Phoenix Park Mass hears Pope Francis ask for forgiveness for clerical sex abuse

During the Papal Mass in the Phoenix Park this afternoon, Pope Francis asked for forgiveness for clerical sex abuse. 

The next World Meeting of Families will take place in Rome in three years time.

Pope Francis admitted that the Church hierarchy had “kept quiet” about and “did not take charge” of painful situations.

“We ask forgiveness for the abuses in Ireland. Abuses of power, conscience and sexual abuses perpetrated by members with roles of responsibility within the Church,” he said.

He acknowledged not just the problem of sexual abuse in the Church but also referenced events that happened in Mother and Baby Homes, Magdalene Laundries and industrial schools.

Survivors of these institutions met Pope Francis for 90 minutes yesterday.

While the Phoenix Park Mass was taking place, a vigil took place in Tuam to remember those who died in the Tuam Mother and Baby Home.

Historian Catherine Corless, whose work uncovered details of the deaths of 796 babies at the home, declined an invitation from the Taoiseach's office to attend the civil reception with the pope in Dublin Castle this weekend.

Thousands of people also turned out in Dublin City centre for the Stand4Truth rally at the Garden of Remembrance. Thosse who attended the Stand4Truth protest walked together towards the last Magdalene Laundry to close in Ireland - located on Seán McDermott Street and it closed in 1996. Organiser of the event Colm O'Gorman said the turn out was phenomenal.

Here are some images from The Phoenix Park. All photographs courtesy of Maxwells Photography.

If you have a story or want to send a photo or video to us please contact the Donegal Live editorial team any time. To contact Donegal Democrat and Donegal People's Press, email To contact Donegal Post, email To contact Inish Times, email

More News

Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.

Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.