RSS

‘I’m sorry’ for victims of clergy sex abuse

29 Sep

By Alex P. Vidal

NEW YORK CITY –– If former Philippine president and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Arroyo said “I’m sorry” for the “Hello Garci” election irregularity, Pope Francis said “I am profoundly sorry” to all victims of sex abuse by Catholic Church clergy during a meeting with some of the victims at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Philadelphia the morning before he left for Vatican recently.
“Words cannot fully express my sorrow for the abuse you suffered. You are precious children of God who should always expect our protection, our care and our love,” he told them.
“I am profoundly sorry that your innocence was violated by those who you trusted.”
The victims were three women and two men, who, the Vatican said, “experienced sexual abuse as a minor by clergy, family members or teachers.”

‘DEEPLY SORRY’
“For those who were abused by a member of the clergy, I am deeply sorry for the times when you or your family spoke out, to report he abuse, but you were not heard or believed. Please know that the Holy Father hears you and believes you. I deeply regret that some bishops failed in their responsibility to protect children,” the Pope added.
“It is very disturbing to know that in some cases bishops even were abusers. I pledge to you that we will follow the path of truth wherever it may lead. Clergy and bishops will be held accountable when they abuse or fail to protect children.”
Each was accompanied by a family member or support person, according to Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi SJ.
The group was accompanied by Cardinal Sean Patrick O’Malley, Archbishop of Boston and chairman of the commission set up by the Pope for the protection of minors, Archbishop Charles Chaput and Bishop Fitzgerald, head of the Philadelphia Archdiocese’s commission for the protection of minors.

VISITORS

The Pope spoke with visitors, listened to their stories, greeted them individually and prayed with them. He told them that he shared in their suffering, and he had pain and shame in particular in the case of injury caused by clergy or church workers.
He renewed the commitment of the Church to the effort that all victims are heard and treated with justice, that the guilty be punished and that the crimes of abuse be combated with an effective prevention activity in the Church and in society.
The Pope thanked the victims for their essential contribution to restore the truth and begin the journey of healing.
The meeting lasted about half an hour and ended with the blessing of the Holy Father.

REMARKS

The full remarks of Pope Francis during his meeting with the survivors of sexual abuse:
My dearest brothers and sisters in Christ, I am grateful for this opportunity to meet you, I am blessed by your presence. Thank you for coming here today.
Words cannot fully express my sorrow for the abuse you suffered. You are precious children of God who should always expect our protection, our care and our love. I am profoundly sorry that your innocence was violated by those who you trusted. In some cases the trust was betrayed by members of your own family, in other cases by priests who carry a sacred responsibility for the care of the soul. In all circumstances, the betrayal was a terrible violation of human dignity.
For those who were abused by a member of the clergy, I am deeply sorry for the times when you or your family spoke out, to report he abuse, but you were not heard or believed. Please know that the Holy Father hears you and believes you. I deeply regret that some bishops failed in their responsibility to protect children. It is very disturbing to know that in some cases bishops even were abusers. I pledge to you that we will follow the path of truth wherever it may lead. Clergy and bishops will be held accountable when they abuse or fail to protect children.
We are gathered her in Philadelphia to celebrate God’s gift of family life. Within our family of faith and our human families, the signs and crimes of sexual abuse of children must no longer be held in secret and in shame. As we anticipate the Jubilee Year of Mercy, your presence, so generously given depute the anger and pain you have experienced, reveals the merciful heart of Christ. Your stories of survival, each unique and compelling, are powerful signs of the hope that comes from the Lord’s promise to be with us always.
It is good to know that you have brought family members and friends with you today. I am grateful for their compassionate support and pray that many people of the Church will respond to the call to accompany those who have suffered abuse. May the Door of Mercy be opened wide in our dioceses, our parishes, our homes and our hearts, to receive those who were abused and to seek the path to forgiveness by trusting in the Lord. We promise to support your continued healing and to always be vigilant to protect the children of today and tomorrow.
When the disciples who walked with Jesus on the road to Emmaus recognized that He was the Risen Lord, they asked Jesus to stay with them. Like those disciples, I humbly beg you and all survivors of abuse to stay with us, to stay with the Church, and that together, as pilgrims on the journey of faith, we might find our way to the Father.

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on September 29, 2015 in NEWS!!!NEWS!!!NEWS!!!, RELIGION

 

Tags: ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: