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New Hampshire bishop, key figure in abuse scandal, resigns at 75

August 12, 2010

Bishop John McCormack of Manchester, New Hampshire, reached his 75th birthday on August 12, and submitted his resignation to the Vatican as required upon reaching that age. Bishop McCormack has been an important figure in the American sex-abuse crisis for two reasons. Prior to his appointment as a bishop, he had handled clerical abuse cases in the Boston archdiocese, working with Cardinal Law on some of the cases that prompted the cardinal’s resignation. In New Hampshire in 2002, he became the first American bishop to sign a consent agreement with law-enforcement officials in order to avoid criminal prosecution of diocesan officials.

A spokesman for the Manchester diocese said that the Vatican had not yet asked Bishop McCormack to provide a full report on the needs of the diocese: an indication that the Holy See is not likely to move quickly to replace him.


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