We pray the Vatican didn’t realize what a blow it struck to the faith of American Catholics last week. Its curt and abrupt order to the US bishops a directive to put off for months any vote on their planned new anti-abuse protocols threatens to deepen divisions within the church.
As Sohrab Ahmari ably summarized for The Post, the US Conference of Catholic Bishops was set to vote on measures to close key loopholes in the anti-abuse reforms passed in 2002: Specifically, the bishops meant to ensure that they themselves could be held accountable.
This was a bold and vital step in the wake of recent revelations, from the Pennsylvania report to the scandals surrounding now-ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick. Catholics who’d weathered more than a decade of appalling news of abuse had begun to wonder if the US church (at least) was even capable of cleaning its own house.
Atop that came the charges of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the former Vatican envoy to America the most extreme of which is a claim that a high cabal within the Vatican opposes all efforts to get to the bottom of the abuse scandals.