CRANBERRY TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Cardinal Donald Wuerl's name will be removed from North Catholic High School after calls for the name change following the release of the grand jury report on priest sexual abuse.
According to a news release from the Diocese of Pittsburgh, Wuerl requested that his name be removed from the school. North Catholic’s board of directors and the board of Catholic High Schools of the Diocese of Pittsburgh accepted the request.
“Bishop David Zubik has accepted these recommendations and is announcing today the school name is now - North Catholic High School,” the release said.
North Catholic became Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic High School in 2013, when it moved from Troy Hill to Cranberry Township.
After the release of a grand jury report on sexual abuse by priests in six Pennsylvania dioceses -- including Pittsburgh, where Wuerl served as bishop from 1988 to 2006 -- an online petition was started to have Wuerl's name removed from the school.
According to the grand jury report, Wuerl was part of the coverup of child sex abuse in the diocese.
On Monday morning, it was discovered that the sign outside the high school was vandalized. Someone sprayed red spray paint over "Cardinal Wuerl."
Wuerl on Aug. 16 requested the removal of his name from the school in a letter, according to the diocese.
“In light of the circumstances today and lest we in any way detract from the purpose of Catholic education…I respectfully ask you to remove my name from it. In this way, there should be no distraction from the great success of the school and, most importantly, the reason for the school -- the students,” Wuerl wrote.
The board of Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic High School met Aug. 17 and recommended the approval of Cardinal Wuerl's request, the diocese said. The recommendation was approved Aug. 20 by the CHSDOP board.
Due to the change in the name of the school, an amended dress code has been distributed: "Students are permitted to wear either a plain red or plain white polo shirt in lieu of their standard CWNC uniform polos. Students may wear a plain white oxford button down (short/long sleeve) without a necktie. All other uniform expectations remain in effect."
Zubik said that as the boards offered their recommendations, they also “acknowledged the contributions that Cardinal Wuerl has made to Catholic education in the Diocese of Pittsburgh.”
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