Tag Archives: pope&#39s

To kiss pope's hand – or not – enters the Catholic culture wars

To kiss pope's hand - or not - enters the Catholic culture warsOn Monday, when Pope Francis visited a Catholic shrine in Loreto, he repeatedly withdrew his right hand as a long line of people bowed and tried to kiss the ring on it. Rorate Caeli, a website read by Catholic traditionalists, Tweeted: “Francis, If you don’t want to be the Vicar of Christ, then get out of there!” Papal biographer Austen Ivereigh, a supporter of Francis, countered by Tweeting: “He’s making sure that they engage with him, not treat him like a sacred relic. Some Vatican watchers noted that even former Pope Benedict, a hero to nostalgic conservatives, and his predecessor John Paul, did not like having their hands kissed – at least not by long lines of people, for the sake of expediency.



Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines

Outrage over Pope's decision to reject resignation of archbishop convicted of protecting predator priest

Outrage over Pope's decision to reject resignation of archbishop convicted of protecting predator priestCatholic campaigners condemned as “shocking” a decision by Pope Francis not to accept the resignation of a French archbishop who was given a suspended prison sentence this month for failing to report the sexual abuse of boy scouts by a known predatory priest.   Tuesday's surprise decision came just a month after the Vatican convened an unprecedented conference of cardinals in which it pledged to get tough on priests who abuse children and the bishops who cover up for them. French cardinal Philippe Barbarin travelled to Rome on Monday and offered his resignation to Pope Francis. But on Tuesday the Vatican announced that the Argentinian pontiff had decided to reject the resignation. While the Vatican offered no explanation, it seems likely that the Pope wants to wait to see the outcome of an appeal that the 68-year-old archbishop intends to launch against his six-month sentence. But the decision was condemned by groups representing survivors of clerical sex abuse from around the world. Pope Francis receives Cardinal Philippe Barbarin, Archbishop of Lyon, at the Vatican Credit: Reuters “I’m stunned by this decision. It is shocking and depressing,” Anne Barrett Doyle, the head of the US-based organisation Bishop Accountability, told The Telegraph. “It reveals the Pope’s very narrow concept of accountability. It is a reminder to bishops that they have nothing to fear from this Pope. It is a profound and disastrous misreading of what is required to address this crisis.” Just last month, during a four-day conference at the Vatican attended by bishops and archbishops from around the world, the Pope said that “no abuse must ever be covered up, as has happened in the past". In a statement, Barbarin, the most senior French Catholic to have been swept up in the Church’s sex abuse scandal, said: “On Monday I handed over my mission to the Holy Father. He spoke of the presumption of innocence and did not accept this resignation." Barbarin said that he would step back from his role as archbishop of Lyon "for a little while", allowing his deputy to stand in for him. Even the Bishops' Conference of France – the country’s most senior Catholic body – said it was surprised by the decision, which it described as "unheard of". Barbarin was convicted earlier this month of failing to act against Bernard Preynat, a priest who has confessed to abusing boy scouts in the 1980s and 1990s. Preynat is expected to be put on trial later this year. Barbarin became archbishop of Lyon in 2002 and learned of Preynat’s abuse of boys but let him remain in ministry until 2015, said Bishop Accountability. French victims of clerical abuse also reacted with outrage to the papal decision. "I think that man (the Pope) is going to manage to kill off the church. It's a mistake too many,” said Francois Devaux, a co-founder of a victims' organisation. Faith in the Catholic Church has plunged as a result of its failure over two decades to address sex abuse perpetrated by clergy. Last week George Pell, the Australian cardinal who was once the third most powerful figure in the Vatican, was sentenced to six years in prison after being convicted of abusing two altar boys in Melbourne’s St Patrick’s Cathedral in the 1990s. He also intends to appeal and remains a cardinal, despite being behind bars. Campaign groups were profoundly disappointed when last month’s Vatican conference on combating sexual abuse failed to come up with any new, concrete initiatives to address the crisis.



Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines

At Pope's abuse summit, Church seeks to fix 'systematic failures'

At Pope's abuse summit, Church seeks to fix 'systematic failures'Cardinals Blase Cupich of Chicago and Oswald Gracias of Mumbai spoke on the second day of a conference of some 200 senior Church officials convened by Pope Francis to confront what he has called the scourge of sexual abuse by the clergy. Various aspects of the sexual abuse crisis made 2018 the worst year for the pope since his election in 2013. Last week, Theodore McCarrick, once a powerful cardinal in the U.S. Church, was dismissed from the priesthood after the Vatican found him guilty of sexual abuse of minors and adults over decades.



Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines

In U.S., pope's summit on sex abuse seen as too little, too late

In U.S., pope's summit on sex abuse seen as too little, too lateIn the study of his home outside Washington, victims’ advocate Tom Doyle searched a shelf packed with books to find the thick report that led him to stop practicing as a priest and devote himself to helping those who had been sexually abused by clergymen. The 1985 report was one of the first exposes in a sexual abuse scandal that has plagued the Catholic Church. Pope Francis has called senior bishops to meet for four days starting on Thursday to discuss how to tackle the worsening crisis.



Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines

Group sees 'disconnect' between pope's words, actions on sex abuse

Group sees 'disconnect' between pope's words, actions on sex abuseA US-based group that compiles data on sexual abuse by Catholic clerics and bishops accused of covering it up fears that a bid by Pope Francis to tackle the scandals is a case of too little, too late. Speaking ahead of a Vatican summit of bishops this week to discuss the crisis, Anne Barret Doyle, co-director of BishopAccountability.org, complained of a “disconnect” between the pontiff’s strong statements and his actions. The non-governmental organisation is taking part in a counter-summit of victims running alongside the Vatican event.



Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines

Pope's credibility 'on the line' as Vatican convenes global meeting on combating child abuse by clergy

Pope's credibility 'on the line' as Vatican convenes global meeting on combating child abuse by clergyVictims of clerical sex abuse have warned Pope Francis that his credibility is on the line as he confronts the biggest challenge of his papacy with a landmark conference on protecting children from rape and molestation. Nearly 200 bishops, archbishops, patriarchs and other senior Catholic figures from around the world will convene in Rome on Thursday for an unprecedented four-day conference that is supposed to tackle the scourge of child abuse by clergy. It is the biggest effort so far to address scandals that have eroded faith in the Catholic Church in the US, Ireland, Australia and elsewhere. “There’s going to be every effort to close whatever loopholes there are,” said Charles Scicluna, an archbishop from Malta who is one of the organisers of the summit. “This is a new day in terms of transparency. Bishops are going to be held accountable. My hope is that people see this as a turning point.” Members of the survivors' group Ending Clergy Abuse in front of St Peter's Square at the Vatican Credit: Gregorio Borgia/AP But victims’ groups are furious that it has taken this long for the Church to organise such a high-profile meeting, pointing out that is has been 17 years since the Boston sex abuse scandal, which lifted the lid on the problem in the Church. They accuse Pope Francis of failing to clearly decree that priests, and the bishops who protect them, should be reported to the police, prosecuted and sent to jail if found guilty of abuse. They say the Vatican has had years to set out clear guidelines to every diocese in the world, instructing them to hand over to the civil authorities any priest accused of abusing children. It has not done so. “Pope Francis has been talking about zero tolerance ever since he was elected. It’s time to deliver on that promise,” said Peter Isely, from Ending Clergy Abuse, a victims’ support group. “There needs to be a universal law for the Church around the world – if you are a priest who rapes or sexually assaults a child, then you are going to be removed from the priesthood. And you are going to be turned over to the authorities and prosecuted and imprisoned.” Peter Isely, founding member of Ending Clergy Abuse, in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican Credit: Gregorio Borgia/AP Survivors of sex abuse are tired of the years of empty rhetoric and lack of action coming from the Vatican. “We’ve been waiting a long time. We’ve waited too long. This is a historic moment. This has never happened before in the history of the Catholic Church. The Pope has acknowledged that this is a global problem in the Church and that’s important. He now has to deliver,” said Mr Isely, speaking in front of St Peter’s Basilica. “They can do something in the next few days that could save a child somewhere in the world from undergoing what we went through as children – these horrible, horrific, terrible crimes.” Peter Saunders, a British victim of sex abuse by priests, said: “This pope is the best public relations pope of our lifetime. He is very media savvy. But his credibility on this issue has been blown away.” The Vatican made Mr Saunders a member of a special commission for the protection of children, but he resigned in protest at how little progress the body made, saying it was “starved of funding”. Around a dozen survivors have been invited to meet the Pope during the conference.  “What we need is action. We need to have a real conversation about this – why is there not zero tolerance for priests who have assaulted children? What’s the hold-up? What’s the problem?” said Mr Isely. The Vatican insists that this time, it means business. Cardinal Blase Cupich, archbishop of Chicago, is one of the organisers of the summit Credit: AP/Gregorio Borgia “It’s going to be a rallying moment,” said Cardinal Blasé Cupich from Chicago, another organiser of the conference. “We want to make sure that bishops claim ownership of the problem.” Archbishop Scicluna vowed that the days of omerta – the code of silence which normally refers to the mafia – were over. “Whether you call it omerta or a state of denial, it’s a no-go. We need to face the facts. This is not the end game but we are going to do everything possible to make people accountable.” On Saturday, Pope Francis defrocked an American cardinal, Theodore McCarrick, for historical sexual abuse allegations. The 88-year-old, a former archbishop of Washington, is the most senior Catholic figure to be dismissed from the priesthood in modern times.



Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines

The Latest: Pope's Christmas wish is "fraternity"

The Latest: Pope's Christmas wish is "fraternity"VATICAN CITY (AP) — The Latest on Pope Francis' Christmas celebrations (all times local):



Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines

Victims, accountability on agenda at pope's sex abuse summit

Victims, accountability on agenda at pope's sex abuse summitVATICAN CITY (AP) — The Vatican on Tuesday released the first details of Pope Francis' upcoming high-stakes sex abuse prevention summit, making clear that bishops attending the gathering must reach out to victims before they get to Rome and that accountability is very much on the agenda.



Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines

Can the pope's accusers force him to resign?

Can the pope's accusers force him to resign?In 2013, Francis’s predecessor, Benedict, became the first pontiff in six centuries to resign. Benedict, then 85, abdicated because he said he no longer had the strength to run the Church. HOW DID THE VATICAN AND THE POPE GET TO THIS POINT?



Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines

Pope's remedy to those seeking scandal: prayer and silence

Pope's remedy to those seeking scandal: prayer and silenceVATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis on Monday recommended silence and prayer to counter those who "only seek scandal," division and destruction in what appeared to be an indirect response to allegations that he had covered up for a U.S. cardinal embroiled in sex abuse scandals.



Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines