Wednesday, July 18, 2018 | ePaper

Pope acknowledges his 'grave mistakes' in Chile sex abuse crisis

  • Print


Reuters, Vatican City  :
Pope Francis acknowledged on Wednesday that he had made "grave mistakes" in the handling of a sexual abuse crisis in Chile, saying he felt shame and inviting victims he had once doubted to Rome to seek their forgiveness personally.
"I have made grave mistakes in the assessment and my perception of the situation, due in particular to a lack of truthful and balanced information," he wrote in an extraordinary letter to Chilean bishops.
The letter followed a visit to Chile by one of the Vatican's most experienced sexual abuse investigators, Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta.
Sciluna was investigating claims surrounding Bishop Juan Barros, appointed by the pope in 2015 despite accusations that Barros had covered up sexual abuse of minors by his mentor Father Fernando Karadima.
Francis wrote the letter after receiving Scicluna's 2,300-page report and in the missive to the bishops he summoned them to Rome for a meeting. He did not say when it would take place.
Such gatherings are rare and usually take place in a period of crisis in a national Church. A similar meeting took place in Rome with American bishops in 2002 during the papacy of Pope John Paul after a sexual abuse crisis exploded in the United States.
In the three-page letter in Spanish, issued simultaneously at the Vatican and in Chile, the head of the Roman Catholic Church said he wanted to "re-establish trust in the Church, trust that was broken by our errors and sins, and heal the wounds that continue to bleed in Chilean society."
Reading Scicluna's report caused him "pain and shame," he added.
Controversy over Barros, bishop of the city of Osorno in Chile's south, dominated a recent trip the Argentine pontiff made to South America. Critics accused the pope of not understanding the depth of the crisis after he initially defended Barros and said he was the victim of slander.
"I apologize to all those I have offended and I hope to be able to do it personally in the coming weeks, in the meetings I will have (with victims)," the pope said in the letter.

More News For this Category

No reason to believe Russia behind election meddling

No reason to believe Russia behind election meddling

Reuters, Helsinki :U.S. President Donald Trump emerged from a meeting with Vladimir Putin on Monday saying he saw no reason to believe Russia had hacked the 2016 U.S. presidential election,

UK tops global ranking of nations' soft power, India not on list

PTI, New Delhi: The UK has topped an annual global ranking of nations' soft power, with France placed second on the list of 30 countries which does not feature India.The

US, North Korea hold 'productive' talks on war remains: Pompeo

US, North Korea hold 'productive' talks on war remains: Pompeo

AP, Seoul :U.S. and North Korean officials held "productive" talks Sunday to discuss the return of U.S. service members' remains missing since the Korean War, U.S. Secretary of State Mike

US Judge suspends deportation of reunited migrant families

US Judge suspends deportation of reunited migrant families

AFP, Los Angeles  :A federal judge in San Diego issued an order on Monday barring officals from deporting newly reunited immigrant families for up to one week.District Judge Dana Sabraw

News in brief

US to consider waivers on Iran sanctionsReuters, Washington The United States in certain cases will consider waivers for countries that need more time to wind down imports of oil from

Gaza mourns teenage boys killed in Israeli air raid

Gaza mourns teenage boys killed in Israeli air raid

Al Jazeera News :Umm Luay zooms in on a photograph on her mobile phone and kisses the screen, again and again.In the photo, her son, Luay Kaheel, is seen

Khamenei seeks better ties with the world, apart from US

Khamenei seeks better ties with the world, apart from US

AFP, Tehran :Iran's supreme leader Ali Khamenei has called for better ties with the world - though not with the United States, according his official website on Monday.Khamenei met

Russia targeted by 25m cyber-attacks during World Cup: Putin

AFP, Moscow :Russia was the target of almost 25 million cyber-attacks during the World Cup, President Vladimir Putin said, though he did not indicate who may have been behind

News In Brief

Strikes blamed on Israel killed 9 pro-regime fighters in SyriaAFP, BeirutAt least nine pro-regime fighters died in an overnight strike in northern Syria blamed on Israel, a monitor said

Trump blames US foolishness and stupidity' for poor Russia ties

Trump blames US foolishness and stupidity' for poor Russia ties

Reuters, Helsinki :U.S. President Donald Trump blamed "U.S. foolishness and stupidity" for bad relations between Washington and Moscow, hours before he was to sit down to a one-on-one meeting