Vatican Investigates Chilean Order After Nuns Report Abuse

Pope Francis shows a crucifix during the Angelus noon prayer he delivers from the window of his studio overlooking St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican on Sept. 16, 2018. Tens of thousands of faithful have been treated to gifts from the pontiff, tiny crucifixes, distributed by nuns, refugees and some of Rome’s homeless and poor after the pope’s traditional Sunday appearance to pilgrims and tourists in the square. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

VATICAN CITY (AP) — The Vatican has launched an investigation into a small Chilean religious order of nuns after some sisters denounced sexual abuse at the hands of priests and mistreatment by their superiors.

The scandal at the Institute of the Good Samaritan was revealed in an investigative report by Chilean national television earlier this year at the height of outrage over how Chilean Catholic hierarchy covered up decades of sexual abuse of children by priests.

In the report, a half-dozen current and former nuns said sisters were thrown out of the order after they denounced the abuse to their superiors.

In a statement, the Vatican embassy to Chile announced that an “apostolic visitation” or investigation had begun Wednesday and would take testimony from current and former sisters and those affiliated with the institute.

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