Members of the Roman Catholic church in Ireland will receive a pastoral letter from Pope Benedict XVI in connection with the reported sexual abuse by some catholic priests committed on persons especially children under their care. The announcement came after Buckingham Palace confirmed Pope Benedict's scheduled visit to England and Scotland in September this year.
The Pope said he will sign the pastoral letter Friday and it will be sent to the Bishops of Ireland to be read during the mass on Sunday. BBC News reports:
The Pope's message will certainly express contrition for what he himself has already described as shameful and hateful behaviour by priests not only in Ireland but also in America, his native Germany, Austria, the Netherlands and even Australia.
The Catholic church hierarchy in Ireland has been under extreme pressure from concerned members and the public in general about a reported cove- up of abuse committed by some catholic priests. The report details sexual abuse by some Catholic priests in Ireland and the church leadership's attempt at allegedly hiding the abuse to protect the church's image.
"I am aware that no words of apology will ever be sufficient," he said, adding that "the fact that many abusers were priests constituted both an offense to God and an affront to the priesthood," the Pope was quoted to have said during the meeting with the church hierarchy in Ireland late last year.
(original article appeared @ Digital Journal