One year after global abuse summit, reaction mixed on progress made


February 22, 2020

By Elise Ann Allen

Photo Caption: Abuse survivors and advocates from the organizations of SNAP, Ending Clergy Abuse and Bishops Accountability stand in front of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith on Friday, Feb. 21, 2020 to demand action on the anniversary of Pope Francis’s global summit on child protection.

Rome – As the Boy Scouts of America slide further into scandal with allegations of widespread sexual abuse continuing to go public, the Catholic Church also finds itself on the public hot seat again one year after a global summit on child protection.

Exactly 12 months after Pope Francis’s historic Feb. 21-24 abuse summit, attended by the presidents of all episcopal conferences worldwide, both survivors and experts have reflected on what the institution has accomplished, and what has yet to be done.

Speaking to Crux, German Jesuit Father Hans Zollner, who was part of the summit’s organizing committee, called the event “a milestone” in both recognizing and accepting that the abuse of children and vulnerable people is a global problem, and that the Church “must be at the forefront” of developing and implementing best practices for safeguarding.

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