Pope Meets With Child Protection Board As Events Show Abuse Scandal Isn’t Going Away

Pope Francis sought to encourage his child protection board on Thursday to continue helping victims, as new developments outside the Vatican underscored that the Catholic Church’s clergy sex abuse scandal isn’t going away anytime soon.

Francis met with his Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, which is expected to soon release the first-ever audit of safeguarding procedures and policies church-wide.

But as that report is being compiled, church officials in Switzerland reported a surge in victims coming forward since the September publication of a bombshell report that found over 1,000 cases of abuse since the mid-20th century in a country with a relatively small Catholic population.

The diocese in northwestern Basel, for example, reported that more than half of the suspected 183 cases in the last 13 years emerged in the last six months. Swiss news agency SDA-Keystone reported at least 70 other cases across four other dioceses since the report was issued.

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