Francis accepted Card. Wuerl’s two year old resignation, wrote him a Letter

Today at last Francis accepted the heavily embroiled Card. Wuerl’s resignation.

Card. Wuerl turned 75 over two years ago. As the law requires he was to submit his resignation.    It was not accepted at the time.  Wuerl submitted another in September.

They’ve given it a lot of coverage.

Francis wrote a letter about it.  It’s in Italian.  HERE  The Archdiocese of Washington has it in English HERE.

I’ve read it.  I won’t comment on it, right now, for the sake of my and your blood pressure.  I have a doctor’s appointment coming up this morning.

In the WSJ account, however, I found this interesting line:

Cardinal Wuerl is now the second prominent U.S. Church official to be brought down by the sex-abuse scandal this year.

As one of my correspondents wrote today:

Viganò 2 – Francis 0


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  1. tamranthor says:

    That letter is quite the pantload.

  2. WVC says:

    Man . . . if Dante were writing Inferno today, just think of how much material he would have to work with. One wonders and at least hopes that some of the folks in the upper hierarchy of the Church receive a moment of grace to really ponder some of those 4 Last Things before they reach their actual, final retirement and face their actual, supreme boss. I have some doubts that the boss will be writing them glowing letters of tribute . . .

  3. Kevin says:


  4. Amerikaner says:

    Wuerl will continue to have influence in the shadows.

  5. allenmurphy says:

    Cardinal Wuerl will still have two years of eligibility to vote in a conclave, should one occur. The Cardinal did not resign from the college of Cardinals

  6. Marimer says:

    Another Feast of Our Lady! She is truly cleaning house. Nuestra Señora del Pilar, ruega por nosotros.

  7. Ivan says:


    Sorry, but this is NOT a way, and therefore not really sufficient to say just ‘next’.
    If we know, and we know, what in reality is on the stake, this is mocking of even earthly justice…
    Especially when you read the letter of PF.
    Especially that sentence wherein he says: “Of this I am proud and thank you.”

  8. Gaetano says:

    True story:

    Back in college my friends had a mouse problem at their apartment. They set out one trap and caught “the mouse”. They declared the problem solved, and there was much rejoicing.

    The next day, they saw another mouse. They set several traps out, and kept resetting them every time they caught another mouse. They caught 20 in less than 24 hours.

    It’s great to know they’ve caught two of the rats, but there are more to follow.

  9. chunky_farles says:

    I am glad that Pope Francis has eschewed any appearance of clericalism in his letter to Cardinal Wuerl!

  10. Charles E Flynn says:


    Given the amount of material, while the Divine Comedy would still be a trilogy, “Inferno” would have to be published in two volumes, for practical reasons.

  11. Winfield says:

    Compare this inspiring letter to the editor in today’s WSJ from a seminarian in St. Louis to the Pope’s letter to Cardinal Wuerl. It’s in response to a recent article on Catholics having second thoughts about staying in the Church. Read it, take hope, and keep this man in your prayers.

    WSJ, October 12, 2018:
    I am a seminarian for the Archdiocese of St. Louis. Most men rise at 5:30 a.m. and go to the chapel for an hour of silent prayer before we celebrate the Liturgy of the Hours and mass together. Many of these prayers are offered for all those who suffer, especially the victims of abuse. Although the clouds of scandal seem to loom over the entire church, I see clearly the light of grace shining through in the formation I am receiving.

    Why would someone enter the Catholic clergy now? It guarantees that one will be dealing with fallout from the sins of an older generation. The answer is simple. We take Christ’s words seriously that the Eucharist is his body and blood. We love Jesus Christ, and we love people, so we want to bring Christ into their lives. He alone can heal the wounds inflicted by former clergy, and he needs men to carry out his mission and to bring his healing presence in the Eucharist into people’s lives.

    Charlie Archer

    St. Louis

  12. Rich Leonardi says:

    Re: Dante and popes and bishops in the Inferno.

    What’s interesting is that when you read the modern, pre-Bergoglian commentaries, the scholars feel compelled to contextualize damned prelates, especially popes. As if to say, “I know you all can’t imagine this sort of thing given how holy the current pontiff is, but there was a time when …”

    Time was, time is again.

  13. Atra Dicenda, Rubra Agenda says:

    Firstly, the level of delusion expressed here on the part of the Roman Pontiff is breathtaking…but unsurprising from a man who is friends with Coccopolermio and who supported Barros and who raised up McCarrick and Mauro Inzoli.

    In the second place, we now have 2 successive Washington DC Archbishop Cardinals (read, Kingmakers of the American Church) who will be entering into retirement with the disgrace of being involved personally in either abuse or its cover-up and are on record for deception and lying about those facts. Men whose actions and inactions have squandered tens of thousands or more dollars of our tithes to pay off the abused to keep silent about abuse and coverup.

