January 22, 2018
Pope Francis apologised for comments he made about victims of paedophile clergy during his trip to South America, but repeated his defence of a bishop accused of protecting a predatory priest.
The Pope issued the partial mea culpa on board the plane that flew him back to Rome after a grueling week-long trip to Chile and Peru.
During his visit to Chile, he had insisted that there was no evidence that Bishop Juan Barros was complicit in keeping quiet about the sexual abuse carried out by a priest, the Rev. Fernando Karadima.
The Pope sharply told journalists: “The day I see proof against Bishop Barros, then I will talk. There is not a single piece of evidence against him. It is all slander. Is that clear?”
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