Response of President of U.S. Bishops' Conference to Cardinal Re's Letter

Mixed Commission to Be Set Up on Norms on Sex-Abuse Allegations

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VATICAN CITY, OCT. 18, 2002 (Zenit.org).- Here is the response of the president of the U.S. episcopal conference, Bishop Wilton Gregory, to the letter of the Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re on the document "Essential Norms for Diocesan/Eparchial Policies Dealing with Allegations of Sexual Abuse of Minors by Priests, Deacons or Other Church Personnel." The norms were written by the U.S. bishops.



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His Eminence
Giovanni Battista Re
Prefect Congregation for Bishops

Your Eminence,

Thank you very much for your letter of October 14, 2002, in which you communicate to me the response of the Apostolic See to the request for "recognitio" by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops for the Norms approved at our Plenary Assembly in Dallas, Texas, on June 14, 2002. The Bishops of the United States are profoundly grateful to the Holy See, both for the fraternal solicitude that has been shown to the Church in the United States at this difficult time and for the gracious consideration that has been given to our request.

In view of the issues that Your Eminence raises in your letter to me regarding the best way for us to pursue effectively the "recognitio" of our proposed Norms, I am happy to accept, on behalf of our Episcopal Conference, the suggestion of the Apostolic See that a Mixed Commission be established in order to reflect further on and consider revision of certain aspects of the Charter accepted by the Bishops in Dallas and the Norms proposed to the Holy See for "recognitio." I look forward to communicating to you in the very near future the names of the four Members of our Conference who will join four representatives from those Dicasteries of the Holy See that have direct competence in the matter before us.

Grateful to you, personally, Your Eminence, for your many kindnesses to our Conference, and with renewed sentiments of esteem and prayerful best wishes, I am

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Most Reverend Wilton D. Gregory
Bishop of Belleville
President

October 15, 2002

[Original text: English]