Protect children from ‘psychological murder’

Pope Francis protect children

More than ever, Pope Francis is urging families, educational and public institutions to protect children and tackle the scourge of child abuse.

He described child abuse, paedophilia and child pornography, as “psychological murder.”

Speaking to members of the Meter Association in the Vatican’s Apostolic Palace on May 15, the pope noted that the Internet is facilitating child abuse.

“Your work is more necessary than ever because, unfortunately, the abuse of children continues.

“I refer in particular to the solicitations that take place through the Internet and various social media, with pages and portals dedicated to child pornography.”

In February, the Guardian newspaper reported that the rapidly expanding volume of child abuse material online is threatening to overwhelm U.K. police.

It said that the U.K.’s child abuse image database contained 17 million unique images, with half a million more added every two months.

“This is a scourge that, on the one hand, needs to be addressed with renewed determination by institutions. On the other hand, it requires an even stronger awareness on the part of families and the various educational agencies.”

Adding, “Even today, we see how often in families, the first reaction is to cover everything up.”

“A first reaction that is always there in other institutions and even in the Church.”

“We have to fight with this old habit of covering up.”

“I know that you are always vigilant in protecting children even in the context of the most modern media.”

The Meter group was founded in Sicily, Italy, in 1989 by Father Fortunato Di Noto. It has been championing the rights of children, especially against child pornography and paedophilia.

Thanking all those who support the association in defending abused and mistreated children, Francis said Meter members have “contributed to making visible the Church’s love for the smallest and most defenceless.”

He said the group has reached out to children with respect, closeness, compassion and tenderness, to welcome, console and protect them, binding up their “spiritual wounds” like the Good Samaritan.

“How many times, like the Good Samaritan in the Gospel, have you reached out [to children] with respect and compassion, to welcome, console, and protect [them]. How many spiritual wounds have you healed? For all this, the Church community is grateful to you. We can compare your Association to a home.”


Vatican News

CBS News

Asia News

Additional reading

News category: World.

Tags: , , ,