Published: Tue, June 12, 2018

Pope accepts resignation of 3 Chilean bishops in sex abuse scandal

Pope accepts resignation of 3 Chilean bishops in sex abuse scandal

The Catholic Church's upcoming big family rally in Ireland will feature workshops on hot-button issues facing Catholic families, including priestly sexual abuse, weathering divorce and ministering to lesbian and gay faithful.

Argentine-born Francis, whose decision was announced in a Vatican statement Monday, has said it must not happen again on his watch.

During his visit to Chile in January, Francis upset abuse survivors and their loved ones when he dismissed the allegations against Barros as "calumny", saying there was no evidence and that he had never seen proof against the bishop.

Karadima was suspended for life by the Vatican over the allegations of child molestation.

Bishop Juan Barros Madrid was accused of covering up the acts of a notorious abuser; Pope Francis enraged thousands of Catholics in Chile when he appointed Juan Barros as bishop of Osorno in 2015. The leader of the Roman Catholic Church accepted Barros's resignation as well as those of two others in Chile. Of the three, only the 61-year-old Barros is below the retirement age of 75.

The Vatican in 2011 sentenced Karadima, a powerful preacher close to Chile's elite, to a lifetime of penance and prayer for his sex crimes. The second group comprises five Chilean priests who met Francis at the start of June. The eight-page letter, according to CBC, graphically detailed sexual abuse at the hands of a priest, as well as the subsequent coverup by Chilean church authorities.

Martin's talk is not the only meeting event indicating that organizers were keen to follow Francis' lead and reach out to some of the most marginalized Catholics. Last month, he joined the rest of Chile's bishops in offering to step down during an extraordinary Vatican summit.

Under Pope Francis, a Vatican committee has been set up to fight sexual abuse and help victims.

It qualifies the removal of certain prelates from their roles as necessary but "insufficient", calling for "the roots" that allowed for such abuse within an "elitist and authoritarian" Chilean church to be examined. "Is that clear?" the Pope had said at the time.

"He (the pope) said, "I was part of the problem, I caused this", Cruz added.

Those two investigators, Archbishop Charles Scicluna and Spanish Monsignor Jordi Bertomeu, are heading back to Chile tomorrow to begin what the Vatican has said is a "healing" mission to Osorno.

Abuse survivors have alleged that when Bishop Barros was still a priest he witnessed their abuse by his mentor, Fr Fernando Karadima.

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, president of the World Meeting of Families 2018, said Father Martin's book, Building a Bridge: How the Catholic Church and the LGBT Community Can Enter into a Relationship of Respect, Compassion, and Sensitivity, had the support of three US cardinals, including Cardinal Kevin Farrell, prefect of the Dicastery for Laity, the Family and Life.

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