Community Issues

Pope Francis Issues New Law Regarding Sexual Abuse Reports

Law requires all priests and nuns to report suspected abuse or coverups to church hierarchy.

The Vatican is taking new steps to hold abusive priests, and the hierarchy that has protected them, accountable.

The Associated Press reports that Pope Francis has issued a new law requiring all Catholic priests and nuns around the world to report clergy sexual abuse and cover-up by their superiors to church authorities.

The law provides a uniform outline for investigating abuse claims and offers whistle-blower protections. Additionally it requires every diocese in the world to have a system for receiving anonymous complaints.

"People must know that bishops are at the service of the people," Archbishop Charles Scicluna, the Vatican's longtime sex crimes prosecutor, told the AP. "They are not above the law, and if they do wrong, they must be reported."

Critics of the law say it does not go far enough, because it does not require the clergy to report suspected abuse to the police, but just to their superiors within the Catholic Church. But the Vatican claims that due to different legal systems in different countries, it is impossible to implement such a rule.

Last year, Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro released a grand jury report revealing more than 300 "predator priests" have been credibly accused of sexually abusing more than 1,000 child victims, in accusations that dated back decades.

You can click here for more information on support and resources for victims of sexual abuse and assault.

How can you start something good?
The Conversation
More stories you may love

How Saving A Church Is Saving Lives Too

A couple bought an abandoned church and turned it into a community center. What they've created is so much bigger.

They're Saluting Our Veterans Every Day of the Year

Meet the Pittsburghers who are making sure our returning vets have jobs, homes and food, and find out how you can help.

How Goats And The Volunteers Who Love Them Are Saving A Popular Park

They're keeping invasive plants from taking over Pittsburgh's Frick Park by doing what comes naturally. For the goats at least!

Our Mission
Have you ever felt like there's just too much bad news? Ever felt like the world is hopeless, and you're helpless to do anything about it? We did too. That's why we created Sparkt™.
At Sparkt™, we tell powerful stories about great people making a difference in their communities, and we show you how you can make a difference too. Join us, and together, let's #StartSomethingGood!
Sparkt Newsletter
Get positive, uplifting stories in your inbox
Follow Us on Social Media
Download the Mobile App
Sparkt™ is a Rabble Holdings, Inc. Media Brand. © 2020 Rabble Holdings, Inc. All Rights Reserved.