The Archdiocese of Washington has issued the following statement through the Catholic Standard newspaper and asked that it be given wide dissemination
Holy Week, 2010
Holy Week, 2010
DURING HIS HOMILY AT THE PAPAL MASS at Nationals Park in April 2008, Pope Benedict XVI’s voice became sorrowful as he said, “It is in the context of this hope born of God's love and fidelity that I acknowledge the pain which the church in America has experienced as a result of the sexual abuse of minors. No words of mine could describe the pain and harm inflicted by such abuse. It is important that those who have suffered be given loving pastoral attention.”
Then after leaving the crowd of nearly 50,000 people after the Mass, the Holy Father was true to his words. With no media present, he met with five abuse survivors at the Apostolic Nunciature. They had a chance to speak with Pope Benedict personally, and he prayed with them, listened to their stories, and offered them words of hope and encouragement, as a pastor would. A Vatican spokesman later said that the meeting was emotional, and some were in tears.
In recent weeks, a relentless media campaign has been underway in Europe and now the United States, criticizing the leadership of Pope Benedict XVI. These unfair attacks are against a man who has done more than anyone to strengthen the Catholic Church’s child protection policies and implemented stronger measures against abusive priests, making it easier for the Church to defrock them. And as the pastor of the Church, he has met personally with abuse survivors, and recently wrote a strongly worded letter to the Catholics of Ireland, apologizing to abuse victims there.
Read the entire statement here at My Catholic Standard.