Updated: January 31, 2012 09:11 AM GMT
Representatives of most of the world's bishops' conferences and 30 religious orders will meet in Rome in early February to launch a global initiative aimed at improving efforts to stop clerical sexual abuse and better protect children and vulnerable adults. The conference, "Toward Healing and Renewal," will be held Feb. 6-9 at Rome's Pontifical Gregorian University and is being supported by the Vatican Secretariat of State and several other Vatican offices. U.S. Cardinal William J. Levada, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which deals with priests accused of abuse, will give the opening address. Other speakers include: a victim of abuse; mental health professionals who have worked in the areas of prevention and treatment; and bishops from different parts of the world, who will talk about responses to the abuse crisis in their countries. The conference is designed in part to help bishops' conferences and superiors of religious orders respond to a 2011 circular letter from the doctrinal congregation requiring all dioceses in the world to develop guidelines on handling allegations of abuse. Full Story:Bishops, religious to attend major conference on preventing abuseSource:Catholic News Service
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