Francis says Catholic Church ‘abandoned’ children, letting them be abused / National Catholic Reporter

“We showed no care for the little ones; we abandoned them,” the pope states (in a letter Aug. 20 addressed to the People of God). (National Catholic Reporter)

Pope Francis has acknowledged that the Catholic Church ‘did not act in a timely matter’ to protect children from sexually abusive priests over a period of decades, saying in a new letter to members of the Catholic faith around the world that the church ‘abandoned’ minors to those who would abuse them.

“‘With shame and repentance, we acknowledge as an ecclesial community that we were not where we should have been … realizing the magnitude and the gravity of the damage done to so many lives,’ the pontiff says in the letter, released Aug. 20 in response to the Pennsylvania grand jury report.

“‘We showed no care for the little ones; we abandoned them,’ the pope states.

“In the three-page letter, addressed to the ‘People of God,’ Francis also says the church has “delayed” in implementing measures to protect children and to hold those who have abused them to account.

By Joshua J. McElwee, National Catholic Reporter — Read more …

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  1. #1 by Mary Pat Fox on August 21, 2018 - 3:16 PM

    Clericalism, as Pope Francis states in his letter to the People of God, and as VOTF has said since 2011 in response to the John Jay Study, is at the root of the problem within the church today. The priests, the hierarchy and the laity all play a role in creating the culture of clericalism and we must all play a role in tearing it down. It will not be easy and it will take a while for this to manifest but the first step must be to hold accountable those bishops that covered up the abuse. Once these men have been brought to justice and called to answer for their actions the People of God can see them for the flawed humans they are.

    This statement is not intended to say the only guilty parties are the bishops. It is meant to be a call to action for the laity. The Church is the People of God it is not a building and it is not the hierarchy – it is us! It is up to us to right these wrongs. We must stand for nothing less than a full account of those who allowed this abuse of children in the church to continue and who covered it up. The Pope must remove from ministry those found guilty of committing or covering up these crimes. We must call for a change to the Statute of Limitations (SOLs) so that victims can seek justice in our courts and the church must support those changes not stand in the way.


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