The Vatican's Promoter of Justice in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Mgr Charles Scicluna, has started a series of separate meetings with 11 men who allege they were sexually abused by priests in St Joseph Home, Sta Venera, 20 years ago.

Some of the men who met Mgr Scicluna today described the meetings as long, but praised Mgr Scicluna for his eye for detail and his understanding.

Four priests are being investigated for the abuse and three have been taken to court, where their case has dragged on for years.

Apart from the criminal proceedings, should the abuse be confirmed, they would also be stripped of the priesthood. They are already banned from conducted priestly duties in public.

A notary attended today's meetings to note the evidence.

One of the men who attended a meeting with Mgr Scicluna said it was hoped that the Church would conclude its case within the next few months.

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