Pope Heads For New York

Pope Benedict XVI departs the Edward J. Pryzbyla University Center on the campus of The Catholic University of America Thursday, April 17, 2008, in Washington.
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Washington (AP) Pope Benedict XVI heads right for the U.N. this morning and will deliver a speech to the general assembly.

His speech comes after a visit to Washington in which he put the country's clergy sexual abuse scandal front and center. During a dramatic meeting in Washington, he prayed and spoke with some of the victims of sexual abuse by priests.

A papal spokesman says Benedict and Boston Cardinal Sean O'Malley met with a group of about five or six abuse victims yesterday in the chapel of the Vatican Embassy in Washington. The pope offered them encouragement and hope.

The pontiff goes to the United Nations for an address to the general assembly, before visiting a Manhattan synagogue. His day ends at a prayer service with christian leaders at a church on the upper east side.