Australian archbishop steps down following conviction for concealing abuse (Australian Catholic Bishops Conference) In 2002, at the high point of the clerical abuse crisis in the United States, Archbishop Philip Wilson spoke with US bishops for three hours at their Dallas meeting. The US bishops’ spokesman at the time described the Australian prelate as “wise in matters of faith, skilled in diocesan leadership, and experienced in dealing with the scandal and the pain and misfortune that clerical crimes bring upon bishops, the people, and the Church.” Archbishop Wilson later served as president of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference from 2006 to 2012.
Venezuelan bishops demand justice for tortured prisoners (Breitbart) Click here for the Spanish-language text of the statement. In its front-page coverage of developments in Venezuela, L’Osservatore Romano (5/23 Italian edition) highlighted President Trump’s new executive order and the condemnation of the recent Venezuelan election by 13 Latin American nations.
Bomb scare near Vatican during papal audience (Express) Police in Rome cordoned off a section of the Via della Conciliazione, the road that leads into St. Peter’s Square, as Pope Francis spoke at his Wednesday public audience on May 23. Responding to a bomb threat at a bank a few blocks from the Vatican, police evacuated offices and blocked traffic before a search determined that there was no explosive.
CCD grants $47K to Biblical literacy projects (USCCB) “It is heartening to see the renewed interest in Biblical literacy at every level of formation and Church life,” said Auxiliary Bishop Robert Brennan of Rockville Centre as the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine’s grants were announced.
Vatican bank reports profits down, focus on ethics (CNS) In its annual report, released on May 22, the Vatican bank reports a drop in profits, but emphasizes its commitment to ethical investing. The Institute for Religious Works (IOR) showed a profit of €31.9 million in 2017, down from €36 million the previous year. The IOR report attributed the decreased profits to low interest rates, but also to a “commitment to affirm the importance of ethics over profit” by choosing ethical investments and refusing to reach out-of-court settlements with former officials charged with financial misconduct.
English bishops complain of anti-Catholicism at BBC (Catholic Herald) Two Catholic bishops have complained of anti-Catholic bigotry at the BBC, after a television interviewer questioned Conservative Party leader Jacob Rees-Mogg about his faith, suggesting that the politician’s Catholicism would make it impossible for him to become prime minister.
Chilean abuse victim: Pope said I should be happy as a homosexual (CNA) A Chilean sex-abuse victim has told the Italian media that Pope Francis affirmed him in his homosexual identity. Juan Carlos Cruz quoted the Pontiff as saying: “God made you like that and he loves you like that and I do not care.” The Pope said that “you have to be happy with who you are,” Cruz told reporters.
The Vatican has not issued any statement to confirm or deny the report. Cruz said that the Pontiff made his remarks during a private meeting.