Face reality says Jesuit child protection expert

Facing reality about issues of child abuse is a crucial part of child protection, says Hans Zollner S.J.

Father Zollner is both President of the Centre for Child Protection of the Pontifical Gregorian University and a member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors.

He says the detailed report about allegations of  sexual molestation, violence and other abuses at the Regensburger Domspatzen school are an “important step forward”.

Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI’s brother Georg Ratzinger was in charge of the famous Regensburger Domspatzen choir, which was run separately from the school.

The report “Hinsehen, Zuhoren, Antworten” (Look, Listen, Respond) shows Regensburg’s Bishop Rudolf Voderholzer has taken all the allegations seriously and “did not shy away from all that would ensue.” Zollner says.

“We must look at reality in the face and we must address all the injustices, sins, crimes that were committed by priests and also other employees of the Church.”

The report details abuses alleged to have occurred between 1945 to the early 1990’s. It says at least 547 pupils have disclosed various forms of abuse; of these, 67 have disclosed instances of sexual abuse.

It took two years for the lawyer Voderholzer tasked with investigating the allegations to complete these and compile his report.

Voderholzer gave Weber free access to files and enabled him to contact victims and  other people involved.

Zollner says the result is “a very well done Report and unobjectionable in its vastness, in its profundity and also in its scientific merit.”


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News category: World.

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