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Pope Meets With Clergy Sex Abuse Victims

Both the New York Times and the AP reported posted at myway.com reported Pope benedict XVI came face to face with victims of clergy sex abuse in a Washington chapel Thursday, and prayed with them. An extraordinary gesture from a pontiff who has made atoning for the great shame of the U.S. church the cornerstone of his first papal trip to America, wrote the AP reporter.

The Rev. Federico Lombardi, a papal spokesman, said that Benedict and Boston Cardinal Sean O'Malley, who the New York Times reported had given the pope a notebook listing about 1,000 victims, met with a group of five or six clergy sex abuse victims for about 25 minutes, offering them encouragement and hope.

“It was a moving experience,? Cardinal O’Malley told reporters afterward reported the New York Times. “It was very positive and very prayerful.?

"They prayed together. Also, each of them had their own individual time with the Holy Father," Lombardi told the AP. "Some were in tears."

The New York Times reported the reactions of the victims and ther advocates varied, some did not think it was enough while others praised the meeting.

Lombardi said it was believed to be the first-ever such session between a pope and abuse victims, according to the AP report.

The pope has called the clergy sex crisis a cause of "deep shame," and has pledged to keep pedophiles out of the priesthood, decrying the "enormous pain" that communities have suffered from the "gravely imoral behavior" by some priests, reported the AP.

The New York Times article features perspective of victims, who saw the pope and attempted to. To see their stories in the New York Times article click here.