Editor’s note: NCR’s Tom Fox is in Munich covering the emerging clergy sex abuse story there.
German reform Catholics said Sunday the pope's pastoral letter, written to Irish Catholics in response to sexual abuse by the clergy, is merely a starting point in a long process of change, and called for the church to overhaul its stance on celibacy.
Pope Benedict XVI Saturday issued a pastoral letter to the church in Ireland, apologizing and acknowledging the failures of the church's top clerics in handling such cases.
But there were expressions of disappointment here that the letter did not make even a short reference to the German sex abuse issues, which have riveted media attention since January.
“Pope says nothing about German abuse cases,” the popular Bild daily headlined on its Web site. “Pope silent on abuse in Germany,” the weekly Der Spiegel's Web site headline read.