The American evangelist wrote on facebook: "Everyone has been shocked and saddened by the disclosures that have surfaced about "predator priests" in the Roman Catholic Church. The magnitude of the abuse over the years is nearly incomprehensible—what happened to these children should grieve us all."
On Tuesday, the 2018 Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report was released and named over 300 priests who were credibly accused of sexually abusing more than 1,000 children over the course of 70 years across six Pennsylvania dioceses.
It documented how paedophile priests were often protected by church hierarchy or moved to other postings without the new location being told of the priests' sexual predatory history.
Jeff Anderson represented the survivors of abuse and sums-up the report here:
The Vatican called the abuse described "criminal and morally reprehensible".
Evangelist Franklin Graham wrote a status on facebook and in several tweets about the matter, criticising the Catholic Church for a large-scale cover up:
"They have been covering it up for years, which allowed the abuse to perpetuate and grow in the darkness. Even one child is too many to have experienced this horror, and there are thousands."
He also addressed the theological question of their salvation, saying that no one is righteous but after faith in Jesus, repentance is necessary.
"Some people are speculating whether or not these priests would be subject to punishment in Hell for what they have done. The answer is that no one is exempt from the wages of sin, not even a priest. Being religious—whether Catholic, Baptist, Pentecostal, or any other label—is not what delivers us from the guilt and punishment of our sins.
"Only the Lord Jesus Christ can save us. But His salvation requires us to repent—to forsake our sins and accept by faith that what Jesus did on the cross, through His death, burial, and resurrection."
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