Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Vatican releases summary of sex-abuse procedures

Catholic World News - April 12, 2010

The Vatican has issued a short set of guidelines explaining how the Church responds to sex-abuse complaints involving Catholic priests.

The guidelines are a simplified summary of the policies laid out in 2001, giving the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) jurisdiction over sex-abuse complaints. This summary, the Vatican press office notes, "may be helpful to lay persons and non-canonists."

The summary of CDF policies stresses that any credible accusation of sexual abuse should be forwarded to the CDF for disciplinary action." Meanwhile the diocesan bishop "always retains power to protect children by restricting the activities of any priest," the summary notes. "Civil law concerning reporting of crimes to the appropriate authorities should always be followed," the guidelines add. The summary outlines the possible disciplinary responses to sexual abuse, including dismissal from the priesthood.

Commenting on the Vatican's release of the guidelines, a New York Times headline said that the summary was provided "to quell critics." While that analysis may have been accurate, another headline, on a CNN story, was simply inaccurate. "Vatican overhauls sex abuse case procedures," the CNN headline read. The procedures outlined in the short document that was released April 12 do not represent a policy change.

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our July expenses ($32,725 to go):
$35,000.00 $2,274.95
94% 6%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

There are no comments yet for this item.

Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Making Moral Progress? July 3
Vatican statement clarifies duties of Catholic faithful after Obergefell decision July 2
Political battles vs. sacrificial service: The Brooks paradox revisited July 2
A Baptist leader with a message the Synod of Bishops should hear June 30
'Helpful' advice for social conservatives: ignore causes, deal with effects June 30

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope approves process for holding bishops accountable in abuse cases CWN - June 10
Pope Francis’ 2nd encyclical released (includes link to full text) CWN - June 18
US Supreme Court rules all states must recognize same-sex marriage CWN - June 26
Archbishop Nienstedt, auxiliary bishop resign CWN - June 15