The Three Chilean abuse survivors who met with Pope Francis last weekend said that his apology to them must be accompanied by concrete actions, not only against those who commit sexual abuse, but also against those who cover it up.
Talking to the journalist yesterday, Juan Cruz said that, "I have never seen someone be so contrite about what he was telling me. I also felt that he was hurting, which for me was very solemn. I don't know what word to use because it's not often a Pope really says sorry and apologizes to you. He said, 'I was part of the problem, I caused this and I'm sorry.'" Cruz told reporters that after his nearly three-hour conversation with the Pope, he truly believes that the pope was truly misinformed about the situation in Chile.
Jose Murillo, another of the Chilean survivors, said, "All of us had different experiences with the Pope. And even if we saw the forgiveness the Pope asked, we're waiting for actions."
All three men have sharply criticized the Chilean bishops for their role in misinforming the Pope on the reality of sexual abuse.
The Pope had invited Cruz, Murillo and James Hamilton to Rome to meet with him individually last week, then again as a group on April 30. The Chilean Bishops have been summoned to Rome by the Pope, and he will meet with them in the 3rd week of this month.
Also from Rome today, the Pope just released his monthly prayer intention video. This month the Holy Father asks all of us to join him in prayer specifically for Evangelization - that the lay faithful may fulfill their specific mission, by responding with creativity to the challenges that face the world today. Have a look.
And earlier this week, it was announced that the canonization process for the Servant of God, Reverend Augustus Tolton, is moving forward with Approval from the Vatican’s Historical Commission. And who is Augustus Tolton you wonder? Well, Allyson Kenny is standing by with more on the life of this possible saint.
Thanks so much, Allyson. Fr. Tolton’s cause is scheduled to appear before the Vatican’s theological commission next February and of course, we’ll bring you more on this, as the story progresses.
Here in Canada, a national delegation of 45 youths traveled to Ottawa yesterday to personally deliver over 15,000 signatures, calling for "Peace and A More generous Canada", to Prime Minister Trudeau.
Since November, Catholic schools have been participating in the “Women at the Heart of Peace” campaign organized by Development and Peace gathering signatures that was hand delivered by the youth. This is in addition to the already 20,000 campaign postcards that have already been received by the Prime Minister’s Office from across Canada. This campaign calls for the Canadian Government to commit to supporting the peace-building efforts of women around the world by adopting a tangible strategy with a precise time frame for reaching the goal of dedicating 0.7% of the gross national income to development assistance.
Now according to the delegation organizer, Luke Stocking from Development and Peace, “Today is a day to celebrate the passion and belief of students in Catholic schools that Canada can be even more generous in supporting women and the search for peace and justice in the world.” Canada’s youth were not content to simply put a postcard in the mailbox. They wanted to make a personal delivery. And for more on the initiative, you can visit the Development and Peace website listed below.
And that is all that we have time for today. Join us again on Monday when I bring you more news and stories from the perspective of a Catholic lens.