The Catholic community of India was in for a rude shock last year as a nun brought up accusations of sexual abuse against a Bishop of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church Kerala. Even as four more nuns later came out in support of the victim and the Bishop was arrested, these nuns faced strong resistance from the church. Separately, Associated Press also reported cases of abuse in Italy and Africa last year. Nuns falling prey to sexual assault within the church is being talked about for years now.
However, as a first, Pope Francis has now admitted that the problem indeed exists. During his historic tour to UAE, he was quizzed by a journalist regarding the same. I can’t say ‘this does not happen in my house.’ It is true. Do we have to do more? Yes. Are we willing? Yes," he said, reports RT. He also lauded Pope Benedict for dissolving a congregation of nuns because slavery had become a part of it.
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EN: God is with those who seek peace. From heaven He blesses every step which, on this path, is accomplished. PT: Deus está com o homem que busca a paz. E do céu abençoa cada passo que se realiza, neste caminho, sobre a terra. ES: Dios está con el hombre que busca la paz. Y desde el cielo bendice cada paso que se da en la tierra por este camino. IT: Dio sta con l’uomo che cerca la pace. E dal cielo benedice ogni passo che, su questa strada, si compie sulla terra. FR: Dieu est avec l’homme qui cherche la paix. Et du ciel il bénit chaque pas qui, en ce sens, s’accomplit sur la terre. DE: Gott ist bei jedem Menschen, der den Frieden sucht. Und vom Himmel aus segnet er jeden Schritt, der hier auf Erden auf diesem Weg gegangen wird. PL: Bóg jest z człowiekiem, który dąży do pokoju. I z nieba błogosławi każdy krok, który na tej drodze jest podejmowany na ziemi. #apostolicjourney #uae
"Pope Benedict had the courage to dissolve a female congregation which was at a certain level, because this slavery of women had entered it - slavery, even to the point of sexual slavery - on the part of clerics or the founder," he said.
The Vatican's women's magazine recently, brought up the issue even as it encouraged nuns to report any instance of abuse that they had to go through. "If the church continues to close its eyes to the scandal –made even worse by the fact that abuse of women brings about procreation and is therefore at the origin of forced abortions and children who aren’t recognized by priests – the condition of oppression of women in the church will never change,” wrote editor Lucetta Scaraffia.