- Sep 30, 2020
Given the COVID-19 pandemic, members of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors met online and, for those who could, in Rome for their plenary assembly Sept. 16-18.
A leading expert in the field of child protection has said that the Catholic Church still has a long way to go in terms of acknowledgment and awareness of the issue, noting that the pope’s environmental encyclical Laudato Si in many areas of the world is more visible than safeguarding efforts.
In a webinar talk on child protection, a top expert in the field warned that the risks of online child sexual abuse or exploitation has significantly increased during the coronavirus pandemic, yet attention to the issue has faded.
Members of the International Union of Superiors General (UISG) Monday were the protagonists of the first of a series of webinar sessions focusing on child protection and how safeguarding efforts have been impacted by the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
In an April 7 statement just hours after the court’s verdict, Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said, “The Holy See, which has always expressed confidence in the Australian judicial authority, welcomes the High Court’s unanimous decision concerning Cardinal George Pell, acquitting him of the accusations of abuse of minors and overturning his sentence.”
Jesuit Father Hans Zollner, one of the world’s leading experts on safeguarding minors, said the church is suffering “institutional trauma” from clerical sexual abuse, trauma that it must learn to integrate into its theology and understanding of salvation if it is to overcome it.