A Kansas elementary school says it had no idea that a former Catholic cardinal alleged to have abused several young men over the course of several decades was placed in a rectory just next door, KansasCity.com reports.
Theodore McCarrick resigned as a cardinal back in July after a review board discovered credible claims of sexual abuse dating back nearly 50 years. McCarrick is alleged to have abused at least one minor and three adults, all seminarians or young priests, under McCarricks tutelage. His youngest victim was reportedly 11 years old.
The Vatican announced Friday that McCarrick had been "relocated" to Victoria, Kansas, where he is expected to live out the rest of his days in prayer and penance, unless Catholic Church officials deem it necessary that McCarrick face further sanctions.
McCarrick will not face criminal charges because of a statute of limitations in New York state where McCarrick's crimes are said to have occurred, even though a review board reportedly found the allegations against McCarrick to be "substantiated and credible."
Victoria Elementary only found out that McCarrick was living nearby at the St. Fidelis friary when parents mentioned the issue on social media, despite the fact that McCarrick is credibly accused of assaulting a minor.
Bishop Gerald L. Vincke of the Diocese of Salina, who reportedly worked with the Vatican to secure McCarrick's living arrangements, says McCarrick is not allowed to leave the friary or make public appearances, but local anti-sex abuse activists say the schools aren't prepared for what to do if McCarrick doesn't obey orders.
The Vatican is currently facing a flurry of questions about McCarrick, unrelated to his living situation. Archbishop Carlos Maria Vigano accused the Vatican hierarchy of sheltering McCarrick for decades — despite knowing he was abusing seminarians and young priests — and accused Pope Francis himself of invalidating sanctions leveled against McCarrick by his predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, and elevating McCarrick to a senior advisory position within the pope's inner circle.