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Pope Names Former Victim To Sex Abuse Panel

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

As we just heard, many Catholics believe that the church under Pope Francis is undergoing a kind of renewal. But one issue that still haunts the Church is the sexual abuse, carried out by priests and historically covered up by church leaders. Yesterday, the pope named eight people to a new panel to confront the abuse, including an Irish woman, who was herself molested by a priest as a child. A spokesman for Pope Francis said he's working to make the protection of minors one of the church's highest priorities. The survivors' network for those abused by priests released a statement criticizing the pope for not punishing church leaders who have covered up abuse. The group says, quote, "It's the continuing courage of victims that gives us hope, not another handpicked church panel."

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MARTIN: You're listening to NPR News. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.