“The victim is our focus!”

First of all, honesty, vigilance and the protection of the people entrusted to our care are the top priorities. In the last thirty years, medical and psychological knowledge about pathologically disturbed sexual inclinations has also improved significantly. Not only in the training of priests, but also in the training and continuing education of our church employees, questions of personality formation and the human integration of sexuality have long been a natural and also regular component. Abolishing celibacy, as some are now calling for, does not solve the problem! According to leading experts, there is no connection between pedophilia and celibacy. And it also completely misses the point of celibacy if you look at it solely from a sexual point of view. We need a responsible approach to the subject. In the seminary, not only a profound training is needed, but also a close examination of the candidates. But education for a strong personality also plays a central role in our schools and kindergartens. Because this is also part of prevention: children who can say no are stronger. We do everything possible to prevent such offenses from occurring.
At the turn of the year, we had already determined with Cardinal Meisner in the Spiritual Council that all priests, deacons, pastoral and parish workers would participate in information events on this topic. At ie here are the questions: what is abuse? How do perpetrators proceed? How do I behave when children tell of abuse? How to act as a pastor in children's and youth ministry? – To name just a few. Speaker is an experienced physician. Unfortunately, events have now caught up with our planning and shown how important they are so that good children's and youth work can continue to be done in our communities in the future and so that natural interaction with children and young people remains possible. In addition, the Bishops' Conference will take a close look at the 2002 guidelines to see what can be improved. Here in Cologne, we will also soon introduce an expert woman as our first point of contact, so that victims of abuse can choose whether they prefer to have their first conversation with a woman or a man.
Interview: Church newspaper for the archdiocese of Cologne

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.