Diarmuid Martin says Pope Francis should meet clerical abuse victims during Irish visit

The Archbishop of Dublin says the pontiff "will obviously speak about various forms of abuse" during this month's trip

Diarmuid Martin says Pope Francis should meet clerical abuse victims during Irish visit

Diarmuid Martin. Photo: Stephen Murphy

The Archbishop of Dublin says Pope Francis should meet with victims of clerical sex abuse when he comes to Ireland.

Diarmuid Martin has previously said the Pontiff should tackle the issue of abuse during his trip later this month.

He now believes that should mean making time for the victims.

Speaking today, Archbishop Martin observed: "It would be great for him to meet some of the victims or survivors from that group - but the time is very tight.

"You'd have to get a small group who are representative, and it's never easy to do that."

He added: "[Pope Francis] will obviously speak about various forms of abuse - not just clerical... there was the abuse in the institutions, the laundries, the mother and baby homes."

Pope Francis is travelling to Ireland for the World Meeting of Families.

The event's spokesperson Brenda Drumm also says the pontiff needs to address some important issues.

She said: "I hope that he will come to address the issues that are of concern to people in the Church, and to people who are no longer part of the Church.

"I think he can't come to Ireland without addressing the issue of abuse."

500,000 people are expected to attend a mass in Dublin's Phoenix Park during the papal visit on August 26th.

Concerns have been raised that if everyone who wants to drive does, Dublin could come to a standstill on the day.

Organisers say that will not happen, but are encouraging as many people as possible to get public transport.