While this is very good news from Vatican Radio, it would have been even better news had it been done by Saint Pope John Paul II.

An excerpt.

Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has created a new Vatican tribunal section to hear cases of bishops who fail to protect children from sexually abusive priests. The head of the Vatican press office, Fr Federico Lombardi, made the announcement during a briefing on the work of the Council of nine cardinals which met with Pope Francis at his Santa Marta residence from Monday June 8th to Wednesday June 10th.

The Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors presented a five point plan to the Pope and his closest advisors at this week’s meeting, including the establishment of a “new judicial section” to examine all cases of bishops accused of abusing their office and failing to report crimes committed by priests in their care. The new office will be set up within the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith which will be mandated to judge all such cases connected to the abuse of children and vulnerable adults.

Fr Lombardi said Pope Francis will appoint a Secretary and some permanent staff for the new department, which will have a five year period to develop and evaluate the effectiveness of these new procedures. The move marks an important step in the ongoing process to hold Church leaders accountable for the actions of abusive priests – something that abuse survivors have insisted is essential to both the healing and prevention efforts..

Also under discussion at the Council of Cardinals meeting this week was the ongoing financial reforms, presented by Australian Cardinal George Pell who heads the new Vatican Secretariat for the Economy. He spoke of three new working groups which have been set up to examine income and investments, another to manage human resources and a third to evaluate the effectiveness of the Holy See’s information technology systems.

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