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Pope thanks those who testified on Chile abuse


VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis has thanked the 64 people who gave testimony to his envoys about Chile's sex abuse scandal, as well as the media for its "professionalism" in covering the case.

Francis said he felt "pain and shame" in reading the 2,300-page dossier his envoys prepared after a nearly two-week visit to New York and Chile to take testimony from victims, whom he praised for having had the courage to bare the "wounds of their souls" for the sake of truth.

Vatican Pope
Pope Francis leaves St.Peter's Square at the end of his weekly general audience, at the Vatican, Wednesday, April 11, 2018. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)

While church leaders have long blasted the media for exposing pedophiles in their ranks, Francis thanked news organizations for respecting the victims' confidentiality while "respecting the right of citizens to information."

APTOPIX Vatican Pope
Pope Francis puts his hands together as he looks at a llama upon his arrival in St.Peter's Square at the Vatican for his weekly general audience, Wednesday, April 11, 2018. Three men from the South Tyrol region of northern Italy walked with three llamas in a two-month pilgrimage to reach the Vatican. (Claudio Peri/ANSA via AP)

In words that laid bare his simmering anger, however, Francis made clear that Chile's bishops must now work to "re-establish confidence in the church, confidence that was broken by our errors and sins, and heal the wounds that continue to bleed in Chilean society."

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An abuse victim's 2015 letter contradicts the pope's claim of ignorance

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