    In the third place, if the USCCB ever wants another dime of my money, they must exclude Wuerl from any honorary or formal or legislative or voting roles in the ongoing business of the USCCB from the November USCCB meeting forward. And then conduct and complete a thorough investigation with lay involvement of the McCarrick situation and anyone whose tentacles are involved.

  14. Pius Admirabilis says:

    Gaudeamus in Domino semper!

  15. Michael Haz says:

    Viganò 2 – Francis 0 indeed, but this is just the playoffs.

    The World Series comes next.

  16. iamlucky13 says:

    So he is formally resigned but still the “administrator” for an unstated period of time and retiring with a letter from the Pope reassuring in a way that borders on decreeing that all the furor is diabolical in origin and about nothing more than ordinary mistakes anyone might make. There’s even a conclusion worked in that Cardinal Wuerl shouldn’t be expected to explain his actions, because that wouldn’t be “nobel”.

    I don’t see the score as 2-0.

    Instead, Cardinal Wuerl is leaving the game in the middle of overtime because his opponents are in scoring position, but the referee is declaring that he won by forfeit.

  17. MrsMacD says:

    We’d better start praying for a good replacement for Cardinal Weurl, since Pope Francis is the bishopicker and it could be worse.

  18. TonyO says:

    Blood prrreeessssssurrrrre, watch the blooood presssssuuuurrrre!

    Oh, my oh my oh my. This is bad. Very bad. It proves beyond doubt that the Pope does not “get it”. There is no fudging it, or spinning it, or pretending that this was “off the cuff” on an airplane, or anything else. No, the Pope has misjudged the problem, both its nature and its extent.

    I am glad that Pope Francis has eschewed any appearance of clericalism in his letter to Cardinal Wuerl!

    Indeed. He just undercut any and every comment about clericalism as being purely flim-flam for the hoi polloi.

    Let’s be absolutely clear here: it is common, even “standard” (in some sense) for an executive accepting the resignation of a subordinate that is “for cause” to make nice and not publicly berate the subordinate for his faults: after all, the guy is leaving voluntarily! But Francis goes far, far beyond “not berating” Wuerl. He even goes beyond the kind of “I accept your resignation” envisioned by Canon 1741.3: “3/ loss of a good reputation among upright and responsible parishioners or an aversion to the pastor which it appears will not cease in a brief time;” . He positively throws under the bus the notion that Wuerl did something that warrants being removed.

    Not to be overly harsh, but in reality the Pope probably should not have “accepted the resignation” here but instead put him under a sort of “administrative leave” until an investigation takes place, and then (if and when the investigation bears out how bad it really was), to FIRE the guy, with positive removal from office along with other canonical censures. The same goes (double or triple) for McCarrick: the man should not have been allowed to resign from the cardinalate, he should have been forcibly removed.

    Francis doubles down on his mistake by leaving Wuerl in place as administrator until his successor takes office. This is bizarre, and bewilderingly footless. The whole point of taking Wuerl out of the post is the lack of confidence in the people in his ability to govern properly (without corrupting further), and when that is so you DON’T leave the guy in place until the replacement comes along. Especially because the typical period for replacement is WELL ABOVE 6 months, it could even be 2 years. This just makes no sense. The “optics” effect of this is that Francis is poking his finger in the eyes of those who were hurt by Wuerl’s malfeasance. One is tempted to think that Francis made this mistake because he wants Wuerl ‘s influence and assistance for as long as he can get it, but it will not serve: whatever Wuerl can give Francis for the sake of the “Francis groupies”, Cupich can give, or any replacement Francis wants to name from any of 100 other bishops waiting in line already groomed by the machinery. Especially because Wuerl’s influence is minimal now that he got caught in the act. No, I cannot think of a reason for this other than that Francis simply doesn’t get what is wrong, not even a little.

    No wonder he goes on and on about “clericalism”. No, Holy Father, the problem is a pink mafia of homosexualists who want the power of Vatican to keep them with an infinite supply of boys and young men, and the power to push ordinary folk around just because they can. It’s homosexualist corruption.

  19. Man-o-words says:

    If you had an employee steal from you, would you compliment him publicly in your “send off?” No, of course not. It would be perceived as tacit approval of his behavior. You would, instead, either remove him quietly, or you would make an example of him to discourage others (legal considerations aside).

    So, I find it more interesting that PF didnt excoriate this man for his failure than the fact he said nice things about him.

  20. JamesA says:

    Sadly, not a demotion, but a promotion. He will be the next McCarrick in terms of influence; if he isn’t watched carefully, in terms of scandal as well.

  21. rcg says:

    Not to be too cynical, but protections from further in estigation or prosecutions does this vi e the Cardinal?

  22. Sportsfan says:

    Sorry to point out the obvious but Cupich and Tobin have crossed the plate. It’s 2-2.

  23. Giana Rose says:

    The bishop of Wheeling-Charleston is also out because of scandal. He is being investigated for sexual harassment of adults. It’s not a prominent diocese like the Archdiocese of Washington, but nonetheless – that’s 3 down at least.

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