Victims' Group Criticise Vatican Report

One in Four has said the Vatican is still not accepting responsibility for its role in creating the culture of cover-ups of the sexual abuse of children.

Speaking today as the Vatican released its report into the church and child abuse the abuse survivors support group expressed disappointment over the Vatican's failure to acknowledge that its interventions in the abuse scandal had allowed church leaders to to ignore guidelines and to protect the Church at the expense of the safety of children.

"While we welcome the findings of the Visitation that the Irish Church now has good child protection practices in place we feel it is a lost opportunity to address the role played by the Vatican in perpetuating the policy of protecting abusive priests at the expense of children,” said executive director Maeve Lewis.

While the group welcomed the recommendation that the Church devote more time to listening to abuse survivors and attending to their needs they said One in Four had noticed a hardening of attitude on the part of church authorities the question of compensation for victims.

"We have had grotesque situations where senior Churchmen meet with survivors, assure them of their remorse for what happened while at the same time are instructing their legal teams to file full defences in relation to civil compensations suits. This only compounds the pain and hurt of survivors. It brings into question the authenticity of the Church’s repentance,” said Ms Lewis.

One in Four founder Colm O'Gorman said the seven-page document offered very little of value and was "almost farcical" in place.

Speaking on Newstalk, he said that despite the Church putting a number of guidelines in place, it had resolutely failed to follow or to respect them.

"Nowhere in this statement or in any statement the Vatican has ever made, has it acknowledged its responsibility for the cover-up of these crimes (and) for its failure to properly address these crimes at any point," he said. "There's a big difference between expressing sorrow of saying that you are truly sorry for the suffering of another and accepting responsibility for that."

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