Reappraisal: Abuse commissioner wants churches to "look at the cards"

The federal government's abuse commissioner, Kerstin Claus, is against the establishment of a state truth commission to deal with the Catholic abuse scandal.

Reappraisal: Abuse commissioner wants churches to "look at the cards"

The federal government's abuse commissioner, Kerstin Claus, is against the establishment of a state truth commission to deal with the Catholic abuse scandal. "I see the danger that such structures contain the idea that there is an end date, a final big final report," said Claus of the "Herder Correspondence" published in Freiburg. "And there is always the wish that by then at the latest it must be good. But that does not correspond to the reality of life for those affected. There is no end to the process of coming to terms with it."

It would make more sense to strengthen the structures of your office in such a way that the independent investigation commission located there would be able to track and monitor investigation processes. "We are currently working together with the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, which is in charge in the federal government, to enshrine this office in law. And here our perspective is not a large truth commission or our own commission in the Bundestag." The assumption of responsibility by the state must do everything beyond big buzzwords to protect children and strengthen those affected in individual processes of coming to terms with it. "In the future, the churches will have to look at their cards more when it comes to coming to terms with things."

Claus reacted with irritation to the overly offensive demands of the church for state support in dealing with the problem. At a press conference of the spring plenary meeting of the German Bishops' Conference, it was said that the bishops were asking for help from the state, but that it was not ready yet. "Of course, that's a very one-sided definition of help," said Claus. "I object to the idea that the church can define what exactly it needs from the state and how the state has to react and when."

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