The Vatican is investigating Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City, Missouri, two years after he was convicted of failing to report suspected abuse.
A Finn spokesman says the bishop was notified of the investigation by the papal ambassador in Washington.
A statement from the diocese to KMBC TV says, “Bishop Finn was notified of the process in advance by the Apostolic Nuncio. He cooperated with the process and was obligated by the terms of the visitation not to speak of it to anyone, including his senior staff and communications director. We don’t know what, if anything, happens from here and since the visitation is supposed to be secret, can’t say much more”.
The National Catholic Reporter was first to report the inquiry which is being conducted by the Vatican’s Congregation for Bishops.
Archbishop Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa visited the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph last week as part of the investigation. His spokeswoman said Monday only that the visit was private.
Finn is the highest-ranking U.S. church leader to be convicted for failing to take action on child sex abuse claims. He was sentenced to two years’ probation for not reporting a priest who had hundreds of pornographic photos of young girls.