London, Feb 8 (ANI): In a shocking revelation it has been told that 4,000 cases of Catholic priests sexually abusing children have been investigated in ten years.
Cardinal Joseph William Levada divulged at a Vatican conference the "dramatic increase" on the 3,000 in 50 years previously suspected.
He told 100 international clergy that the Catholic Church has an obligation to report paedophile priests to the authorities.
There have been instances in Ireland and other places where bishops were "dragging their heels" in naming offenders.
Cardinal Levada said Pope Benedict XVI wanted help for abuse victims to be a priority.
Irish victim Marie Collins, 65, revealed how she was raped by a chaplain when she was 13.
"It is impossible for me to forget even after 50 years," the Sun quoted her as saying.
"Those hands that abused my body were the same ones that the following day offered me Holy Communion," she added.
Paedophile priest Alexander Walsh, 58, faces a long jail sentence after being convicted at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court of 21 sex offences in 18 years against boys aged eight to 16. (ANI)
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