Catholic Church excludes adult women in talks about protecting sexual abuse victims

The Jakarta Post

July 29, 2020

By Ivany Atina Arbi, Evi Mariani and Dwi Atmanta

Top officials in the Catholic Church have said that they are coming up with a protocol to protect minors and vulnerable adults, but they reiterated that physically and mentally able adult women who have sexual relations with clergymen – consensual or otherwise – will not be the beneficiary of the protocol.

While admitting there were power dynamics and cases of power abuse between clergymen and laywomen or nuns, Father Sunu Hardiyanta, who has been working on a system to prevent and handle cases of sexual abuse at the Catholic Church since 2012, told The Jakarta Post and that the topic of handling cases involving adult women was different and required “a separate protocol”.

“Adult relationships are more an ethical matter, code of conduct, a wrong behavior,” he said. “The most important thing here is correct authority, correct leadership.”

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