Legacy of Pope Francis will be inaction, not reform, if he fails to tackle abuse

Irish Examiner

September 24, 2018

TP O’Mahony warns that a papacy that promised Church reform will remain mired in controversy unless Francis ensures accountability for the mishandling of abuse cases.

THE crisis over clerical sex abuse now engulfing the Catholic Church reaches all the way to the threshold of Casa Santa Marta, the Vatican guesthouse where Pope Francis has taken up residence.

His own credibility is now very much on the line, and threatens his legacy as a reforming Pope.

His inaction has caught up with him, and constantly preaching about “zero tolerance” while failing to put effective structures in place for dealing with bishops and cardinals who have covered up abuse no longer impresses, as he found out in a particularly painful way during his recent Irish visit.

During his two days here — a trip described by one Vatican correspondent as the “toughest and most difficult of his pontificate” — he was left in no doubt about the extent of the alienation and feelings of betrayal experienced by many in the Irish Church.

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