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Child and Youth Protection


Pope Francis Issues Motu Proprio Vos estis lux mundi (“You are the light of the world”

The Holy Father recently issued new norms for the worldwide response to the evil of sexual abuse. These norms add to layers of response already in place in the United States including the Essential Norms and the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People.

The news norms affect the global Church and require:

  • easily accessible reporting systems
  • clear standards for the pastoral support of victims and their families
  • timeliness and thoroughness of investigations
  • whistleblower protection for those making allegations
  • active involvement of the laity

Bishops also will be held accountable under the authority of this Motu Proprio, which covers sexual abuse of minors or vulnerable persons, sexual acts compelled through the abuse of authority, and any coverup of such crimes.

The norms also require that Church institutions comply with civil reporting laws.

Christus Vivit, Pope Francis’s Apostolic Exhortation on Young People, the Faith, and Vocational DiscernmentChrist Lives! Pope Francis' Apostolic Exhortation

The Holy Father dedicated a significant portion of his most recent Apostolic Exhortation to addressing the abuse crisis in the Church and society. You can find abuse-related commentary in paragraphs 95-102 of Christus Vivit, particulary the sectiion titled "Ending Every Form of Abuse."

You can order a copy of Christus Vivit from the USCCB Store.

2019 Annual Report on the Implementation of the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People

The 2019 Annual Report on the Implementation of the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, produced by the Secretariat of Child and Youth Protection (SCYP) in 2020, describes the progress of Catholic dioceses/eparchies in implementing victim assistance and child protection policies and programs in the United States, particularly those found within the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People. The report is based on an annual audit process, carried out between July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019, by StoneBridge Business Partners.

Recent Statements from the U.S. Bishops' Conference

Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo is Archbishop of Houston and Vice President of the USCCB.President of U.S. Bishops’ Conference Issues Statement on Pope Francis’s Motu Proprio Ordering Worldwide Response to the Evil of Sexual Abuse
May 9, 2019

Statement at Close of Meeting on the Protection of Minors in the Church
February 24, 2019

Statement on Theodore McCarrick in Response to Judgement by the Holy See
February 16, 2019

For past statements, please visit News Releases.

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