Over 100 bishops from all over the world will this week meet in Vatican to tackle the wave of child sex abuse scandals on the rise in the Catholic Church.
The summit which will run from Thursday to Sunday, will focus on coming up with an action plan to protect the minors.
Victims’ groups from all over the word have come out strongly to demand that a concrete action plan on fighting pedophilia be drawn up.
CNN’s News18 reported that Pope Francis has asked bishops from all the continents to speak to victims of abuse in their respective countries before the Rome convention.
However, its reported that the Pope is working to dial down “inflated expectations” for a solid solution to the problem affecting the church.
He is reported to have already warned those hoping the four-day meet will be a panacea that “the problem of abuse will continue”.
“By resolving the problem within the Church, through becoming aware, we will contribute to resolving it within society, within families, where the shame means everything is hidden,” Francis said.
During the rare summit, victims from across the world have also been encouraged to attend.
“I ask you to pray for this meeting,” the pope said Sunday.
Pope Francis reiterated that he wanted the meeting “as an act of strong pastoral responsibility in the face of an urgent challenge of our time.”
Father Federico Lombardi, who will be leading the debates during the conference revealed that aim is for the heads of the world’s episcopal conferences to achieve “a feeling of collective responsibility”
“The credibility of the Church is at stake,” he said.
The summit comes days after Pope Francis admitted that some bishops have been abusing nuns.
Also, Pope Francis recently defrocked a former cardinal – American Theodore McCarrick — over accusations he sexually abused a teenager 50 years ago.
Some critics have come out to say that the church is trying to protect its image by avoiding the word sex in the theme “the protection of minors”.
“That reflects the Church’s centuries-old instinct to protect its image,” said Chilean Vatican expert Luis Badilla.
“The only way to emerge from the crisis is to tell the whole truth.”