Vatican disputes claim Pope told interviewer '2% of priests are paedophiles'
Row between La Repubblica and the Vatican comes after the publication on Sunday of an interview between Pope Francis and editor Eugenio Scalfari
A Vatican spokesman has claimed that a Papal interview in La Repubblica magazine did not represent Pope Francis' exact words, and he had not told the newspaper that "about 2%" of clergy in the Catholic Church are paedophiles.
The deepening row between La Repubblica and the Vatican comes after outrage followed the publication on Sunday of an interview between Pope Francis and editor Eugenio Scalfari.
Mr Scalfari is known for not using a digital voice recorder during interviews and not taking notes. The Vatican also said that Pope Francis never checked the accuracy of the interview prior to publication.
In the article Pope Francis is quoted as saying that the two per cent estimate came from his advisers.
If true it would mean that 8,000 priests out of a global number of about 414,000, were paedophiles.
"Among the 2% who are paedophiles are priests, bishops and cardinals."
"Others, more numerous, know but keep quiet. They punish without giving the reason," Pope Francis was quoted as saying.
"I find this state of affairs intolerable," he went on.
There has been criticism of Francis for failing to take a high-profile stand against the global paedophilia scandal
The headline on the interview translates as: "Pope says: Like Jesus, I shall use a stick against paedophile priests."
However, Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said that not all the phrases could be attributed "with certainty" to the pope.
In the interview the Pope also reportedly pledged that he would drive away the “leprosy” of child abuse that was infecting the “house” of Catholicism.
His comments came a week after the Pope met with six victims of clerical paedophilia to apologise for their abuse at the hands of priests.
The meeting, with six British, Irish and German Catholics, was designed to acknowledge the gravity of the Church’s guilt and complicity.
Despite Pope Francis’s popularity, there has been criticism of him for failing to take a high-profile stand against the global paedophilia scandal.
His predecessor, Benedict XVI, met with victims of sexual abuse by priests, in Washington in 2008. He then met with victims in Australia, Germany, Malta and the UK.
In February and May, critical reports released by two separate UN committees condemned the Church’s “code of silence” on paedophile priests.
It said this silence was allowing known sex offenders to continue working with children.
- 2 Rarest Beanie Baby of them all could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 3 Professional big game hunter Ian Gibson crushed to death by elephant during hunt
- 4 Farmer told to tear down mock-Tudor castle after hiding construction behind hay bales
Migrants crossing the Mediterranean: Pope Francis joins calls for EU action on boat refugees
Yemen crisis: Meet the child soldiers who have forsaken books for Kalashnikovs
Alan Rickman admits editing 'terrible' script with friends in Pizza Hut behind backs of writers on Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
Rarest Beanie Baby of them all could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
Isis in Afghanistan: Group claims responsibility for Jalalabad suicide bombing that killed 35
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
£18000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...
£16500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Chiropractic Assistant is needed in a ...
£18000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...
£28000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company provides coaching ...