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Abuse: Mgr. Aupetit (Paris), Pope calls for “profound conversion to put an end to a culture of abuse – be it sexual, of power, of conscience”

Pope Francis’ letter to the people of God last 20 August “marks a further step in the fight that was vigorously started under Pope Benedict XVI’s pontificate”. This is according to the Archbishop of Paris, Michel Aupetit, who, too, referred to the Pope’s message in a letter to his faithful about “how to respond to that call”, which will be read out in all churches in Paris on Sunday, 9 September. First, Mgr. Aupetit called on everyone to “take the time to read that letter carefully”. “I want to repeat that the Diocese of Paris is fully committed” to the protection of minors and vulnerable adults, the Archbishop wrote, with a “strengthened mechanism that implies listening to the wounded, accompaniment, full cooperation with civil authorities, and prevention”. Echoing Pope Francis’ invitation, Mgr. Aupetit called on everyone “to never choose complicit silence and evil, but to always maintain a sense of responsibility”. The Pope’s words are “a call to profound conversion, to put an end to a ‘culture of abuse’”, be it “sexual, of power or of conscience”, also because “a priest is at the service of the life of the Baptised”. The Archbishop also called on pastoral councils and on all community leaders in Paris “to work on concrete ways to avoid these scandals”, starting from what is already being done, and “sharing in the suffering of the victims”.

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