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McCarrick Becomes Highest-Ranking Defrocked U.S. Prelate

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ROME — Theodore McCarrick, once the most powerful man in the American Catholic church, is no longer a priest after Pope Francis signed off on his laicization, the canonical term for official removal from the priesthood. According to a statement from the Vatican press office issued early Saturday morning in Rome, the high-ranking prelate was found “guilty of the following delicts while a cleric: solicitation in the Sacrament of Confession, and sins against the Sixth Commandment with minors and with adults, with the aggravating factor of the abuse of power.” The pope then imposed on him “the penalty of dismissal from the clerical state” with no chance of appeal.

But for one of his victims, James Grein, who the prelate allegedly abused from the time he was 11 until he was 29, the punishment comes far too late. “I will never get my childhood back,” he told The Daily Beast through his lawyer. “I will never have a chance to go back and be a normal, happy child.”

Grein’s story is common both among abuse victims and their predators. McCarrick was a family friend who had easy access to Grein throughout his early life. He was the first baby McCarrick baptized shorty after his ordination, and he went on to hold the boy captive through a combination of coercion and the power of Catholic guilt. The abuse lasted 18 years and only ended when Grein got married at a Catholic wedding that McCarrick officiated.

“When I was 11 and through all my formative years, just starting to grow up, he groomed me to a point that I needed to be with him. I was his special boy,” Grein said in a recent taped........

© The Daily Beast