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VATICAN CITY — With the Catholic Church in crisis once again over clerical sex abuse and cover-up, Pope Francis will meet Thursday with U.S. cardinals and bishops who are demanding to know how one of their own was able to climb the clerical ranks despite allegations that he slept with seminarians.
The Vatican said Tuesday that the U.S. delegation would be headed by Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, head of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, and also include Francis' top sex abuse adviser, Cardinal Sean O'Malley.
Di Nardo has said he wants Francis to authorize a full-fledged Vatican investigation into ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, who was removed as cardinal in July after a credible accusation that he groped a teenager.
The Vatican has known since at least 2000 that McCarrick would invite seminarians to his New Jersey beach house and into his bed.
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