The New York Times has the scoop on this doozy of a story that even if it doesn’t happen is sure to make waves:
The formal filing of nearly 80 pages by two American advocacy groups, the Center for Constitutional Rights and the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, was the most substantive effort yet to hold the pope and the Vatican accountable in an international court for sexual abuse by priests.
“The high-level officials of the Catholic church who failed to prevent and punish these criminal actions,” the complaint says, “have, to date, enjoyed absolute impunity.”
A spokeswoman at the court said the prosecutor’s office would examine the papers, “as we do with all such communications.” The first step will be “to analyze whether the alleged crimes fall under the court’s jurisdiction,” Florence Olara, the prosecutor’s spokeswoman said.
Complaints about the Vatican and child abuse by Roman Catholic priests have been received at the court before, court records showed. But Ms. Olara said details were not normally disclosed by the court unless a case went forward.
Lawyers familiar with the international court said it was unlikely the complaint against the Vatican would fit the court’s mandate to prosecute war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. The Rev. Federico Lombardi, the spokesman for the Vatican, said he had no comment.
And if you didn’t think that was a big deal in terms of bad publicity…It was the second most read story on the Times website.
There needs to be something done even more publicly to show remorse than there was been thus far. Like a giant Super Bowl ad begging forgiveness or something very public in the U.S. the next time the Pope comes to visit. Let’s not forget that this Pope wasn’t at the helm when all these things were going on, but he was in his former role. I’d be more apt to hold people like Cardinal Law responsible for this, but the problem is much more systemic without one person to blame.
Today let’s simply pray that victims can be released from pain and that justice can be served in a way that brings peace.