Justice for Predator Prelate?

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by Nadia Bullock  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  February 10, 2022   

Papal crony faces abuse trial

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TRANSCRIPT

Pope Francis recently amended Church law to allow greater latitude in punishing sexual predator priests and bishops. But is that enough? Church Militant's Nadia Hazimeh tells us about an alleged homopredator bishop who was protected by Pope Francis.  

Sex abuse victims of Argentine archbishop Gustavo Zanchetta are finally getting their day in court. After some delays, the bishop's trial is scheduled for Feb. 21.

Pope Francis faced criticism due to his deferential treatment of Zanchetta despite sex abuse allegations going back to 2015. 

As archbishop of Buenos Aires, then-cardinal Jorge Bergoglio gave Zanchetta a powerful role in the Argentine bishops' conference. After his election to the papacy in 2013, Pope Francis named Zanchetta bishop of Orán. It was one of the first episcopal appointments he made as pope.

In September 2015, a diocesan employee discovered pornographic pictures on Zanchetta's phone. The pictures included gay porn involving young men and images of Zanchetta showing his genitalia and sexually gratifying himself. 

Despite being reported to the Vatican by several people in 2015, the Vatican didn't do anything about it until the local press picked up the story in 2017. 

After months of hiding, Zanchetta was moved in late 2017 to the Vatican, where Pope Francis created a position for him as an assessor for the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See — the Vatican office that oversees millions of dollars in Church real estate. Then, in 2018 Zanchetta was granted citizenship to the Vatican City State — a rare perk.

Pope Francis has spoken about "zero tolerance" for clerical sex abusers. But his record with Zanchetta and other accused sodomite bishops shows not just tolerance but protection

The pope famously asked in 2013, "Who am I to judge?" regarding a sodomite priest. But as study after study reveals in the United States 80-plus percent of sex abuse cases involve homosexual predation. And it seems Pope Francis isn't really interested in addressing this aspect of clerical sex abuse.

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