Former Catholic cardinal Bernard Law died Tuesday in Rome, just over 15 years after resigning from his role as head of the Boston archdiocese after the Boston Globe’s investigative team revealed that dozens of priests in the Boston archdiocese had been serially sexually abusing hundreds of boys under Law’s leadership.
Law was aware of the abuse perpetrated by the priests and covered it up. After moving to Rome, Law was allowed further positions of power in the Catholic Church.
Tuesday night, St. Louis Post-Dispatch sports columnist and former president of the Baseball Writers Association of America Jose de Jesus Ortiz posted a memorial for Law on his personal Facebook, which, after expressing a wish for him to rest in peace, begins with: “I know his reputation was sullied, but ...”
Ortiz told Deadspin that Law was one of the many people with whom he prayed with while on a trip to Rome after his mother’s injury. He added that he does not “condone” Law’s behavior, which surely goes without saying.
“As I said in my post,” he said, “history and God will judge Cardinal Law.”
Law ministered to those who needed aid throughout his long career; he also knowingly allowed literally hundreds of children to be sexually abused under his direction. History and God will judge him; whether anyone else will or needs to, who can say?