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Cardinal Gracias calls for the entire church to act decisively to prevent abuse

Cardinal Oswald Gracias of Bombay called Friday for the “entire Church” to “act decisively to prevent abuse from occurring in the future and to do whatever possible to foster healing for victims.”

Calling the abuse suffered at the hands of those in the Church “a profound betrayal of trust,” he offered practical solutions mainly focused on fostering better communication on all levels of the Church’s hierarchy during a Feb. 22 speech at the Vatican.

“As serious as the direct abuse of children and vulnerable adults is, the indirect damage inflicted by those with directive responsibility within the Church can be worse by re-victimizing those who have already suffered abuse,” the cardinal noted.

Cardinal Gracias is one of the principal organizers of a Vatican summit taking place this week to address the sexual abuse of minors, which features the presidents of national bishops’ conferences worldwide.

Cardinal Gracias himself admitted to the BBC Feb. 21 that he could have better handled sexual abuse allegations that were brought to him in the past after several Indian victims of sexual abuse told the BBC that Gracias failed to respond quickly or offer support to victims........

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