Cardinal Reinhard Marx, who leads Germany’s Catholic Church, has offered his resignation to Pope Francis over a clerical sex-abuse scandal that has rocked Germany. In a letter posted in German and Italian, Marx wrote that he shared responsibility for the “catastrophe” of clerical sex abuse. Recent reports have found that hundreds of children have been abused by priests for decades. Many were moved among dioceses, endangering more children. Francis has not yet accepted the resignation and asked Marx to stay in place until he decides. But last week, the pope deployed a team to investigate the Archdiocese of Cologne over its handling of the scandal. “I have to share responsibility for the catastrophe of sexual abuse by officials of the Church over past decades,” Marx wrote, adding that his stepping down would offer a new direction for the German church.
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