Pope's visit

Pope Francis to meet clerical sex abuse victims during Ireland visit

The Vatican has confirmed Pope Francis will meet victims of clerical abuse as he visits the Republic this weekend
Michael McHugh, Press Association

Pope Francis will meet clerical sex abuse victims when he visits the Republic this weekend, the Vatican has confirmed.

He is due to arrive in Dublin on Saturday for two days of meetings with families and political authorities as well as a trip to Knock.

Yesterday the Pope condemned the "atrocities" of child sex abuse and clerical cover-ups in a strongly worded letter to members of the church.

A spokeswoman for the Vatican, when asked about the Pope's meeting with Irish survivors, confirmed it would take place.

Protesters have arranged a series of rallies coinciding with the pontiff's trip to the Republic to highlight what they believe has been the church's failure to properly address wrongdoing.

Last week a grand jury report outlined seven decades of abuse in Pennsylvania.

The investigation found more than 1,000 children had been abused by 300 priests.

The Pope has apologised after defending a bishop in Chile who was accused of hiding abuses by a priest.

The latest Vatican intervention on the issue comes as the Republic gears up for its first papal visit in 40 years during which at least half a million people are expected to attend a papal mass in Dublin's Phoenix Park.

Several protests by groups campaigning for clerical abuse victims are set to take place during the visit.

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Pope's visit

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