Updated Fri Nov 5, 2010 5:32am AEDT
Pope Benedict XVI has called for “purification” and “reform” of the Catholic Church, as the wave of abuse accusations against paedophile priests continues to rock the establishment.
“Trials and sufferings are not lacking in the ecclesiastical community, which needs purification and reform,” the pope said in a written statement to the Archbishop of Milan, that was released by the Vatican press office.
He also called on priests “to turn their lives into a courageous and saintly journey” and commit to “a sober and pure life” with “a limpid faith”.
The Church has been plunged into its gravest crisis of recent years after the publication of a 2009 report detailing hundreds of abuse cases in Ireland.