Vatican

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Vatican Has New Law on Sex Abuse Complaints

For first time, a system is in place to investigate bishops, other higher-ups

(Newser) - Pope Francis issued new rules Thursday on how the church should handle sexual abuse allegations. Some key points of the decree, called "You Are the Light of the World," which takes effect June 1:
  • A first: For the first time, priests and nuns are required to report abuse
... More »

After 35 Years, Vatican Opens Probe Into Missing Girl

Emanuela Orlandi was the daughter of a Vatican employee who vanished at age 15

(Newser) - The Vatican has for the first time opened its own investigation into the case of Emanuela Orlandi, a 15-year-old Vatican citizen who disappeared in the summer of 1983. The Orlandi family's lawyer, Laura Sgrò, confirmed the probe on Wednesday. She told the AP that "the Secretariat of State... More »

In Significant Move, Pope Defines the Term 'Vulnerable Adults'

As part of new law requiring Vatican personnel, Holy See diplomats report abuse allegations

(Newser) - Pope Francis on Friday issued sweeping new sex abuse legislation for Vatican personnel and Holy See diplomats that requires the immediate reporting of abuse allegations to Vatican prosecutors, a policy shift aimed at being a model for the Catholic Church worldwide. The mandatory reporting provision, while limited in scope, marks... More »

What Did the Pope Do During the Holocaust? We'll Soon Know

Pope Francis announces Vatican archives from Pope Pius XII papacy will be opened in 2020

(Newser) - Three of the four popes who followed Pope Pius XII have since been named saints. The effort to attach the same designation to Pius has stalled, but a big move by Pope Francis could soon change that. Saying "the church is not afraid of history," the pope on... More »

Vatican's 'Next Scandal': Rules on 'Children of the Ordained'

Spokesman confirms secret rules on how to deal with children fathered by priests

(Newser) - "It's the next scandal" for the Vatican, according to one man right in the middle of it. Just days after Pope Francis admitted there was a problem within the Catholic Church involving nuns impregnated by male clergy, sometimes leading to forced abortions, Vincent Doyle talks to the New ... More »

Pope Makes 'Almost Revolutionary' Move Against Ex-Cardinal

Theodore McCarrick has been defrocked by Pope Francis

(Newser) - Cardinal Donald Wuerl may have forgotten about sexual abuse allegations against his predecessor, but Pope Francis didn't. The New York Times reports that word has been handed down from the top: Theodore McCarrick, the former cardinal of Washington, DC, has been defrocked. "The Holy Father has recognized the... More »

Book Describes Large Gay Subculture Within Vatican

French author Frederic Martel says it's at the heart of Catholic Church's troubles

(Newser) - A gay French writer has lifted the lid on what he calls one of the world's largest gay communities, the Vatican, estimating that most of its prelates are homosexually inclined and attributing much of the current crisis in the Catholic Church to an internecine war among them. In the... More »

Rome Mayor Quickly Reverses Plan to Keep Fountain Coins

Virginia Raggi suggested the city keep them, but they'll continue to go to Catholic charity

(Newser) - The proper way to toss a coin into Rome's famed Trevi fountain is to do so over your shoulder. Just don't think about what happens after that, because it's apparently quite the touchy subject. The city of Rome has traditionally given the tossed coins—they add up... More »

Letter Reveals Vatican's Real Take on Abuse Cases

Rome's reaction stunned sex-abuse survivors

(Newser) - The Vatican blocked US bishops from taking measures to address the clergy sex abuse scandal because US church leaders failed to sufficiently consult with the Holy See beforehand about legally problematic proposals, according to a letter obtained by the AP . The Nov. 11 letter from the Vatican's Cardinal Marc... More »

Unlikely Catholic Revolt: Tiny Order of French Nuns

Tiny order threatens to renounce vows rather than accept Rome's decision to replace their leader

(Newser) - The Vatican has an unusual dilemma after nearly all the nuns in a tiny French religious order threatened to renounce their vows rather than accept the Holy See's decision to remove their superior. The sisters argue that the Vatican commissioners sent to replace their superior general, the niece of... More »

