Pope sends envoys to German diocese in church abuse crisis

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BERLIN (AP) — Pope Francis is sending envoys to the German archdiocese of Cologne to investigate possible mistakes by senior church officials in handling past sexual abuse cases and the “complex pastoral situation” in the deeply divided church there. The papal nuncio’s office in Berlin said Friday that Francis ordered an “apostolic visitation.” He will send the bishops of Stockholm and Rotterdam to Cologne in the first half of June. The two envoys will work to get a “comprehensive picture” of the situation in the archdiocese and investigate “possible errors” on the part of Cologne’s archbishop, two auxiliary bishops and the archbishop of Hamburg.

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