Priests Could Break Law over Confession; Church-State Collision over Reporting Child Abuse

Daily Mail (London), April 26, 2012 | Go to article overview

Priests Could Break Law over Confession; Church-State Collision over Reporting Child Abuse


Byline: Niamh Lyons Political Correspondent

THE Church is on a collision course with the State over new laws that will require priests to break the seal of the confessional.

The clergy and members of religious communities are among those who will face up to ten years in prison if they fail to report child sexual abuse to the authorities.

However, legal and religious experts have criticised the Government for 'very bad lawmaking', saying the legislation will create an obligation which priests cannot live up to under Canon Law.

Relations have soured considerably since the Coalition took office last year. Education Minister Ruairi Quinn is pushing through a range of measures to secularise schools while the Taoiseach launched a comprehensive criticism of the Vatican in the wake of the Cloyne report.

Justice Minister Alan Shatter yesterday said the new laws, expected to be enacted by the end of the year, are one element of a suite of legislation to protect children and vulnerable adults.

Separate child protection measures will compel the likes of schools, religious groups and sports clubs to report suspected abuse.

The new provisions will require anyone who has knowledge of a child being abused to report that information to the authorities or face up to ten years' imprisonment, depending on the gravity of the abuse. Mr Shatter confirmed that Catholic priests given information about abuse in confessionals would also be obliged to report it.

However, he criticised the 'media obsession' with whether a priest breaches the seal of confession. He said there were no references to it being a problem in any of the diocesan reports into child sexual abuse.

He said: 'The problem that arose was that they knew who abusers were for a whole range of reasons. It wasn't what someone said in confessional; they got reports from victims of abuse and we know they were aware of that abuse. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Priests Could Break Law over Confession; Church-State Collision over Reporting Child Abuse
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.