A United Nations committee issued a report Wednesday slamming the Vatican for its response to child sex abuse involving the clergy. Vatican City is more interested in saving its own image than helping the victims, the report from the Committee on the Rights of the Child stated.
“In dealing with child victims of different forms of abuse, the Holy See has systematically placed preservation of the reputation of the church and the alleged offender over the protection of child victims,” the report reads, notes Bloomberg.
The committee said that it is “gravely concerned” that the Holy See “has not acknowledged the extent of the crimes committed” and that its policies make it easy for the perpetrators to continue to abuse victims. In addition, the group slammed the “code of silence” among the clergy in these cases, suggesting that more needs to be done in cooperation with law enforcement.
According to the Washington Post, the report also took aim at how the Church teaches about abortion, homosexuality and gender equality, even while praising Pope Francis for being more open in these areas.
While the Vatican said it is still committed “to defending and protecting the rights of the child,” it was particularly annoyed with the UN panel’s decision to criticize its philosophies. “Trying to ask the Holy See to change its teachings is not negotiable,” Silvano Maria Tomasi, the Vatican’s UN observer in Geneva, told Vatican Radio, notes the Post.
You can check out the full report here.
image: Wikimedia Commons