Pope Francis: Bishops are under attack from 'Great Accuser.' Internet: Wait, what?

By Jessica Remo
NJ Advance Media for
September 11, 2018

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro speaks during a news conference about the grand jury report.
Photo by Matt Rourke

[with video]

In the wake of a Pennsylvania grand jury report alleging decades of sexual abuse of children by priests and sophisticated cover-ups by bishops, people have been hanging on the pope's every word. 

So, wait? What, exactly, did his Holiness mean when he referenced a "Great Accuser" attacking bishops in a homily today?

Weeks after the Pennsylvania allegations (which included four priests with ties to N.J.) — and after a cardinal accused the pope of covering up other alleged sexual abuses by former Newark Archbishop Theodore McCarrick — Pope Francis preached the following, according to Vatican News:

“In these times, it seems like the 'Great Accuser' has been unchained and is attacking bishops. True, we are all sinners, we bishops. He tries to uncover the sins, so they are visible in order to scandalize the people. The 'Great Accuser', as he himself says to God in the first chapter of the Book of Job, 'roams the earth looking for someone to accuse'. A bishop’s strength against the 'Great Accuser' is prayer, that of Jesus and his own, and the humility of being chosen and remaining close to the people of God, without seeking an aristocratic life that removes this unction. Let us pray, today, for our bishops: for me, for those who are here, and for all the bishops throughout the world.”



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