By David Madden
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Pope Francis has reached out to the victims of sex abuse at the hands of Catholic priests, asking for their forgiveness. Meantime, a group that works on behalf of the victims is not impressed.
Vatican Radio is reporting that the Pontiff told members of a French group that protects children that the church should not ”take a step back in dealing with this problem and the sanctions that must be imposed.”
The reaction from America’s Survivors Network of those abused by priests is that nothing has changed.
“Be impressed by deeds, not by words, and until this Pope takes decisive actions that will protect children…be skeptical. Be vigilant,” spokeswoman Barbara Dorris says.
She insists Francis could unilaterally order improved cooperation with law enforcement, not to mention discipline against pedophile priests and some bishops who protect them. She sees no difference between Francis’s actions and those of predecessors Benedict and John Paul.