Authors Greg Erlandson and Matthew Bunson continue the discussion they began in the book from Our Sunday Visitor, Pope Benedict XVI and the Sexual Abuse Crisis: Working for Reform and Renewal. Send us feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org. Kindle Edition available for download at amazon.com.
As has been anticipated for months, and as we predicted in our book "Pope Benedict XVI and the Sexual Abuse Crisis," in coming weeks the Holy See is planning to issue an update to the 2001 norms for how cases involving sexual abuse of minors by priests are to be handled. What to expect? Basically a codification of current policy and practice to make the lessons learned from handling the flood of cases originating in the United States available to Church leaders in other parts of the world.
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Try this thought experiment: A priest in California drugs and rapes a 13-year-old boy. He's caught, and is convicted of the crime. But before he is sent to prison, he hops a plane in Los Angeles and flees to the Vatican, hiding behind the sovereign walls of the Holy See. The United States requests the priest's extradition. The Vatican refuses, arguing in part that the priest has visited the Vatican on numerous occasions recently, and had an expectation that visiting "would not entail any legal disadvantages" for him.Would there be outrage?
According to the British newspaper The Daily Telegraph, the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation, the world’s largest public service broadcast network that exists under a Royal Charter) is planning to celebrate the visit of Pope Benedict XVI to England and Scotland in September by putting the pontiff “on trial.” The 90-minute show will offer a hypothetical trial of the pope for covering up child sex abuse cases by priests.
The New York Times once again attacked Pope Benedict XVI in its July 1 edition with another poorly researched and error-filled article. Having failed to stir up any major controversy with the article, the Times editors railed anew in an editorial on Friday expressing explicitly the biases that were so implicit in its earlier article. In the July 1 article, the Times claims that then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger failed in his responsibilities to claim jurisdiction over sex abuse cases in the 1990’s.
Developments in Belgium over the last seven days have gone from strange to stranger as police raided Church offices, drilled holes in the coffins of dead archbishops while ostensibly searching for files related to sexual abuse cases, and attracting the ire of Pope Benedict XVI and the Vatican.
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