Meeting with abuse victims, Pope Benedict expresses 'deep shame'
Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi explains Pope Benedict's message to abuse victims
Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi explains Pope Benedict's message to abuse victims
Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest Addthis

.- On Saturday at the Apostolic Nunciature in London, Pope Benedict XVI met with a group of victims of clerical sexual abuse, the Vatican’s press office has announced. There he expressed “deep sorrow and shame” over what victims and their families had suffered.

A press release from the Holy See’s Press Office said that the Pope was moved by what the victims said to him.

He prayed with the victims, that they might experience healing and reconciliation and that they be able to overcome their past and present sufferings with “serenity and hope for the future,” in the words of the press release.

Pope Benedict reportedly assured the victims that the Catholic Church is continuing to take action to protect young people and is doing everything to investigate allegations, to work with civil authorities and to bring to justice clergy and religious accused of “these egregious crimes.”

The Pope was also scheduled to address a group of professionals and volunteers dedicated to protecting children and young people in church environments.

At his Saturday morning Mass Pope Benedict based his homily on the theme of the Precious Blood of Christ. He explained that martyrs, sex abuse victims, the sick, elderly, handicapped and those who suffer mentally and spiritually all share in the suffering of Christ on the cross.

Elsewhere, Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi responded to apparent media confusion about Pope Benedict XVI’s message to victims of sexual abuse during that homily. The spokesman explained that sex abuse victims differ from martyrs but both can find hope in the cross of Christ.

Meeting with international journalists in the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Hall, Fr. Lombardi answered one reporter's question about a possible connection between martyrs and abuse victims.

Questioning the reporter’s assumed link between martyrdom and suffering abuse, Fr. Lombardi said, "I don't think this is the sense of the homily. The blood of Christ and the cross is a message of hope and confidence for all people who suffer problems and have the experience of suffering."

He continued, "the problem of the victims is different obviously, but it is true that they have an experience of deep suffering. In this sense, also, the cross is a message for everyone that (suffers), also for the victims, in the hope of finding the way to reconciliation, renewal and to new life.

"But," he concluded, "I don't think there is a parallel or a derived connection between martyr and victim (of sexual abuse), this is different."

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages


Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google

Featured Videos

Little Sisters of the Poor press conference in Denver
Little Sisters of the Poor press conference in Denver
Family thrilled to see Pope Francis in Istanbul
Syrian Refugee, Sara, 14, Before Meeting Pope
Ebola orphans thousands of children in West Africa
One year after Haiyan: Philippines rebuilds homes, lives
An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
Christ Cathedral CNA video Sept 2014
Alejandro Bermudez of CNA accepts ice bucket challenge
'The Real Albania,' remembering those who fled
Pope Francis in Albania, "one of the most important visits of the post-communist era in Albania"
Pope Francis greets paralyzed man who risked all to see him
Franciscans on the banks of the Tiber in Rome, working for the New Evangelization
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea

Liturgical Calendar

December 20, 2014

Advent Weekday

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 21:23-27


Daily Readings

First Reading:: Judg 13: 2-7, 24-25A
Gospel:: Lk 1: 5-25

Saint of the Day

St. Romuald »


Homily of the Day

Mt 21:23-27