Clergy Sex Abuse Victims 'Beyond Angry' Over Pope's 'Friends Of The Devil' Comment

Pittsburgher Jim Van Sickle in Rome says he feels 'deflated'

Marty Griffin and Wendy Bell
February 22, 2019 - 11:38 am

Nick Childers/ANIMAL Studio

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PITTSBURGH (Newsradio 1020 KDKA) - Pittsburgh's Bishop and local abuse victims are reacting to developments at the Vatican summit on preventing clergy sex abuse.

Jim Van Sickle of Coraopolis is in Rome watching developments. He tells KDKA Radio he was angered to hear the Pope say those who spend their life accusing are with the devil.

“Luckily I heard it in Italian so I didn’t react right away but I can tell you everybody here is angry, beyond angry.”

During the summit Pope Francis said “One cannot live a whole life accusing, accusing, accusing, the church . . . (people who do are) the friends, cousins and relatives of the devil”.

“I was a Catholic, to me my predator was Satan, I’m not Satan for speaking out,” said Van Sickle.

Feeling “deflated” Van Sickle adds he doesn’t see any action being taken by the church, “How can you talk about responsibility, accountability and transparency if you don’t even want to admit there’s a problem?”

But Bishop David Zubik says the Pope has offered 21 specific proposals to end abuse.

“If wounds have to heal they have to be exposed,” said Zubik.

RELATED: Cardinals attending the conference are calling for a new culture of accountability.

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