Dear Pope Francis - 3 actions you can take:
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I am a survivor of sexual abuse by a priest. For centuries now the Catholic Church has hidden and protected priests who have sexually abused children. Church leaders have opted to protect the wealth and powerful men of the Church at the expense of children and families. It's time for the global community of survivors to come together and speak directly to Pope Francis to demand action.
Below are three actions that I have proposed. You may think 'the Church will never take these actions'. That's no reason not to propose them, or to participate. Join us. Let's set our expectations for change high.
Dear Pope Francis:
It's never too late to do the right thing.
We are ordinary citizens who have no worldly power to make the Church do anything. Therefore, we ask you to voluntarily apologize to everyone who has been hurt and then use the material wealth of the Church to help them heal.
Three proposed actions:
1. Direct non-offending priests and bishops to visit every (willing) family in their parish that has suffered sexual abuse by priests and clergy. Listen silently to their stories. Believe them. Tell them you are sorry.
2. Stop forcing survivors to file legal cases for compensation. Ask families and communities what they need to heal - give them everything they ask for. Remember that all of your wealth comes from the people. It's time to give it back. Go to any length for healing.
3. Publicly acknowledge the role of the Catholic Church in residential schools in Canada. Acknowledge and apologize for the sexual, physical and emotional abuse of Indigenous peoples by priests and nuns.
Pope Francis, you have a chance to use the full power of the Church to do something remarkable and real. Forgiveness may not be possible for everyone, but you will feel better for having tried.
To the global community of survivors and families, thank you for your support. Visit: Dear Pope Francis and read my open letter to the Pope. It's time for radical change and reform in the Church. Add your voice - your experience matters and deserves to be heard.
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