Pope Appoints Former Child Victim to Church Group on Sex Abuse
March 23, 2014 5:33 PM EST
Pope Francis on Saturday named a victim of sexual abuse by a priest to be part of a core group formed to help the Catholic Church tackle the problem of clerical pedophilia that has dogged it for two decades.
Pope Francis looks on as he leads a special audience with pilgrims from Terni's diocese in Paul VI hall at the Vatican
The formation of a group of experts was first announced in December, and today the pope named the first eight members - four female and four male - from eight different countries.
These initial members will be responsible for rounding out the "commission for safeguarding minors" with other experts from around the world and defining the scope of the group's action.
"Pope Francis has made clear that the Church must hold the protection of minors amongst Her highest priorities," Vatican spokesman Rev. Federico Lombardi said in a statement.
"Looking to the future without forgetting the past, the Commission will take a multi-pronged approach to promoting youth protection," he said.
These will include taking criminal action against offenders, educating people about the exploitation of children, developing best practices to better screen priests, and defining the civil and clerical duties within the Church, Lombardi said.
Among those named to the group was Marie Collins, who was a victim of sexual abuse in Ireland in the 1960s and who has campaigned actively for the protection of children and for justice for victims of clerical pedophilia.
Another member of the commission is the archbishop of Boston, Cardinal Sean Patrick O'Malley, known as a pioneer for a more open approach to tackling scandal since he published a database of Boston clergy accused of sexual abuse of minors online in 2011.
Most Popular Slideshows
- Gennady Golovkin Next Fight Options: Canelo Alvarez, Miguel Cotto Or Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.
- NFL MNF: Pittsburgh Steelers 30, Houston Texans 23 [PHOTOS]
- 2014 MLB World Series Game 1: San Francisco Giants 7, Kansas City Royals 1 [PHOTOS]
- 2014 MLB World Series - Game 2: Kansas City Royals 7, San Francisco Giants 2 [PHOTOS]
Join the Conversation
- Ebola Fears Cause Hysteria In United States And Around The World
- Kate Middleton Pregnancy Update: Duchess All Smiles In First Public Appearance, Sickness Seems Over
- Baby Corpses Found in Storage Locker in Canada
- Ebola Virus Might Reach Australia in Months; Health Dept Says Australia Prepared For Outbreak
- ISIS Taking U.S.-Airdropped Weapons An 'Embarrassment'; Another Yazidi Massacre Looming [VIDEO]
- No Mercy: ISIS, Father Stones to Death Daughter for Alleged Adultery
- Boy Stoned To Death For Alleged Rape, Victim Receives Dowry From Militants
- iOS 8 Jailbreak Release Date is Doomed as Team Evad3rs Opts Out, Pangu Hits Snag – Report
- Russia is Creating Underwater Combat Robots to Protect its Arctic Territories
- ASUS Releases A Teaser Indicating The Arrival of New Zenfone and ZenWatch On October 28
- Google Nexus 6 vs. iPhone 5S: 4 Important Things to Consider Before Switching to Android Lollipop
- Swedish Military Spots ‘Russian Submarine’ Off Stockholm Coast, An Alarming ‘Security Game Changer’