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“We need a respectful, mutual listening, free of ideology and predetermined agendas.” Pope Francis, Let us Dream, December 2020

After meeting pope, cardinal says he’s hopeful about addressing crisis

Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston struck a determinedly hopeful tone after his long-awaited meeting with Pope Francis to discuss the growing sexual abuse crisis in the United States.

“I myself am filled with hope,” he said, “but I also realise all these things might take purpose and time.”

The cardinal spoke following an afternoon meeting at the Vatican on 13th September. Cardinal DiNardo, president of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, was joined in his meeting with the pope by: Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley of Boston, president of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors; Archbishop Jose H. Gomez of Los Angeles, vice president of the USCCB; and Mgr J. Brian Bransfield, general secretary of the conference.

“The Holy Father is the important figure for us in this,” Cardinal DiNardo said. “He sees the problem all over the Church and throughout the world.”

While the cardinal did not want to discuss the specifics of the private meeting beyond a statement released by the US bishops, he did describe the encounter as “very, very fruitful.”

“It was lengthy, and we shared a lot of thoughts and ideas together,” the cardinal told Catholic News Service, “so I found the meeting very good from that point of view.”

“The pope is well informed,” the cardinal said, “and he’s also very, very attentive to what has happened to abuse victims in the Church in the United States.”

Picture: Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, president of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, concelebrates Mass at the Convocation of Catholic Leaders in 2017 in Orlando, Fla. (CNS photo/Bob Roller).