Cardinal Donald Wuerl

Statement from Cardinal Wuerl

October 12, 2018

“Our Holy Father, Pope Francis, has accepted the resignation first offered on November 12, 2015, when I reached my 75th birthday. I am profoundly grateful for his devoted commitment to the wellbeing of the Archdiocese of Washington and also deeply touched by his gracious words of understanding.

The Holy Father’s decision to provide new leadership to the Archdiocese can allow all of the faithful, clergy, religious and lay, to focus on healing and the future. It permits this local Church to move forward. Once again for any past errors in judgment I apologize and ask for pardon. My resignation is one way to express my great and abiding love for you the people of the Church of Washington.”

Letter from Pope Francis

“To our Venerable Brother Cardinal Donald William Wuerl,

On September 21st I received your request that I accept your resignation from the pastoral government of the Archdiocese of Washington. I am aware that this request rests on two pillars that have marked and continue to mark your ministry: to seek in all things the great glory of God and to procure the good of the people entrusted to your care…”

Click here to read the full letter from Pope Francis to Cardinal Wuerl.

Seek First the Kingdom Blog Post

Dear Brothers and Sisters of the Archdiocese of Washington,

Pope Francis has accepted my resignation as Archbishop of Washington. I had the privilege of meeting with him to let him know of your pain, sadness and confusion from what has been revealed these past months.  With a heavy heart I said that I could no longer serve you in the way that you deserve.  What is needed now is new leadership so that all of you, the faithful of this Church, can begin to focus on healing and the future.

I am sorry and ask for healing for all of those who were so deeply wounded at the hands of the Church’s ministers…

Read more 

The Latest

Bishop Knestout’s Statement Regarding Pope Francis Acceptance of Cardinal Wuerl’s Resignation

Statement of Bishop David A Zubik Regarding the Resignation of Cardinal Donald Wuerl

Catholic Standard: Pope accepts resignation of Cardinal Wuerl, who as Washington’s archbishop expanded outreach, founded seminary and hosted two papal visits

Catholic Herald: Pope accepts Cardinal Wuerl’s resignation as archbishop of Washington

Statement from Bishop Michael F. Burbidge regarding the acceptance of the resignation of Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl

Catholic Standard: Cardinal Donald Wuerl’s milestones as archbishop of Washington

Catholic Standard: A John Paul II Bishop

Catholic News Agency: Pope Francis accepts resignation of Cardinal Donald Wuerl, appoints him interim DC leader

Catholic News Service: Pope accepts Cardinal Wuerl’s resignation as archbishop of Washington

America Magazine: Pope Francis accepts resignation of Cardinal Wuerl

National Catholic Reporter: Wuerl resigns, ending influential tenure in wake of abuse report

Crux: Wuerl resigns amid papal praise , will stay as interim administrator 

The Latest From the Archdiocese

Individual Statements from the Auxiliary Bishops of the Archdiocese of Washington

Statement from the Auxiliary Bishops of the Archdiocese of Washington

Statement on the Retirement of Cardinal Wuerl by Kim Viti Fiorentino, Chancellor and General Counsel of the Archdiocese of Washington

Letter from the Holy Father to Cardinal Wuerl

Cardinal Wuerl’s Statement on the Holy Father’s Acceptance of his Resignation

Cardinal Wuerl Celebrates Mass to Begin Season of Healing for Survivors of Abuse in the Archdiocese of Washington

Cardinal Wuerl Blog Post: To Begin the Healing

Former U.S. Attorney: Cardinal Wuerl’s record reflects effort to “prevent, expose, and remedy abuse”

Cardinal Wuerl Celebrates Mass at Annunciation to Install New Pastor, Offers Remarks About Recent Events Involving the Church

Statement Regarding Archbishop Viganò’s “Testimony”



Cardinal Wuerl’s Milestones as Archbishop of Washington