The national director of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests talks about their "Dirty Dozen" list of most concerning papal candidates.
Top Catholic clerics from France and Britain expressed shame, anger and regret Friday over a widening abuse scandal in the church that has reached Pope Benedict XVI's doorstep.
At the same time, the Vatican and Benedict's former German diocese strongly denied a newspaper report that said the pope was aware that a priest later convicted of molesting boys was returning to pastoral work.
They said the pope, then archbishop in Munich, Germany, had no knowledge of the decision to return the priest to resume his duties.
The archdiocese "rejects any other version of events as mere speculation," the Vatican said.
The Vatican and archdiocese were responding to a New York Times article published Friday that said the future pope was copied on a memo informing him the priest, the Rev. Peter Hullermann, would return to pastoral work within days of beginning psychiatric treatment for pedophilia.
After working as a journalist for 17 years in London, I have returned to Ireland where I find a very different country to the one I left.
I find an Ireland in the midst of massive change, not just economically but socially too. Covering the Irish church scandal story for CNN really brought home these changes to me.
When I was growing up in Ireland in the 1970s and 80s the church dominated. Most people I knew were schooled by priests and nuns. So was I until my parents decided to reef me out of the convent after one nun told me to cross my legs because I was exciting the boys: I was six years old.
Most people went to Mass and confession once a week. My grandmother went to mass every day. Confession was the strangest thing: how could an eight-year-old sin enough to confess every week? Most weeks I would sit there and make up sins that I had committed to make myself sound more interesting. And that way I had something to build on the following week.
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