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Poland: Bishops’ letter about new consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Divorce and abuse, open wounds. A call to fraternity

“It is sad that social and political life in Poland is affected by never-ending tension and conflict, by hatred and hostility”: this was written by the Polish Bishops in a pastoral letter published to mark the 100th anniversary of the consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The document, drawn up to coincide with the anniversary, which is celebrated on the first Friday after the octave of Corpus Christi, in Cracow, recalls that “the Bishops entrusted the country to the Sacred Heart of Jesus on June 3rd, 1921, after Poland had got its national sovereignty back”. In their message, the prelates do not hide concern for the current situation in the country: for “the crisis that is deeply affecting the Polish families, a third of which are broken up by divorce”, for “the difficult test of credibility” that must be passed by the Church itself, “sorely tried by sin and by the wounds inflicted on brothers and sisters by some clergymen”, guilty of committing “the sin of sexual abuse, capable of effectively diminishing the light of the Gospel”. The letter places emphasis on “the need for purification and on asking the victims to forgive”, and insists on the duty to “treat them with special care”. “We wish to learn how to face new challenges, how to take responsibility for ourselves and for others, how to love and serve”. The letter ends with a call to fraternity, “which Pope Francis powerfully urges us to”.

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