When news broke that Cardinal Bernard Law, the former Boston archbishop known for being the center of the Catholic Church pedophilia scandal, passed away on Wednesday, it was revealed that he would be given a full cardinal’s funeral at St. Peter’s Basilica with the dean of the College of Cardinals presiding over the service and Pope Francis participating. This news rightfully angered many survivors of sexual abuse, as Law was forced to resign from his position in 2002 after the Boston Globe exposed that he had been involved in covering up years of systemic child molestation by Catholic priests.
In an even worse turn of events, not only will Pope Francis be participating in Law’s funeral, but he will actually be giving the disgraced cardinal his final blessing. Not a good look, Cool Pope.
“One of the big things that bothers me is he’s going to have this huge funeral in the Vatican at St. Peter’s Basilica with all the pomp and circumstance. He doesn’t deserve it,” said Ann Hagan Webb, a priest abuse survivor and Wellesley psychologist who treats other victims. “Pope Francis should have the presence of mind to just give him a quiet funeral and not incite the retraumatizing of victims.”
Law passed away in Rome, where he has lived comfortably since 2002, after being hospitalized for congenital heart failure two weeks ago. In 2004, Law was appointed to Archpriest of the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore by Pope John Paul II; a position with only ceremonial duties but still more than most felt he deserved.
As, Phil Saviano, one of the victims of child abuse put the passing of Law, “Now is the judgment day. How is he going to explain this when he comes face to face with his maker?”
(Via Boston Herald)