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Archbishop Martin sees lingering resistance to action on sexual abuse

Catholic World News - July 22, 2011

Dublin’s Archbishop Diarmuid Martin believes that some Church leaders, both in Ireland and at the Vatican, may still be resisting effective action to root out the sex-abuse problem.

“There are still some small circles that are defying the rules in place for Irish bishops,” the archbishop told Vatican Insider.

Earlier, in an RTE broadcast interview, Archbishop Martin had said that all Irish bishops “as far as I know” are now in compliance with their own policies and Vatican directives regarding sex-abuse cases. But he told Vatican Insider that there are “these circles, present in Ireland and perhaps in the Vatican, who are still not fully adhering to the rules in place, both the rules of the Irish Church and those of the Holy See.” The archbishop said that true reform will require “a change in mentality and mentalities cannot be changed from one day to the next.”

Speaking more generally about the sex-abuse scandal, Archbishop Martin said that it points to deeper problems for the Church:

The crisis in the Irish Church is not just a crisis linked to sexual abuse of minors. These are symptoms of a far deeper crisis. This crisis goes far deeper. It is a crisis of faith, a crisis of transmission of faith and in many cases it is also a lack of understanding of the very nature of the Church.

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