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Rupnik was not “the cause”: Vatican clarifies why Cardinal Ladaria asked for dispensation from Synod

Valentina di Giorgio

(ZENIT News / Rome, 09.24.2023).- After the complete list of participants in the upcoming Synod on Synodality was unveiled on Thursday, September 21st, one absence quickly came to light: that of Cardinal Luis Ladaria, the retired Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

Some Italian media outlets had linked this absence to the Rupnik case: a few days earlier, a report on the visit to the spirituality center founded by the Jesuit accused of sexual abuse against women and a man had been released. The report suggested some irregularities related to the excommunication resulting from absolution of an accomplice in sins against the sixth commandment.

Due to the speculations circulating, the Holy See’s Press Office responded, saying, “Regarding some newspaper articles related to the reasons why Cardinal Ladaria Ferrer will not participate in the upcoming synodal assembly, it is clarified, according to His Eminence, that these reconstructions have no foundation and are the product of pure imagination.”

So, what is the actual reason for Cardinal Ladaria not participating in the October Synod in Rome? According to the Holy See, “The truth of the matter is that, having completed his term as Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Cardinal Ladaria, who is close to 80 years old, requested not to participate in the Synod solely due to accumulated fatigue, his age, and his desire for some rest.”