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French Bishop Says Defending Minors “Absolute Priority” After Confession Row

Eric de Moulins-Beaufort’s feedback got here after report of tens of 1000’s sexual abuse circumstances by clergymen


Defending youngsters from sexual abuse is an “absolute priority” for the Catholic Church, a French archbishop stated Tuesday, strolling again earlier feedback suggesting clergymen shouldn’t violate the secrets and techniques of confession.

Eric de Moulins-Beaufort sparked outrage amongst victims’ teams final week after saying the secrecy of confession was “above the laws of the Republic”.

His feedback got here after an impartial report revealed tens of 1000’s of circumstances of sexual abuse by clergymen over the previous seven many years.

The archbishop met Tuesday with Inside Minister Gerald Darmanin — on the request of President Emmanuel Macron.

Afterwards, he insisted on “the determination of all bishops, and all Catholics, to make the protection of children an absolute priority, in close cooperation with the French authorities.

“The scope of the violence and sexual assaults in opposition to minors revealed by the report calls for that the Church revise its practices in gentle of this actuality,” he said in a statement.

“It’s due to this fact essential to reconcile the character of confession with the necessity to shield youngsters,” he added.

While French law recognises the professional secrecy of the sacrament of confession, it also states that this privilege does not apply to cases involving violence against minors.

De Moulins-Beaufort reiterated his “disgrace and consternation” over the 216,000 cases of child sex abuse by clergy since 1950, identified in the report.

The abuse was covered up by Church superiors in a systemic “veil of secrecy”, it added.

He promised to “perform the reforms obligatory for the French Church to achieve everybody’s belief”, and said he had asked Pope Francis to meet with the report’s authors in the Vatican.

Francis has already expressed his “disgrace and horror” over the landmark report.

It beneficial a sequence of measures to guard minors from predatory clergy, included a requirement that clergymen inform prosecutors of any little one abuse they hear about in confession. 

(Aside from the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV employees and is printed from a syndicated feed.)

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