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Vatican overloaded with sex scandals

As hundreds of new allegations of sexual abuse surface in the German church alone, a top Vatican official acknowledged on Tuesday that, with only 10 people handling such cases, his office might not be adequate for the task.

world Updated: Mar 17, 2010 23:14 IST

As hundreds of new allegations of sexual abuse surface in the German church alone, a top Vatican official acknowledged on Tuesday that, with only 10 people handling such cases, his office might not be adequate for the task.

But the official, Monsignor Charles Scicluna, who is effectively the Vatican’s internal prosecutor, said the church was working to bring more “transparency” to the delicate and emotional process of settling allegations of abuse by priests that have severely damaged the church’s moral standing.

His comments were part of a broader Vatican defense against a rising abuse scandal in Germany, including a case that happened on the watch of Archbishop Joseph Ratzinger, who became Pope Benedict XVI in 2005.

Over the weekend, Scicluna told L’Avvenire, the newspaper of the Italian Bishops Conference, that his office had examined 3,000 abuse cases in the past decade, most of them from the US. The ratio of 10 people handling 300 cases a year did not go over well in some quarters.