Articles on Clergy sex abuse

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Pope Francis recently made it mandatory for clergy to report sexual abuse to church superiors. AP Photo/Andrew Medichini

The Catholic Church is tightening rules on reporting sexual abuse – but not swearing off its legal privilege to keep secrets

Pope Francis is trying to address gaps in the regulatory processes of the Catholic Church. But clergy can still decide whether, and to what degree, to share information.
Theodore McCarrick, retired archbishop of Washington D.C., prays during the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops in 2011. AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File

Theodore McCarrick will continue to be a Catholic priest

In the Catholic understanding, priesthood is not simply a job that a someone can be fired from. Ordination is a deeply spiritual ceremony that is believed to transfer the power of the Holy Spirit.
A woman holds up a quilt with photos of people who say they were abused as children by priests, in San Diego, 2007. AP Photo/Denis Poroy

What Catholics can learn from protests of the past

There is rich Catholic heritage of resistance. Catholic protesters have used powerful religious symbols, including vials of their own blood, as an extension of Christ's blood, to demand change.
Member of the Coalition of Catholics and Survivors hold a protesting outside the Boston archbishop’s residence in 2003. Jim Bourg/Reuters

The Catholic Church’s grim history of ignoring priestly pedophilia – and silencing would-be whistleblowers

While the problem of priestly abuse might be centuries old, its modern paper trail began after World War II, when 'treatment centers' appeared for rehabilitating priests. Many were send to New Mexico.
New priests being ordained during a ceremony led by Pope Francis in St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican, when they take vows, including to remain celibate. AP Photo/Andrew Medichini

How views on priestly celibacy changed in Christian history

Early Christians were open to marriage for priests. It wasn't until the 12th century that celibacy became mandatory in the Catholic Church.

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