Timothy Dolan on the State of the Catholic Church

The torrent of accusations from the Catholic Church keeps coming. Now, for the first time, Pope Francis summons the world’s bishops to meet on sexual abuse. One of America’s most powerful Catholic leaders, Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York, joins the program.

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TIMOTHY DOLAN: A big part of the disaster,

Christiane, is that our people tell us that it’s hard to believe us, it’s hard that our trust has been terrible damaged. And they say —

CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR: And you’re the leaders?

DOLAN: Yes. Now, don’t think that sends a chill up and down?

AMANPOUR: It sure does.

DOLAN: I’m not worried about popularity. But if I don’t have the trust of my people, I am nothing. All right. The church is all based on trust,

it’s not based on coercion. So, that bothers me.

One of the ways we might be able to get it back, and our people say this, ask some outside experts to help. There they are, the AG. So, we bishops

in New York we wrote and said, “Come on in. How can we help? Anything you want, go ahead.”

Now, one thing, Christiane, we’ve got pretty good tradition, a very good tradition, by the way, of cooperating. Since 2002, I keep bringing that

date up because that’s when the bishops, I’d like to propose, began to get their act together and did some very good things.

We have been cooperating with the, with the district’s attorney. There’s 10 of them here in the archdiocese in here (ph). So, we got a pretty good

track record of working with them, providing anything document that they want. You do know, any time we get an accusation, I had to learn this the

hard way, but since 2002, the second person that knows it after us, is the DA. We say, “Here. This I for you. We can’t judge it. We can’t decide

if its credible. Turn it over.”

AMANPOUR: And yet, you feel quite sorry that Cardinal Wuerl, a friend of yours, may offer his resignation, in delayed honor, perhaps falling on his

sword. Do you feel sorry about that?

DOLAN: Yes. I feel — I’m sorry from — that we’ll be missing some of his good leadership, yes.

AMANPOUR: But not some of his bad leadership?

DOLAN: Am I sorry that he’s owned up and expressed apology and do I share a sense of shame over that? You bet. Yes.

AMANPOUR: Many people — of course, the Cardinal Archbishop Vigano letter —

DOLAN: Vigano.

AMANPOUR: Vigano letter that came out over the summer was a shock to many, many people. Here we have nearly a dozen American bishops who have called

Vigano’s letter about the Pope. He alleged that the Pope was aware of sexual abuse by Cardinal McCarrick, who has, as we said, resigned, as early

as 2013. And about a dozen American archbishops say this is credible.

He was the (INAUDIBLE), he worked in the U.S. Vatican Embassy. You, at one point, did as well. Not at the same time.

DOLAN: At ’87 and ’92.

AMANPOUR: Exactly. But you know sort of the information that comes through there and what access he might have had to information. Do you

think — do you believe that Pope Francis is part of a cover-up as it’s being alleged?

DOLAN: No, no. But I do think we need to take Archbishop Vigano’s allegations seriously.

AMANPOUR: But that is his allegation.

DOLAN: And I trust the Holy Father will take it seriously. And he’ll answer it and he’ll have evidence to say, “Here’s what happened.”

AMANPOUR: So, you don’t believe that he knew it?

DOLAN: I trust him very much.

AMANPOUR: The Pope you’re talking about?

DOLAN: I think — I trust the Pope very much. I he’s going to say, “We feed to get to the bottom of this. Let’s look into it. Let’ not be rash

and impetuous in answering. But I owe my people an answer to this.” And I think we’ll get them. I trust the Pope.

About This Episode EXPAND

Christiane Amanpour interviews Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York and José Andrés, chef and author of “We Fed an Island.” Walter Isaacson interviews John Urschel.