The Case of Theodore McCarrick

Reposted from https://www.commonwealmagazine.org/case-theodore-mccarrick

I taught at Immaculate Conception Seminary from the late 1980s until 1996, when Theodore McCarrick was archbishop of Newark and Immaculate Conception was his seminary. What I heard in those days about McCarrick’s misbehavior with seminarians I used to refer to, until very recently, as rumors. Now I realize that “rumors” was not the right word, because rumor suggests uncertainty. What the seminarians would talk about among themselves and with some members of the faculty were experiences that they themselves had undergone, or that they had heard others had undergone. It may have been gossip, but it was gossip about real events.

Most people who have been following the case of Theodore McCarrick know by now that he had a beach house on the Jersey Shore at his disposal and that he would regularly request seminarians to visit it with him. This is how it went: he or his secretary would contact the seminary and ask for five specific seminarians, or would just contact the seminarians directly. Understandably, a request from one’s archbishop could not easily be refused…

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