Pope asks US bishop to resign after cover-up investigation

A bishop in Minnesota resigned Tuesday at the request of Pope Francis after he was investigated by the Vatican for allegedly interfering with past investigations into clergy sexual abuse, officials said.

The Vatican said Francis accepted the resignation of Crookston Bishop Michael Hoeppner and named a temporary replacement to run the diocese. Hoeppner is 71, four years shy of the normal retirement age for bishops.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Crookston said the pontiff asked Hoeppner to resign following the Vatican probe, which it said arose from reports that the bishop “had at times failed to observe applicable norms when presented with allegations of sexual abuse involving clergy.”

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