October 16, 2005

Bishop: Sorry for 'institutional sin'

Philadelphia Inquirer

By Nancy Phillips
Inquirer Staff Writer

To Camden Bishop Joseph A. Galante, the sex-abuse problem in the Catholic church and the hierarchy's botched handling of it over the years amount to "institutional sin."

"I think all of us have to face that this has been a part of church life and be sorry for it and face it and apologize," Galante said an interview.

Galante is apologetic about the church's failings, in contrast to leaders of the Philadelphia Archdiocese, whose lawyers angrily labeled "anti-Catholic" the recent critical grand-jury report on sex abuse.

"The pain, the suffering that was inflicted on so many young people was horrible," he said. "... In the name of the church, they deserve an apology."

In one of his first acts as bishop, Galante, who took over the diocese in April 2004, wrote letters to every known abuse victim. So far, he's met with two dozen and apologized.

Posted by kshaw at October 16, 2005 10:02 AM