This article in today’s Inquirer on Cardinal Bevilacqua’s role in the sex abuse scandal is even more sinister for me. When the legal pressure was turned up, his faulty memory morphed into diagnosed dementia. Trusted sources, who are personal friends of the Cardinal, have told me that while physically fragile he was in good mental health until recently. I suppose it wouldn’t have mattered if he had testified. The truth was disposable.
“Prosecutor grilled, Bevilacqua deflected, grand jury testimony from 2003 shows,” by Nancy Phillips, Craig R. McCoy, Maria Panaritis, David O’Reilly, Inquirer Staff Writers, July 24, 2011
“In some cases, he (Cardinal Bevilacqua) acknowledged that church officials had misled churchgoers about the reasons for a priest’s transfer. In one case, the archdiocese told parishioners that an abusive priest had come down with Lyme disease and should be in their prayers.
Questioned further about this, the cardinal gave a familiar answer: He was following the advice of his top aides, notably Lynn.
As the church official in charge of handling complaints from victims, Lynn, according to prosecutors, was the cardinal’s agent in shuttling abusive priests from parish to parish without informing police or parishioners.”