Francis begs forgiveness from victims of church sex abuse in Chile and admits he made "grave mistakes" in handling the scandal.
Pope Francis has admitted he made "grave errors" in judgement in a clerical sex abuse scandal in Chile.
In a letter he said he felt shame and has invited the abuse victims he had discredited to Rome to beg their forgiveness.
The scandal and the Vatican's handling of it triggered protests during the Pontiff's visit to Chile in January.
The Catholic Church was accused of a "cover-up" involving Chilean Bishop Juan Barros, who is said to have hidden abuses by a priest. Francis repeatedly rejected the accusations.
After his trip, Pope Francis sent one of the Vatican's most experienced sexual abuse investigators, Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta.
Sciluna was investigating claims surrounding Bishop Juan Barros, appointed by the pope in 2015 despite accusations that Barros had covered up sexual abuse of minors by his mentor Father Fernando Karadima.
Francis wrote Wednesday's letter (April 11) after receiving Scicluna's 2,300-page report and in the missive to the bishops he summoned them to Rome for a meeting. He did not say when it would take place.