AIGAV, IADC host forum for journalists in Rome
On April 18, the International Association of Journalists Accredited to the Vatican, in collaboration with the Institute of Anthropology (IADC), hosted the “From Darkness to Light” Forum.
The event, which coincided with the 20th anniversary of the “Spotlight” team’s Pulitizer Prize for the coverage of the sexual abuse scandal in the Archdiocese of Boston, was an in-depth and off-the-record discussion on journalism and its role in uncovering sexual abuse in the Catholic Church.
Over 30 journalists accredited to the Holy See Press Office attended the forum which was held at the National Spanish Church in Rome.
Among the guest speakers who participated in the event were: Archbishop Charles J. Scicluna, Archbishop of Malta; adjunct secretary of the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith; Brian Devlin, survivor & author of “Cardinal Sin: Challenging Power Abuse in the Catholic Church”; Tina Campbell, International Safeguarding Consultant & visiting teacher in Safeguarding Diploma and Licentiate Programs for the IADC; & Father Davide Cito, Extraordinary Professor of Penal Canon Law, Faculty of Canon Law of the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross, Rome.
Participants also received a message from Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Vatican secretary of state, on behalf of Pope Francis. In the message, which was sent to Father Hans Zollner, director of the Institute of Anthropology, Pope Francis sent his “prayerful good wishes” to those present and expressed his hope that the forum would “shed further light on the scourge of abuse.”
Below is the full text of the message:
THE REVEREND HANS ZOLLNER, S.J.
DIRECTOR, INSTITUTE OF ANTHROPOLOGY
PONTIFICAL GREGORIAN UNIVERSITY
HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS SENDS PRAYERFUL GOOD WISHES TO THE PARTICIPANTS IN THE FORUM ON SEXUAL ABUSE SPONSORED BY THE INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF JOURNALISTS ACCREDITED TO THE VATICAN AND THE INSTITUTE OF ANTHROPOLOGY. HE TRUSTS THAT YOUR DISCUSSIONS AND SHARED EXPERIENCES INVOLVING JOURNALISTS, SURVIVORS AND EXPERTS WILL HELP SHED FURTHER LIGHT ON THE SCOURGE OF ABUSE AND PROMOTE MORE EFFECTIVE COOPERATION WITHIN THE CHURCH AND THE LARGER SOCIETY IN ORDER TO ERADICATE THIS PROFOUND EVIL. IN ENCOURAGING YOU TO CONTINUE YOUR IMPORTANT WORK WITH OPENNESS AND INTEGRITY IN SERVICE TO THE TRUTH, HIS HOLINESS EXPRESSES HIS GRATITUDE FOR THE ONGOING EFFORTS BEING MADE TO PROMOTE TRANSPARENCY, RESTORE DIGNITY AND HOPE TO THE SURVIVORS OF ABUSE AND ENSURE THE WELFARE OF ALL GOD’S CHILDREN. UPON THOSE TAKING PART IN THE FORUM, THE HOLY FATHER INVOKES ALMIGHTY GOD’S BLESSINGS OF WISDOM AND STRENGTH.
CARDINAL PIETRO PAROLIN
SECRETARY OF STATE