Timeline of Catholic Church Sexual Abuse Crisis in U.S.

Pope Francis made a surprise announcement on the last day of his U.S. visit, revealing that he'd met with people who have been sexually abused by clergymen. The move brought renewed focus on the issue, which has rocked the Roman Catholic church for more than a decade. 

Francis isn't the first pope to apologize to victims of abuse, nor is he the first to meet with them – that would be Benedict XVI, seven years ago. 

What makes Francis' remarks especially notable is where he made them – in Philadelphia, where the first U.S. clergyman was convicted for not acting to stop abuse in the city's archdiocese. Click through the timeline to see more events from the 30 year history of public abuse. 

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