Pope Francis acknowledged that ''serious errors of assessment and perception'' took place in handling cases of sexual abuse by the Catholic Church in Chile.
Iquique, Chile. Photo taken on 18/01/2018. Pope Francis in his first visit to Chile as a Pope. Photo: ARCHIVE. Télam/via Ulan/LANA
In a letter sent to the Chilean Episcopal Conference and released today, Pope Francis said that errors took place due to 'lack of truthful and balanced information', an issue that damaged his visit to Chile in January.
He apologized to all those he offended and said that he would like to do it personally in the coming weeks during the meetings he will hold with representatives of the people interviewed.
He said after reading the reports made by the special mission of Archbishop Charles Scicluna that 'all the stories gathered in them speak in a stark way about many crucified lives and I confess that it causes me pain and shame'.
Monsignor Scicluna visited Chile as prosecutor of the Vatican to investigate into bishop of Osorno Juan Barros, accused of complicity with ousted priest Fernando Karadima for pedophilia and sexual abuse.
But already in Chile, in a visit that was halted by health problems, he also gathered heartbreaking testimonies of people sexually abused at the Marist college.
The letter was read this afternoon by Fernando Ramos, general secretary of the Episcopal Conference, who told the media that the 32 bishops of Chile will travel to the Vatican in the third week of May.
Then, Pope Francis is expected to announce a decision regarding the investigations carried out in Chile.