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Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

Old 01-17-14, 08:49 PM
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Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

VATICAN CITY — A document obtained by The Associated Press on Friday shows Pope Benedict XVI defrocked nearly 400 priests over just two years for sexually molesting children.

The statistics for 2011 and 2012 show a dramatic increase over the 171 priests removed in 2008 and 2009, when the Vatican first provided details on the number of priests who have been defrocked. Prior to that, it had only publicly revealed the number of alleged cases of sexual abuse it had received and the number of trials it had authorized.

While it’s not clear why the numbers spiked in 2011, it could be because 2010 saw a new explosion in the number of cases reported in the media in Europe and beyond.

The document was prepared from data the Vatican had been collecting and was compiled to help the Holy See defend itself before a U.N. committee this week in Geneva.


Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Vatican’s U.N. ambassador in Geneva, referred to just one of the statistics in the course of eight hours of oftentimes pointed criticism and questioning from the U.N. human rights committee.

The statistics were compiled from the Vatican’s own annual reports about the activities of its various offices, including the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which handles sex abuse cases. Although public, the annual reports are not readily available or sold outside Rome and are usually found in Vatican offices or Catholic university libraries.

An AP review of the reference books shows a remarkable evolution in the Holy See’s in-house procedures to discipline pedophiles since 2001, when the Vatican ordered bishops to send cases of all credibly accused priests to Rome for review.

Then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger took action after determining that bishops around the world weren’t following church law to put accused clerics on trial in church tribunals. Bishops routinely moved problem priests from parish to parish rather than subject them to canonical trials — or turn them into police.

For centuries, the church has had its own in-house procedures to deal with priests who sexually abuse children. One of the chief accusations from victims is that bishops put the church’s own procedures ahead of civil law enforcement by often suggesting victims keep accusations quiet while they are dealt with internally.

The maximum penalty for a priest convicted by a church tribunal is essentially losing his job: being defrocked, or removed from the clerical state. There are no jail terms and nothing to prevent an offender from raping again.


According to the 2001 norms Ratzinger pushed through and subsequent updates, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith reviews each case sent to Rome and then instructs bishops how to proceed, either by launching an administrative process against the priest if the evidence is overwhelming or a church trial. At every step of the way the priest is allowed to defend himself.

The Congregation started reporting numbers only in 2005, which is where Tomasi’s spreadsheet starts off. U.N. officials said Friday that the committee has not received the document.

In 2005, the Congregation authorized bishops to launch church trials against 21 accused clerics, and reported that its appeals court had handled two cases. It didn’t say what the verdicts were, according to the annual reports cited by the spreadsheet.

In 2006, the number of canonical trials authorized doubled to 43 and eight appeals cases were heard. And for the first time, the Congregation revealed publicly the number of cases reported to it: 362, though that figure includes a handful of non-abuse related canonical crimes.

A similar number of cases were reported in 2007 — 365 — but again the Congregation didn’t specify how many were abuse-related. Vatican officials, however, have said that it received between 300-400 cases a year in these years following the 2002 explosion of U.S. sex abuse cases in the U.S. In 2007, 23 cases were sent to dioceses for trial.

By 2008, the tone of the Vatican’s entry had changed. Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI, traveled to the scandal-hit United States that year and is quoted in the annual report as telling reporters en route that he was ‘‘mortified’’ by the scale of abuse and simply couldn’t comprehend ‘‘how priests could fail in such a way.’’

That year’s entry was also notable for another reason: For the first time, an official Vatican document made clear that nothing in the church process precluded victims from reporting abuse to police.

There was also another first in 2008, a critical year as abuse lawsuits in the U.S. naming the Holy See as a defendant were heating up: For the first time, the Vatican revealed the number of priests who had been defrocked: 68. Some 191 new cases were reported.

A year later, the number of defrocked priests rose to 103, while some 223 new cases were received, the vast majority of them abuse-related.

The year 2010 was another milestone in the sex abuse saga, with the explosion of thousands of cases reported in the media across Europe and beyond. Some 527 cases were reported to the Congregation. No figures were given that year for the number of defrocked priests, rather the Congregation described new church laws put in place to more easily and quickly remove them.

By 2011, with the new streamlined laws in place, the number of defrocked priests rose dramatically: 260 priests were removed in one year only, while 404 new cases of child abuse were reported. In addition to those defrocked, another 419 priests had lesser penalties imposed on them for abuse-related crimes.

In 2012, the last year for which statistics are available, the number of defrockings dropped to 124, with another 418 new cases reported.

http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/worl...xQM/story.html

-The bolded part just blows me away. How are these priests not being arrested for the actual molesters , and the ones knowing about these crimes and basically covering up??? Especially now we know all about this we should've heard of some kind of charges on anyone involved in these despicable crimes.
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Old 01-17-14, 09:04 PM
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Re: Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

Isn't it obvious? By keeping it in house, they reduce the amount of negative press that the Catholic Church gets. And obviously the defrocked priests aren't going to complain, because to do so would be a one way ticket to prison.

