(CNN)The archbishop who accused Pope Francis of mishandling sexual misconduct allegations against a top American archbishop unveiled a new charge on Saturday: that Vatican officials — and perhaps the Pope himself — have told untruths about the pontiff’s controversial meeting in 2015 with Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who refused to sign same-sex marriage certificates.
In a letter published Saturday on LifeSiteNews.com
, a conservative Catholic website, Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, the former Vatican ambassador to the United States, said that several high-ranking church officials, including the Pope, knew in advance of the meeting and the controversy that could ensue if it became public.
During the Pope’s 2015 trip to the United States, he tried, for the most part, to avoid stepping directly into the country’s bitter culture wars. Davis, who cited her Christian faith in refusing to validate same-sex marriages, had become a cause célèbre in those wars, with prominent conservative politicians and religious leaders rallying to her side. Davis said the Pope urged her to “stay strong” during their brief meeting at the Vatican embassy in Washington.