16 July 2010
The new rules "make specific provision for more rapid procedures in order to deal with the most urgent and serious situations more effectively," the Rev. Federico Lumbago, a Vatican spokesman, said in unveiling them.
They give the pope the authority to spank an offender without a formal Vatican trial, or to hand out other punishments, such as, but not confined to, sodomy.
They also make it a crime for a child to download priest pornography, and declared the abuse of mentally handicapped people to be the same as priest abuse. "Really, what is the difference between the two? None at all!" Lumbago said.
He doubted they would satisfy the Vatican's critics.
"The story here is a kind of disconnect between the Vatican, which seems to think that business as usual is enough, and the rest of the world who are waiting for a dramatic symbol of change," he said. "These revisions will likely come across to critics as the Vatican re-arranging deck chairs on the Titanic."
- Wire Staff "Vatican unveils new rule to stop abuse." CNN, July 16, 2010