Bizarrely he feels that the faithful are the ones that must do penance.
I'm never entirely sure whether the hierarchy of the Church really believes their own dogma or whether they are simply cynically holding to a career that pays well and offers good perks. However he doesn't seem to have much respect for Irish Catholics if he recommends that they do penance for crimes committed by the clergy.
One thing he can be certain of is that those Catholics who follow this command humbly without a word of protest at the insult are so institutionalised that they literally will put up with anything and can be relied on to shut up and stay in their place in future.
Colm O'Gorman has started a response here:
Read furtherThis letter is primarily concerned not with the protection of children but with getting people back into the church.
If the Pope is truly concerned for the welfare of victims, his primary focus would be on ensuring that there are no further victims, and not only here in Ireland but across the global church he governs as Supreme Pontiff.
It was a simple enough an exercise. Acknowledge the fact of the cover up by the Church, take responsibility for it, and show how you will ensure it never happens again.
But the Pope failed to do any of these things.