By Vatican News
The six Cardinals of the Council of Cardinal Advisors met from 18 to 20 February for their first meeting of 2019. Alessandro Gisotti, ad interim Director of the Holy See Press Office, stated in a briefing that the primary focus of the Council was the re-reading of the draft for the new Apostolic Constitution.
New Apostolic Constitution
The new Constitution, with the working title Predicate evangelium, has been in the works for a long time, but according to Gisotti the text is “practically completed”. What remains is a canonical inspection of the text by the Council’s canon lawyer, Archbishop Marco Mellino.
According to the wishes of the Holy Father, there will be a second round of consultation with, amongst others, the Bishops’ Conferences and the Dicasteries of the Roman Curia. After which the document will be submitted to Pope Francis for his final approval and promulgation.
Meeting on the protection of minors
Cardinals Pietro Parolin, Óscar Andrés Rodríguez Maradiaga, Reinhard Marx, Sean O'Malley, Oscar Gracias and Giuseppe Bertello participated in the work of the Council.
Pope Francis also attended the meetings with the exception of the Wednesday morning session due to his presence at the weekly General Audience.
The prelates focused on the "The protection of minors in the Church" meeting due to open on Thursday and end on Sunday.
Gisotti said that following this meeting, another is scheduled for February 25th. It foresees the participation of Dicastery representatives, of the organizing committee and of some experts.
The next meeting of the Council of Cardinal Advisors will take place from 8 to 10 April.
Card. O'Malley pleased with Meeting on protection of minors
Gisotti said that he had the chance to speak to Cardinal Sean O'Malley at the conclusion of Tuesday evening’s work session of the Council of Cardinals.
“Cardinal O'Malley told me that he is very pleased with the Meeting on the Protection of Minors in the Church that the Council of Cardinals called for during its last meeting in September with an idea developed by the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors”, he said.
The Press Office Director said Cardinal O'Malley revealed he is happy to give his contribution to this Meeting, and believes that it will be a very important event. He also said that there will be significant follow-up to the meeting, beginning with the April plenary assembly of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors.
On former Cardinal McCarrick
During the meeting of the Council of Cardinals, reference was also made to the dismissal from the clerical state of the former archbishop of Washington, Theodore McCarrick.
The Council highlighted the fact that the irrevocable decision by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, approved by the Pope, is a fundamental step in the administration of justice for the crimes and sins committed by McCarrick.
The Cardinal advisers confirmed that by working in unity with the Pope the next steps to be taken – starting with the Meeting on the Protection of Minors in the Church - will send a strong message to the People of God to strengthen trust in the Church's commitment to fight every form of abuse.