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Vatican City, Feb 21, 2019 / 04:20 am (CNA).- At the start of the Vatican’s sex abuse summit Thursday, Pope Francis pointed to expectations for the meeting to produce responsibility and concrete action, not just denunciations of abuse.
“The holy People of God looks at us and expects from us not simple and obvious condemnations, but to prepare concrete and effective measures,” the pope said Feb. 21, in the Synod Hall of the Vatican.
Burden - Responsibility - Meeting - Bishops - Obligation
A burden “of pastoral and ecclesial responsibility weighs on us” in this meeting, he urged bishops, noting the obligation to “discuss together, in a synodal, sincere and in-depth manner, how to face this evil that afflicts the Church and humanity.”
The pope’s brief remarks followed the opening prayer of the four-day meeting, which includes the heads of bishops’ conferences, Eastern Catholic Churches, and religious communities, and is focused on the education of bishops on the protection of minors in the Church.
Guidance - Holy - Spirit - Francis - Church
Invoking the guidance of the Holy Spirit, Francis urged the Church leaders to “listen to the cry of the little ones who ask for justice,” adding that they must begin the work of the summit “armed with faith and the spirit of maximum parrhesia, courage and concreteness.”
He thanked the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors (PCPM), the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and the organizing committee, which includes Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago, Maltese Archbishop and CDF adjunct secretary Charles Scicluna, and Fr. Hans Zollner, SJ, for their work preparing the meeting.
Speech - Francis - Guidelines - Bishops - Conferences
In his speech, Francis also pointed to guidelines from bishops’ conferences which have been handed out to summit participants as a reference point for reflection, though he added that they would “not detract from the creativity that must exist in this meeting.”
He concluded by calling on the Holy Spirit for support in helping to “transform...
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