‘IT IS ALL SLANDER’

Pope Offers Rare Apology for Sex-Abuse Comments

Pope Francis on Sunday offered a rare apology after standing up for a Chilean bishop currently facing scrutiny for allegedly covering up the behavior of a pedophile. “I have to apologize,” he said, conceding he had “wounded many people who were abused.” He added, “It was a wound that I inflicted without meaning to. It pains me very much.” Despite this apology, the pope still contends that Juan Barros, who stands accused of protecting a pedophile, is innocent. The pope said last week, in a tone he now regrets: “The day I see proof against Bishop Barros, then I will talk. There is not a single piece of evidence against him. It is all slander. Is that clear?”