Archbishop discharged from hospital

He will now be spending a period of recovery at the Apostolic Nunciature of Chile, before continuing with his investigation

Archbishop Charles Scicluna
Archbishop Charles Scicluna

Archbishop Charles Scicluna has been discharged from hospital after having his gallbladder rmoved through a keyhole surgery two days ago.

Scicluna was admitted at the clinic on Tuesday at 9pm with abdominal pain that he started feeling the previous days and was later diagnosed with acute cholecystitis, an infection of the gallbladder caused by gallstones.

In a brief statement, the Curia said that Scicluna would now be spending a period of recovery at the Apostolic Nunciature of Chile before continuing with his investigations.  

The Maltese archbishop this week met the victims of Chilean priest Fr Fernando Karadima, who was convicted in 2011 for abusing a number of boys. Archbishop Scicluna is in Santiago looking into accusations that Bishop Juan Barros covered up crimes against minors.

Catholic bishop’s conference spokesman Jaime Coiro said the problems affecting Archbishop Charles Scicluna aren’t extremely serious, “but neither are we dealing with a very simple ailment.”

READ MORE • In Chile as Vatican’s investigator, Malta archbishop Charles Scicluna hears abuse victims’ testimony

He started hearing victims’ testimony on Tuesday, including that of Hamilton. He is expected to leave Chile on Friday.

Pope Francis was criticized during his visit last month for defending Bishop Juan Barros, whom he appointed in 2015 despite accusations that he had covered up sexual abuse of minors. Several men have accused Barros of protecting Karadima, his former mentor. Barros, of the diocese of Osorno, has said he was unaware of any wrongdoing by Karadima.

A Chilean man who was sexually abused by the priest said he was hopeful his testimony to Scicluna, appointed as special investigator by Pope Francis, would lead to better protection for children. “I hope that in the Chile of the future, there is security for children, there is no statute of limitations on sexual abuse, that Sename (Chile’s child protection service) cares for children,” James Hamilton told reporters on Tuesday. “It does not matter to me what the Catholic Church determines.”

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