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December 4, 2002 | Elizabeth Mehren and Josh Getlin, Times Staff Writers
Roman Catholic Church officials here overlooked for decades a range of abuses that included the molestation of girls preparing to become nuns, homosexual rape and drug use by priests with parish youth, according to confidential archdiocesan documents made public Tuesday. The records show that as recently as last year, bishops and archbishops in Boston consistently ignored parishioners' complaints while protecting priests and striving to minimize financial damage.
November 27, 2002 | From Associated Press
Roman Catholics from the lay reform group Voice of the Faithful met face-to-face with Cardinal Bernard Law for the first time Tuesday in an attempt to ease tensions that have simmered for months between the two sides. The cardinal, leader of the Boston Archdiocese, "squarely told us he was concerned about who we are and who we aspire to be," said Jim Post, president of the group.
November 18, 2002 | Teresa Watanabe, Times Staff Writer
In adopting a final plan last week to deal with sexually abusive priests, the nation's Roman Catholic bishops seemed certain they had turned a corner on the debilitating scandal. But in parishes throughout Southern California on Sunday, many parishioners called it only the first step in a long road to recovery. "I don't think the church is past the worst of the scandal," said Kevin Kane, a parishioner for 15 years at St. Monica Church in Santa Monica.
November 15, 2002 | From Times Wire Reports
The Church of England lifted its ban on divorced people remarrying in church -- a move that could allow Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles, both divorced, to wed. The church's governing body voted 308 to 110 to end the ban, but added that it should not turn into a free-for-all. Divorced people whose previous spouses are dead have always been allowed to remarry in church.
November 14, 2002 | Larry B. Stammer, Times Staff Writer
The nation's Roman Catholic bishops overwhelmingly approved a policy on sexually abusive priests Wednesday that they say maintains their stance of "zero tolerance" but provides accused priests with procedural protections that Vatican officials had insisted on. The policy approved by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops will have the force of mandatory church law after it receives the final approval of the Vatican, which is expected to happen quickly.
November 12, 2002 | Larry B. Stammer, Times Staff Writer
Outside critics and "extremists" within the Catholic church have exploited the sexual abuse scandal to "advance their own agendas," the head of the nation's Roman Catholic bishops charged Monday. Speaking at the opening of the meeting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, which later this week is scheduled to vote on a compromise plan for handling abusive priests, Bishop Wilton D. Gregory of Belleville, Ill.
November 5, 2002 | Larry B. Stammer, Times Staff Writer
Roman Catholic priests in more than a third of the states could have significant new leeway on whether to tell authorities about priests suspected of molesting minors under a revised sex abuse prevention policy negotiated last week between U.S. bishops and the Vatican. Church officials on Monday released the full text of the revised policy, which shows that a potentially significant loophole was added to a section on reporting priests to civil authorities.
November 2, 2002 | Larry B. Stammer, Times Staff Writer
An agreement reached by Vatican officials and a team of U.S. Roman Catholic bishops earlier this week would revise the American zero-tolerance policy on sexual abuse by reimposing a statute of limitations on some cases and giving church tribunals the final word on whether accused priests should be removed from the ministry. Leading U.S. bishops on Friday defended the changes, which were hammered out in two days of negotiations in Vatican City between four U.S. bishops and four Vatican officials.
October 20, 2002 | Larry B. Stammer, Times Staff Writer
Two-thirds of the nation's Roman Catholic priests disapprove of the way that U.S. bishops have handled sexual abuse allegations against members of the clergy, a nationwide Los Angeles Times poll of the priesthood has found. The findings of the poll, the most extensive nationwide opinion survey of American priests since 1994, point to a pervasive and deep-seated anger among many priests. Many are upset at the nation's bishops. They are also, in many cases, angry at the news media.
October 18, 2002 | Larry B. Stammer, Times Staff Writer
Vatican officials are expected today to turn down central elements of the sexual abuse policy adopted by U.S. bishops last June. Pope John Paul II met privately Thursday with several leading U.S. bishops as the Vatican completed its long-awaited response to the "zero tolerance" policy that would discipline priests accused of sexually molesting minors.
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