NPR : News

Filed Under:

Pope Benedict Reportedly Defrocked Hundreds Of Priests For Abuse

In a period of just over two years, Pope Benedict XVI defrocked nearly 400 priests for molesting children, according to the AP, which says it obtained a document representing a rare collection of such data.

As of Friday afternoon, NPR hasn't independently confirmed the AP's information, not having seen the document. Here's a bit of context from NPR's Sylvia Poggioli in Rome:

"If confirmed, the number of nearly 400 marks a sharp increase over the 170 priests removed in 2008 and 2009, when the Vatican first provided details on the number of defrocked priests.

"Before that, the Vatican only revealed the number of alleged cases of sexual abuse it had received."

The reported defrockings span a period from 2011-2012, meaning they would have taken place well before the election of Pope Francis in March of 2013. The document that allegedly lists the incidents is part of the Catholic Church's ongoing effort to cope with a legacy of child sex abuse.

From the AP:

"The document was prepared from data the Vatican had been collecting to help the Holy See defend itself before a U.N. committee this week in Geneva.

"Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Vatican's U.N. ambassador in Geneva, referred to just one of the statistics in the course of eight hours of oftentimes pointed criticism and questioning from the U.N. human rights committee."

The news agency says it acquired the document about the pope's punishment of the priests Friday. The U.N. panel that Tomasi faced this week is the Committee on the Rights of the Child, which is meeting in Geneva this month.

Sylvia reports that Tomasi "was subjected to a tough grilling" Thursday.

And she adds, "The Holy See was asked to provide data on the scale of clerical sex abuse, what it's done to address it, and what Pope Francis intends to do with a new commission he announced last month to find best practices to protect children from abuse and to help victims heal."

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Book Review: 'In Praise Of Hatred'

Alan Cheuse reviews the novel In Praise of Hatred, by Khaled Khalifa. The book, which was recently translated to English, features a young Muslim girl in 1980s Syria.
NPR

Fast-Food CEOs Earn Supersize Salaries; Workers Earn Small Potatoes

A new report finds that the average compensation of fast-food CEOs has quadrupled since 2000. By comparison, worker wages have increased less than 1 percent.
NPR

Green GOP Group Caught Between 'Rock And A Hard Place'

On Earth Day 2014, it wasn't easy being an environmental organization in the Republican Party. The big donors who write checks aren't much interested in the environment.
NPR

Online Sales Taxes Shift Consumer Behavior, Study Shows

Some states have enacted so-called Amazon taxes, forcing the giant online retailer to collect sales taxes the same way traditional stores do. In those states, Amazon's sales fell about 10 percent.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.