U.S. Charter Review Process Under Way

WASHINGTON, D.C., OCT. 12, 2004 (Zenit.org).- Archbishop Harry Flynn announced the start of the review process for the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People that the U.S. bishops adopted in June 2002.

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Archbishop Flynn, of St. Paul and Minneapolis, chairs the bishops’ Ad Hoc Committee on Sexual Abuse.

At the time of the charter’s adoption, the bishops called for it to be reviewed in two years to ensure its effectiveness.

In a letter to U.S. bishops, Archbishop Flynn asks the prelates to discuss the revision of the charter at meetings in their regions.

The Ad Hoc Committee is also requesting the bishops to hold discussions in dioceses that include the priests’ council, the diocesan pastoral council, the diocesan review board, child protection personnel, and educators.

The committee will also consult with the Conference of Major Superiors of Men. The charter states that the revision is to take place with the advice of the National Review Board.

In his letter, Archbishop Flynn said that the bishops’ Administrative Committee has set the June 2005 General Assembly of the episcopal conference to conclude the review. Results of the discussions called for in the letter are to be returned to the Ad Hoc Committee by Jan. 15.

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