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Rome Reports

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Joaquín Navarro-Valls: John Paul II did not cover up for Marcial Maciel

One of the people who spent many years with John Paul II was Joaquí­n Navarro-Valls. He experienced first hand the time when many sexual abuse scandals were confronting the Church and the Pope was growing old and weak due to illness.  Despite his condition, he says that John Paul II took control of the situation and pressed forward to address the problem.  JOAQUíN NAVARRO-VALLS Former spokesman for the Vatican "The Pope was very concerned. One needs to to understand the purity of his thoughts, so to speak. To accept the situation was remarkably difficult, but he did accept it. Naturally he began to make decisions. He called for all of the American cardinals to come to Rome, he could not bring all of the bishops from United States because there were too many, but all of the cardinals came. I was at that meeting. He spoke clearly of the abuse cases and began to understand and make decisions, decisions that were of a legal natureâ?.  Some time later, the double life of Marcial Maciel came to light. Joaquí­n Navarro-Valls explained that the investigation into the actions of Maciel began during the last year of the pontificate of John Paul II, and that the Pope was aware of the investigation. He declared that John Paul II in no way covered up or ignored the actions of Maciel.  JOAQUíN NAVARRO-VALLS Former Spokesman for the Vatican  "There is simply a lack of objective information. I was on the inside of things and can deny these claimsâ?.  The investigation ended during the first year of now Pope Emeritus Benedict XVIâ??s pontificate. Joaquí­n Navarro-Valls explains that from the very first moments the Pope asked to know the whole story, without having any intention of hiding the truth.    AC/LK AA GDP -PR Up: PM