L.A. Parker: Pope Francis delivered ambiguous message about Catholic priest sex abuse

The Trentonian

By L.A. Parker, The Trentonian
POSTED: 09/28/15

Pope Francis finally departed the United States after a whirlwind visit that attracted ginormous crowds in Washington, New York City and finally Philadelphia but his visit clouded a priest sex abuse scandal.

The Pontiff first praised American bishops for their “generous commitment” to aid and support abuse victims, even went as far a saying that Catholic church leaders handled the crisis “without fear or self-criticism and the cost of mortification and great sacrifice.”

“I realize how much the pain of recent years has weighed upon you, and I have supported your generous commitment to bring healing to victims — in the knowledge that in healing we, too, are healed — and to work to ensure that such crimes will never be repeated.”

The Washington Cathedral resounded with applause from bishops in attendance for the Pope Francis address to church leaders.

The initial assessment caused such retribution, particularly from the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), that Pope Francis offered a more subdued response by the time his entourage reached Philadelphia where he met with five sexual abuse victims harmed by either family members or Catholic priests.

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