Posts Tagged congregation for the doctrine of the faith
Exclusive: Marie Collins responds to Cardinal Muller’s allegations about abuse commission / National Catholic Reporter
“Marie Collins of Ireland is a clergy sexual abuse survivor who resigned March 1 from Pope Francis’ Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors. Cardinal Gerhard Müller, the head of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, gave an interview shortly following Collins’ resignation. Collins has written an open letter to Müller in response to that interview.”
… Finally, with respect, Cardinal, I do not know what the motivation is in regard to any difficulties put in the way of the pontifical commission. All it wishes to do is bring better protection to children and vulnerable adults wherever in the world the Catholic Church is present. If there are problems, nothing is gained by maintaining a pretense that all is well.
“I would ask that instead of falling back into the Church’s default position of denial and obfuscation, when a criticism like mine is raised the people of the church deserve to be given a proper explanation. We are entitled to transparency, honesty and clarity.
“No longer can dysfunction be kept hidden behind institutional closed doors. This only succeeds as long as those who know the truth are willing to remain silent.”
By Marie Collins in National Catholic Reporter — Read more …
Opinions differ over how Pope Francis is handling the Church’s clergy sexual abuse scandal. But setting aside questions of mercy vs. justice as debated in a recent Associated Press story, we think that some of the most problematic comments come in the story’s last paragraph:
“Francis scrapped the commission’s (Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors) proposed tribunal for bishops who botch abuse cases following legal objections from the congregation (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith). The commission’s other major initiative — a guideline template to help dioceses develop policies to fight abuse and safeguard children — is gathering dust. The Vatican never sent the template to bishops’ conferences, as the commission had sought, or even linked it to its main abuse-resource website.”
You can click here to read the rest of the Associated Press’ story.
In a move likely to be read as an attempt by Pope Francis to show resolve in the fight against clerical sexual abuse, the pontiff has named Boston’s Cardinal Sean O’Malley, widely seen as the leading reformer in the Catholic hierarchy, as a member of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the powerful Vatican department that handles abuse cases.
“The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, traditionally known as the “Holy Office,” is headed by German Cardinal Gerhard Muller. Its main responsibility is defending Catholic teaching, but since 2001, it’s also played lead in prosecuting cases under Church law for priests charged with sexual abuse.
“Last June, Pope Francis also announced that the congregation would house a new legal section designed to impose accountability not only on abuser priests, but also on bishops and other Catholic superiors who covered up that abuse.
“Since then, however, the launch of the new tribunal has been delayed amid legal and administrative wrangling, and O’Malley’s appointment may well reflect a desire by Francis to kick-start the process.”
By Ines San Martin, Cruxnow.com — Click here to read the rest of this story.
Doctrinal congregation convokes meeting on role of women in the church / Catholic News Service in National Catholic Reporter
Leaders of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith spent three days in late September listening to women theologians, canon lawyers, Scripture scholars and specialists in other academic fields talk about roles women have played in the Catholic church and roles they could play in the future.
“After the symposium Sept. 26-28 was over, the congregation issued a brief statement outlining the topics discussed and listing the women who made formal presentations. The congregation said the papers will be published at a later date.
“Cardinal Gerhard Müller, prefect of the doctrinal congregation, opened the meeting, which involved about 50 people, mostly women, and officials and consultants to the congregation, the statement said.
“The theme of “the role of women in the church” was explored first by looking at “the definition of the feminine vocation in Catholic tradition,” and proceeded to a discussion about concrete roles women have played and can play within the church.”
By Cindy Wooden, Catholic News Service, in National Catholic Reporter — Click here to read the rest of this story.
Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai has urged Pope Francis to remove Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron as head of the Archdiocese of Agana because of gravely serious allegations of sex abuse of altar boys.
“‘I want you to know that I am in Rome to urge the Holy See to remove Archbishop Apuron as archbishop of Agana and to appoint a successor,’ Hon said in his two-page statement. ‘I can assure you that the gravely serious allegations against Archbishop Apuron will continue to be dealt with by the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, which will hold a canonical trial. His Holiness, Pope Francis, is monitoring the proceedings.’
“Pope Francis temporarily stripped Apuron of his administrative powers over the Catholic church on Guam and temporarily replaced him with Hon on June 6.”
By Haidee V. Eugenio, Pacific News Daily — Click here to read the rest of this story.
More than a year after the conclusion of the Vatican’s apostolic visitation of US communities of women religious, the Vatican has begun asking more than a dozen orders to send their superiors to Rome to discuss concerns that surfaced.
