Pope Francis: No tolerance for sexual assault |  DW |  05.09.2022

Pope Francis: No tolerance for sexual assault | DW | 05.09.2022

Pope Francis said during this interview with “TVI/CNN Portugal”, excerpts were published on the channel’s website regarding incidents of sexual assaults within the Catholic Church, “This is very clear. No tolerance at all. A priest cannot continue to be a priest if He was an aggressor. He can’t do that because he’s either sick or a criminal.”

“It is brutal because it destroys lives,” he added in this two-part interview, which was broadcast on Sunday (September 4, 2022) and will be rebroadcast on Monday evening. Similar to France, there is an independent commission that began its work at the beginning of the year, responsible for investigating any sexual abuse within the church in Portugal, a country with a strong Catholic tradition.

This commission, which was set up at the initiative of the Church, has already collected about 400 testimonies, 17 of which have been reported to justice, according to Pedro Stritch, a child psychiatrist who heads this working group, which must present its conclusions at the end of the year.

“I do not deny abuses,” the pope said in the interview on Portuguese television. “Just one offense is truly brutal.” The Pope also indicated that he intends to visit Portugal during World Youth Days, a global meeting of Catholic youth that will take place from 1 to 6 August 2023. “I am thinking of going there,” he said.


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