Vatican Insists US Bishops Delay Sex Abuse Vote

Top Catholics want stateside clergy leaders to postpone till after global meeting

(Newser) - At the Vatican's insistence, US Catholic bishops abruptly postponed plans Monday to vote on proposed new steps to address the clergy sex abuse crisis roiling the church, per the AP . Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, the president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, said he was told... More »

35-Year Mystery Stirs as Vatican Finds Bones

Emanuela Orlandi's family hopes to 'bring her home'

(Newser) - The discovery of human bones at a property next to the Vatican's embassy to Italy has renewed hope of solving a 35-year-old disappearance, which some claim involves the Vatican itself. Rome's chief prosecutor is working to identify the bones found during renovation work at the Vatican property in... More »

Spain, Vatican Are in Agreement on Dictator's Remains

Say they'll prevent Gen. Francisco Franco from being reburied under Madrid cathedral

(Newser) - The Spanish government said Tuesday that the Vatican has agreed to jointly find ways to prevent the remains of late Spanish dictator Gen. Francisco Franco from being reburied under a central Madrid cathedral. Relatives of Franco want to reinter his embalmed body in a family crypt under Almudena Cathedral if... More »

Victim of Alleged Priest Sex Abuse Takes On the Vatican

Manny Vega sues, wants names of all offenders within the church released

(Newser) - A California man who says he was sexually abused by a priest decades ago is suing the Vatican, seeking the release of the names of all offenders within the church worldwide, the AP reports. Manny Vega, a 52-year-old former police officer and Marine, said Thursday that he's seeking the... More »

Benedict to His Defenders: You're Going Too Far

Pope emeritus says 'pain has turned to anger' and is affecting the church and his own legacy

(Newser) - Pope Benedict pledged to remain "hidden to the world" when he became pope emeritus and turned things over to Pope Francis, but some newly surfaced letters are changing that. In them, Benedict sends a message to those who prefer his more conservative leadership over Francis' relatively liberal style that... More »

Letter Makes Latest Church Sex Scandal Look Worse

Seems the Vatican heard about Theodore McCarrick's behavior long ago

(Newser) - A 2006 letter from a top Vatican official confirms that the Holy See received information in 2000 about the sexual misconduct of now-resigned US cardinal, lending credibility to bombshell accusations of a cover-up at the highest echelons of the Roman Catholic Church, the AP reports. Catholic News Service published the... More »

Vatican Responds to Damning Clergy Sex Abuse Report

Pope is on victims' side, spokesperson says

(Newser) - Two days after the release of the grand jury report on clergy sex abuse in Pennsylvania's Catholic dioceses, the Vatican has responded, CNN reports. "Regarding the report made public in Pennsylvania this week, there are two words that can express the feelings faced with these horrible crimes: shame... More »

Pope Makes Big Doctrine Change on an 'Inhuman Recourse'

Francis says death penalty is always 'inadmissible'

(Newser) - Pope Francis has changed church teaching about the death penalty, saying in a new policy published Thursday it's always "inadmissible" because it "attacks" the inherent dignity of all humans. The Vatican says Francis has approved a change to the Catechism of the Catholic Church , the compilation of... More »

Church Abuse Scandal Claims Highest-Ranking American Yet

Pope Francis accepts resignation of former DC archbishop Theodore McCarrick

(Newser) - The Catholic Church's sexual abuse scandal has just claimed its highest-ranking American church official. Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of 88-year-old Cardinal Theodore McCarrick while an investigation into multiple allegations of abuse continues, reports the AP . McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington, DC, had been removed from public... More »

Teens Help Crack Vatican's Secret Archives

In Codice Ratio aims to put it all online

(Newser) - Wish you could access the Vatican's Secret Archives online? Sorry, it's not there—but a new project combining artificial intelligence with optical-character-recognition (OCR) could change that, the Atlantic reports. Called In Codice Ratio , it aims to scan the archives' 53 miles of shelved material dating back some 1,... More »

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