Reinhard Cardinal Marx in conversation © Markus Nowak (KNA)
Cardinal Marx sees the anti-abuse summit as an important step toward a worldwide movement against sexualized violence. He said: "I am glad that the Pope has set an example."
The conference has "once again given a push that the whole world church sees, here is a challenge that we all have to face," he said on Sunday evening in the ZDF "heute journal". "But it is not the last conference, and a further journey will be necessary," the Munich archbishop said.
"It can't be done overnight"
Marx rejected the accusation that Pope Francis had remained too general in his address at the end of the four-day conference. "He has already spoken very concretely in his seven points."Francis has given "some guidelines, guidelines," "but not everything can be done by Rome."".
The bishops are now challenged to move forward in the broad line – "no cover-up, looking at the victims, coming to terms with the past". On the other hand, questions of canon law, for example, could only be dealt with at the world church level: "This cannot be done overnight."
"The whole world is challenged"
He said Francis had wanted to make it clear that it was "not just about the problem of some parts of the Church" but that "the whole world is called upon": "And if we want to help fight this terrible crime of child abuse throughout the world, then we must first clean up the inside of the Church and bring clarity and push for purification. 'He said that clearly,' Marx emphasized.
The church has been working for years to come to terms with the "scandal of the century". He said the guidelines established by the German Bishops' Conference in 2010 must be further developed, including at the world level. "The legal situation in the countries is different in some cases," the Munich archbishop said "But it must be clear that no one who commits sexual abuse can be active in the pastoral care of the church."
"For this one can only be ashamed"
Marx also referred to the results of the study on abuse commissioned by the German bishops: "One can only be ashamed of this, this is a disgrace." In the reappraisal and prevention, "not everything is yet at the level it should be; we are working on that in the German Bishops' Conference.".
From Rome he expects support in the implementation, "and there I am glad that the Pope has set a sign," said the cardinal. This had also been an important point in the conversation with victims' associations. Here he supports the idea of a "monitoring, a task force," the cardinal added: "The Pope has indeed indicated that he wants to do this. We will support him very much in this."