On 18th December, Tuesday, the Roman Catholic Church’s chief specialist on sexual abuse asked bishops to eventually take accountability for overall clerical abuse scandal. Moreover, the bishops should go and speak personally to the victims, or else they might face the risk of watching the Church lose its trustworthiness globally.
Pope Francis has asked dozens of experts and leaders of religious orders and the heads of around 110 national Catholic bishops’ conferences to be present at the Vatican on Feb. 21-24 for an exceptional meeting devoted to the sexual abuse crisis.
Victims of clergy sexual abuse are expecting that the gathering will eventually emerge with a clear policy that would make bishops liable for ruining and botching the cases of abuse.
The conference’s steering committee stated in a letter to all members that devoid of an all-inclusive and communal reply, would not only fail to cure the victims or survivors, but the reliability of the Church to continue with the mission of Christ will be in peril all over the world. The letter also stated that they need to join hands in unity, modesty, and contrition in order to repair the damage. The bishops should share a customary obligation to clarity and hold everyone within the church responsible.
The committee is composed of Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago, Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta, Cardinal Oswald Gracias of Mumbai, the Vatican’s leading sex abuse investigator, and Father Hans Zollner, an abuse expert based in Rome.
The US bishops were asked to wait for some time by the Vatican before any corrective measures were brought out. However, the victims of sexual abuse saw it as a setback.
A Vatican spokesperson stated that the first step would be accepting the truth of the matter. Each bishop would be asked to pay a visit to the survivors of clergy sex abuse in their area in order to learn about the immediate suffering that the victims have gone through.
During a study, it was revealed that 1,670 clerics and priests had sexually abused 3,677 minors, who were mostly males, in Germany over 70-year period.