Cardinal Bernard Law became known outside the Catholic community when news of his complicity in covering up child sexual abuse within his Boston archdiocese was uncovered, resulting in his 2002 resignation. From there, Law was appointed to Archpriest of the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore in Rome.
His passing on Wednesday and the subsequent veneration shown him in death has reopened wounds and caused outrage among many, not the least of which those who were affected in childhood by his silence.
“One of the big things that bothers me is he’s going to have this huge funeral in the Vatican at St. Peter’s Basilica with all the pomp and circumstance. He doesn’t deserve it,” said Ann Hagan Webb, a priest abuse survivor and Wellesley psychologist who treats other victims. “Pope Francis should have the presence of mind to just give him a quiet funeral and not incite the retraumatizing of victims.”