The long-running clergy sexual abuse scandal within Dublin’s Archdiocese is still the Catholic Church’s problem, and on Monday, Pope Benedict XVI met with Irish bishops for the first part of a two-day strategy and damage-control session at the Vatican. –KA


BBC religious affairs correspondent Christopher Landau says bishops from a particular country normally visit the Vatican around once every five years.

But the Pope has summoned Ireland’s bishops for a special two-day meeting, specifically to address the issue that has severely undermined Catholicism’s standing there, our correspondent says.

The Report of the Commission of Investigation into the Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin – the Murphy report – published in November, found the Church had “obsessively” hidden child abuse from 1975 to 2004, and operated a policy of “don’t ask, don’t tell”.

Some bishops still in office had been part of the cover-up, the report said.

Four out of five key bishops who were particularly criticised have now resigned, but the fifth, Bishop of Galway Martin Drennan, is expected to meet the Pope.

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