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As Pope visit nears, U.S. sex victims say Church remains obstacle to justice / Reuters

 … When Pope Francis makes his first visit to the United States this month, he will find that wounds from the U.S. Catholic Church’s sex abuse scandal are still festering – and draining its finances – more than a decade after it burst onto the national stage.

“The tensions are being played out in courtrooms and state legislatures, where the Church is using its legal and political clout to oppose bills that would extend the statute of limitations for victims of child sex abuse. A statute of limitations forbids prosecutors or plaintiffs from taking legal action after a certain number of years.

“The pontiff has vowed to root out ‘the scourge’ of sex abuse from the Roman Catholic Church, and this year created a Vatican tribunal to judge clergy accused of such crimes.

“But U.S. victims’ advocates contend the biggest obstacle they face in giving victims more time to report abuse remains the Church itself, and want the pope to change that stance.”

By Scott Malone, Reuters — Click here to read the rest of this story

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