Vatican Launches Website In Effort to Protect Children from Clerical Sexual Abuse

The Vatican's new website provides resources aimed at preventing clerical sexual abuse and promoting healing for past victims. Creative Commons image by Stefano Rellandini
The Vatican’s new website provides resources aimed at preventing clerical sexual abuse and promoting healing for past victims. Creative Commons image by Stefano Rellandini

The Vatican has launched a website as part of its efforts to protect children from clerical sexual abuse and promote healing and reconciliation.

It’s the first time that the Vatican has published resources and documents on the issue, and the site is sponsored by the commission set up by Pope Francis to protect minors.

“It is very important for the commission to have a means to communicate,” Marie Collins, an Irish abuse survivor and commission member, told Religion News Service on Tuesday (Dec. 6).

“I hope eventually people will also use it to communicate with the commission.”

The commission was established by the pope in 2013 and is headed by Boston Cardinal Sean O’Malley.

The new website includes a template for local churches seeking to protect minors from clerical sex abuse, guidelines on how to handle complaints and options for education and healing.

It also provides news and information about the commission in an easily accessible format and promotes greater sharing of information within the church.

“Awareness is so important, anything that encourages people to come forward and seek help,” Collins said. “This is very important to me as a survivor.”

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SOURCE: Religion News Service