A top adviser of Pope Francis is embroiled in a controversy involving accusations of sexual offenses.Australia's move to bring charges against Cardinal George Pell is the latest chapter in a damaging saga of abuse within the Church and brings a worldwide scandal to the heart of the Vatican.PHILADELPHIA — Pope Francis celebrated Mass with hundreds of thousands in the streets of the City of Brotherly Love on Sunday, closing his historic six-day visit to the U. where he drew big and enthusiastic crowds wherever he went. In his homily, Francis told the faithful that much like happiness, "holiness is always tied to little gestures.""These little gestures are those we learn at home, in the family; they get lost amid all the other things we do, yet they do make each day different," Francis said. trip that also took him to New York and Washington, coincided with the World Meeting of Families, and Francis used his final scheduled public appearance of the trip to connect faith with family.Jim Gates, who married wife Louise in a civil ceremony in the 1980s without an annulment of his prior marriage, said he thought the pope’s document released Friday marked a good first step.(Chris Sweda / Chicago Tribune) Threading through Pope Francis' highly anticipated landmark document on marriage and family was an underlying theme that struck a chord with Chicago Archbishop Blase Cupich: The church exists to form people's consciences, not to serve as a substitute."That's a very striking thing to say," Cupich said during an interview with the Tribune after the Vatican's release of the long-awaited document Friday.
Crowds blocks away joined in the chanting and prayers as Mass began.
He dismissed the allegations as a "scandalous smear campaign." He was also accused of covering up other abuses committed by other priests.
Police filed the charges upon the prosecutor's advice last month.
Cupich said he hopes the pope's guidelines show divorced and remarried Catholics that they do still belong in the church and give license to priests, like himself, who have been taking that approach for a while."There is a mindset within the life of the church among Catholics that if in fact they do have marriage breakups and they get into a second marriage that its kind of over for them unless they can get an annulment.
The pope is saying that's not the case," Cupich said.