Spain’s Catholic Church says sorry – level 3

03-11-2023 15:00

Spain’s Catholic Church has issued an apology to victims of sexual abuse by priests.

However, they have raised doubts about the accuracy of a recent survey that indicated a higher prevalence of abuse nationwide compared to previous investigations.

The survey released by Spain’s human rights ombudsman revealed that 0.6% of over 8,000 respondents reported abuse, rising to 1.1% when including lay individuals like teachers at Catholic schools. The Spanish Bishops’ Conference acknowledged the damage caused by some Church members and repeated their request for forgiveness from the victims.

Spain, where approximately 60% of the population identifies as Catholic, only began discussing the issue publicly following a significant media investigation in 2021. The Conference criticized the lack of cooperation with the survey and expressed concerns about its methodology.

Difficult words: prevalence (the extent to which something is widespread), ombudsman (a person who investigates complaints and reports to them), methodology (a system of methods used in a particular area of study or activity).

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What do you think the Spanish Bishops' Conference should do to ensure victims of sexual abuse by priests receive justice?


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