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Rome Reports

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Pope Francis on letter accusing him of covering up abuses: Read it and draw your own conclusions

On the return flight from Ireland, the press asked the pope for a comment on the harsh letter of the former US Nuncio Carlo Viganò, accusing him of not having acted immediately when he learned of the abuses committed by former Cardinal McCarrick, asking him to resign. 

“I read that statement this morning.”
“Read it carefully and draw your own conclusions. I won't say a word about it. I think the statement speaks for itself and you have the journalistic capacity to draw your own conclusions. ”

The pope said that as soon as someone detects an abuse, he should quickly inform a court, a bishop or his parish priest, and asked the press not to condemn without proof, as they did, unfortunately, with three priests from Spain.

“These men were condemned by the local media before justice and so your work is very delicate. You must accompany, you must say what happens, but with the legal presumption of innocence, not with the legal presumption of guilt. ”

The pope, with a tired face, commented on some moments of his intense trip to Ireland. For example, his encounter with victims and his request for forgiveness for the abuses committed by people in the Church. 

“I think it was necessary to listen to these eight people. And from this meeting came the proposal. I made it myself. They accepted it and helped me to do it, to ask for forgiveness today at Mass, but about concrete things.” “It was painful for me but it was also a comfort to be able to help clarify these things.”

Another thorny question was what a parent should do if his son or daughter tells them they are in a homosexual relationship.

“I would never say that silence is a remedy. Ignoring the homosexual son or daughter is a lack of fatherhood and motherhood. You are my son, you are my daughter, you are, I am your father, your mother. Let's talk about it. And if they, father and mother, can't handle it, ask for help, but always with dialogue. Because that son and daughter have a right to a family. And this person's family... He's not to be kicked out of the family. This is a serious challenge that puts fatherhood and motherhood to the test.”

The pope explained how the tribunal that judges bishops works, and addressed other issues such as abortion, which he said is not a religious but a human problem; or the trafficking of emigrants. Pope Francis said he had seen a video in which they were treated like slaves.