The Primate of All-Ireland has urged Irish Catholics to raise their voices on the abuse scandals ahead of an unprecedented Church summit in Rome next month.
Archbishop Eamon Martin, in a letter to The Irish Catholic this week, has called on Catholics in the pews to pray, reflect and offer feedback on a number of key questions. He has pledged to bring this to Rome for a meeting of bishops from all over the world ordered by the Pope to prioritise decisive global action on the issue of safeguarding in the Church.
In the letter, Archbishop Eamon insists that “this is an issue that has profound consequences for those who have experienced abuse and their families, and it is also a deep wound to the Body of Christ – the Church”.
The questions include: ‘What are the factors in Ireland that contribute to a lack of adequate response by the Church in dealing with child sexual abuse?’ and ‘If you had one key message to communicate to the meeting in Rome on this issue, what would it be?’
Speaking to this newspaper, Archbishop Eamon said he is conscious that “a group that is often forgotten is the faithful who have also been deeply impacted by the grave scandal of abuse in the Church.
“Many of them have been bewildered, angered and had their faith tested in recent years by the revelation of these terrible things happening.
“I do speak with the faithful and I do hear their views often, but perhaps there are people out there who have not felt heard so I wanted to give them the opportunity to reflect and to pray and put pen to paper to me if they wish,” he said on the feedback initiative.