Pope Francis Asks Abuse Victims for ‘Forgiveness’

The Pontiff admits he’s compelled to tackle the “evil” committed by priests who sexually abused youth and has promised to do more to protect children

Pope Francis asked those who had been abused by Catholic priests for forgiveness on Friday, while promising the Catholic church will continue to fight to protect children.

“I feel compelled to personally take on all the evil which some priests, quite a few in number, obviously not compared to the number of all the priests, to personally ask for forgiveness for the damage they have done for having sexually abused children,” the Pope said during a speech at the Vatican, according to Vatican Radio.


SO GOOD that he asked them for forgiveness.
I can’t remember if the pope before him ever said these words, but even so, it can’t be said enough or asked enough.
Good on him.


VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis said today he took personal responsibility for the “evil” of priests who raped and molested children, asking forgiveness from victims and saying the church must be even bolder in its efforts to protect the young. It was the first time a pope has taken personal responsibility for the sex crimes of his priests and begged forgiveness.

Francis made the off-the-cuff remarks after coming under criticism from victims’ advocacy groups for a perceived lack of attention to the sexual abuse scandal and ongoing demands that he sanction bishops who covered up for pedophiles.

He delivered the comments to members of the International Catholic Child Bureau, a French Catholic network of organizations that protects children’s rights. Sitting with them in his library today, Francis spoke slowly and softly in his native Spanish, deviating from his text.


I believe Pope Francis spoke from his heart. I am glad that he has asked forgiveness from the victims. I believe coming from the Pope as heartfelt as he seems, could be a big step in helping to heal the wounds suffered by the victims. The Pope is acknowledging the terrible pain these victims have lived with and the suffering they have endured because of the horrible actions by the offending priests.
I believe the previous Pope also realized how these victims have suffered and felt much sorrow that priests in the Church betrayed the trust put in them.

and canonizing JPII will be a nice follow up to this apology. right? eh? no?

Yes, he did.


  1. On several occasions since my election to the See of Peter, I have met with victims of sexual abuse, as indeed I am ready to do in the future. I have sat with them, I have listened to their stories, I have acknowledged their suffering, and I have prayed with them and for them…
  2. To the victims of abuse and their families
    You have suffered grievously and I am truly sorry. I know that nothing can undo the wrong you have endured…
  3. To the priests and religious of Ireland
    All of us are suffering as a result of the sins of our confreres who betrayed a sacred trust or failed to deal justly and responsibly with allegations of abuse.
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