The German Catholic Church is being urged to offer compensation to victims of sexual abuse, as bishops prepare to officially present a shocking report on the topic at a national conference.
“It is still an open wound,’’ Johannes-Wilhelm Roerig, the government official responsible for questions of child sexual abuse, told newsmen on Tuesday.
The Church is grappling with the fallout from the church-commissioned report, which shows that priests involved in sexually abusing boys were never disciplined.
The report was leaked to Spiegel magazine and Die Zeit newspaper earlier this month ahead of its formal presentation at the conference.
It stated that 1,670 priests or 4.4 per cent of Catholic clerics had abused 3,677 people between 1946 and 2014 in Germany.
Cardinal Reinhard Marx, who is chairman of the German Bishops’ Conference in the central city of Fulda, said that the Church finds itself at “a decisive, important turning point’’ with regards to allegations of abuse.