Ireland unveils new report on Catholic child abuse

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That letter from the late Archbishop Luciano Storero, then Pope John Paul II’s ambassador to Ireland, dismissed the Irish policy as representing “a study document.” The Associated Press was the first media organization to publish that letter in full in January.

Mr. Shatter said the Vatican’s criticisms of the 1996 child-protection initiative “was entirely unhelpful, giving comfort and support to those who dissented from the guidelines. We want to say as clearly as we can that this approach, when the state was entitled to rely on assurances about the operation of the guidelines, was wholly unacceptable.”

The Vatican offered no immediate response.

In his 2010 pastoral letter to Ireland’s Catholics condemning pedophiles in the ranks, Pope Benedict XVI faulted bishops for failing to follow canon law and offered no explicit endorsement of Irish child-protection efforts by the Irish church or state. Benedict was widely criticized in Ireland for failing to admit any Vatican role in covering up the truth.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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