Saturday, December 19, 2009

Catholics urged to send ‘message of anger’ to Pope

Catholics urged to send ‘message of anger’ to Pope

Saturday, 19 December 2009

Irish Catholics have been urged to send a Christmas message to the Pope demanding he take action over the country's child abuse scandal.

A survivor of institutional abuse revealed he will be using a new online service launched by the Vatican to demand the Pontiff reform the church and apologise to the people of Ireland.

John Kelly, from Irish Survivors of Child Abuse, believes few Irish Catholics will be sending goodwill greetings through the internet.

“The victims of abuse and many Irish people feel deeply let down,” said Mr Kelly.

“I will be saying ‘Your Holiness, Please show me leadership, please intervene in what's going on in the Irish Catholic Church and please remove those princes of the Irish Catholic Church whose behaviour has to be questioned'.”

Mr Kelly said he will also demand that a motion is set to reform the Catholic Church and visit Ireland to apologise and seek forgiveness.

The initiative was unveiled by Monsignor Paul Tighe, a Dublin priest who was promoted to become one of the Vatican's most senior media advisers two years ago.

The service allows web surfers to send online Christmas greetings to Pope Benedict XVI through the Pope2You portal, which is run by the Vatican's Pontifical Council for Social Communications.

Maeve Lewis, of support group One In Four, said the number of victims seeking help has escalated since the publication of two damning reports into clerical abuse.

“I would urge Irish Catholics to send a card to the Pope, but in it to express the distress, anger and frustration so many devout Catholics feel at the findings of the Dublin Report and the wholly inadequate response of the Irish hierarchy and the Vatican to it,” she added.

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