Tag: 2013 (page 1 of 2)
“When Pope Benedict announced that he was going to resign on Feb. 28, 2013, it sent shock waves around the world. Being the first Pope to leave the papal throne—alive—in 600 years, two billion followers of the Roman Catholic Church are in a state of disbelief.
“Although Pope Benedict became the lightning rod of criticism against members of the clergy for ‘crimes against children,’ he had steadily weathered the maelstrom of controversy the engulfed Christendom’s seat of power, the Vatican.
“Indeed, as soon as Pope Benedict announced his resignation, the enemies of the Catholic Church laid siege on the Vatican. Yes, it was time to strike while the iron was hot. And strike they did, hitting the Pope when he was vulnerable!
“An obscure organization called International Tribunal into Crimes of Church and State (ITCCS) issued a media release on its website, saying that Pope Benedict resigned because he had found out that an unnamed European government was going to issue an ‘arrest warrant’ against him one he had vacated the papacy. He would then be charged of crimes against humanity and criminal conspiracy. Read more
“Another official said: ‘While this was not the main consideration [really?], it certainly is a corollary, a natural result’
“After he resigns, Benedict will no longer be the sovereign monarch of the State of the Vatican City, which is surrounded by Rome, but will retain Vatican citizenship and residency.
“That would continue to provide him immunity under the provisions of the Lateran Pacts while he is in the Vatican and even if he jaunts into Italy as a Vatican citizen.
“The 1929 Lateran Pacts between Italy and the Holy See, which established Vatican City as a sovereign state, said Vatican City would be ‘invariably and in every event considered as neutral and inviolable territory.’
“There have been repeated calls for Benedict’s arrest over sexual abuse in the Catholic Church.
“When Benedict went to Britain in 2010, British author and atheist campaigner Richard Dawkins asked authorities to arrest the pope to face questions over the Church’s child abuse scandal. Dawkins and the late British-American journalist Christopher Hitchens commissioned lawyers to explore ways of taking legal action against the pope. Their efforts came to nothing because the pope was a head of state and so enjoyed diplomatic immunity. Read more