Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has asked for forgiveness for any ‘grievous faults’ following a German report criticising his handling of clergy sex abuse cases.
The report criticised his actions regarding four cases whilst he was Archbishop of Munich between 1977 and 1982.
Pope Emeritus Benedict said: “I have had great responsibilities in the Catholic Church.
“All the greater is my pain for the abuses and the errors that occurred in those different places during the time of my mandate,” he said.
The report was released by an independent law firm, but was commissioned by the Church in Germany to examine how cases in the Archdiocese of Munich were handled between 1945 and 2019.
The report criticised Pope Benedict for having failed to restrict the ministry of the priests involved in the cases, even after having been criminally convicted.
A rebuttal of the criticisms was released alongside the letter which insisted he was not ‘aware of sexual abuse committed or suspicion of sexual abuse committed by priests’ in the cases mentioned in the report.