A report on cases of abuse in the diocese of Munich and Freising attests to the misconduct of numerous people responsible for decades. Cardinal Marx speaks out.
Munich – One week after the publication of a shocking report on abuse in the Archdiocese of Munich and Freising, the responsible Archbishop Reinhard Marx apologized again on Thursday (01/27/2022) for the suffering and loss of trust. In his statement he emphasized that a reform of the church was essential. Marx: “There is no future for Christianity in our country without a renewed Church!”
After reading the report, he was again shocked and shocked, above all by the suffering of those affected, but also by the perpetrators and accused and the behavior of those responsible. “We see a disaster,” said Marx in Munich, referring to the report, which mentions at least 497 victims and 235 suspected perpetrators. According to the experts, the dark field is possibly significantly larger.
“Don’t stick to my office”: Marx does not offer to resign after abuse reports
Anyone who still “denies systemic causes and opposes a necessary reform of the church in attitudes and structures”, said Marx at his press conference, “did not understand the challenge”.
He was not only criticized in the context of the report, which also accused him of misconduct in dealing with cases of abuse in two cases. In the aftermath, those affected by the abuse in the Catholic Church would have reacted with disappointment that Marx did not offer another resignation from office. Pope Francis had rejected a resignation request from the Archbishop of Munich last year. During the press conference, however, Marx stressed that “I am not attached to my office”.
Munich: Affected initiative criticizes Marx’s handling of abuse reports
The spokesman for the Eckiger Tisch initiative for those affected, Matthias Katsch, described Marx’s behavior as “hard to bear for those affected” and called for “finally” turning to the victims of abuse. To this day there is no independent contact point for victims of abuse by employees of the Catholic Church. Instead, volunteers like the Eckigen Tisch volunteers would have to do this work.
“There is still no victim recovery work, there is still no fair, appropriate compensation,” criticized Katsch. He finds it really difficult “to really answer this self-centered talk by Cardinal Marx”.
After publication of the Munich abuse report: decision-makers let offices rest
Instead of personal consequences, Marx demanded that everyone responsible should check for themselves where they were guilty and what consequences they had to draw from it, he said. Prelate Lorenz Wolf, who is heavily criticized in the report, informed him that he would let all offices and tasks rest. He accepted this.
The broadcasting council of the Bayerischer Rundfunk (BR) confirmed on request that Wolf would let his office as chairman of the committee rest. Until further notice, he handed over the management of the Broadcasting Council to his deputy on the supervisory body of the public broadcaster, Godehard Ruppert.
Abuse report in Munich reveals numerous cases of misconduct in the Catholic Church
The report commissioned by the Archdiocese of Munich and Freising itself and commissioned by the law firm Westpfahl Spilker Wastl (WSW) came to the conclusion that cases of sexual abuse in the diocese had not been dealt with appropriately for decades. It also accuses the former archbishops Friedrich Wetter and Joseph Ratzinger, who is now Pope Benedict XVI, of specific and personal misconduct in several cases. (ska with dpa/AFP)