Vatican Law to Protect Individuals From Abuse By Priests

Vatican Law to Protect Individuals From Abuse By Priests

(HorizonPost.com) – The Roman Catholic Church has a long history — even in the modern era — of being unwilling to address the sexual tendencies of its (supposedly) celibate clergy. However, Pope Francis has now added provisions to the Vatican’s Code of Canon Law redefining who can be considered a victim or a predator.

Most people are aware of the many stories of clergy preying on children and young men who had the misfortune of falling under their sway. The new rules now apply to lay leaders (school principals or accountants, for example) and recognizes that adults can be victims because of the balance of power in relationships between priests and parishioners.

While any steps taken to eradicate the crimes are a reason for celebrating, the new policies only go so far. The punishment only leads to the defrocking of a clergyman and fines levied on laypeople. Also, there’s nothing that requires those holding higher office to report suspected abuses to the police.

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