June 11th, 2010
07:45 AM ET

Pope addresses priest abuse scandal

Pope Benedict XVI said Friday the church must promise "to do everything possible" to ensure that the sexual abuse of children by Catholic priests "will never occur again."

He was addressing thousands of priests who had gathered at the Vatican for a three-day conference to mark the end of the "Year of the Priest."

"So it happened that, in this very year of joy for the sacrament of the priesthood, the sins of priests came to light - particularly the abuse of the little ones, in which the priesthood, whose task is to manifest God's concern for our good, turns into its very opposite," the pope said.

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Filed under: Catholic Church

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soundoff (15 Responses)
  1. QuestionMark

    Mayby the Pope will step down, if in fact he practices what he preaches. He is as guilty as anybody. There is one priest caling for his resignation, finally a person who wants justice and change within the RCC.
    Check it out under Priest calls for Popes resignation

    September 24, 2010 at 8:45 am |
  2. AK

    The comments are even more curious than the article itself. First and foremost the CC is the world's oldest corporation, and as such the main goal of CC is its own prosperity and well being. This behavior is archetypal of any large business, compare to BP, for example – a little apology, typically too late, as damage control. There will be some cleanup action that follows, with some changes, but please don't expect anything dramatic. This is a rather minor problem in the big picture of things for the church.

    June 15, 2010 at 4:10 am |
  3. Fred Friedman

    The Catholic Church is absolutely disgusting. They distort the word of God and use it to manipulate the ignorant souls who follow their teachings. From the Spanish inquisition to the reparations that led to Luther's rebellion, it is obvious that the Church has done more harm than good. Now the world watches in disgust as priests sexually abuse children. How much longer are we going to allow this to happen? I don't understand how people could fall for this garbage in the 21st century. If Jesus (who was a practicing Jew) saw what has been done in his name, he surely would kill himself ten times over.

    June 14, 2010 at 11:50 pm |
    • JT

      Fred, there are many great things about this church, but I believe many things have gone astray, not the least of which is internal management over who has the role of representing the faith and leading others. It is not "absolutely" disgusting. One big problem is represented by the enormity of grandeur, like you see in the picture of the pope. Way beyond how Jesus even portrayed himself, we have raised the importance and pompous nature of this position to such a loud scale that it alone is embarrassing. The Catholic Church's growth is so far beyond management, and beyond the self-imposed limit of only unmarried men being priests, that this situation is inevitable. And the laws of our country should determine punishment of priests, not the pope, or the church. They are after all, citizens. My problem is with the hands-off approach by our society that I can't understand – like being the parents, but never punishing the children, we allow the church to go unbridled. How it that?

      But to some of your other statements – we are ALL ignorant souls – that's the nature of us – following teachings of whatever group or philosophy that guides us – for some it's their community, or anti-community, others it's their anger, some it's religion, or business, or whatever we think is important. I think the Catholics are just too full of themselves, as is the politic of the church organization, and the assumptive laws and rules they have created for themselves.

      I disagree with AK – that this is a small problem. I believe the church is and will continue to erode, as people realize how Christian Ministers do great at spreading the word and leading communities, as Jesus directed; they are true disciples, not holding themselves to be 'special' above others, but humble guides. This 're-definition of self' that occurs in the CC that raises men to think they are somehow above has always been troubling to me.

      August 30, 2010 at 12:59 pm |
  4. lily power

    The clergy still come first. Did the pope not consider having a 'year of the victims of sexual abuse'? OH NO, Who are they?

    June 14, 2010 at 5:32 pm |
  5. Eric G

    Abstinence makes the Church grow fondlers.

    June 13, 2010 at 10:41 am |
  6. Reality

    The all-male, mostly white priesthood is just another flaw in the RCC which slowly erodes at the foundations of said church.

    June 13, 2010 at 8:35 am |
  7. Colin

    And by, "everything possible" does that include confessing to the fact that he covered up the abuse committed by priests before he was Pope?

    June 11, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
    • John

      Those accusations have been thoroughly investigated and properly refuted, yet the same allegations are recycled in the secular press, day after day, year after year.

      June 11, 2010 at 7:42 pm |
    • gerald

      yes John, anti-catholicism is the one prejudice still allowed and honored in this country.

      June 11, 2010 at 10:33 pm |
    • Paul Hatfield

      Christianity: The belief that some cosmic Jewish Zombie can make you live forever if you symbolically eat his flesh and telepathically tell him that you accept him as your master, so he can remove an evil force from your soul that is present in humanity because a rib woman was convinced by a talking snake to eat from a magical tree....THIS is what we're supposed to BELIEVE???

      June 12, 2010 at 5:54 am |
    • Paul Hatfield

      @John..these accusations have been thouroughly investigated and REFUTED???....is that why the catholic church has PAID off all these accusers through the years???...you need to WAKE up and smell the coffee bud!

      June 12, 2010 at 5:58 am |
  8. Michael

    Yes, melpol does live in the same plane of existence as us. Evil is real, and it takes the form of the choices we make that hurt others. The only way to prevent evil from breeding more evil is to bring it out into the light. The violators need to come to understand their sin, confess it, and face penance (in the form of prison terms). That is the only hope for salvation.

    June 11, 2010 at 5:33 pm |
  9. melpol

    The Devil has invaded the minds of the priesthood and he must be exorcised before thousands of our most beautiful children are turned ugly. Unfortunately the ancient art of exorcism has been lost and only through confession can the violators be discovered and punished.

    June 11, 2010 at 10:00 am |
    • Luke

      Wha wha what? Say, do you live in the same plain of exhistance as the rest of the world?

      June 11, 2010 at 1:01 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.