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Vatican approves new child sex rules for US

The Vatican gave its formal approval on Monday to a revised plan by US bishops on how to punish priests caught up in a vast clergy sexual abuse scandal.

The Vatican approval came in a letter by Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, head of the Congregation for Bishops, and sent to Bishop Wilton Gregory, head of the US Catholic Bishops Conference.

The Vatican rejected the original norms in October, saying the rules, drawn up by US bishops to deal with the worst crisis to hit the American Church, were inadequate, confusing and legally ambiguous.

The revised regulations, known as "norms," were subsequently worked out by a special US-Vatican commission. The approval came three days after the resignation of Cardinal Bernard Law whose Boston archdiocese is at the heart of the crisis.


New tone at Mass by Law's successor (San Francisco Chronicle)
Connell under pressure (UTV, Ireland)
Boston's new bishop asks parishioners to help repair damage (KRT/Sydney Morning Herald)
Archbishop rejects resign call (Belfast Telegraph)
Catholics Seek Hope From Boston Bishop (AP)
Catholic church feels the power of the pews (Christian Science Monitor)
Bishop backs Church over media coverage (The Universe)
Cardinal's departure may be first of many (Boston Herald)
Formal Vatican Approval for "Dallas Norms" (Catholic World News)
Church admits another sex abuse mistake (London Times)

17 Dec 2002