A Minnesota newspaper has called for St. Paul and Minneapolis archbishop John Nienstedt to resign following confirmation that he has been subject to an investigation of sexual misconduct, ignored evidence of pedophilia, and concealed the names of priests involved in the abuse.
Last December, Nienstedt, who launched a mass mailing campaign of 400,000 anti-gay DVDs, told the mother of a gay son that she must reject him or risk burning in hell and said Satan is behind gay marriage, was accused of inappropriately touching a minor.
In an editorial last Saturday, the Star Tribune said that for the sake of the Catholic church, “one of this state’s most valued institutions,” Nienstedt’s service at the archdiocese should end now.
The editorial continued:
“Nienstedt has become the face of a coverup that has put children in harm’s way. His credibility is in tatters. The archdiocese needs a different leader — a reformer — to have a reasonable chance of restoring its damaged reputation and sustaining its service to the community.
“The damage that brand name is suffering in Minnesota has become severe enough to put public support — and, crucially, donor support — of all things Catholic at risk. The abuse scandal has become more than an internal problem.”
In conclusion, the paper suggested that Nienstedt should follow Pope Benedict’s example of church leadership:
“Eighteen months ago, Benedict concluded that he was not up to the task of meeting the church’s leadership needs, and broke with 600 years of tradition to resign from office. His decision was not a display of weakness, but of love for his church. Nienstedt’s resignation would show the same.”
Watch a report on last December's revelations, AFTER THE JUMP...