- Apr 14, 2021
When Pope Francis abolished the “pontifical secret” covering the church’s judicial handling of cases of the sexual abuse of minors, it was hailed as a major step forward in promoting greater transparency and accountability.
The Vatican report on Theodore E. McCarrick’s rise through the U.S. episcopal ranks should be a contemporary lesson in transparency for the entire church, said U.S. experts in church law.
Part of the charm of living in Italy is the way Catholicism is so utterly woven into the fabric of life here.
With Easter just days away, debate continues to swirl about how accessible churches and pastors should be on the holiest day on the Christian calendar – and, for that matter, whether Easter ought to be celebrated next Sunday at all.
In real life, my experience is that many Catholics recognize the competing values at stake and don’t envy bishops who have to make virtually unprecedented judgment calls.
Pope Francis updated the laws that govern the Vatican judicial system in an effort to establish greater transparency and independence, particularly in financial and criminal matters.
The 12-year process of updating the Code of Canon Law section dealing with crimes and penalties was necessary “to make it more organic and responsive to new situations and problems,” Pope Francis said.
Like American law, victims of clerical sexual abuse are not parties to criminal procedures, but could that change?