Action Alert!
Catholic World News

No compromise on confessional seal, Vatican declares

July 01, 2019

The Vatican has stated that priests can never be required to reveal what they are told in sacramental confessions.

Reacting to legislature proposals that would require priests to disclose reports of sexual abuse, a Note from the Apostolic Penitentiary says that while the Church is committed to fighting abuse, the confessional seal cannot be compared with other professional privileges, such as the lawyer-client privilege, which may be waived in some circumstances. The Vatican statement insists that the Church will work “to prevent secular laws from applying to the seal, which is inviolable.”

The note—signed by Cardinal Mauro Piacenza, the Major Penitentiary, says: “The secrecy is not an obligation imposed from the outside, but rather an intrinsic requirement of the sacrament and, as such, cannot be dissolved even by the penitent.”


For all current news, visit our News home page.

Further information:
Sound Off! supporters weigh in.

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

Show 1 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: [email protected] - Jul. 01, 2019 10:53 PM ET USA

    About time the Church has taken a strong stand on this. It also lets the leftist government legislators that this non-negotiable. If we buckle to this they will be telling us what we can hear in church and what our faith can be or include. Also the Church must challenge and chastise any priest or bishop who professes otherwise.