Pope assigns Denver archbishop to troubled Philly

By Maryclaire Dale

Associated Press

Published: Tuesday, July 19 2011 10:30 a.m. MDT

Cardinal Justin Rigali, left and Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput are seen after a news conference Tuesday, July 19, 2011, in Philadelphia. The Vatican on Tuesday named Chaput as Rigali's successor as Archbishop of Philadelphia.

Matt Rourke, Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA — The incoming Roman Catholic archbishop of Philadelphia has pledged to help sex-abuse victims by working harder than anyone to heal "the sins of the past."

Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver takes over an archdiocese rocked by two grand jury reports that accuse the church of hiding sex-abuse complaints for decades.

A Philadelphia monsignor is fighting child-endangerment charges for allegedly transferring problem priests, while three priest co-defendants are charged with rape.

Outgoing Archbishop Justin Rigali will retire to Tennessee after eight turbulent years leading nearly 1.5 million Catholics.

The pope appointed the outspoken, conservative Chaput to the post early Tuesday. A 66-year-old Native American, he has spent his career in the western U.S.

Critics say he fought efforts in Colorado to extend the time sex-abuse victims have to file suit.

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