- May 24, 2020
Beginning the process of restoring normal governance to the dioceses of Chile in the wake of a massive clerical sexual abuse and cover-up scandal, Pope Francis named archbishops for the archdioceses of Santiago and Puerto Montt.
Chile’s bishops called for national dialogue and an end to the violence that has wracked the country for the past month.
Archbishop Bernardino Piñera, who served as Archbishop of Serena from 1983-1990 after previously serving as Bishop of Temuco, is being investigated by the Vatican over allegations that he sexually abused a minor 50 years ago.
He hasn’t yet taken office, but a newly announced auxiliary bishop of Santiago, Chile, is already in hot water over his remarks on the sex abuse crisis, women, and the Jewish community.
Chilean bishops said that while they support legislation requiring priests and religious authorities to report crimes, they also fear that an update to the country’s current law would force clergy to break the sacramental seal of confession.
Chilean Cardinal Javier Errazuriz has gone before a local prosecutor to testify as a defendant as part of an investigation into the country’s sprawling sex abuse and cover-up scandal.