McCarrick has been “laicized”, that is, stripped of the clerical state. While Holy Orders leaves an indelible mark on the souls (meaning that even death doesn’t remove the sacramental character – a priest is a priest forever, even in heaven or… *shudder* in the other place) he may not function in any priestly capacity for the rest of his life.
The Catholic Herald writes:
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 February 16 Vatican communique.
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.
According to a statement from the Vatican on February 16, the decree finding McCarrick guilty was issued on January 11 and followed by an appeal, which was rejected by the CDF on February 13.
McCarrick was notified of the decision on February 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.)”
While I take little pleasure in any of this, I find it grimly pleasing. I had long held McCarrick as one of the most loathsome people at large in the Church, based on what I had heard of him decades ago, and on his blatant lying about Ratzinger’s letter to US bishops and about what Arinze said in a presser when I was present.
Good riddance. The barque is a little less grimy today.
What remains to be determined is to what extent McCarrick was involved with Francis and Team Francis before and after the 2003 conclave.
That will come out. After all, the Devil makes good frying pan, but he doesn’t make covers for them. Eventually, things come out.
Did the pope ask for a formal apology at large? That would have been icing on the laicization cake! Did the pope remove McCarrick’s money cache and give it to the ones offended? Will the pope announce McCarrick’s apology and tell us the results? Will we ( or the uniformed ) remain in a cloud of mystery?
I am not allowed to comment on Fr Z’s blog, so I’ll leave a comment here. It’s actually *Doctor* McCarrick (he has a real Ph.D., even if it is only in sociology). More shockingly, he still has a string of honorary degrees, not all of which have been removed.
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I love the comment on the frying pan – whenever we get depressed about this pontificate and the sexual abuse revelations it is good to see it in the perspective of an ancient Church, where these revelations are showing us the consequences of modernism and compromise on doctrine. And, no matter how Pope Francis, Kasper, all the Vatican opportunists spin it, eventually the truth reveals itself, together with its consequences. In that respect, we are truly in momentous times.
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That is more that has to happen. And any book he has ever written must have his titles removed,; that’s what I think. That makes me mad to think these things were overlooked
It is really abundantly clear, isn’t it?
Bishop Schneider spelt out the obvious (yet often ignored) cause of the crisis in a post that we published on 8th February : homosexual networks exist in the Church and the root of the abuse crisis lies in this “homosexual vice”.(And “vice” it most certainly is, however much the secular, godless world tries to brainwash us to “accept” this evil as something “natural”!)
There is no place for homosexuals in the priesthood, not even for those who despite having this disorder have vowed to live chastely.
So it’s a long overdue ‘bye-bye’ to this notorious former Prince of the Church, whose revolting sexual misdeeds have ruined the vocations and lives of numerous young men and children, and have caused untold damage to the Church.
I hope (for his sake) that Mister (or ‘Doctor’) McCarrick will still have a number of years granted to him in his monastery to make some sort of reparation.