German bishop offers to resign

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The Independent Online

A leading conservative Catholic bishop in Germany has written to Pope Benedict XVI offering to resign amid persistent allegations of physical abuse of children and financial misconduct.

Bishop Walter Mixa wrote a letter to the pope yesterday, the Augsburg diocese said, offering to step down in hope of allowing a "new start" for his diocese. He said he would cooperate fully with investigators.

"I ask the forgiveness of all those to whom I may have been unfair and to those who I may have caused heartache," Mixa wrote, acknowledging that he was "fully aware of my own weaknesses."

The Vatican does not comment on possible resignations. Mixa has been accused of hitting children while a priest decades ago.

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