Pope Francis is hosting a four-day summit on preventing clergy sexual abuse, a high-stakes meeting created to impress on Catholic bishops around the world that the problem is global and that there are consequences if they cover it up.
"While the USA church has been working for the past two decades to develop safe environment policies, in many countries in the world that has not yet happened", he said.
The pope and the nearly 200 participants in a Vatican auditorium watched a video of five victims, who wished to remain anonymous, telling painful stories of abuse and cover-up. "Maybe they can't see those burns, but they hurt and they hurt constantly".
Others were just as critical about the Catholic Church's mishandling of sexual abuse allegations.
After years of dealing with extreme depression and just months after telling his parents what had happened, Eric Patterson took his own life in 2000.
Huggins was first groomed by Rev. John Edward McCann when she was 11 years old, she said. "Since then I, who loved coloring books and doing somersaults on the grass, have not existed", she said.
Another survivor from Chile said the church's leaders had discredited victims and protected the priests who abused them.
"Those people to me are the bigger criminals", said SNAP board member Becky Ianni. As archbishop in Buenos Aires, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, he played a decisive and divisive role in Argentina's most famous abuse case, commissioning a four-volume, 2,000-plus page forensic study of the legal case against a convicted priest that concluded he was innocent, that his victims were lying and that the case never should have gone to trial.
A poll by Santiago-based think tank Latinobarometro showed the number of Chileans calling themselves Catholics fell to 45 percent past year, from 74 percent in 1995.
In her speech to the summit, Openibo recalled the Oscar-winning film 'Spotlight, ' based on the Boston Globe's prize-winning expose of clergy abuse and cover-up that sparked the explosion of cases coming to light in the U.S.in 2002.
Opening the summit earlier this week, the Pope said the Catholic church needs "concreteness" when addressing sexual abuse within its ranks.
The event is closed to the press, but the Vatican is live-streaming certain moments, including the remarks from the Pope and the three official presentations that are planned for each day. Currently, the minimum age is 14 for females and 16 for males.
After Pope Francis opened the summit, Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, the Archbishop of Manila, spoke to the assembly about healing and justice for the victims.
"(The Church's) seemingly more important children, as are you, bishops and cardinals - I dare not say the Pope - are no more so than any other boy, girl or young person who has experienced the tragedy of being the victim of abuse by a priest", she said forcefully in Spanish. "But it is also true, we humbly and sorrowfully admit, that wounds have been inflicted by us bishops on the victims and, in fact, the entire body of Christ".
Later on, the Church offered the family further help, but the family declined, the statement said.
"Although the experience of abuse seems dramatically present in certain parts of the world, it is not a limited phenomenon", Gracias said at the summit, adding, "The entire Church must take an honest look, undertake rigorous discernment, and act decisively".
"The summit centers on three themes: responsibility, accountability and transparency". He said it like it was.
More reports on Saturday suggested that nuns may also also committed sex crimes. This time she feels herself healing, shedding the shame.
"Files that could have documented the awful deeds and named those responsible were destroyed or not even created", said Marx, the archbishop of Munich and president of the German Bishops' Conference.
- New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft charged with soliciting prostitution, police say
- Chelsea eye Holland as Sarri replacement
- Clive Lloyd talks about Chris Gayle’s importance in the tournament
- Best ways to make your website stand out from the rest
- Syrian fighters start to evacuate civilians from last Islamic State bastion
- Lawyer Says Woman Who Joined IS a US Citizen
- Serena Williams shares a peek inside Meghan Markle's £60,000 baby shower suite
- Jussie Smollett Charged With Filing False Police Report
- Another UK Lawmaker Leaves Labour Party Amid 'Anti-Semitism' Scandal
- Talent Not an Issue for England's New Manager