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Chicago archdiocese faces new abuse lawsuit in notorious McCormack case

September 05, 2013

The Chicago archdiocese faces a new lawsuit brought by a man who says that he was sexually abused by the ex-priest Daniel McCormack.

The new suit charges that the archdiocese and Cardinal Francis George were negligent in placing McCormack in ministry despite reports of abuse. The archdiocese has already settled suits brought by some of the 20 young men who report that McCormack molested them.

The McCormack case had an important impact on the politics of the US bishops' conference in 2010. Bishop Gerald Kicanas of Tucson, Arizona, who was the vice-president of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) at the time, had previously been rector of the Mundelein seminary where McCormick was trained for the priesthood. Bishop Kicanas came under fire for saying that it would have been "grossly unfair" to deny ordination of McCormack, despite several reports of homosexual activity during his seminary years. As the controversy grew, the US bishops broke with precedent and, for the first time, did not elect the vice-president to replace the outgoing president of the USCCB. Instead New York's Cardinal Timothy Dolan was chosen as USCCB president.


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