Any true moral leader would not just defrock these guys, but also turn them in to the authorities. The way that Pope Francis handles this should be interesting.
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Old 01-17-14, 09:07 PM
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Re: Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

Originally Posted by Supermallet View Post
Isn't it obvious? By keeping it in house, they reduce the amount of negative press that the Catholic Church gets. And obviously the defrocked priests aren't going to complain, because to do so would be a one way ticket to prison.

Any true moral leader would not just defrock these guys, but also turn them in to the authorities. The way that Pope Francis handles this should be interesting.
Or, make them immediately deal with Jesus at the pearly gates directly, if you catch my meaning.
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Old 01-17-14, 09:11 PM
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Re: Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

I believe the correct procedure is eye for an eye. So the only appropriate response would be to have the offending priests get gang-raped by the college of cardinals.
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Old 01-17-14, 09:14 PM
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Re: Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

Originally Posted by Supermallet View Post
Isn't it obvious? By keeping it in house, they reduce the amount of negative press that the Catholic Church gets. And obviously the defrocked priests aren't going to complain, because to do so would be a one way ticket to prison.

Any true moral leader would not just defrock these guys, but also turn them in to the authorities. The way that Pope Francis handles this should be interesting.
But at this point isn't there enough evidence for the Police to step in arresting and pursuing charges against these priests? These child-rapists can't stand behind their religious shield forever.
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Old 01-17-14, 09:16 PM
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Re: Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

Originally Posted by Supermallet View Post
I believe the correct procedure is eye for an eye. So the only appropriate response would be to have the offending priests get gang-raped by the college of cardinals.
Yeah, but they'd probably enjoy it for the most part, so, not really an eye for an eye....
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Old 01-17-14, 09:24 PM
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Re: Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

Originally Posted by mhg83 View Post
But at this point isn't there enough evidence for the Police to step in arresting and pursuing charges against these priests? These child-rapists can't stand behind their religious shield forever.
Not if the church has convinced the victims to keep quiet about it.
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Old 01-18-14, 01:25 PM
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Re: Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

Maybe I'm misreading something but this article doesn't state that priests aren't being turned in or arrested.
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Old 01-18-14, 01:48 PM
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Re: Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

I'm fairly surprised the former pope did anything, to be honest.
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Old 01-18-14, 03:50 PM
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Re: Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

Originally Posted by Supermallet View Post
I believe the correct procedure is eye for an eye. So the only appropriate response would be to have the offending priests get gang-raped by the college of cardinals.
I would prefer if it were this guy and his buddies instead of the cardinals.

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Old 02-05-14, 04:20 PM
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Re: Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

Vatican must report child abusers to police: UN

The Vatican must remove all child sexual abusers from their posts and turn them over to the police, the United Nations children's rights watchdog said on Wednesday.

The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child urged the Holy See to "immediately remove all known and suspected child sexual abusers from assignment and refer the matter to the relevant law enforcement authorities for investigation and prosecution purposes".

In a hard-hitting report, the committee said that the Catholic Church was still failing to do enough to live up to its stated commitment to stamp out child abuse by priests and lay employees, including in schools.

SEE ALSO: 'Vatican refuses to stop abuse': victims' group

It underlined its "deepest concern about child sexual abuse committed by members of the Catholic churches who operate under the authority of the Holy See, with clerics having been involved in the sexual abuse of tens of thousands of children worldwide".

"The Committee is gravely concerned that the Holy See has not acknowledged the extent of the crimes committed, has not taken the necessary measures to address cases of child sexual abuse and to protect children, and has adopted policies and practices which have led to the continuation of the abuse by and the impunity of the perpetrators," it added.

SEE ALSO: Vatican defrocked 400 priests after scandals

It blasted the practice of transferring child abusers from parish to parish within countries, and even across borders, in an attempt to cover up their crimes and remove them from the clutches of justice authorities.

"The practice of offenders' mobility, which has allowed many priests to remain in contact with children and to continue to abuse them, still places children in many countries at high risk of sexual abuse, as dozens of child sexual offenders are reported to be still in contact with children," it said.

The report followed a landmark hearing last month during which members of the committee - made up of 18 independent human rights experts from around the globe - grilled senior Churchmen and repeatedly called into question the Vatican's resolve.

http://www.thelocal.it/20140205/vati...r-to-police-un

-Why the fuck can't the Police come in and arrest these Priests? Do they have some kind of Magic keeping cops back?
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Old 02-05-14, 05:43 PM
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Re: Former pope defrocked hundreds for abuse

The Vatican is a sovereign country. They don't have to let the police come in to arrest anyone. They would have to agree to extradition.
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