After Pope Francis outrages sex abuse victims, top adviser questions pope’s words

America Magazine

January 20, 2018

By Michael J. O’Loughlin

Seán O’Malley, the top adviser to Pope Francis on issues of clerical sexual abuse, weighed in on remarks made by the pope this week defending a controversial Chilean bishop that caused outrage to victims of sexual abuse. The Boston archbishop expressed support for victims and warned against using language that casts doubt on their stories.

“It is understandable that Pope Francis’ statements yesterday in Santiago, Chile were a source of great pain for survivors of sexual abuse by clergy or any other perpetrator,” the Boston archbishop said in a statement released Saturday morning. “Words that convey the message ‘if you cannot prove your claims then you will not be believed’ abandon those who have suffered reprehensible criminal violations of their human dignity and relegate survivors to discredited exile.”

Cardinal O’Malley said his “prayers and concern will always be with the survivors and their loved ones.”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.