Bishop Elias Statement on Cardinal Theodore McCarrick
Eparchy of Our Lady of Lebanon of Los Angeles
TO: Priests and Deacons
Subdeacons, Monks and Nuns All the Faithful of the Eparchy
As most of you are aware, the Holy Father has accepted the resignation of former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick from the College of Cardinals and he has been suspended from all ministry. Ministry carries with it, a solemn and sacred responsibility. Information thus far indicates that former Cardinal McCarrick had violated this sacred trust over a period of many years. The alleged crimes committed by the former Cardinal have caused grave scandal and embarrassment to all of us not to mention the pain of his victims. Further canonical and legal consequences are likely to occur against the former Cardinal.
As Bishop of the Eparchy of Our Lady of Lebanon of Los Angeles, I am committing myself and all my clergy to a policy of “zero tolerance” for violations of sexual abuse against minors or other vulnerable persons by anyone affiliated or employed by the Eparchy. It will simply not be tolerated in any way. We have policies and procedures in place to deal with any accusation brought to our attention. Those procedures will continue to be followed and enforced. This embraces all the clergy, including myself, as Bishop, all our employees and volunteers. Additionally, all those affiliated with the Eparchy are required to be trained in the prevention of any form of abuse and to report it in a timely and appropriate manner.
I ask your prayers for the victims and their families of the alleged crimes of former Cardinal McCarrick. I also ask your prayers for all of us as we commit ourselves to working together to prevent such acts in the future.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
+A. Elias Zaidan Bishop of the Eparchy of Our Lady of Lebanon of Los Angeles