The bishop of Augsburg in southern Germany has offered to resign following accusations that he hit children, officials and media reports say.
Bishop Walter Mixa was reported to have told the Pope in a resignation letter that his diocese needed a “new start”.
The bishop at first denied hitting children before saying he may have slapped them. He apologised on Tuesday.
A stream of global abuse allegations has rocked the Roman Catholic Church in recent months.
Bishop Mixa was accused of carrying out beatings at a Catholic children’s home in the 1970s and 1980s.
He has not been accused of any sexual abuse.
Many of the allegations to emerge against Catholic priests recently in Germany and other countries concern the sexual abuse of children.