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Why Pope Francis apologized for clergy’s sex abuse scandals

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Pope Francis apologizes for clergy's sex abuse scandals

By ALLAN TAWAI

Pope Francis has admitted his “pain and shame” over the sexual abuse of children by Catholic clergy on a visit to Chile which has been overshadowed by the firebombing of nine churches – allegedly by activists claiming a high-level cover-up.

“I cannot begin to express the pain and shame that I feel over the irreparable harm caused to children by some ministers of the church,” the 81-year-old pope said.

“I would like to join with my brothers in the episcopate, because if it is right to ask for forgiveness and to support the victims with strength, we must at the same time commit ourselves to make sure that this does not happen again,” he added.

The pontiff made his comments when he visited President Michelle Bachelet’s official Moneda Palace residence, drawing applause from pilgrims watching on giant screens in a Santiago park where he later celebrated an open-air mass for 400,000 people.

Nevertheless Francis did not receive a universal welcome, with fracases breaking out between riot police and demonstrators in the vicinity of O’Higgins Park.

Police used armored vehicles to fire water cannons at the demonstrators and arrested several people, bundling them into vans.

Many of the demonstrators chanted “paedophile accomplices” as they approached the park.

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A man dressed as the pope and two other people dressed as nuns unfolded a banner from the balcony of a nearby building that read: “Francis, accomplice of paedophile crimes.”

Francis’ visit, his first to Chile as pope, has been overshadowed by a report outlining the depth of sexual abuse in the local church, and his appointment of a bishop who many here believe covered up the country’s most prominent sex abuse scandal.

The US-based NGO Bishop Accountability said ahead of the visit that almost 80 Roman Catholic clergy members had been accused of sexually abusing children in Chile since 2000.

For victims, the pope’s request for forgiveness did not go far enough.

“We need concrete actions that the pope has not taken with the Chilean church,” said Juan Carlos Claret, spokesman for a lay association in the southern city of Osorno.

Claret’s group is demanding Francis remove Osorno bishop Juan Barros, whom he appointed in 2015, despite Barros’ ties to a disgraced paedophile priest Fernando Karadima.

The pope later told representatives of Chile’s clergy at a packed Santiago cathedral that he was “attentive to what you are doing to respond to this great and painful evil.”

It was painful for the victims and their families, he told them, but painful also for them.

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“I know that at times you have been insulted in the metro or walking in the street, and that by going around in clerical attire in many places you pay a heavy price.”

In his sermon at the mass, where the congregation included Mapuche women in traditional dress, Pope called for the rights and culture of indigenous people to be respected, so they could be treated as “a worthy child of this country.”

Earlier, he said in his speech to officials that indigenous peoples “can make a great contribution” to the environmental protection of the planet.

“We can learn from them that there is no true development in a population that turns its back on the earth and everyone and everything around it,” he said.

However, there was no specific mention of the Mapuche, with whom the pope is scheduled to meet Wednesday during a visit to Temuco, over 600 kilometers south of the capital Santiago.

Three Catholic churches were vandalized on Tuesday, including one in the Araucania region, where most of the Mapuche people live.

In a first for Francis, he visited a women’s prison, telling inmates at Santiago’s San Joaquin Female Penitentiary that “losing our freedom does not mean losing our dreams and hopes.”

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About 100 inmates welcomed him with songs and excited applause, some of them with their small children.

“We need to reject all those petty clichés that tell us we can’t change, that it’s not worth trying. That nothing will make a difference. No dear Sisters! Some things do make a difference,” Francis said.

A jail sentence must offer opportunities for personal growth, he said.

“Public order must not be reduced to stronger security measures, but should be concerned primarily with preventive measures, such as work, education, and greater community involvement.”

 

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Kenyan woman battling cancer in US appeals for help as doctors say she has a few days to live

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BY BMJ MURIITHI

A US-based Kenyan woman has touched the hearts of many with her story. Zipporah Kamau who was diagnosed with one of the most devastating forms of cancer last year and has been going through Chemotherapy in Seattle, Washington, says the doctors recently told her that she had only three days to live.

Her story is heartbreaking to say the least. In a tragic twist of fate, soon after she arrived in the US in November 2017, her son was struck by a car and died in Nairobi.

When she and her then husband attended the funeral, he passport got lost and she was forced to apply for travel documents to get back to the US.

She stayed in Atlanta, Georgia, for a while before relocating to Seattle to live with her friend, only identified as Beth. It was then that she got sick and was diagnosed with Lymphoma, an aggressive form of cancer that begins in infection-fighting cells of the immune system, called lymphocytes. Now the doctors tell her that she may need to go through dialysis as her kidneys are failing.

“I have gone through 9 rounds of Chemo and now they have told me that I have to start another round of palliative chemotherapy but I don’t think I can do it any more. My body is totally ruined by the previous round of Chemo,” she tells Jeremy Damaris of Kikuyu Diaspora TV in an interview.

READ ALSO:   Michelle Obama takes 'most admired woman' in the US title from Hillary Clinton

“They recently said I had only three days to live and that my kidneys are affected..but I know I can live longer than that in Jesus mighty name,” she adds.

Zipporah Kamau (Right) pictured here at an event in Kenya in 2016. PHOTO/BMJ MURIITHI

Looking emaciated and weak, she appeals to well wishers to come to her aid and help her to at least pay her house rent which has accumulated to over $4,000 as she has not done so since June last year.

“I live with a friend where I am supposed to pay $600 a month but because of my condition, I have’t been able to meet my end of the bargain for the last six months. My roommate is a very nice lady but she can only do so much,” says Zipporah as she fights off tears.

