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Vatican confirms: Belgian bishop instructed to leave country

April 13, 2011

The Vatican has confirmed that a Belgian bishop has been asked to leave that country, and barred from public ministry, as the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) investigates a sex-abuse complaint.

Bishop Roger Vangheluwe of Bruges resigned in April 2010, after revelations that he had abused his nephew. Last week the apostolic nuncio in Belgium disclosed that Bishop Vangheluwe had left the country.

In an April 13 statement, Father Federico Lombardi, the director of the Vatican press office, confirmed that the bishop was directed by the CDF to leave Belgium and to undergo psychiatric evaluation "to to enable further diagnostic and prognostic information to be gathered in order to continue and conclude the proceedings with a definitive decision." The CDF is still proceeding with the case, Father Lombardi said, and the directives from the Vatican do not represent a final judgment.


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