Pope `deeply ashamed` over paedophile priests: news agency
Rome (ANTARA News) - Pope Benedict XVI said Tuesday he was "deeply ashamed" by the child sex scandals that have rocked the US Catholic Church, as he flew to Washington for an official visit, the ANSA news agency reported.
"We are deeply ashamed," the pope told journalists, adding: "The Church will do everything it can to heal the wounds caused by paedophile priests" and ensure "events of this kind are no longer repeated."
"Paedophilia is completely incompatible with the practice of ministry. It is better to have good priests rather than have many," he added.
Benedict made the comments as he travelled to the United States for his first papal visit to North America since he was elected in 2005 following the death of John Paul II.
On the visit, the pope is expected to strongly denounce a paedophilia scandal involving hundreds of priests which plunged the US church into a serious crisis and forced it to pay victims more than three billion dollars in compensation.