Pope reforms sanctions, lay also liable for abuse

Attempted ordination of women priests also a crime now

(ANSA) - ROME, JUN 1 - Lay people will also be liable for sexual abuse in the new list of penal sanctions Pope Francis issued Tuesday, on the principle that "mercy requires correction", the Vatican said.
    In the new system, abuse is seen as a crime against human dignity.
    Francis has on several occasions stressed the Vatican's zero tolerance policy on sex abuse by priests, and cover-ups by bishops.
    Among the other moves, the attempted ordination of women as priests is also listed as a crime.
    With the Apostolic Constitution "Pascite Gregem Dei," Pope Francis reforms Book VI of the Code of Canon Law, continuing a revision begun by Benedict XVI and applying penal sanctions to more criminal offenses, Vatican News reported.
    The new text is a more agile tool for correction, which is to be applied promptly to "avoid more serious evils and to soothe the wounds caused by human weakness." The Apostolic Constitution "Pascite Gregem Dei" is dated 23 May 2021, the Solemnity of Pentecost, and enters into force on 8 December 2021. (ANSA).


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