Nov. 10, 2020
The report issued today is unprecedented and a watershed moment as it pulls back the curtain on a culture of clericalism that has separated the clergy from the people they have been ordained to serve. While the report makes for painful reading, it is fearless in admitting the failures of church leaders. The report is another example of Pope Francis’ commitment to responsibility, accountability and transparency to victim-survivors and all others who have been harmed by the sexual abuse of minors and other misconduct by the clergy and bishops of the Catholic Church. We are grateful to the Holy Father for ordering the report and to those who carried out his mandate.
The report should be read in full and in the context of the strong direction provided by Pope Francis at the 2019 summit on these matters and the subsequent measures he has taken. In his apostolic letter issued motu proprio, Vos Estis Lux Mundi, the Holy Father has made it clear that we must eliminate the sin of clericalism, hear the cries of the victims, and place the faithful, especially children, at the heart of everything we do and every judgment we make in working to prevent abuse and to support those affected by this tragedy. Let us seize this moment, build on what we have already done and go forward in fidelity to the call of Christ to protect the most vulnerable among us.