Saturday, April 28, 2012

Irish Law versus Canon Law on seal of Confession: A compilation. Sacrament of Confession protects criminals and ignores their victims


The Irish government ...

IRELAND
Catholic Herald (United Kingdom)
The Irish government is going to make it a criminal offence for a priest not to tell the gardai when a sex offender confesses his crime: I say, bring it on

By William Oddie on Friday, 15 June 2012

“It has to be made clear to everyone, including the main Church in this State, that the rights of children and the laws of the land come first,” Senator David Cullinane was reported by the Irish Times as saying earlier this week in Seanad √Čireann. “Priests should know that they cannot use the confessional seal as a reason for not coming forward with information on abuse.”

And that is what the government of the Irish republic has now reaffirmed. According to the Minister for Justice, Alan Shatter, if a priest or a bishop, prosecuted under the legislation he intends to introduce, were to claim entitlement to “some form of privilege”, the courts might be called on to decide the issue, since the special position of the Catholic Church has been removed from the Constitution. He did not, he went on, believe that where a child or a vulnerable adult had been a victim of abuse, the Irish courts would hold that it was “of benefit to the State” that those who knew of the abuse should conceal it.

And so, there we are. They are really going ahead with this. Last month, Shatter announced the publication of his bill, which will make it a criminal offence for a priest who learns while hearing a confession about a case or cases of child abuse, from the abuser himself, not to break the seal of the confessional and inform the civil authorities of what he knows. The Criminal Justice (Withholding of Information on Offences Against Children and Vulnerable Persons) Bill is, says the Irish government, one element of a “suite of legislation to protect children and vulnerable adults to which the Government is committed”.

Updated June 15, 2012

The Irish government is going to make it a criminal offence for a priest not to tell the gardai when a sex offender confesses his crime: I say, bring it on, see news update below

Irish Justice Minister Alan Shatter is reiterating existing Irish laws that require reporting of crimes, including sexual crimes on children, without exempting Catholic priests who hear them in the confessional box, and if priests do not report them to the police they could result in a 10-year jail sentences.  Shatter said, “I would expect that if there was someone going to confession who was a serial sex abuser, I don't know how anyone could live with their conscience if they didn't refer that to the gardai (police).”  But the Catholic Bishops and priests are adamant in defying this secular law. Auxiliary Bishop of Dublin Raymond Field said, "The seal of the confessional is inviolable as far as I am concerned, and that's the end of the matter."    Last year we wrote that ‘Forgiveness’ is a tool of INJUSTICE to victims of the John Paul II Pedophile Priests Army  http://jp2army.blogspot.ca/2010/03/forgiveness-is-gizmo-of-injustice-to.html .  And this year we add that the Sacrament of Confession is a tool of protecting criminals and ignoring their victims.   This magical wizardry of priests of reincarnating the flesh of God and forgiving sins at the cost of protecting and perpetuating the crimes and the criminals must end in this century.  Read the compilation of the on-going Irish Law versus Canon Law on Confession below

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Priests must report child abuse confessions or face jail

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

Thursday, 26 April 2012
Priests could face ten years in prison if they fail to report sex abuse revealed in confession.

In a move which will further sour ailing relations between church and state, new laws requiring priests to break the seal of the confessional are expected to be enacted by the end of the year and are one element of a suite of legislation to protect children and vulnerable adults, said the Republic's Justice Minister Alan Shatter.

But the new rules have prompted accusations of “very bad lawmaking” by the government from both legal and religious experts who believe they will create an obligation which priests cannot live with under Canon Law.

Irish bishop reaffirms seal of confession amid legal controversy

IRELAND
Catholic News Agency

Dublin, Ireland, Apr 27, 2012 / 12:03 am (CNA).- Dublin's Auxiliary Bishop Raymond W. Field says priests must maintain the confidentiality of the confessional, which may be threatened by a proposed law requiring mandatory reporting of abuse.
“The seal of the confessional is inviolable as far as I am concerned, and that's the end of the matter,” Bishop Field said in comments reported by the Irish Independent newspaper on April 26.
Remarks made the previous day by Irish Justice Minister Alan Shatter suggested that priests could be bound by requirements of the sex abuse reporting bill. Due to be introduced in the legislature later this year, the bill threatens up to ten years in jail for those who fail to report sex crimes.

