Kansas City diocese holds service for sexual abuse healing

FILE - In this Nov. 14, 2011 file photo, Bishop Robert Finn, of Kansas City, Mo., leaves a meeting at the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' annual fall assembly in Baltimore. Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Finn who pleaded guilty to failing to report a suspected priestly child abuser, answering demands of victims to crackdown on bishops who covered up for pedophiles. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

LIBERTY, Mo. (AP) — About 100 Kansas City-area worshippers have participated in a Catholic prayer service to seek spiritual healing over sexual abuse within the local archdiocese.

The Kansas City Star reports that the service at St. James Catholic Church in Liberty was the eighth in a series called “Healing Our Parishes Through Empathy.”

Participants carried small stones in a somber procession to the altar, where they placed the pebbles at the base of a wooden cross to symbolize letting go of a burden they’ve carried. They then washed their hands in basins of water.

The diocese says it was just a coincidence that the service was held exactly one year after Pope Francis accepted Bishop Robert W. Finn’s resignation. The former leader of the Kansas City-St. Joseph Diocese had failed to report a child sex abuse case involving a priest.


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