Pope: Scandal due to church's sin

Benedict says persecution over abuse due to "sins within church", not outside "enemies".

    Critics say 'strong comments' by the pope have not been backed up by 'strong action' [GALLO/GETTY]
    In depth

      Q&A: Church abuse scandal
      Pope Benedict's letter in full
      Inside Story: Suing the pope 
      Video: Abuse scandal mars pope celebration
      Video: Apology 'not enough'
      Video: Pope responds to child abuse row
      Blog: Ireland's legacy of abuse
      'Scandal hidden in secret vaults'

    In a shift from the Vatican's initial claim that the church was the victim of a campaign by the media and abortion rights and pro-gay marriage groups, Benedict said: "The greatest persecution of the church doesn't come from enemies on the outside but is born from the sins within the church."

    Previously, he had taken to task the abusers themselves and, in the case of Ireland, the bishops who failed to stop them.

    Benedict has promised that the church would take action to protect children and make abusive priests face justice.

    He has started cleaning house, accepting the resignations of a few bishops who either admitted they molested youngsters or covered up for priests who did.

    Critics are demanding more. They recall that while Benedict has scolded his church and accepted some bishops' resignations, none of them has been actively punished or defrocked, even those who admitted molesting children.

    David Clohessy, director of the main US victims' group, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, said "many are tiring of hearing about his 'strong comments'. They want to see strong action".

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Cricket World Cup 2019 Quiz: How many runs can you score?

    Cricket World Cup 2019 Quiz: How many runs can you score?

    Pick your team and answer as many correct questions in three minutes.

    Visualising every Saudi coalition air raid on Yemen

    Visualising every Saudi coalition air raid on Yemen

    Since March 2015, Saudi Arabia and a coalition of Arab states have launched more than 19,278 air raids across Yemen.

    Remembering Chernobyl

    Remembering Chernobyl

    The fallout from the Chernobyl nuclear power plant explosion remains as politicised as ever, 28 years on.