technicalities

It’s Not Like Abusive American Priests Are Employees of the Vatican

The Vatican’s latest attempt to escape any responsibility for the Catholic Church’s little child abuse problem: start calling priests “independent contractors” rather than employees.

The Vatican on Monday will make its most detailed defense yet against claims that it is liable for U.S. bishops who allowed priests to molest children, saying bishops are not its employees and that a 1962 Vatican document did not require them to keep quiet, The Associated Press has learned.

The Vatican will make the arguments in a motion to dismiss a federal lawsuit on jurisdictional grounds filed in Louisville, Kentucky, but it could affect other efforts to sue the Holy See.

The Vatican’s U.S. attorney, Jeffrey Lena, said it will include a response to claims that the 1962 document “Crimen Sollicitationis” — Latin for “crimes of solicitation” — barred bishops from reporting abuse to police.

[…] The Vatican is expected to assert that bishops aren’t its employees because they aren’t paid by Rome, don’t act on Rome’s behalf and aren’t controlled day-to-day by the pope — factors courts use to determine whether employers are liable for the actions of their employees, Lena told the AP.

That’s great news for you reasonable American Catholic priests who have been wondering why in the hell you have to keep insisting, without any room for maneuvering, that gays are going to burn in hell. You no longer have to take direction from Rome!

[AP]