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German Episcopal Conference promises new measures to fight child abuse

Currently there is no official number on how many victims there are in Germany. But the episcopal conference has sent a questionnaire to all the dioceses to find out how many people may be affected.

Robert ZollitschPresident, German Episcopal Conference“We are ready to face our responsibility and we can’t excuse ourselves from what has happened. But what’s also true is that the media is reporting on old abuse cases that happened in the past that don’t involve the Church.”

The Church will prepare an assistance plan that will provide both therapeutic and pastoral guidance to the victims and their families. Part of the plan is also to cooperate fully with the judicial system and law enforcement. Germany and Austria are the only countries in which the Church formally collaborates with the government to put an end to this problem.

Robert ZollitschPresident, German Episcopal Conference“One important point in all of this, ; is the Church’s support. We’ve supported studies conducted by the justice department and state following cases of child sexual abuse.”

A meeting set for April 23 in Berlin is part of this collaboration. The round table meeting will include members of both the Church and the government. Both sides are set to discuss ways to fight child sexual abuse in Germany.

PVB/MC