“Pope Francis is close to victims of abuse” & related article

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L’Osservatore Romano
05 April 2013
The Holy Father received in Audience this morning Archbishop Gerhard Ludwig Müller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. On this occasion various topics of the Dicastery’s competence were discussed. The Holy Father recommended in particular that the Congregation, continuing on the lines desired by Benedict XVI, should act with determination with regard to cases of sex abuse. In the first place, it should promote measures for the protection of minors; help for those who have suffered such violence in the past, the due procedures for the guilty, and the commitment of Bishops’ Conferences to formulate and implement the necessary guidelines in this area which is so important for the witness of the Church and for her credibility. The Holy Father gave the Archbishop his assurance that the victims of abuse are present in a special way in his attention and  his prayers.

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Pope Francis confirms Benedict XVI’s decisive line on sex abuse

Vatican Radio

05 April 2013

(Vatican Radio) Below we publish a translation of a communique issued Friday morning by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith:

 

The Holy Father today received in audience Archbishop Gerhard Ludwig Mueller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. During the audience, various subjects pertaining to the Dicastery were discussed, the Holy Father recommended in particular that the Congregation, continue the line desired by Benedict XVI of decisive action regarding cases of sexual abuse, primarily by promoting measures for child protection; help for the many who in the past have suffered such violence; due process against those who are guilty; the commitment of Bishops’ Conferences in the formulation and implementation of the necessary directives in this area which is of great importance to the witness of the Church and its credibility. The Holy Father assured that the victims of abuse and their suffering are especially present in his thoughts and prayers.

12 Responses to “Pope Francis is close to victims of abuse” & related article

  1. Sylvia says:

    I and I’m sure all of you have been waiting for some indication of what Pope Francis will or will not do about clerical sexual abuse. This is the first murmur. There are articles out on this all over the place. I wanted to find out what exactly he had said. This is it. In essence this is no more than a third-party recap of what was said in a one-on-one meet with the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

    To my knowledge decisions have not yet been made as to which members of the curia will stay and which will be replaced, that includes the Prefect for the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith.

    I will continue to bide time until we hear something official and directly from the Holy Father’s own mouth or pen. My prayer is that it will be more than this third-hand info which, perhaps of necessity at this moment in time, seems to do no more than maintain the status quo.

  2. Lina says:

    Does this phrase bring you hope?

    “The Holy Father recommended in particular that the Congregation, continuing on the lines desired by Benedict XVI, should act with determination with regard to cases of sex abuse. ”

    I don’t know what Pope Francis will do, what I do know he better do something.

    Talk without action is not good.

    Please hurry up!

  3. Sylvia says:

    No Lina – that does not bring me hope – that is status quo.

    I am puzzled by the fact that this is third-hand information. Why are we not hearing this directly from the Pope himself? Pope Francis has shown himself more than capable of expressing his thoughts – why nothing on clerical sexual predators but this report on what he is said to have said? and that no more than to maintain the status quo. It troubles me. However, I think we need to be cognizant of the fact that he is just getting his feet wet and has yet to put his people into the curia, never mind try to sort out who to put where.

    I will give him opportunity to fire/replace those he plans to fire/replace. Best he do better after that than maintain the status quo.

    • Lina says:

      I don’t know how the Catholic Church dealt with clergy abuse victims in Pope Francis’s homeland Argentina.

      Does the Catholic Church in Argentina have a better track record dealing with the clergy victims there?

      OR
      Do clergy abuse victims in Argentina face the same hardship problems with the Catholic Church as the clergy abuse victims here at this site and other places such countries as Ireland, Australia, U.S.A. etc…?

      Before he was elected Pontiff was Pope Francis well known to help clergy abuse victims in his country?

      Is there any solid evidence that he dealt with certain bad priests who committed those clergy crimes against the innocents? What did he actually say but more importantly what did he do?

      • Sylvia says:

        There have been a number of contradictory articles on this Lina. I have been waiting to get something which I believe is factual less I (1) give false hope to those hoping for good news, or (2) prematurely make comment based on erroneous reports or facts.

