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Pope Francis Seeks Forgiveness For 'Evil' Sex Abuse By Priests

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April 11, 2014 AT 4:00 AM
Pope Francis asked for forgiveness for the evil of clerical sexual abuse on Friday, addressing head-on an issue that has dogged the church for two decades. He said on Vatican Radio, "I feel compelled to personally take on all the evil (of) some priests ... (and) to personally ask for forgiveness for the damage they have done for having sexually abused children." He added: "The Church is aware of this damage. It is personal, moral damage carried out by men of the Church, and we will not take one step backward with regards to how we will deal with this problem, and the sanctions that must be imposed."