Cardinal Nichols says he has ‘no wish to walk away’ as bishops launch safeguarding overhaul

Catholic News Agency

November 20, 2020

Cardinal Vincent Nichols said Friday that he was committed to overseeing a major overhaul of safeguarding procedures in England and Wales following an independent report that sharply criticized his handling of abuse cases.

The Catholic Church in England and Wales announced sweeping changes to its child protection system Nov. 20, 10 days after the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) issued a scathing report on the Church.

In a personal statement shared with journalists at a press conference Friday, the cardinal said that the report had “brought together a picture of abuse inflicted in the Catholic Church over a period of 50 years.”

“It is a terrible picture,” he said. “I remain shocked and ashamed. It is a reality that hangs like a dark cloud over my heart and mind.”

He continued: “I say again: I am so sorry. I say this for many bishops who have gone before me over these 50 years. Many hearing this will feel that we let you down. Yes, we did let you down in many ways, in different times, in different places, for different reasons. I apologize again. I am so sorry for all that has happened over these years.”

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