Clear dissatisfaction

Clear dissatisfaction

Polish bishops © Paul Haring (KNA)

A majority of Poles are in favor of the resignation of all the country's Catholic bishops in a recent poll. The background to this is the dissatisfaction of the majority of those questioned with the way in which abuse is dealt with.

The question "Should the entire bishops' conference resign in view of the revelation of further pedophilia scandals in the Polish church??" 58.7 percent answered in the affirmative, according to the magazine "Wprost" (Monday); 33.9 percent answered "no".

Only among 50- to 59-year-olds was there no majority for the resignation of the entire bishops' conference, according to the survey. In this age group, only 25 percent were in favor. Among 30- to 39-year-olds, however, 87 percent were in favor of the chief shepherds resigning their posts. The survey was conducted for the magazine by the United Surveys Institute.

Cover-up allegations

Several Polish bishops are accused of covering up child sexual abuse by clergymen. Most recently, the case of the priest Andrzej Dymer from the western Polish archdiocese of Stettin-Cammin (Szczecin-Kamien) made headlines.

He is alleged to have abused four boys of a reformatory in the early 1990s. Since 1995 the church had known about it, but had done nothing against Dymer. Just last week, Archbishop Andrzej Dziega of Szczecin removed him as director of a medical institute.

As early as May 2019, a poll showed 54 percent of Poles favored the resignation of the entire bishops' conference. Bishops apologized several times to abuse victims. Under the motto "Communion with the Wounded," the Church in Poland on Friday celebrated a "Day of Prayer and Penance for the Sin of Sexual Abuse of Minors".

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