‘Scourge of abuse, internal attacks’ mark pope’s sixth year in office
Catholics cannot place blame for the sexual abuse crisis on “those who came before us” in an attempt “to present ourselves as ‘pure’,” said the editorial director of the Vatican media outlets.
The Church today must ask God to free it from evil, said Andrea Tornielli, editorial director of the Dicastery for Communication.
On the eve of Pope Francis’ sixth anniversary as pope – he was elected on 13th March 2013 – Tornielli offered a quick review of the pope’s past year, focusing particularly on his plea for Catholics to pray the Rosary in October, asking for protection of the Church from attacks by the devil.
Tornielli’s review included listing the Synod of Bishops on young people, the Vatican summit on child protection and clerical sexual abuse and the pope’s trips abroad.
But the piece published on Vatican News on 12th March also mentioned the call for Pope Francis to resign issued by Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, the former nuncio to the United States, who claimed in August that the pope knew of and ignored sanctions issued against then-Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick because of sexual misconduct.
Pope Francis’ sixth year in office, Tornielli said, “was characterised by the scourge of abuse and by suffering from internal attacks. His response was a call to return to the heart of faith.”
Picture: A sunset after a day of rain illuminates the cobblestones near the Vatican in Rome on 5th March 2018. Today, 13th March, is Pope Francis’ sixth anniversary as pope. (CNS photo/Paul Haring).