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Vatican awaiting report that accuses Pope Benedict of mishandling 4 abuse cases

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CPP / Polaris/East News

Kathleen N. Hattrup - published on 01/20/22

Presented to the public today, the report of several hundred pages "will be examined" and the details studied, says Vatican. Report covers Munich from 1945 to 2019.

The Holy See briefly responded to an independent report into sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of Munich-Freising, Germany, between 1945 and 2019, which accuses Benedict XVI of mishandling four cases of abuse by priests when he was archbishop there.

“The Holy See believes it must give due attention to the document, the contents of which it currently does not know,” said the director of the Vatican press office, Matteo Bruni, shortly after the publication of the report January 20.

“In the next few days, after its publication, it will be examined and we will be able to properly study the details,” added Bruni.

The Vatican reiterated “its sense of shame and remorse for the abuse of minors committed by clerics.”

The Holy See assures “all victims of its closeness and confirms the path it has taken to protect children by guaranteeing them a safe environment.”

An independent report on abuse in the Archdiocese of Munich-Freising between 1945 and 2019, was presented at a press conference on January 20. It accuses Benedict XVI of “misconduct” in handling four cases of sexual abuse by priests when he was archbishop of Munich and Freising (1977-1982). His successor, Cardinal Friedrich Wetter, is implicated in 21 cases, and the current archbishop, Cardinal Reinhard Marx, in two cases.

According to Bild magazine, the Pope Emeritus provided 82 pages of response to the questions posed by lawyers in the investigation. His secretary, Archbishop Georg Gaenswein, said he welcomed both the investigation and the eventual publication of the report, which is said to include more than 350 pages on one case alone.

Meanwhile, through Archbishop Gaenswein, Benedict XVI denied a report published in Germany’s Die Zeit newspaper that Benedict – then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger – had received a dossier from two Chilean priests regarding victims of Mexican priest Marcial Maciel, founder of the Legionaries of Christ.

“No this is not correct,” Gaenswein said, about the report that Ratzinger had received the report when he was prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

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