The Catholic Church is “nowhere close” to enacting the reforms needed to stop the “epidemic” of sex abuse by predatory priests and bishops against children, campaigners warned on Tuesday.
Pope Francis is “in retreat” from any meaningful effort to bring abusers to justice, said Bishop Accountability, a leading pressure group.
The scathing criticism comes as the Vatican admits it has secret guidelines on how to deal with priests who break their celibacy vows and sire children.
The scathing criticism comes as nearly 200 archbishops, bishops and other senior officials join the Pope at the Vatican for an unprecedented, four-day conference on combating the sexual abuse of minors by clergy.
More… Always more… Vatican’s Secret Rules for Catholic Priests Who Have Children
ROME — Vincent Doyle, a psychotherapist in Ireland, was 28 when he learned from his mother that the Roman Catholic priest he had always known as his godfather was in truth his biological father.
The discovery led him to create a global support group to help other children of priests, like him, suffering from the internalized shame that comes with being born from church scandal. When he pressed bishops to acknowledge these children, some church leaders told him that he was the product of the rarest of transgressions.
But one archbishop finally showed him what he was looking for: a document of Vatican guidelines for how to deal with priests who father children, proof that he was hardly alone.