April 18th, 2010
08:46 AM ET

Pope meets with abuse victims on Malta visit

Pope Benedict XVI, on a trip to the Mediterranean island of Malta, met with eight men who said they were abused by priests when they were children, the Vatican said Sunday.

The eight are among a group of 10 men there who have come forward saying Catholic priests abused them at a local orphanage during the 1980s and 1990s.

The Malta stop was the first of five international trips the pope has planned this year.

Tens of thousands of people attended an open-air Mass in the capital Valletta, but the pope did not address the sexual abuse scandal plaguing the church in his homily.

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soundoff (12 Responses)
  1. Monaghan

    I wonder if he blames them to their faces...doubtful. I'm sure this is the Vatican trying desperately to get approval back from the public. Nice PR stunt but i'm not convinced and as an abuse victim who grew up Catholic, I'm not impressed with anything he has done when it comes to abuse victims.

    April 18, 2010 at 9:06 am | Report abuse |
  2. Janette

    How odd the police didn't show up and arrest him for knowing about a crime and not reporting it.

    April 18, 2010 at 9:13 am | Report abuse |
  3. layk

    I think the pope is in denial of the sexual abuses of some priest.I hope that someday there will be a transparent discussion on the said subject, Not all "men of God " are these pervert.

    April 18, 2010 at 9:25 am | Report abuse |
  4. Constance

    Kinda curious he only mentions shame for the abuse of young men. Still trying to blame it on homosexuality not pedophilia rampant with in the "Church". Read the history of the Catholic Church, pedophilia ingrained within the institution and has been for centuries.

    April 18, 2010 at 9:26 am | Report abuse |
  5. mrgmhale

    I wonder if the pope had the church cut them a check. Or did the church get off cheap by sending some kind of presumed holy man to smooth things over instead. I so much despise how organized religions prey on the insecurities, fears and superstitions of the masses. We are such a cruel species to each other.

    April 18, 2010 at 9:28 am | Report abuse |
  6. weybourne

    Too little too late. Ratzinger is only doing damage control ever since he learned of the impending threat of being arrested upon his arrival in the U.K.

    While I respect any sort of "apology" the Vatican is prepared to make to past victims, is it not at least a little pathetic that it took this long to meet with the victims to try to make amends?

    I wonder how "concerned" Ratzinger would be if the media campaign hadn't amped up to its current level.

    This is ALL about PR for the Chuch, and not at all about a sincere apology.

    April 18, 2010 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
  7. Christian McFarlane

    The Pope is a greedy, arrogant, mean spirited man who needs to resign amidst this scandal. He is a hypocrite who let a priest continue despite knowledge of abuse. Shame on the Catholic church. The church needs to be abolished and replaced by something that is truly Christian that does not espouse hate at every turn.

    April 18, 2010 at 9:40 am | Report abuse |
  8. John Bonavia

    I was not enthusiastic initially about his visit, however since his arrival in Malta I've seen him become immersed with his suffering and love for the people. This made me feel very different towards the Pope and I was complled to participate. It is a privilage as a human to experience the radiance and joy of a nation who unifies itself for this unique event.

    April 18, 2010 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Heather Howell

    Perhaps the church should consider welcoming and allowing marriage within the priesthood the way it is in the Anglican Church. You don't hear of the abuse amongst the Anglican community the way one does the Catholic community. I'm sure many "good men" have been lost because they decided to marry. Just a thought......

    April 18, 2010 at 11:49 pm | Report abuse |
  10. catherine

    We are a society of confused values. We are rightfully making such battle against a relatively handful of abusing priests – something which can never be justified, but then we are silent in the face of millions of murders of unborn babies!!!! Why? because they never grow to demand their rights and justice!!

    April 19, 2010 at 3:05 am | Report abuse |
  11. Pamela

    Being Maltese I have thoroughly enjoyed the Pope's visit. He has come across to many as a caring, humble and simple man very different from what certain media are trying to portray him as. As a nation we have give him a welcome to be proud of and hope that it has brought him joy in the face of much persecution and humiliation. I beliieve the way forward for the Church is to address these issues openly and bring to justice those who perform abusive acts towards children entrusted to their care.

    April 19, 2010 at 8:32 am | Report abuse |
  12. Mallori

    this is just disturbing but im glad the pope went to help

    June 8, 2010 at 9:45 am | Report abuse |