Pope hits out at opponents of abuse cover-up accused bishop

Pope Francis has described as “leftists” those Chileans who criticised his appointment of a bishop accused of covering up for an abusive priest.

In a video taken of a conversation in St Peter’s Square five months ago, Francis mentioned the case of Bishop Juan Barros Madrid of Osorno.

“Don’t be led around by the nose by these leftists who are the ones who put this [opposition] together,” the Pope is heard saying to a former spokesman for Chile’s bishops.

“Osorno suffers for being stupid because it has not opened its heart to what God says,” Francis also said in the video.

Abuse survivor and member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors Marie Collins tweeted that she was “saddened and disappointed” at the Pope’s comments.

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