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“We need a respectful, mutual listening, free of ideology and predetermined agendas.” Pope Francis, Let us Dream, December 2020

Chile – priests say they felt welcomed, listened to by pope

After meeting with Pope Francis for more than four hours, a Chilean priest who suffered abuse and a priest who ministers to survivors said they felt comforted and hopeful for the Church’s future in their country.

The pope met on 2nd June with five priests who the Vatican described as being “victims of abuses of power, of conscience and of sexual abuse.”

Two priests who have accompanied the survivors “in their juridical and spiritual journey” and “two laypeople involved in this suffering” also were invited by Pope Francis. They were all guests at the Domus Sanctae Marthae, the Vatican residence where Pope Francis lives.

Speaking to journalists after the groups’ final meeting with the pope on 2nd June, Fr Francisco Astaburuaga Ossa, who has accompanied survivors of abuse, said the pope asked forgiveness for the abuse and subsequent cover-ups committed by members of the Church.

Picture: 17th January archive picture of Pope Francis arriving in procession to celebrate Mass at the Maquehue Airport near Temuco, Chile. (CNS photo/Paul Haring).