(NewsMax.com) - Pope Benedict XVI was expected Wednesday to raise sensitive issues such as the Iraq war and Hispanic immigration when he meets with President George W. Bush on the second day of a US visit that began under the cloud of a clergy sex scandal.
On the flight from Rome to Washington Tuesday, Benedict told reporters he felt "deeply ashamed" by the child abuse scandal that has rocked the US church, and would use his first visit as pope to the United States to try to "heal the wounds caused by pedophile priests."
He also vowed to raise the issue of immigration when he holds one-on-one talks with Bush at the White House on Wednesday.
The United States must do "everything possible to fight ... all forms of violence so that immigrants may lead dignified lives," the pope said in response to a reporter's question about whether he would address the issue of Latin American immigrants with the US leader.
Hispanics make up nearly 40 percent of the 70 million Catholics in the United States and are increasingly targeted by a crackdown in the United States on illegal immigrants.
Benedict was also expected to discuss with Bush the US involvement in Iraq, where more than 4,000 US soldiers have died in a war launched by the United States against firm opposition from the Vatican.
"There was a difference of opinion back in 2003, when the war began, and beyond", White House spokeswoman Dana Perino told reporters.
"But I do think that they share an agreement that in order to stabilize the region and promote human rights and justice, having our troops there has been helpful," she added....
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