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September 23rd, 2010
01:38 PM ET

German bishops set out rules to stop sexual abuse

Berlin, Germany (CNN) - German Catholic bishops Thursday set out new rules to help prevent clergy from abusing children, following scandals across Europe.

They aim "to sensitize and empower all those working in the church environment to recognize evidence of sexual abuse and to deal with it in an appropriate fashion," said Stephan Ackermann, archbishop of Trier and the bishops' point man on sexual abuse of children within the church.

They require all 27 German Catholic diocese to give employees strict rules on how to maintain an appropriate level of "close distance" between other staff and children and young people in their trust, the bishops said.

Diocese must also thoroughly check the police records of employees; establish both internal and external routes for advice and complaints; and improve hiring procedures and the training of new employees with the issue of sexual abuse in mind.

Read the full story here.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Bishops • Catholic Church

Review: The 14th Dalai Lama – a manga biography
September 23rd, 2010
10:51 AM ET

Review: The 14th Dalai Lama – a manga biography

Editor's Note: CNN's Gabe La Monica files this report on the new manga biography of the Dalai Lama.

“Manga” in Japanese means “whimsical pictures.”  Author and illustrator Tetsu Saiwai brings whimsy to life in "The 14th Dalai: a Manga biography."

The book is a hybrid comic book/graphic novel. The central character, Tenzin Gyatso, is introduced as a kind of 2-year-old embodiment of Rudyard Kipling’s Kim: an audacious and quick-witted boy with no fear. He grows up fast. At the age of 5, in 1939, Tenzin Gyatso becomes officially recognized as the 14th reincarnation of the Dalai Lama, and is renamed “Holy Lord, Gentle Glory, Compassionate, Defender of the Faith, Ocean of Wisdom.”

FULL POST

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Art • Books • Buddhism

Deaf victim of sex abuse is suing pope, and going public with his story for the first time
September 23rd, 2010
09:10 AM ET

Deaf victim of sex abuse is suing pope, and going public with his story for the first time

Editor’s note: A one-hour CNN special, “What the Pope Knew,” will air Sept. 25 and Sept. 26, 8pm and 11pm ET. This story is drawn from that exclusive report.

By Scott Bronstein
CNN Special Investigations Unit

MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin – Terry Kohut has kept a dark secret for nearly 50 years. Now he is breaking his silence, becoming a key figure in the sex-abuse crisis in the Catholic Church and the growing controversy over what Pope Benedict XVI did about it.

When Kohut was barely a teen, and for years afterward, he says, he was sexually molested and assaulted by the headmaster and priest of the school where he lived, St. John’s School for the Deaf, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. What occurred there is one of the most notorious cases of sex abuse in the Catholic Church.

Kohut was not alone. From 1950 to 1974 the headmaster of St. Johns, Father Lawrence C. Murphy, raped and molested as many as 200 deaf boys, according to court and church documents.

Kohut has now filed the first sex-abuse lawsuit against the Vatican actually naming Pope Benedict, previously known as Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, as a defendant.

FULL POST

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Bishops • Catholic Church • Christianity • Pope Benedict XVI

Imams brief congressman on trip to concentration camps to battle anti-Semitism
September 23rd, 2010
07:13 AM ET

Imams brief congressman on trip to concentration camps to battle anti-Semitism

WASHINGTON (CNN) - An American imam took an eye-opening tour last month of the Dachau and Auschwitz death camps and said that what he saw was unfathomable - and undeniable.

"You see the ashes of people. You see the pictures. You walk the trail; you see the gas chambers," said Imam Muhamad Maged of the All-Dulles-Area Muslim Society in Virginia, vice president of the Islamic Society of North America.

"It is beyond imagination that somebody would do something like that."

FULL POST

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Interfaith issues • Islam • Judaism • Leaders • Persecution • Politics • Quran

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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.

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