We must raise $453 by March 31st to pay critical bills. Essential to continue our mission. Donate now!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Belgian bishop wants more Vatican action against abusive prelate

Catholic World News - September 15, 2010

A Belgian bishop has questioned why the Vatican has not taken stronger disciplinary action against a bishop who admitted to sexual abuse.

Bishop Guy Harpigny of Tournai, the chief spokesman for the Belgian hierarchy on sex-abuse issues, asked why Bishop Roger Vangheluwe has been allowed to go into hiding, without answering to the Holy See for his admitted years of abuse. “Vangheluwe has chosen his own punishment and the Vatican does nothing,” Bishop Harpigny complained.

The Belgian prelate expressed the view that Bishop Vangheluwe should be laicized. But in any case the disgraced bishop should be disciplined, he said. “I would prefer a trial by the church authorities. This would be more honest. But any signal would be a good one," he said.

Bishop Harpigny also conceded that Belgian Church leaders had been slow to admit the sex-abuse problem, because an open discussion of the issue might open the Church to legal claims. “If you officially apologize, then you are acknowledging moral and legal responsibility,” he said. “Then there are people who ask for money and we don’t know what lawyers and the courts will do about that.”

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 March expenses ($453 to go):
$35,000.00 $34,546.96
1% 99%
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!

Show 1 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: scullyjr9118 - Sep. 15, 2010 7:31 PM ET USA

    To paraphrase his Excellency's comments: 'Yeah, the rest of us were wrong, but he was wronger.' And: 'Hey, don't look at me, man, that guy confessed!' I mean, I really don't blame this guy. It's hard to overcome the perception of being pathetic. He and his Eminence Danneels should host a talk show.

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

Recent Catholic Commentary

Insights on the enigma that is Pope Francis March 27
Our Most Characteristic Vice? March 27
Recognizing the Noonday Devil March 27
Patricia Jannuzzi on gay activists: And the real problem is? March 27
Surrogate parenthood = exploitation of desperate women March 27

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope announces Jubilee: a Year of Mercy CWN - March 13