Pope Francis Sends Letter to the Chilean Bishops
May 17, 2018
At the conclusion of three days of "fraternal" meetings, Pope Francis hands the following letter to the 34 Chilean bishops with whom he had closely examined the clerical sex abuse scandal that has tarnished the image of the Latin American Church in recent decades:
To the bishops of Chile:
Dear brothers in the episcopate,
I wish to thank you for having accepted my invitation so that, together, we may make a frank discernment regarding the serious events which have damaged the ecclesial communion and undermined the work of the Church in Chile in recent years.
In light of these painful incidents which concern abuse - of minors, power, and conscience - we exchanged views on their seriousness as well as on their tragic consequences, particularly for the victims. For each of them I have wholeheartedly asked for forgiveness, an action to which all of you have united in one will and with the firm intention of repairing the damage done.
I thank you for the total willingness each one of you has shown to join and collaborate in all the changes and resolutions that we will need to implement in the short-, medium-, and long-term in order to restore justice and ecclesial communion.
Following these days of prayer and reflection, I give you a mandate to continue building a prophetic Church capable of giving pride-of-place to what is most important: Service to the Lord in the hungry, the prisoner, the migrant, and the abused.
Please do not forget to pray for me.
May Jesus bless you and the Virgin Mary watch over you.