Inside the VaticanJune 10, 2021
A Latin-English edition of the Code of Canon Law is pictured on a bookshelf. New canon law provisions approved by Pope Francis are expected to help the Catholic Church safeguard against abuse. (CNS photo/Nancy Phelan Wiechec)

After 17 years of preparation, a new edition of volume VI of the Code of Canon Law—the Vatican’s penal code—has been published, the first new edition since 1983. About two-thirds of the canons, or laws, in the volume have been updated, and a number of new canons have been added, most significantly in the areas of sexual abuse and requiring penalties for violations of the law.

On this episode of “Inside the Vatican,” host Colleen Dulle and veteran Vatican correspondent Gerard O’Connell walk through the changes to canon law on sexual abuse, women’s ordination, and financial mismanagement.

“What the law has tried to do and what his new Book VI of the Code of Canon Law is doing with the penalties is to reduce, as far as possible, the loopholes, to ensure justice for those who have been victims, to ensure proper exercise of authority by those who are in authority and hold penalties for failure to exercise authority properly,” Gerry said. “And also to guarantee to the wider public, to the people of God, the people in the church and outside the church, that they will know that such criminal acts are not acceptable and they will be punished.”

After their conversation, Colleen gives updates on the discovery of the remains of more than 200 Indigenous children on the grounds of a former residential school in Canada and the unexpected offer of resignation from Cardinal Reinhard Marx, which Pope Francis rejected today.

Links from the show:

Pope Francis overhauls church’s criminal code to punish the sexual abuse of adults by priests
Pope Francis calls for abandonment of colonial mentality after discovery of buried Indigenous children in Canada
Cardinal Marx offers Pope Francis his resignation, citing ‘responsibility for the catastrophe of sexual abuse’
Explainer: Cardinal Marx wasn’t accused of sexual abuse or cover-up. So why has he offered to resign?
Pope Francis rejects Cardinal Marx’s offer of resignation, calls on all bishops to take responsibility for the abuse crisis

We don’t have comments turned on everywhere anymore. We have recently relaunched the commenting experience at America and are aiming for a more focused commenting experience with better moderation by opening comments on a select number of articles each day.

But we still want your feedback. You can join the conversation about this article with us in social media on Twitter or Facebook, or in one of our Facebook discussion groups for various topics.

Or send us feedback on this article with one of the options below:

We welcome and read all letters to the editor but, due to the volume received, cannot guarantee a response.

In order to be considered for publication, letters should be brief (around 200 words or less) and include the author’s name and geographic location. Letters may be edited for length and clarity.

We open comments only on select articles so that we can provide a focused and well-moderated discussion on interesting topics. If you think this article provides the opportunity for such a discussion, please let us know what you'd like to talk about, or what interesting question you think readers might want to respond to.

If we decide to open comments on this article, we will email you to let you know.

If you have a message for the author, we will do our best to pass it along. Note that if the article is from a wire service such as Catholic News Service, Religion News Service, or the Associated Press, we will not have direct contact information for the author. We cannot guarantee a response from any author.

We welcome any information that will help us improve the factual accuracy of this piece. Thank you.

Please consult our Contact Us page for other options to reach us.

City and state/province, or if outside Canada or the U.S., city and country. 
When you click submit, this article page will reload. You should see a message at the top of the reloaded page confirming that your feedback has been received.

The latest from america

Anti-government protesters hide behind makeshift shields during clashes with the police in Bogota, Colombia, Wednesday, June 9, 2021. The protests have been triggered by proposed tax increases on public services, fuel, wages and pensions. (AP Photo/Ivan Valencia)
What began on April 28 as a public reaction to a tax reform proposal from President Iván Duque has expanded into a massive mobilization of broad discontent.
Filipe DominguesJune 15, 2021
One of Germany’s most famous Catholic boys’ choirs, the Regensburg Cathedral Choir, plans to establish a separate choral group for girls for the first time in its more than 1000-year history.
America Media received 56 awards from the Catholic Media Association on June 11 for its groundbreaking coverage of events at the intersection of the church and world across print, digital, audio and video.
America StaffJune 14, 2021
After a year of being kept off the Way of St. James due to pandemic-related travel restrictions, soul-searchers hoping to heal wounds left by the coronavirus are once again strapping on backpacks and following trails to the shrine in the city of Santiago de Compostela.