Vatican Whistle Blower Reveals Lax Enforcement of Restrictions on Disgraced Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, SNAP Responds

For immediate release, May 28, 2019

We are grateful to Monsignor Anthony Figueiredo for having the courage to release these communications and to show to the public that the “restrictions” placed on former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick were not taken at all seriously by his colleagues.

While Cardinal McCarrick has been defrocked by the Church, this correspondence not only illustrates that many other high-ranking Catholic officials were aware of the restrictions that bound the Cardinal, but also that they did nothing to enforce them. To us, this demonstrates that cases of clergy sex abuse are still not being handled properly.

It is very troubling to learn of the lax attitude with which Cardinal McCarrick's discipline was treated by his fellow prelates. This fact becomes all the more troubling now that Pope Francis has mandated that all Church staff report cases of clergy abuse internally to those same prelates. It is difficult to imagine that any reports will be treated with the care they deserve when the officials who receive them have shown a willingness to ignore the punishments imposed by the Vatican.

We hope that Msgr. Figueiredo’s example will encourage other whistle blowers within the Church to come forward. When they do, we also hope they will first make a report to police and prosecutors before reporting internally.

CONTACT: Zach Hiner, Executive Director ([email protected], 517-974-9009)

(SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for 30 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is

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