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Archdiocese pledges to make amends

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We're hearing plenty about reparations as of late, but that's mostly related to war reparations. Now, the Archdiocese of Agana is talking about making amends with survivors through a Year of Reparation. It's a step towards spiritual justice.

"What are we doing? What is this year of reparation about? Well, we understand civil remedies and ecclesiastical remedies are always insufficient," explained Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Byrnes acknowledges the body is hurting - large in part due to the growing number of clergy sex abuse lawsuits against the Church.

To date, 80 victims have come forward alleging they were sexually abused or molested by priests or Catholic school staff.

That's what prompted a Year of Reparation, which will start on Thursday. The Faithful will focus on praying, fasting, and almsgiving.

HIs Excellency added, "What our prayers do is say to those victims to those who suffer, that they are worth our attention, our sacrifices, and our prayers. It's a way of the body of Christ expressing to all those who suffer, we're with you. We're in solidarity with you. And we think that a year of persistent prayer, fasting and almsgiving is a way for us to express to you your value."

"That the shame, the despair, the betrayal of trust, god can heal that. Because why? Because they're his beloved sons and daughters," he said.

A Year of Reparation will begin with an opening mass at the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral Basilica on July 6 at 6 p.m.

The mass will include a traveling monstrance or a golden vessel that contains a sacred host to be blessed by Archbishop Byrnes and will be passed from parish to parish. The monstrance will symbolize unity amongst the Archdiocese.

A final schedule of events will be announced at a later date.

"Our prayers are effective," the archbishop promised.

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