Wuerl Acknowledges Calls for ‘New Leadership’ but Refuses to Resign

Cardinal Donald Wuerl of Washington on Thursday recognised calls for new leadership in the archdiocese, including from local priests, but did not say whether he was considering stepping down.

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In a September 6 letter to the priests of the archdiocese, Wuerl referenced a 90-minute period of prayer and discernment he had held with the priests of diocese three days earlier, before the annual Labor Day cookout.

“Among the many observations was that the archdiocese would be well served by new leadership to help move beyond the current confusion, disappointment and disunity,” he said in the letter.

Wuerl, who has faced growing calls for resignation over allegations of mishandling abuse reports, did not elaborate on his future leadership intentions. Sources have told CNA that Wuerl had hoped to stay on as Archbishop of Washington until the US Conference of Catholic Bishops’ fall general assembly in November.

In his letter, the cardinal said that in his discussion with priests, he “also heard voices calling for the beginning of healing. This I believe we need to do now.”

From Catholic Herald