Archive for September 24th, 2014

Will Vatican’s first criminal trial on charges of clergy sexual abuse signal new policy?

Voice of the Faithful® National Statement:

The arrest and initiation of criminal proceedings against a former papal nuncio for child sex abuse may signal the Vatican is ready to take substantive action on clergy sex abuse and cover-ups instead of just talking about needed changes.

The arrest Sept. 23 of former bishop and apostolic nuncio to the Dominican Republic Josef Wesołowski, who is accused of having paid for sex with minors, is just one step. Still needed are penalties for bishops who covered up child sex abuse and shielded priests from criminal prosecution. This problem continues today despite the Church’s constant vows to do better.

If this arrest demonstrates a new resolve by the Church under Francis’ papacy to discipline abusers and abettors of the scandal, Voice of the Faithful® is encouraged the Church may have turned a corner in its handling of clergy sexual abuse, but next steps to discipline other bishops are needed now, not in the distant future.

Voice of the Faithful® is a worldwide movement of faithful Roman Catholics working to support survivors of clergy sexual abuse, support priests of integrity and increase the laity’s role in governance and guidance of the Church.

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Vatican arrests former nuncio on sex abuse charges / Associated Press on Crux

The Vatican put its former ambassador to the Dominican Republic under house arrest Tuesday (Sept. 23) after opening a criminal trial against him, the first time a high-ranking Vatican official has ever faced criminal charges for sexually abusing youngsters.

“Josef Wesolowski had already been defrocked in June after the Vatican’s canon law court found him guilty of abuse and imposed its toughest penalty under church law: laicization, or returning to life as a layman.

“On Tuesday, the Vatican City State’s separate criminal court opened a preliminary hearing into his case and ordered him placed under house arrest.”

By Associated Press on Crux — Click here to read the rest of this story.

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