Zipporah Kamau during the interview. PHOTO/SCREEN GRAB

During the interview, she sends a message to her children back in Kenya. “Whatever happens, just know that I love you all very much,” she says, after calling each of them by name. She wishes she could pay fees for her children who are in college. “I hope to see you some day when I get stronger,” she tells them.

Photos taken in 2016 show a healthy looking  and bubbly woman compared to the recent pictures which depict a pale shadow of her former self. You may send your donation via CASHAPP.  The number is +1 253 499 3845 (Zipporah Kamau) or via MPESA at +254 718 504 548 (Jeremy Wambui)

READ ALSO:   Michelle Obama takes 'most admired woman' in the US title from Hillary Clinton

To get the full story, Watch the video below [in Gikuyu] courtesy of KDTV:

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VIDEO: Kenyan-born Gospel Musician set to launch new DVD/CD in US

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BY BMJ MURIITHI

Renowned Dallas-based gospel arstiste, Lizz Ndung’u MD is set launch her latest album in Texas this coming weekend (Sunday February 24th, 2019) at Rhema Gospel Church: 2700 Warren Circle, Irving, Texas 76502 at 2:30 PM. 

The forthcoming album is titled “Ndimuirigire”  ( I am guarded) which talks about how God  protects His people by surrounding them with a divine hedge of fire.

Besides being a singer, the former Atlanta resident is also a song writer whose star has continued to rise since she launched her first CD six years ago.

Her first album titled  “kirigiriro” (Hope) was released in 2013 while the second album entitled “Ngai ndarikitie nawe” (God id not done with you yet) was launched in 2016.

“I consider it  a huge blessing to introduce an additional name in my third album, ‘MD’ which stands for my husband. My previous albums only bore my first two names, Lizz Ndung’u, but I have since gotten married and I thank God greatly for that,” said Lizz in a Press Statement sent to KSN this week.

The event, which will be presided over by Rev. Dr.  Solomon Waigwa will be graced by a retinue of fellow gospel artistes with popular Diaspora media personality Jeremy Damaris as the Master of Ceremonies (MC).

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Lizz says the new album has already  powerfully ministered to her personally even as she looks forward to the launch. “God has been truly gracious to me and my family,” she says.

Her music is in both Kikuyu and Kiswahili and most of it is about giving hope and encouraging people to have courage as they face the challenges of life.

She says this new release will touch many in a myriad ways besides being a blessing to those who will watch or listen to it.

Lizz can be reached through her facebook  profile: @ Lizz ndungu. Her music Facebook  page  is @Lizznproductions while her email address is endungu95@gmail.com.

She and her husband Davis MD Maina  can also be reached via her phone number –404 751-6781

They welcome all friends and well wishers to Sunday’s event.

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STRANGE: Kenyan man in US says women reject him because he is a perfectionist, great cook

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A Kenyan man in Boston, Massachusetts in the US cannot find a wife because he is a great cook. Albert Kiage is not your average ‘hustler’. He has everything going for him. He has a good job, a string of real estate properties in the United States and Kenya and drives top-of-the-range SUVs.

His house is furnished with all the fancy electronic gadgets anyone would wish for in life. What’s more, Kiage’s says he has a balance worth writing home about in his bank account. What Kiage, however, lacks is a wife.

Not that he has not tried getting one. He is divorced once and has watched three women leave him because he is not only too clean, but also a great cook and a perfectionist to boot.

“I think I am an incurable germophobe, with an OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) that drives women away. I had constant wrangles with my first wife over small matters of hygiene and we divorced in 2007 after two years of marriage. I couldn’t stand her. I found her too dirty for my house. We just couldn’t cope,” complains Kiage.

Biggest problem

He says he has dated three women since then. In all the cases, he says, the relationships were serious and he hoped they would lead to marriage.

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Unfortunately, that was not to be. “The problem has always been the same. The first one always complained that I am a perfectionist. The two other cases were almost similar, with one complaining about my insistence to cook all the time. Truth of the matter is she was a joke in the kitchen,” says the accountant.

His biggest problem with most women stems from the fact that he is an incredible cook. Having lived his entire adult life single, save for the short-lived marriage, he has perfected his cooking skills and can’t stand bad food.

“You can only eat out for so long,” he says. “As a gym enthusiast, you want natural foods which you cannot find readily when you eat out. I am also very keen with my diet, it has to be balanced,” he says.

Living alone has taught him many things, culinary-wise. He can whip up every discernible Kenyan meal, including chapatis. “In fact some Kenyan female friends even come for chapatis, cake and barbecues at my home over the weekends. They know I am good at it. We always laugh over my obsession for cooking and cleanliness, but it’s never that serious,” he says. This, however, comes at a cost. It has continuously kept potential wives away.

READ ALSO:   Michelle Obama takes 'most admired woman' in the US title from Hillary Clinton

House wife

They come, settle, try to keep up with his standards, but many cannot. Partly because life is too busy in the United States for anyone to depend on homemade food every day of the week, and partly because Kiage must eat at home. He is able to do it. He doesn’t see why he should relent. Not that he chases them away. They just chicken out.

“They become increasingly uncomfortable, since I insist on cooking for both of us. I don’t mind at all. But many say, it is un-African,” he says. He says many women in America, whereas they are busy and crave independence, they still want a chance to play the role of a traditional house wife. And many are not ready to compete with him in roles that were traditionally considered to belong to women.

Kiage says his culinary skills must have been nurtured when he was young, when he was growing up with his father in Eldoret.

“I lived with my father and I used to do everything on my own. So I learned everything and became quite independent. Living as a bachelor only made me perfect the skills,” he says. He says he is praying and hoping to find a fellow perfectionist to settle down with.

READ ALSO:   Michelle Obama takes 'most admired woman' in the US title from Hillary Clinton

Source: Standardmedia.co.ke

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