The Pope, his accuser, and the sex abuse scandal that's buffeting the Vatican

Pope Francis leading Mass in Dublin last Sunday, during his visit to Ireland.
Pope Francis leading Mass in Dublin last Sunday, during his visit to Ireland. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE
US ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick resigned in July over claims that he had sexually abused seminarians.
Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano has called for Pope Francis to step down.
Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano has called for Pope Francis to step down.
US ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick resigned in July over claims that he had sexually abused seminarians.
Pope Benedict XVI in 2013 became the first pontiff to resign in nearly 600 years. Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone was Pope Benedict's second in command. Pope Francis leading Mass in Dublin last Sunday, during his visit to Ireland.
Pope Benedict XVI in 2013 became the first pontiff to resign in nearly 600 years.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE
Pope Benedict XVI in 2013 became the first pontiff to resign in nearly 600 years. Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone was Pope Benedict's second in command. Pope Francis leading Mass in Dublin last Sunday, during his visit to Ireland.
Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone was Pope Benedict’s second in command.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A report on American clerics' abuse of children has sparked a damning claim by an archbishop that the Pope had covered up for the abuser, fuelling bitter Vatican infighting

DUBLIN • On the final day of Pope Francis' mission to Ireland, as he issued candid apologies for devastating clerical sex abuse scandals, a former top Vatican diplomat alleged in a letter published last Sunday that the Pope had joined top Vatican officials in covering up the abuses and called for his resignation.

The bombshell letter written by Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, the former top Vatican diplomat in the US and a staunch critic of the papal leader, seemed timed to do more than simply derail the Pope's uphill efforts to win back the Irish faithful, who have turned away from the Church in large numbers.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on September 02, 2018, with the headline 'The Pope, his accuser, and the scandal that's buffeting the Vatican'. Print Edition | Subscribe