ACI Prensa Staff, Jun 16, 2023 / 17:05 pm
Pope Francis has sent a letter to the president of Bolivia expressing “feelings of shame and dismay” and a firm promise to work with the government of the South American country to end clerical sexual abuse of minors.
The letter, released Friday according to the Associated Press but signed on May 31 and addressed to Bolivian President Luis Arce, is a response to another letter sent to the pontiff on May 22 by the South American president. The pope’s letter was made public on May 15 on the official Twitter account of the Bolivian president.
“Dear Mr. President: I have read your letter and I thank you for the clarity and deference with which you share with me your concern, outrage, and condemnation and that of the citizens of that beloved nation, due to the deplorable events that have affected and continue to affect individuals sexually abused by members of the Church,” the pope wrote at the beginning of his letter.
The pontiff then expressed his sorrow: “In the face of the tangle of evil caused by those who, betraying their mission as priests, pastors, and educators — and who, as you express — committed ‘crimes that harm boys and girls for life, and that also harm the Church,’ I express my sorrow and my feelings of shame and dismay.”