“I would expect that if there was someone going to confession who was a serial sex abuser, I don't know how anyone could live with their conscience if they didn't refer that to the gardai (police),” said Shatter. He noted that existing laws already require reporting of other crimes without exempting priests.

Irish priests say they will disobey new confession box law on child abuse

IRELAND
Irish Central

By
PATRICK COUNIHAN,
IrishCentral Staff Writer

Published Thursday, April 26, 2012

Irish priests have vowed to defy a new law forcing them to report details of sexual abused revealed in the confessional box.

Ireland’s Justice Minister Alan Shatter is to introduce new legislation which will force the clergy to reveal all details disclosed in confession.
But priests have vowed to defy the law despite the threat of a 10-year jail sentence after the introduction of the mandatory reporting legislation.
The 800 strong Association of Catholic Priests has even told the Irish Independent newspaper that its member will flout the Shatter law.
Spokesman Fr Sean McDonagh told the paper: “I certainly wouldn’t be willing to break the seal of confession for anyone -- Alan Shatter particularly.”

Priest Will Defy Law On Reporting Sexual Abuse

IRELAND
Build

A new law requires them to report sexual abuse disclosed to them in the confession box, failure to do so could result in a 10-year jail sentences.
Fr Sean McDonagh of the Association of Catholic Priests, which represents 800 clergymen, warned last night: "I certainly wouldn't be willing to break the seal of confession for anyone -- Alan Shatter particularly."
The defiant stance comes after Justice Minister Alan Shatter confirmed the mandatory reporting requirement would apply to priests hearing confession.
"The seal of the confessional is inviolable as far as I am concerned, and that's the end of the matter," said Auxiliary Bishop of Dublin Raymond Field.

Onus on priests to report offences unclear

IRELAND
The Irish Times

CARL O'BRIEN
SEAL OF CONFESSION: THE DEPARTMENT of Justice was unable to confirm last night whether priests will be legally obliged to report serious offences against children to gardaí that are disclosed during Confession.
The issue first sparked controversy after Catholic bishops warned last year that any laws that would breach the seal of Confession would be a “serious offence” to the rights of penitents.
To date priests have been allowed to refuse to answer questions relating to what is said in the confessional under what is known as “sacerdotal privilege”.
However, Mr Shatter said yesterday the issue had become a “media obsession” and the new law would not protect priests from prosecution for failing to pass on information that arises during Confession.

5 yrs’ jail if you hide perv priests

IRELAND
The Irish Sun

By MYLES McENTEE
ANYONE found guilty of staying silent about sex crimes against a child will face five years behind bars under tough new measures unveiled yesterday.
The crackdown came as Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin insisted it had become more difficult for clerics to share sensitive information with anybody other than gardai or health officials.

Justice Minister Alan Shatter told how the latest legislation he was pushing through would close a loophole and make it a criminal offence to withhold information about abuse of children or vulnerable people.

Meanwhile, a second law will make it mandatory for organisations, including churches and named professionals, to report abuse or neglect.

Priests: We won’t break seal of confession to report sex abuse

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By Michael Brennan Deputy Political Editor
Thursday April 26 2012
CATHOLIC priests will defy a new law that requires them to report sexual abuse disclosed to them in the confession box -- despite the threat of 10-year jail sentences.
It came after Justice Minister Alan Shatter confirmed the mandatory reporting requirement would apply to priests hearing confession.
Fr Sean McDonagh of the Association of Catholic Priests, which represents 800 clergymen, warned last night: "I certainly wouldn't be willing to break the seal of confession for anyone -- Alan Shatter particularly."
And Auxiliary Bishop of Dublin Raymond Field said: "The seal of the confessional is inviolable as far as I am concerned, and that's the end of the matter."

Failure to report child sex abuse to be criminal offence

IRELAND
The Irish Times

CARL O'BRIEN, Chief Reporter
Any sports club, society or voluntary organisation that works with children faces being shut down if they fail to implement official guidelines on how to handle child protection and welfare concerns.
It is one of a number of measures contained in two new pieces of legislation published today which are likely to have far-reaching implications for how the State, voluntary groups and wider society respond to children at risk.
Details of both Bills were published today by Minister for Justice Alan Shatter and Minister for Children Frances Fitzgerald.
Under the Children First Bill, all organisations where children attend without their parents - such as schools, sports clubs or religious groups - will face a legal requirement to ensure they provide a safe environment for children.

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