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Pope Francis greets then Cardinal McCarrickJonathan Newton-Pool/Getty Images

SIGN THE PLEDGE: Support and pray for Archbishop Viganò. Sign the petition here.

Updated Oct. 24, 2018

September 5, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – Over 47,000 women have signed a letter to Pope Francis asking if he knew about and lifted sanctions reportedly imposed on now ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick by Pope Benedict.

“Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò’s recent statement impels us to reach out to you directly for answers,” the Catholic women wrote to Pope Francis. “His testimony accuses you, Holy Father, and highly placed cardinals of turning a blind eye to former Cardinal McCarrick’s egregious behavior, and promoting this predator as a global spokesman and spiritual leader. Is this true?”

“These are devastating allegations. As USCCB President Cardinal Daniel D. DiNardo recently stated, ‘The questions raised deserve answers that are conclusive and based on evidence.’ We agree,” the signatories stated.

“Several crucial questions raised by Archbishop Viganò’s statement, however, require neither lengthy investigations nor physical evidence. They require only your direct response, Holy Father,” the letter continues. “When reporters questioned you recently about Archbishop Viganò’s charges, you replied, ‘I will not say a single word on this.’ You told reporters to ‘read the statement carefully and make your own judgment.’”

“To your hurting flock, Pope Francis, your words are inadequate. They sting, reminiscent of the clericalism you so recently condemned. We need leadership, truth, and transparency. We, your flock, deserve your answers now.

The letter has been signed by well-known female Catholic leaders like Mary Rice Hasson, Obianuju Ekeocha, and Professor Janet E. Smith, as well as thousands of mothers, wives, catechists, and religious sisters.

“We are the backbone of Catholic parishes, schools, and dioceses,” the women wrote. “Please do not turn from us…We need to know we can trust you to be honest with us about what happened.”

“We have a right to know. We have a right to your answers.”

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