Sources from Vatican City reported that Pope Francis's public admission that priests have used nuns as "sexual slaves" and may still be doing so marks a new chapter in the abuse crisis rocking the Catholic Church. Lucetta Scaraffia, editor of the Vatican's women's magazine, told "It is the first time that the pope, but also the church as an institution, has publicly admitted this abuse is taking place, and that's hugely important".
Meanwhile the pontiff on Tuesday said Catholic priests and bishops had been sexually abusing nuns, and that his predecessor Benedict XVI had dissolved a religious order of women because of "sexual slavery on the part of priests and the founder". He said the Church has "suspended several clerics" and the Vatican has been "working (on the issue) for a long time". Accordingly the abuse was "still going on, because it's not something that just goes away like that”.
Scaraffia said “The nuns’ scandal broke as the Catholic Church has had to contend with a wave of cases involving paedophile priests in countries worldwide from Ireland and the United States to Australia. Francis's admission of the problem was "the umpteenth blow to the church's image, but also an occasion to show that change really is underway".
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