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Richmond bishop to celebrate Mass of Atonement

September 14, 2018

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A Catholic bishop in Virginia is celebrating a “Mass of Atonement” in light of a Pennsylvania grand jury’s allegations that some 300 priests abused more than 1,000 children over 70 years and bishops covered up for them.

The Mass will be held Friday evening at the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Richmond.

Bishop Barry Knestout of the Diocese of Richmond organized the Mass as an opportunity for Catholics to pray for abuse victims and for church leaders to seek forgiveness.

Knestout said in a statement last month that the revelations in the Pennsylvania grand jury report “further erode trust in church leaders and in the church as a whole.”

The bishop has asked for a review of the Richmond diocese’s current procedures for responding to abuse complaints.

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