        According to one article I cam across shortly after his election Pope Francis apparently said he personally had not dealt with any predatory priests in his own archdiocese, but had been approached by a bishop in another Argentinian diocese seeking direction regarding allegations against one of his priest. According to that article Pope Francis said he told the bishop to go to police and to get rid of the priest. I didn’t post it because I just wasn’t sure of the truth of the reporting. I looked for more and couldn’t find it. I just looked for it now and can’t find 🙁 Anyway, that was a positive article which sounded pretty good to me, but I opted not to post because I really wanted to be sure that that was fact.

        As you know, there have been other articles over the last number of days. I wasn’t going to post them either. I finally posted the one above because there were articles spinning off all over the world based on that third-hand report of what the Pope allegedly said to the Prefect for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. I personally want better than that before I get too excited about what a new Pope is or is not going to do about so important an issue.

        If you check on Sylvia’s Site you will see that there are only a handful of reports from Argentina. Argentina has a population of over 40 million. Canada has a population of just over 33 million. About 70 % of Argentinians are Roman Catholic. I think the percentage of Catholics in Canada falls between 40 and 50 %?

        I am well aware that the fact that there are so few articles on the Argentina page can mean that those are all I happened upon plus that there is a language issue which makes it difficult to pick up such coverage from Argentina. But, the numbers do seem to be exceptionally low. Do we conclude that the numbers are low because of cover-up? Or, do we conclude that the numbers are low because clerical sexual predators have not gained entry into the priesthood in Argentina as they have in other countries? I just don’t know.

        I’m still watching and I’m still waiting for something concrete from Pope Francis. I believe that the issue of clerical sexual abuse is of such import that it warrants a public personal address or written statement by the Pope. I do wish he had said something in one of his addresses – even just as an aside. He did not. He may have his reason for waiting. He’s just in. For now I will give him the benefit of the doubt. And, to be very honest, when I heard that he was going to say Holy Thursday Mass at a detention centre I wished that the word had been that he had invited victims of clerical sexual abuse to small church for Mass. Anyway, that wasn’t it, but I did wish that since he was making a marked departure from the norm for Holy Thursday that he would have reached out to victims of clerical sexual abuse. Perhaps that is yet to come?

        On another note, I don’t blame the Pope for what his fellow bishops did while he, the Pope was Cardinal in Argentina or head of the Argentinian Conference of Bishops. The bishops of any country do not answer to the Cardinals of their country, nor do they answer to the Conference of Bishops of their country. In short, neither the head of a conference of Catholic bishops or a Cardinal has authority over their fellow bishops/archbishops. The key to where Pope Francis stood rests with what he did in his own archdiocese with clerical molesters. There is mention of two priests: are/were they both incardinated in the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires and hence his ‘problem’? I can’t sort that out. And if they were, then the report that he never had to deal with a clerical sexual predator in his archdiocese is false, either through erroneous reporting or because he lied?

        I don’t tend to jump on a bandwagon until I have a good idea of where it’s going Lina.

        Anyway, I have posted the following. It gives a little info re your questions, but, for me, the jury is still out. And, here’s the article:

        21 March 2013: “Pope Francis: U.S. was ‘stupid’ for shuffling around pedophile priests instead of firing them” & related articles

        • Lina says:

          Sylvia,

          Pope Francis is new as a Pontiff. Maybe there is good reasons he is taking his time addressing this major global issue of clergy abuse and the victims.

          To be told…be patient and wait…it’s difficult for victims, their loved ones and supporters especially if it takes years and their still waiting for a solution and justice.

          Ramon Luzarraga, ( teaches theology ) is an expert on the Catholic Church in Latin America. He said:

          “Argentina’s democracy is still comparatively young and, compared to the United States, people are not as acclimated to being outspoken in the face of injustice.”

          70% of the population being Roman Catholic you can say the Catholic Church there still has a strong influence on their people.

          If the people there are NOT use to speaking up against injustice and these people are loyal to the Roman Catholic Church’s influence the odds are great that the Church officials will still worked hard behind the scenes to control the sex abuse scandal and keep it from authorities as well as parishioners.

          I believe that is the case but hopefully that will change in days and months ahead with more clergy victims coming forward with their abuse stories and seek justice.

