Pope's visit

Pope Francis prays for Irish victims of abuse

 Pope Francis greeting crowds in Dublin city centre. Picture by Aaron Chown, Press Association
Press Association

The Pope has prayed for the victims of clerical sex abuse in Ireland after expressing pain and shame at the failure of church authorities to tackle the scandal.

Francis sat in prayerful contemplation inside a Dublin cathedral at a candle perpetually lit for those abused on the first day of his historic visit.

The gesture at St Mary's Pro Cathedral came after the pontiff acknowledged that people had a right to be outraged at the response of senior figures in the Catholic Church to the crimes inflicted on young people.

In the speech at Dublin Castle, he expressed hope that remaining obstacles to reconciliation in Northern Ireland could be overcome.


His visit to the cathedral this afternoon came ahead of a drive through the city in the Popemobile.

He greeted the huge crowds who had turned out to see him and later paid a visit to a homeless centre.

The private visit to the Capuchin Day Centre came hours before he celebrates Mass for tens of thousands of people at Croke Park.


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Pope's visit

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