleston. ” He said: “ I have never sexually abused anyone. ” This added awkward drama just as the four – member U.S. delegation had come to the Vatican, si%ng down with Pope Francis to discuss the abuse and cover – up scandals rocking the U.S. Catholic Church. Among the four was Bransfield ’ s cousin, Monsignor Brian Bransfield, secretary – general of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. The head of the delegation Cardinal Daniel DiNardo had requested a full – fledged Vatican investigation into the McCarrick affair, and said he also wanted answers to allegations that a string of Vatican officials knew of McCarrick ’ s misdeeds since 2000, but turned a blind eye. After the U.S. delegation of four had met with Pope Francis, their statement made no mention of DiNardo ’ s request for a Vatican investigation. The statement said that the Americans briefed the Pope on the “ laceration ” that abuse has caused and that “ we look forward to actively continuing our discernment together identifying the most effective next steps. ” The statement also made no mention of the Bransfield investigation. Bishop Bransfield and Cardinal McCarrick were both active in the Papal Foundation, the big U.S. fundraising organization that McCarrick co – founded and which has brought millions of dollars to the Vatican over the years. (To be continued … )