          If we learn at a future date that Pope Francis I, was part of a cover-up as well, do not be surprise for Pope Francis to resign like a former Pontiff we all know.

          Thank you Sylvia for your comments and that information you found.

          • Sylvia says:

            Thanks Lina.

            Yes, it is possible that victims in Argentina have not yet come forward. I have considered that and shall wait and watch.

            If in the coming weeks and months there is evidence that Pope Francis participated in a cover-up I will be right in there. Ditto if, in the coming weeks and months the Pope either fails to address the issue or indicates that he is happy with the status quo. For now, I don’t see it, and I have scoured the net and find nothing to give credence to that. I will never defend the indefensible whether it be the actions of Pope, Cardinal, bishop or priest. At this point I have nothing to prove that Pope Francis has covered up in his years as Archbishop and Cardinal. As for what he plans to do about the matter as bishop, all we have heard to date is the Prefect for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith reporting what he says the Pope said during an audience. The audience with the Prefect may well have been the Pope telling the Prefect that he will be replaced, or that he is being moved to another congregation, or – it may have been to determine if he will be left where he is. I have no idea what the audience was about, but I do believe that if Pope Francis wants to put out a message to the world about clerical sexual abuse he is more than capable of doing so in a much more effective manner than this.

            Bottom line, as I keep saying, I am waiting and watching. When it comes to this issue which is very near and ear to my heart and to the hearts of so many that I have come to care about deeply, there is much skepticism in my being, but I am just not ready to throw arrows until I am sure they should be thrown. It’s a little like the new priest in the sanctuary. I have reached the point now that I am always skeptical. However, I will not call the new priest a predator just because he is a priest. I am cognizant of the fact that there are good priests, and equally cognisant of the fact that because the bad ones aren’t defrocked it is extremely difficult to know who the good ones are. And so it is with Pope Francis. When it comes to clerical sexual abuse, I truly don’t know where he stands, nor do I have a clue what he intends to do. I will keep watching and waiting until I know with certainty 🙂 If we have to wait too terribly long to hear from him – directly from him – that’s a message too. Meanwhile, I pray for him. I pray for the victims. I pray for all of us. These are difficult and confusing times.

  4. Baspuit says:

    Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.

  5. Jane Spence says:

    https://www.amazon.com/Sex-Abuse-Church-Code-Silence/dp/B0718SMTRY

    Excerpt from this programme;

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ngFG25SYQCs

    This segment claims that Pope Francis, as Archbishop Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, ignored cries for justice from abuse victims in his diocese.

    Arrest warrant for Pope Francis? I should think so

  6. Mike Mc says:

    I read today the Pope has called a major conference for February 2019 ( the Philadelphia Inquirer.) It’s with all the Bishops etc. Personally, I think the Pope should resign as coverups have reached him as well. I think it’s all too late, don’t you? Sexual abuse amongst priests has been rampant throughout the world. Holy Orders has lost its holiness. Why don’t we have women priests? It’s time, and long over due. It’s still mostly men in the world who continue to do evil. Just look at the present President of the USA. Immoral and selfish to say the least.

  7. MS says:

    I agree with you Mike until your last reference to President of the US. When someone criticizes President Trump for being immoral and selfish, I ask myself what president wasn’t? What leader isn’t? He is what the media, CNN, etc. portrays because they hate him; he is not part of the “established career politicians” mode or order who have to protect their assets and asses. Power corrupts morals if there are any there in the first place. President Trump is not a man of “precedent” but perhaps that’s what society needs at this time; God wants righteousness in the nation; righteousness exalts a nation. That does not make him “holy” in a “priestly” sense; it means doing what needs to be done, doing the right thing, no matter how unpopular it makes us. The Vatican has had more power because of secrecy and Canon Law and places to hide, protect and defend pedophiles and those who support the culture. Pope Francis is a face on a tired, old institution that is irrelevant to many; he will not drain that swamp.

  8. Mike Mc says:

    Trump is a pathological liar and self-confessed serial sexual predator. I needn’t say anymore, MS. We’re not here to debate Trump.

    The present Pope is also guilty of coverups. The mere fact that the Vatican hides evidence in secret vaults is proof enough.

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