Tag Archives: Papal Nuncio

Screen Shot 2014-08-25 at 09.06.20Jozef Wesolowski

You may recall an interview Pope Francis gave last month in which he pledged that bishops who covered up the abuse of minors would be held accountable.

It has now emerged that the former Papal Nuncio to the Dominican Republic, Jozef Wesolowski has been defrocked after being accused of sexually abusing boys.

But far from settling the matter, the Vatican has stirred an outcry because it helped Mr. Wesolowski avoid criminal prosecution and a possible jail sentence in the Dominican Republic. Acting against its own guidelines for handling abuse cases, the church failed to inform the local authorities of the evidence against him, secretly recalled him to Rome last year before he could be investigated, and then invoked diplomatic immunity for Mr. Wesolowski so that he could not face trial in the Dominican Republic.

The Vatican’s handling of the case shows both the changes the church has made in dealing with sexual abuse, and what many critics call its failures. When it comes to removing pedophiles from the priesthood, the Vatican is moving more assertively and swiftly than before. But as Mr. Wesolowski’s case suggests, the church continues to be reluctant to report people suspected of abuse to the local authorities and allow them to face justice in secular courts.

The Vatican says that because Mr. Wesolowski was a member of its diplomatic corps and a citizen of the Holy See, the case would be handled in Rome.

For Nuncio Accused of Abuse, Dominicans Want Justice at Home, Not Abroad (Laurie Goodstein, New York Times)

Heads turned when Archbishop Charles Brown, the new papal nuncio, arrived wearing his pectoral cross. He was approached by well-wishers, which was something of a contrast to the picket outside the Nunciature.

The Manhattan-born Brown told me that he has traced his ancestors, on both sides, to east Clare, “and to Gort, which I know is not in Clare, but in Galway, right?” He said that he had a wonderful time in west Cork on Saturday, when he visited Leap. On Sunday he was back in Dublin to meet up with his old friend, David Rosen, the former chief rabbi of Ireland. Rosen is now based in Jerusalem.

Archbishop Brown became embarrassed when the issue of him being referred to as “the George Clooney of the Diplomatic Corps” was raised. “Oh, I just pray my rosary,” he said.


Hat tip to Miranda Wrights, who adds:

Wouldn’t happen in Madam’s day, in all fairness.

Meh. He’s no David James Glendon.

Previously: Good Grief Charles Brown

Douze points for Israeli celebration (Irish Times)

(Photocall Ireland)