Archbishop Scicluna urged those who have passed through the dreadful experience of sexual abuse to speak up adding that the Church in Malta appeals to everybody to fight against such abuses. The Archbishop’s statement on RTK 103FM on Saturday morning was the second comment this week on the Pope’s letter to the People of God released last Monday. The Pope expressed his sadness, his frustration, as well as his anger against this henious crime that has deeply hurt those abused as well as their friends and families.
Mgr Scicluna said that priests or religious persons who abuse children become ravaging wolves instead of shepherds. He condemned such abuse as a sin, a crime, a violent tragedy and immense tragedy.
The Pope, said the Archbishop, has not only asked for prayer and fasting to fight abuse but has asked for a change in mentality so that whenever evil is encountered, it is denounced, referred to by its true nature, spoken about and acted upon.
“When faced with evil,violence and abuse, one cannot look away, act deaf or remain silent.”
Archbishop Scicluna said that the Church in Malta set up a Safeguarding Commission composed of a group of experts to investigate all allegations of abuse. The Commissions acts in full compliance with Maltese law and when required files a police report. He encourage all to report abuse by getting in touch with these experts.
Mgr. Scicluna showed his appreciation of so many priests and religious persons who act as true shepherds of the People of God but may have been criticised in the wake of sexual abuse crimes committed by others. He said that the community has to defend itself against those who are abusing of their holy orders; adding that forgiveness requires . justice and justice requires the courage and humility of truth.
An environemnt that protects children
“Let’s pray so that Pope Francis’ powerful word enters our soul and helps us become a beautiful community, where the innocent are safeguarded, where those who seek help find it, and where those who sin, after paying their dues to society once they have passed through the justice system, ask for forgiveness from God and the community, and that they find a community that knows how to protect itself without excluding anyone.”
Archbishop Scicluna exhorted his listeners to create an environment where the innocent are protected.
One can read the full message of the Archbishop by clicking here.