In Poland, 85 priests have already been convicted of sexual abuse in recent years. 24 bishops are now accused of protecting not the faithful but the convicted clergymen.
Victims of sexual abuse by Catholic priests in Poland accuse 24 of the country's current and former bishops of covering up the crimes. In a 27-page report to Pope Francis published Thursday in Rome, the victims' association "Have No Fear" accused Warsaw Cardinal Kazimierz Nycz and Krakow Archbishop Marek Jedraszewski, among others, of protecting perpetrators of the crime.
The association had handed over the report to the Pope personally on Wednesday on the sidelines of the general audience.
Convicted priests moved on
Nycz, as bishop of Koslin-Kolberg (Koszalin-Kolobrzeg) in 2005, had transferred a parish priest sentenced to probation to continue working in another parish. As archbishop of Warsaw, he had helped the priest Piotr D. a new community, where he sexually abused two boys.
Jedraszewski was one of the "most ardent defenders" of former Poznan Archbishop Juliusz Paetz, the association said. Paetz is accused of sexual assaults on seminarians and priests; he denies it.
Also accused in the report are acting local bishops Slawoj Leszek Glodz (Gdansk), Jan Tyrawa (Bydgoszcz), Jozef Gorzynski (Warmia), Andrzej Dziuba (Lowicz), Jacek Jezierski (Elbing/Elblag), Jan Watroba (Rzeszow) and Andrzej Czaja (Opole).
85 priests have been convicted
Polish courts reportedly have sentenced 85 priests so far. On an online map, the association has registered 384 victims of abuse.
Francis had kissed the hand of the association's founder Marek Lisinski on Wednesday after speaking to him briefly. He had been abused by a priest for months when he was 13 years old.
Bishops' Conference: invitation to talk
Lisinski criticized in front of journalists that the president of the bishops' conference, Archbishop Stanislaw Gadecki, has not heard him so far. Bishops' Conference spokesman Pawel Rytel-Andrianik said in Warsaw that Gadecki's invitation to talk to the "Do not be afraid" foundation remains valid.
The bishops' conference had announced Wednesday an immediate response to the group's report once it was received and studied.
Film increased prere on Polish church
The Polish foundation "Do not be afraid," established in 2013, is named after Pope John Paul II's motto of the same name. named after his or her election in 1978.
In Poland in the fall of 2018, the feature film "Clergy" had increased prere on the Church. He denounced child sexual abuse by priests and its cover-up. More than five million viewers made it the most-watched movie in Poland since 2000.