Prelate responds to newspapers series on sexual abuse

The B.C. Catholic

By Deborah Gyapong

Archbishop Terrence Prendergast, SJ, of Ottawa responded to a series of clerical sexual abuse news stories in the archdiocese by acknowledging the great evil and pledging vigilance.

“This shocking moment can become a moment of purification for us in the Catholic community and serve to remind us to keep vigilant in protecting the vulnerable, especially children,” said Archbishop Prendergast in a statement released to CCN as well as to the Ottawa Sun. “We will continue to commit to making sure that our protocols for safety and security are being followed and are effective.”

“We Catholics may see in this reminder of our past failures a call from God to our Church to let go of all that does not come from the teaching and life of Jesus Christ, the Lord who loves, forgives, heals, and above all is merciful,” he said.

Beginning May 17, the Postmedia’s Ottawa Citizen and Ottawa Sun ran several days of front page coverage tracing historical abuses back to the 1950s. Using court records and the archives amassed at Sylvia MacEachern’s blog “Sylvia’s Site,” Postmedia documented 41 victims of 11 priests.

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