"I feel compelled to personally take on all the evil that some priests ... and to ask for forgiveness for the damage they have done by sexually abusing children."
Four women who were forced into sex slavery and later freed met Thursday with Pope Francis at an international conference on human trafficking held at the Vatican to combat what the pontiff called a "crime against humanity."
After a private meeting with the victims, the pope joined church officials and police chiefs from 20 countries, including the U.S., England, Thailand and Nigeria, in an effort to build global cooperation to fight the problem.
People can choose either to tackle life's challenges with the loving and wise heart of God or be driven by their own passions and interests, Pope Francis said.
All people, whether they know it or not, have access to the gift of the Holy Spirit, "who teaches us to see with God's eyes, to feel with God's heart, to speak with God's words," helping people build a peaceful and loving home, church and world, he said.
Pope's quotes: Some of our favorite quotes from Pope Francis.
Christianity isn't a philosophy or guide to survival, good behavior and peace, it's a relationship with a real person who died on the cross for our sins, Pope Francis said.
"Christianity can't be understood without understanding this deep humiliation of the son of God, who abased himself, becoming a servant to the point of his death and death on the cross" in order to serve humanity, the pope said.
Pope Francis will celebrate the Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord's Supper at a Rome rehabilitation facility for the elderly and people with disabilities.
He will preside over the Holy Thursday evening Mass and foot-washing ritual at the Father Carlo Gnocchi Foundation's Our Lady of Providence Center on the outskirts of Rome, the Vatican announced Tuesday.
Last year, the pope celebrate the Holy Thursday liturgy at Rome's Casal del Marmo juvenile detention center, where he washed the feet of young male and female offenders.
Pope Francis, accepting the recommendations of his international Council of Cardinals and other advisory groups, has decided the Vatican bank will continue to exist and has approved a plan to increase its transparency and accountability.
The Vatican press office issued a statement Monday saying the pope "has approved a proposal on the future" of the Institute for the Works of Religion, the formal title of the bank. The Vatican, however, did not release details of the proposal.
Just days before Rwanda was to begin a weeklong period of official mourning to mark the 20th anniversary of its genocide, Pope Francis urged the country's bishops to be resolute in continuing the work of healing and reconciliation.
"Twenty years after those tragic events," when as many as 1 million people were murdered in savage acts of ethnic violence, Pope Francis said, "reconciliation and the healing of wounds must remain the priority of the church in Rwanda."
Pope's quotes: Some of our favorite quotes from Pope Francis