Cardinal Cacciavillan, Nuncio to the US in the 1990s, reports rumors of McCarrick's sexual misconduct in 1994.
(Washington) Another former Nuncio in the United States announced that in 1994 he heard rumors of sexual misconduct by Theodore McCarrick. However, that was still very vague then.
Cardinal Agostino Cacciavillan is now 93 years old. In 1990, the former Vatican diplomat began his service as a Pro Nuncio in the United States, where he would remain until 1998. Yesterday, he told the Catholic News Service, the press agency of the American Bishops' Conference, that in 1994 they had received a phone call from a woman. That was several months before Pope John Paul II’s visit to the United States in 1995.
"I remember receiving a phone call in 1994 while preparing for the Pope's visit to New York, Newark and Baltimore," said the cardinal. He was then in the Apostolic Nunciature in Washington.
The woman said there would be a "media scandal" when "the pope comes to Newark." In Newark at that time McCarrick was archbishop. The reason given by the woman was "rumors about McCarrick's behavior with the seminarians."
This was "no formal complaint", but "expression of a concern," according to the then nuncio. Nevertheless, the diplomat contacted the Archbishop of New York at the time, Cardinal John O'Connor: "Nobody knew better what happened in US diocese than the Archbishop of New York."
Cardinal O'Connor promised an "investigation.” As a result, the nuncio was told that there were "no obstacles to the Pope's visit to Newark."
Cardinal O'Connor, who passed away in 2000, is described by the Nuncio as "very competent", which is why he saw no reason to doubt the information provided by the investigation.
But he never talked about these rumors with McCarrick, whom he met several times during his eight years in Washington. He also did not inform the Vatican after the feedback from Cardinal O'Connor.
It was not until the beginning of October that he first spoke to a Vatican official about the matter, after Cardinal Marc Ouellet responded in an open letter to Nuncio Carlo Maria Viganò. Cardinal Cacciavillan denies having asked McCarrick to sell a house in Sea Girt, New Jersey, where he is said to have invited groups of seminarians to celebrate homosexual orgies. In any case, McCarrick sold the house in 1997, when Cacciavillan was still Nuncio to Washington.
Cacciavillan is not mentioned by Archbishop Viganò in his dossier published on 26th August. In the dossier, he raises heavy charges against McCarrick, against Pope Francis and against a gay lobby in the Church. Since then, 65 days have passed, but Pope Francis has refused any response to the allegations and the associated request to resign.
Msgr. Viganò, however, listed the steps of his immediate predecessors, the Nuncios Montalvo and Zambi, in McCarrick's case, as they had found expression in the nunciature records. The case was in late 2000 / early 2001 with the appointment of McCarrick as Archbishop of Washington and his move to the capital had led to him becoming really virulent, said Cardinal Cacciavillan.
The question is what kind of "investigation" Cardinal O'Connor initiated in 1994, which produced no results. O'Connor was with McCarrick a few years earlier among the founders of the Papal Foundation Their cash flows to Rome could have played a not inconsiderable role in being "benevolent" both in the US and in Rome.
Trans: Tancred firstname.lastname@example.org