Sex abuse survivors in Ireland issue cautious welcome to new Pope - express hope for 'more openness'
Victims groups express guarded optimism over new appointment
The founder of One in Four, an organization that supports victims of sexual abuse in Ireland, said the appointment of Pope Francis evoked “a spark of hope” in him.
The Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, was named as the next Pope on Wednesday.
Colm O’Gorman, a victim of clerical abuse himself during his teen years, expressed optimism concerning the new Pontiff.
“There was a humility and a humanity about it that was intriguing and encouraging,” he said.
“We don’t know enough about this man yet but one would hope we are facing into a period of more humility, more humanity and more openness – that’s what we should at least hope for.”
He described the pope’s task as “enormous,” but said what was required was “not complex.”
“What he needs to do is acknowledge the truth. We need to see a frank, open and honest acknowledgment of the global cover-up of hundreds of thousands of children worldwide and the Vatican’s role in that.
“The organisation must subject itself to appropriate scrutiny and oversight and put in place meaningful child protection practice that is enforced across the world with the same vigour as that with which the cover-up was enforced. That’s incredibly important.”
Campaigner and abuse survivor Andrew Madden told the Irish Times he was surprised by the election of Pope Francis.
“He wasn’t somebody on my radar in terms of somebody who had commented on child sex abuse within the church or the church’s handling of it,” he said.
“We have to wait and see how he handles the issue going forward and what he has to say. It would be very odd if he didn’t acknowledge the issue. How he handles further allegations and members of the hierarchy involved in cover-ups will be one to watch.”
Marie Collins, a victim and campaigner for sexual abuse victims, said Pope Francis “appears to be a humble man," which was “very welcome.”
She said she will be interested to see what stance the new pontiff adopts on the issue of clerical sex abuse.
“We will have to see if he will follow his predecessor or make bishops accountable for their actions. He has a huge task in front of him. The child abuse crisis is still ongoing even if people want to think it has passed.”
- An open letter in strong defence of capitalism.
- Sarah Palin is saving Christmas
- Racist incidents in Ireland up by 85 percent...
- Gay teacher fired from Catholic school after...
- Virginia governor slammed by doctor over...
- Top Christmas Irish ads that will be bring...
- Irish drugs mule to escape full trial and...
- Nelson Mandela was against IRA decommissioning.
- Families as well as Catholic Church and governm
- Bill O’Reilly slams Nelson Mandela as an...
Based on my experiences here (US) I would only advise a bit of skepticism with the complaints of racial "harassment". We have seen far tooRacist incidents in Ireland up by 85 percent says Immigrant Council
Based on my experiences here (US) I would only advise a bit of skepticism with the complaints of racial "harassment". We have seen far tooGay wedding cakes latest target of anti-gay bigots
It certainly is discrimination. If one is open to serve the public, that means serving EVERYONE and with courtesy. @ Mr. O'Doherty, I find it hypocrFamilies as well as Catholic Church and government to blame for illegal adoptions
Gus have you been in touch with the sisters who ran the mother and baby home in Bessboro? They do have registers and a database and should be able to