Church: Pope accepts resignation from Bishop Bode of Osnabrück
Pope accepts resignation from Bishop Bode of Osnabrück
Osnabrück’s Bishop Bode has been criticized for his handling of abuse cases. Now he resigns.
Franz Josef Bode is no longer Bishop of Osnabrück. The Pope accepted a resignation from the 72-year-old, who has been heavily criticized for dealing with abuse cases. This was announced by the Holy See on Saturday. Exact reasons for Pope Francis’ decision were not given.
The churchman is accused of not adequately responding abuse cases to have reacted. Last year he declared a case of sexualized violence against minors as a “relationship”, accused a council of those affected. In December, he contacted the Vatican and filed a canonical complaint against Bode. The attitude of the bishop is still more perpetrator than victim-oriented, it said.
cases of abuse in the diocese Osnabruck
The background to this is cases of abuse in the diocese of Osnabrück that have become known through a scientific report by the University of Osnabrück. In one case, a priest had sexualized violence against a girl in a community for years. The experts accuse Bode of having given him a management position in youth work in the same year in which the person concerned was helping the man bishop indicated.
Bode had recently announced that he did not want to resign. A corresponding application to pope had not previously been known.
The chairman of the German Bishops’ Conference, Georg Bätzing, accepted the resignation request with “great regret and respect”, as the DBK announced. Bode became auxiliary bishop in the archdiocese of Paderborn in 1991 and has been bishop of Osnabrück since 1995. He was the longest-serving, incumbent bishop in Germany.