“‘We did a very positive report at the conclusion of the visitation,’ a report that looked at the life of women’s congregations in the United States as a whole and was released in December 2014, said Cardinal Joao Braz de Aviz, prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life.
“But ‘there remained about 15 — more or less — congregations that we needed to speak with about a few points,’ the cardinal told Catholic News Service on June 14. The cardinal had attended a news conference about a new document from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith looking at the relationship between the hierarchy and communities or movements that arise from ‘charismatic gifts.'”
By Cindy Wooden, Catholic News Service, in Catholic Herald — Click here to read the rest of this story.
Pope Francis’ proposed Vatican tribunal to judge bishops who covered up for pedophile priests is going nowhere fast.
“Despite fresh focus from the Oscar-winning film ‘Spotlight’ on how Catholic bishops protected priests who raped children, Francis’ most significant sex abuse-related initiative to date has stalled. It’s a victim of a premature roll-out, unresolved legal and administrative questions and resistance both inside and outside of the Holy See, church officials and canon lawyers say.
“The surprise proposal made headlines when it was announced on June 10 as the first major initiative of Francis’ sex abuse advisory commission. A Vatican communique said Francis and his nine cardinal advisers had unanimously agreed to create a new judicial section within the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to handle ‘abuse of office’ cases against bishops accused of failing to protect their flocks from pedophiles.
“But the proposal immediately raised red flags to canon lawyers and Vatican officials alike.”
By Nicole Winfield, Associated Press — Click here to read the rest of this story.
Muller on ‘Spotlight’ cover-up: Most priests ‘bitterly wronged’ by abuse generalizations / National Catholic Reporter
Questioned on his reaction to the unveiling of systematic cover-up of priestly sexual abuse in the Oscar-winning film ‘Spotlight,’ the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Cardinal Gerhard Müller, said that only a number of individuals not motivated by their priestly office but instead ‘disturbed or immature,’ have been proven guilty of sexually abusing minors …
“Meanwhile, Jesuit Fr. Klaus Mertes, the whistleblower who first unveiled the abuse in the Jesuit College in Berlin during his tenure as headmaster in 2010, has called for Müller to step down.
“Bishops who contribute towards covering up abuse cases should be removed from episcopal office or step down, Mertes told the Kölner Stadt Anzeiger …
“‘Instead of stepping down, Bishop Müller, who covered up and obscured sexual abuse when he was in the highest position in the church in his diocese, has climbed the hierarchical ladder just like that,’ Mertes said. ‘… He still continually speaks of ‘malicious press campaigns’ against the Catholic church. Not a sign of remorse and certainly not of a willingness to deal with the structural problems that the church has in connection with abuse. For him it is just the case of a few evil churchmen but otherwise everything is in order in the church and can remain as it always was.’
“‘In my opinion, that is intolerable — above all, intolerable for the victims,’ Mertes continued. ‘How can this man, who is the head of the Congregation finally responsible for abuse, of all things, ever again be credible?'”
By Christa Pongratz-Lippitt, National Catholic Reporter — Click here to read the rest of this story.
Former diocesan leader alleges Muller thwarted investigation of choir boy abuse / National Catholic Reporter
A former chairman of the lay diocesan council in Regensburg, Germany, has alleged that Vatican Cardinal Gerhard Müller ‘systematically’ prevented the investigation of abuse in Germany’s famous ‘Regensburger Domspatzen’ boys’ choir during his time as Bishop of Regensburg.
“The allegations against Müller, who is now the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, coincided with 60 further alleged abuse victims coming forward since Ulrich Weber, an independent lawyer, published an interim report in January which showed that three times as many boys had been abused between 1953 and 1992 than reported by the diocese.”
By Christa Pongratz-Lippitt, National Catholic Reporter — Click here to read the rest of this story.
Voice of the Faithful thanks Pontifical Commission for prompting new tribunal for holding bishops accountable
The Roman Catholic Church reform movement Voice of the Faithful today thanks the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors and Cardinal Sean O’Malley for presenting proposals to Pope Francis that have led to establishment of a new Vatican tribunal for judicial review of allegations against bishops involved in clergy sexual abuse of children.
At the same time, we thank Pope Francis for approving the tribunal and authorizing funding for it.
Time will tell whether these moves actually result in holding bishops accountable for coverups of crimes, but these steps are the most promising the Vatican has yet taken.
Although thankful that Pope Francis has funded the tribunal, we are awaiting similar funding for the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors. Unlike other Vatican committees, the Commission answers directly to the Pope and not to other Curial offices—and funding is essential for the Commission to maintain its independence from the Curia.
Voice of the Faithful®: 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 the governance and guidance of the Church. More information is at www.votf.org.