Pope To Meet With Survivors Of Clerical Abuse During Irish Visit

The Vatican has confirmed Pope Francis will meet with survivors of clerical abuse during his trip to Ireland.

The pontiff is under pressure to apologise to victims when he’s here this weekend for the World Meeting of Families, which gets underway today.

Meanwhile, the Killaloe Diocesan Director of Communications believes a meeting between state representatives and the Pope presents the best opportunity to discuss clerical sex abuse as Clare FM’s Fiona Cahill reports:


Bells will ring this evening in Catholic cathedrals across Ireland’s 26 dioceses as the World Meeting of Families officially gets underway.

Up to 47,000 people expected to attend a three day conference at the RDS from tomorrow, while the event culminates in a two-day visit by Pope Francis at the weekend.

More than 12 hundred journalists from 31 countries are expected to cover the meeting with representatives from countries including Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica, India, Mexico, Russia and a large group of media from the US and Europe.

Editor of online publication CRUX, John Allen says many of Pope Francis’ themes will be for a global audience.

Ahead of the event, Pope Francis has issued an apology for the church’s failures in dealing with clerical sex abuse, but there has been criticism by some, with abuse victims demanding an apology in person from the Pontiff.

The Vatican has confirmed Pope Francis will meet with survivors of clerical abuse while he’s here.

The Director of Communications for the Diocese of Killaloe believes the meeting between Pope Francis and State Representatives at Dublin Castle provides the best opportunity to discuss clerical sex abuse.

Fr Brendan Quinlivan says there’s an expectation that he’ll make a statement on the matter.

The Taoiseach has stopped short of confirming whether he will raise the issue when he meets with Pope Francis on Saturday.

But Leo Varadkar has called on the church to introduce mandatory reporting for child sexual abuse, saying there shouldn’t ever be a statute of limitations for prosecutions in those cases.

He says the church can learn from law changes introduced in Ireland.