Punish abusers, but demand evidence: Cardinal Castrillon Rome, Nov. 07 (CWNews.com) - The Church will punish pedophile priests,but will not act simply on the basis of rumors, according to CardinalDario Castrillon Hoyos (bio - news).Ina conversation with the "Rome Reports" television news agency, theoutgoing prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy said that thesexual abuse of children by Catholic priests is a real problem, but onethat has been "inflated by certain people who have an interest" inexaggerating the scope of the offenses. TheChurch will show no partiality toward priests who have molestedchildren, the Colombian cardinal assured "Rome Reports," adding thatthe Vatican is not afraid of exploring the facts and rendering anaccurate judgment. What does concern Church leaders, he said, is "thedeformation of public opinion." CardinalCastrillon Hoyos said that he has "confidence in the clergy of theworld," and said that "if this moment that is so difficult for theworld, the clergy is rich in virtue, even if unfortunately we have toregret some mistakes." He said that the misdeeds of clergy should bekept in perspective, recognizing that only a minority are involved."Show me a family that doesn't have problems," he said. The cardinalwas reacting to the statement made by Pope Benedict XVI (bio - news)in an October 28 meeting with visiting bishops from Ireland. The Popehad told the bishops that the Church must regain public confidence andrepair the damage done by sexual abuse. CardinalCastrillon Hoyos has consistently urged reporters to take a morebalanced approach to accusations of sexual abuse by the clergy. In2002, when the leaders of the US hierarchy were summoned to Rome for aspecial meeting on the sex-abuse scandal, the Colombian prelate drewprotests from American journalists when he seemed to imply that themedia had exaggerated the severity of the problem. Glossary Terms: prelate, Congregation for the Clergy
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.Pedophilia and sexual abuse of children in Australia