The Pope changes the Catholic Church Legal Code laws to Criminalize Sexual Abuse for Adults
The Vatican modified the criminal portion of its Code of Canon Law on 01 June 2021, amending Church law to make the sexual abuse of adults by priests a crime that applies to priests no matter their position of power. Since church officeholders can also be penalized for sex offences, laypersons in that position must also be careful.
The Canon Law governs the 1.3 billion-member Catholic Church. This is outside of traditional law, and the most up-to-date version was last revised in 1983. Developing the improvements that were implemented on Tuesday has taken 11 years.
To decrease the number of criminal crimes that are sanctioned for the first time in the Code of Canon Law, the update adds new penalties to the Code of Canon Law. According to the legislation, both adults and minors can be sexually assaulted by priests in a variety of different ways, such as by using force, making threats, or gaining sexual favours through their influence. Individual laypersons working inside the church may likewise be held accountable for sexual misbehaviour.
Pope Francis recognized that "rapid societal developments" necessitated revising the criminal code because he felt there was a "clear necessity" for it. He wrote in regards to criminal law: “Indeed, it is love that commands that shepherds administer the penal system whenever required, carrying out the three functions that need its use, which is to restore justice, correct offenders, and put a stop to the irritation that others might cause.”