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Pope says he has considered when it might be time to resign

15 May 2018

As a result, Paul exhorts "watch the flock; you are bishops for the flock, to keep the flock, not to climb into an ecclesiastical career", Francis explained.

For years, sex abuse victims have blasted the Chilean hierarchy for discrediting their claims, protecting abusers, moving them around rather than reporting them to police and then handing out light sentences when church sanctions are imposed.

Pope Francis has previously hinted at the possibility that he might resign, saying in 2015 that the Catholic Church should not have "leaders for life", and noting in 2014 that Pope Benedict XVI's 2013 resignation "cleared a path" for future papal resignations.

Francis said Paul felt "compelled by the Holy Spirit" to go to Jerusalem.

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Francis made the comment during his morning homily Tuesday; the Vatican didn't release the full text.

FILE - From left, Juan Carlos Cruz, James Hamilton and Jose Andres Murillo meet reporters at the foreign press association in Rome, May 2, 2018. However, he boarded a plane in Santiago May 13 and flew to Rome. Chilean media had said Errazuriz was offended that he couldn't stay at Santa Marta, his usual residence during periodic visits as one of Francis' nine key cardinal advisers. Barros has said he was unaware of any wrongdoing.

Victims have also accused other bishops of either covering up the abuse by Karadima, of delaying investigations, or of discrediting victims in the media and demonizing them in private conversations and emails.

Soon after returning, Francis sent two seasoned investigators to Chile to get to the bottom of the scandal. He apologized to the victims and summoned the bishops for a brow-beating.

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Chilean Bishop Fernando Ramos said the meetings would address "abuse of power, abuse of conscience, and sexual abuse that have occurred in recent decades in the Chilean Church, as well as the mechanisms that led, in some cases, to concealment and serious omissions against the victims".

Calling for a "revolution of tenderness" in parishes and the diocese, Pope Francis said that while "guiding a Christian community is the specific task of the ordained minister - the pastor - pastoral care is based in baptism and blossoms from brotherhood and is not the task only of the pastor and priests, but of all the baptized".

Media reports in Chile initially indicated that Cardinal Francisco Javier Errazuriz Ossa, retired archbishop of Santiago and a member of Pope Francis' worldwide Council of Cardinals, would not attend the meeting.

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Pope says he has considered when it might be time to resign