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Hong Kong bill threatens confessional seal, warn advocates

March 14, 2024

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CWN Editor's Note: Catholics in Hong Kong have voiced “profound and grave concerns” about legislation that could threaten the integrity of the confessional seal.

The proposed law would require all citizens to report another who “committed, is committing, or is about to commit” a criminal offense.

In a March 13 statement, a group of activists pointed out: “To disclose the information to a police officer or face a 14-year prison sentence. “To force a priest to reveal what has been said in Confession, against his will and conscience and in total violation of the privacy of the individual confessing, is a total violation of Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and as such is completely unacceptable and must be condemned by people of conscience of all faiths and none throughout the world.”

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