Vatican

All posts tagged Vatican

British paedophile victim picked for Vatican abuse watchdog

Published December 18, 2014 by JS2

Screen Shot 2014-12-18 at 10.30.47

VATICAN CITY (AFP) – Pope Francis has appointed eight new members from five continents to the Vatican’s child protection body, including a British victim of paedophile priests, the Holy See said Wednesday.

The commission of experts, which is tasked with advising Francis on how to deal with a sex abuse scandal which rocked the Catholic Church in the 2000s, is now “a wide representation of situations and cultures,” the Vatican said.

Led by American cardinal Sean O’Malley, the body – set up a year ago – is now made up of seven women and nine men, from both the clerical and lay worlds, with new members hailing from Australia, Britain, Colombia, New Zealand, Philippines, South Africa, United States and Zambia.

Peter Saunders from Britain is the second paedophile victim to be appointed to the commission created to root out paedophilia in the Catholic Church, after Marie Collins from Ireland, an outspoken campaigner for the rights of victims.

Saunders, who was abused throughout his childhood by two priests, set up NAPAC, the National Association for People Abused in Childhood, which aims to support victims and develop resources for responding to child abuse.

The appointment of new members to the body – including child protection trainers, psychologists and specialists in human rights – follows Francis’ move in November to create a separate commission to speed up the appeal process for priests found guilty by the Church of child sex abuse.

Speeding up the process would see sex abusers handed a definitive conviction more quickly, as well as helping innocent priests eager to clear their names.

For more than a decade, the Catholic Church has been rocked by a cascade of paedophilia scandals, with victims describing the trauma of abuse at the hands of people charged with their care.

A UN committee in February denounced the Church for its secretive handling of child abuse accusations and for failing to stamp out predatory priests, and urged it to hand over known and suspected abusers for prosecution.

Pope Francis hit back, saying the Church had “acted with transparency and accountability” in its handling of the scourge.

Despite his recognition of abuse as “the shame of the Church”, some victims’ groups have accused him of not doing enough, most prominently the American association SNAP, which does not believe the commission will resolve the issue.

“We know Pete Saunders and Marie Collins,” its director David Clohessy said Wednesday.

“They are wonderful, smart and compassionate individuals. We wish them, and the commission, well.

“But complicit Catholic officials need punishment, not advice. This commission can’t provide that. Only external pressure – from victims, witnesses, whistleblowers, police, prosecutors, and lawmakers – can,” he said.

Former Vatican Ambassador To Be Tried for Child Sexual Abuse

Published September 25, 2014 by JS2

is

The Vatican has opened a criminal trial against its former ambassador to the Dominican Republic and placed him under house arrest, marking the first time a high-ranking official has been criminally charged by the Vatican with sexual abuse of children was defrocked in June after the Vatican’s canon law court found him guilty of abuse and returned him to life as a layman. Wesolowski, who is from Poland, had been recalled from his post in August 2013 amid allegations that he had sexually abused teenage boys.

What Pope Francis Has Done Differently in Tackling the Sexual Abuse Scandal

In a statement, Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi, S.J. said that the move “is consistent with the wish expressed by the Pope that such a serious and delicate case be addressed without delay, with the just and necessary rigour, with the full assumption of responsibility on the part of the institutions governed by the Holy See.”

Because of health problems, Wesolowski is being held under house arrest in Vatican City, according to the statement.

In Secrets of the Vatican, FRONTLINE detailed the Vatican’s failure to address the church’s handling of abuse cases. Recent steps toward reform have included criminalizing sexual abuse and forming an advisory board.

But the pope has also defended the church’s handling of the crisis, telling an Italian newspaper in March that “no one else has done more.”

“The cases of abuse are awful because they leave profound wounds,” Francis said. But he added: “The Catholic Church is maybe the only institution to have moved with transparency and responsibility. No one else has done more. Yet the church is the only one to be attacked.”

Vatican Rentboy Scandal: Paedophile Priest Patrizio Poggi Arrested for Slander

Published July 2, 2013 by JS2

384701

 

A convicted paedophile priest who claimed that an underage prostitution ring was operating inside the Holy Roman Church has been arrested for slander.

 

Italian prosecutors said that Patrizio Poggi, a 46-year-old former priest who named nine clergymen and three other people as involved in recruiting and abusing young boys in Rome, made up the allegations out of personal animosity.

The Vatican had refused to reinstate Poggi after he served a five-year sentence for abusing teenage boys during his time as a parish priest at the San Filippo Neri church in Rome.

“Poggi conceived and put in action a slanderous plan, presenting circumstances that were false”, prosecutors said.

“He wanted to cause a scandal that he believed could have led to a review of his sentence and his re-admission to the church.”

 

The Vatican had rejected Poggi’s allegations as false and said he was motivated by a desire for vengeance. It criticised sections of the Italian media for publishing the names of those accused by Poggi.

“The cardinal expresses his full confidence in the magistracy and declares himself full convinced that this slander will be demolished, demonstrating Poggi’s claims to be untrue,” said Cardinal Agostino Vallini, head of the Catholic Vicariate of Rome.

“God will hold everyone accountable for their deeds.” 

