Bishop Hurkmans on the abuse crisis

In their Chrism Mass homilies several bishops spoke about the abuse crisis. The text below comes from the homily of Bishop Antoon Hurkmans of ‘s Hertogenbosch (emphases mine):

“In the past months, brothers and sisters, we all painfully experienced that a lot went wrong in our family. We have a high calling, we have high ideals, but we realise that some members of our family have gone seriously wrong. The power of evil is not yet broken. Day after day we read and hear about abusers and victims. The people concerned are part of our family. That is why the abuse stories cut so deeply. But we must not avoid that pain. I call to people who have been abused by people of the Church to report their stories. The wave of past abuses is also painful because we know full well that we ourselves aren’t there yet either. Evil remains a threat for each of us. We still recall how Jesus said: “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone”.

There are people who can’t stand the tension. They break with the family where they were raised in. They let themselves be deregistered from the Church. That too is painful for them and for us. I can’t say anything but that I fully share the pain of all involved.

Furthermore, I support the fact that committee from outside the Church will indicate what we have to. At one point, after having done what must be done, I hope there is also room for mercy.”



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