Munich (dpa) – During a visit to the Bavarian parish of Garching an der Alz on Saturday, Germany’s Cardinal Reinhard Marx apologized for cases of abuse there and admitted mistakes.
It is now known “that abuse also happened, that the priest who worked here was an abuser,” Marx, who is also archbishop of Munich and Freising, said after talks and a joint prayer session with parish representatives.
“This is a betrayal of the message of Jesus and it is a failure of the institution for which I apologize,” the Catholic prelate said.
A priest convicted of sexual abuse had worked in Garching for around 20 years, although he had previously abused children in another parish and had also been convicted of that.
According to the diocese, he relapsed after his transfer to Garching, which was before Marx was bishop in charge. Three victims had come forward accusing the man of having abused them.
“For this failure, I apologize,” Marx said. “We probably underestimated something about the tensions and wounds and injuries that are there.”