Cardinal Donald Wuerl To Meet With Pope Francis On Potential Retirement

Pope Francis reaches out to hug Cardinal Archbishop emeritus Theodore Mc Carrick after the Midday Prayer of the Divine with more than 300 U.S. Bishops at the Cathedral of St. Matthew

Pope To Meet With U.S. Church Leaders Over Clergy Sex Abuse

DiNardo has also said Vigano's accusations deserve answers.

The summit was announced a day before Francis will meet American church leaders hit by fresh accusations over the cover-up of sex abuse by priests.

Five of the council include cardinals who have reached or passed the retirement age of 75: Francisco Errázuriz Ossa, 84, Laurent Monsengwo, 78, George Pell, 77, Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga, 75, Giuseppe Bertello, 75.

Archbishop Vigano said he had told Francis soon after the pontiff's election in 2013 that Theodore McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington, had engaged in sexual misconduct.

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The Vatican hasn't responded to Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano's allegations against the pope and some two dozen other Vatican and USA officials, but has promised "clarifications" that could come after Francis' meeting Thursday with the US delegation.

Victims' advocates immediately dismissed the event as belated damage control, an action publicized hastily as allegations regarding Francis' record of handling abuse cases - and accumulated outrage among rank-and-file Catholic faithful over covered-up crimes - jeopardize his papacy. "The 'Great Accuser, ' as he himself says to God in the first chapter of the Book of Job, 'roams the earth looking for someone to accuse". "True, we are all sinners, we bishops".

Bishops, he said, should be men of prayer, and should know they were chosen by God and keep close to their flock.

Pope Francis addressed the recent sex abuse scandals that have rocked the Catholic Church in some controversial remarks Tuesday in his homily.

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Archbishop Georg Gaenswein told a book presentation that he by no means was comparing the scandal to the almost 3 000 people killed in the USA 17 years ago on Tuesday, on September 11, 2001.

The Catholic Church in the United States has been shaken by a damning Grand Jury report in the state of Pennsylvania that found that 301 priests in the state had sexually abused minors over the past 70 years.

"Today, even the Catholic Church looks full of confusion at its own 9/11, at its own September 11, even though this catastrophe isn't associated with a single date but rather at so many days and years, and innumerable victims", he said.

Wuerl had served as Bishop of the Pittsburgh Diocese for 18 years, and, his name was mentioned prominently in the grand jury report for allegedly not doing enough to remove predator priests from ministry...while noting at the same time, that Wuerl did, at times, refuse to return priests to parishes, after they were accused of sexual abuse.

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Gaenswein's said Benedict's admonition was "apparently in vain, as we see today".

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