Vatican orders US bishops to delay taking action on sexual abuse crisis

“We are not, ourselves, happy about this [delay]. We have been working hard to get to the action stage, and we’ll do it, but we have to get past this bump in the road.” – Cardinal Daniel DiNardo

(Daniel Burke – CNN)  The Vatican has told the US Conference of Catholic Bishops to delay voting on measures to hold bishops accountable for failing to protect children from sexual abuse, the president of the conference said in a surprise announcement Monday morning.

In announcing the decision to his fellow bishops, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo said he was disappointed by the Vatican’s interference, which he said he learned of on Sunday afternoon.

“At the insistence of the Holy See, we will not be voting on the two action items in our docket regarding the abuse crisis,” said DiNardo.

For weeks, the US Catholic bishops have trumpeted a series of reforms they had hoped to make after what one cardinal called the church’s “summer of hell.” Those reforms must be approved by the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, which gathers the country’s bishops twice a year to debate and adopt new policies.

The Vatican’s eleventh-hour intervention, ordered by its Congregation for Bishops, according to DiNardo, essentially puts the American bishops’ reforms on hold.

DiNardo, who looked shell-shocked Monday morning, tried to put a positive spin on the Vatican’s decision, calling it a “bump in the road.” View article →