At a Mass at Westminster Cathedral, Pope Benedict has just spoken these words in his homily -- some of the strongest yet expressed on clerical sex abuse.
“Here too I think of the immense suffering caused by the abuse of children, especially within the Church and by her ministers. Above all I express my deep sorrow to the innocent victims of these unspeakable crimes, along with my hope that the power of Christ’s grace, his sacrifice of reconciliation, will bring deep healing and peace to their lives. I also acknowledge, with you, the shame and the humiliation which all of us have suffered because of these sins; and I invite you to offer it to the Lord with trust that this chastisement will contribute to the healing of the victims, the purification of the Church and the renewal of the age-old commitment to the education and care of young people. I express my gratitude for the efforts being made to address this problem responsibly, and I ask all of you to show your concern for the victims and solidarity with your priests.”