Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Vatican City: Pope says 'I have made serious mistakes . . . I ask forgiveness.'


The pope admitted he was wrong and apologized. This was not a "non-apology apology," but a full-throated admission that he had messed up.

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | Int'l Desk
Source/Credit: National Catholic Reporter / RNS
By Thomas Reese | April 17, 2018

[Excerpt]

In his recent letter to Chilean bishops, Pope Francis has admitted he made "grave errors" in judgment in dealing with the sexual abuse crisis there. He had defended Bishop Juan Barros, who was accused of knowing about the abuse done by the Rev. Fernando Karadima but doing nothing about it. Francis said there was no proof. He even accused the bishop's accusers of "calumny."

Eventually, Francis did the right thing and sent Maltese Archbishop Charles Scicluna to investigate. Scicluna has a reputation for being a dogged investigator who follows the evidence. He is the one who got the goods on the Rev. Marcial Maciel, a sexual predator and founder of the Legionaries of Christ.

Scicluna is one of the few clerics trusted by survivors of sexual abuse. His 2,300-page report based on 64 interviews forced the pope to acknowledge with "pain and shame" the "many crucified lives" of those who were victims of abuse.

The pope admitted he was wrong and apologized. This was not a "non-apology apology," but a full-throated admission that he had messed up.

"I have made serious mistakes in the assessment and perception of the situation," he wrote. He said this was due to a "lack of truthful and balanced information," but it was still his mistake.

"I ask forgiveness from all those I offended," he said, "and I hope to be able to do so personally, in the coming weeks, in the meetings I will have with representatives of the people who were interviewed."

The pope has asked the Chilean bishops to come to Rome to assist him "in discerning the short, mid- and long-term measures that must be adopted to re-establish ecclesial communion in Chile, with the goal of repairing as much as possible the scandal and re-establishing justice."


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