Retired German archbishop offers up honor after abuse report Lalrp KY4SLDXAFYI63J4OTJ6CIGFQBQ

BERLIN — A former head of the Catholic German Bishops Convention is giving up the nation’s highest honor following scathing criticism this week of his dealing with of clergy abuse circumstances throughout his tenure as archbishop of Freiburg and as a personnel officer within the diocese.

A spokesperson for Robert Zollitsch mentioned Friday the 84-year-old knowledgeable German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier that he’s handing again the Order of Benefit, which was bestowed on him in 2014, German information company dpa reported. He didn’t specify a motive for the transfer.

An unbiased report commissioned by the Freiburg archdiocese on the church’s dealing with of abuse circumstances over many years was offered on Tuesday — the most recent in a string of such experiences casting gentle on church officers’ actions, or lack thereof, in dioceses throughout Germany.

Considered one of its authors, Eugen Endress, mentioned that Zollitsch utterly ignored canon legislation in reference to abuse circumstances throughout his time in workplace. He mentioned that, for instance, a cleric’s breach of celibacy guidelines was punished however that the abuse of kids wasn’t penalized underneath church legislation. “We had been speechless,” he mentioned.

Zollitsch was answerable for personnel points in Freiburg from 1983 till he turned archbishop of Freiburg in 2003, a place that he held till 2013. He was the top of the German Bishops Convention from 2008 to 2014.

Freiburg, in Germany’s southwestern nook, is without doubt one of the nation’s largest dioceses, with about 1.8 million Catholics.

Its management selected Thursday to take down portraits of Zollitsch and his late predecessor, Oskar Saier, on the workplaces of present Archbishop Stephan Burger.

Zollitsch launched a video in October acknowledging that he made severe errors and asking for forgiveness. He didn’t remark after the discharge this week of the report.

Along with giving up the Order of Benefit, he has knowledgeable Burger that he’ll forgo the privilege of being buried within the bishops crypt at Freiburg cathedral, in response to Friday’s announcement.