Children in first Communion attire wait inside a church after taking part in a Corpus Christi procession in Zahara de la Sierra, southern Spain, June 2.
Spain’s bishops urged Catholics to be more proactive in passing on the faith to children. They said Spain’s current education system had fueled an “educational emergency” by failing to provide “training in moral and ethical values,” or encourage “endeavor, memory, dedication and a sense of life.”
To preserve the faith, Catholics should “join forces, share experiences and people, and prioritize spending resources,” they added. Poland’s clergy abuse victims seek damages Polish victims of alleged sexual abuse by Catholic priests have formed a foundation to seek damages from the church.
“We want the people who harmed us to be penalized, barred from working with children and even dismissed from pastoral service,” the foundation founder told the Gazeta Wyborcza daily.
“We aren’t the guilty ones, but the ones who were harmed,” he continued. “In our small communities, we are often treated as black sheep, and many of us have had to move.”
Organizers of the Poznan-based foundation, “Be Not Afraid,” said they hoped to obtain compensation and psychological help for victims and persuade Polish legislators to change a law establishing a 15-year limit for abuse prosecutions.
Poland’s Catholic Church has faced accusations of ignoring or covering up abuse by priests, at least 50 of whom have been convicted in the last decade; most received suspended sentences.
In March 2012, the bishops adopted guidelines for handling accusations in line with Vatican instructions.