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Abuse victims wounded by bishops’ defensive posture, says papal commission member

August 10, 2016

A member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors said that a defensive posture on the part of Church leaders has caused deep wounds to abuse victims.

“I've heard from survivors, had they had that opportunity to speak out and be listened to, humanly, openly, receptive, they wouldn’t have gone mad, they wouldn’t have gone public, they wouldn’t have tried to get as much money as possible, but because they were wounded by the defensive, cool approach by some church leaders they chose the other way,” said Father Hans Zollner, SJ, president of the Center for Child Protection at the Pontifical Gregorian University.

“It’s not my concern whether we recover [our reputation] or not, my concern is to do what we need to do and stay focused on this,” he added. “We need to focus on what we can do in cleaning up the mess that has been created over the years and doing whatever we can do in creating as safe environments as possible.”

 
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