“We must reconfirm the rights of children to grow up in a family with a father and a mother.”
That was the message of Pope Francis during a meeting with the International Catholic Child Bureau on April 11. Additionally, he noted the right of parents to determine their children’s moral and religious education.
The Holy Father was stern in his rejection of any kind of “educational experimentation” with children and young people. “They are not,” he said, “guinea pigs in a laboratory!”
Pope Francis quoted an expert with whom he had spoken in the last week about the “dictatorial path of some educational projects.” “One doesn’t know,” he said, “if we are sending children to school or to a re-education camp.”
In that meeting, the Pope also apologized for the clerical abuse scandal and spoke of the Church’s efforts to prevent child abuse by clergy or others involved with parish ministry.