Pope Francis lambasts Catholic bishops who helped cover up child abuse


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Pontiff makes strongest condemnation yet of paedophile priests and senior clergy who obfuscated rather than punished

Leaders of the Roman Catholic church who failed to “respond adequately” to reports of child sex abuse by paedophile priests caused “even greater suffering” to their victims and will in future be held accountable, Pope Francis has said, in a clear rebuke to bishops who helped cover up the scandal and shield abusers.

In his strongest condemnation yet of the way in which the church handled its abuse crisis, Francis asked victims for forgiveness not only on account of those who had perpetrated the abuse but also those senior figures whose “sins of omission” had exacerbated the problem.