 

International Buisness Times

 

Paedophile priest claims ‘rent boy’ scandal operated at Vatican with ‘starving’ victims picked up at gay bar for sex with clergymen

Published June 30, 2013 by JS2

  • Starving and desperate victims from eastern Europe were picked up outside gay bar called Twink
  • Former Carabinieri officers pimped boys for nine clergymen, says Don Patrizio Poggi
  • Vatican dismiss allegations and accuse priest of seeking revenge


article-2351535-1A92811E000005DC-39_306x336

Accuser: Convicted paedophile priest Don Patrizio Poggi who claims there was a rent boy ring at the Vatican

A convicted paedophile priest has claimed a rent boy ring operated at the Vatican with clergymen hiring teenagers for sex inside churches.

Don Patrizio Poggi, 46, who served a five-year sentence for abusing five boys aged 14 to 15, at his parish outside Rome, has given police a list of nine names.

Four people have been placed under investigation – including a monsignor who is currently the secretary of an important bishop, it has been alleged.

Also being investigated is a former Carabinieri policeman suspected of recruiting under-age boys for the alleged prostitution ring.

The ex-officer apparently snared the teenagers, mostly eastern European immigrants, outside a gay bar named Twink near Rome’s Termini train station.

A senior Vatican official has dismissed the allegations, accusing Poggi of seeking revenge because the church refused to reinstate him.

Poggi, the former priest at the San Filippo Neri church in Rome, said he made the allegations to ‘protect the Holy Church and the Christian community.’

The boys were chosen because they were starving and desperate, he claimed, according to Il Messaggero newspaper.

The former policeman allegedly selected the victims as he sat in his Fiat Panda – marked ‘Emergency Blood’ to avoid parking fines.

He was helped by a friend who ran a modelling agency, luring underage boys through ‘false work offers for modelling and acting roles’, Poggi said.

The agent also looked for victims at gay discos, saunas and gyms across Rome. An accountant was also said to be involved.

The boys were paid €150-€500 (£130-£425) to perform sex acts in church premises across the capital.

Poggi also accused the former Carabinieri of selling consecrated hosts for satanic rites.

When he met the authorities, Poggi reportedly presented documentary and photographic evidence in the company of two senior Vatican clergymen who vouched for his credibility.

One of the clergymen was Monsignor Luca Lorusso, an adviser to the Papal Nuncio to Italy, who is himself a confidante of Pope Francis.

Poggi’s list of names included two senior church officials and a religion lecturer.

Cardinal Agostino Vallini, head of the Catholic Vicariate of Rome, accused Poggi of making false claims out of a desire for vengeance and personal resentment.

Vallini said: ‘The cardinal expresses his full confidence in the magistracy and declares himself full convinced that this slander will be demolished, demonstrating Poggi’s claims to be untrue

‘God will hold everyone accountable for their deeds.’

The controversy comes just weeks after Pope Francis confirmed the existence of a ‘gay lobby’ in the Vatican to a visiting Latin American church group.

The apparent network inside the supposedly celibate and staunchly anti-homosexual Church is one reason why Pope Francis is working on a thorough house-cleaning of the Roman curia.

 

Mail online

Pope orders Vatican officials to tackle child sex abuse scandals

Published April 5, 2013 by JS2

Pontiff’s call dismissed by victims’ groups as simply rhetoric designed to try and woo back disgusted Catholics to the church

Pope Francis consulted senior cardinals over the clergy sex abuse scandals.

Pope Francis consulted senior cardinals over the clergy sex abuse scandals. 
 
Pope Francis has directed the Vatican to act decisively on ecclesiastic sex abuse cases and take measures against paedophile priests, saying the Catholic church’s credibility was on the line.
 

The announcement was quickly dismissed by victims’ advocates as just more talk. “Once again … a top Catholic official says he’s asking another top Catholic official to take action about paedophile priests and complicit bishops,” said Barbara Dorris, an official of Snap, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, a US-based organisation.

“Big deal. Actions speak louder than words. And one of the first actions Pope Francis took was to visit perhaps the most high-profile corrupt prelate on the planet, Cardinal Bernard Law, who remains a powerful church official despite having been drummed out of Boston for hiding and enabling crimes by hundreds of child molesting clerics,” Dorris said in a statement.

Clergy abuse victims have called for swift and bold action from Francis as soon as he was elected pope last month. In the pope’s homeland, Argentina, Roman Catholic activists had characterised him as being slow to act against such abuse while he was head the church there.

The clergy child abuse scandals in many countries have drained morale and finances from the church, driving countless Catholics away, especially in western Europe. Some dioceses have had to close parishes and take other drastic actions after paying out millions for counselling and other compensation to victims in cases settled in and out of court.

The Vatican’s brief announcement on Friday emerge from the pope’s meeting with Bishop Gerhard Ludwig Müller, the head of the congregation for the doctrine of the faith – the office that shapes and enforces church policy on what to do about any abuse allegations and what happens to the abusers.

“The holy father in a special way urged that the congregation, following the line sought by Benedict XVI, act decisively in sex abuse cases, above all promoting measures to protect minors, assistance for all those who in the past suffered such violence, necessary measures against the guilty,” the statement said of Francis’s meeting with Müller.

 

The Guardian