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A new set of behavioral guidelines for priests issued by a Chilean archdiocese has immediately come under fire for its matter-of-fact tone and disturbing level of detail.
The 'Guidelines Promoting Good Treatment and Healthy Pastoral Coexistence,' was published in Spanish on the archdiocese website this week and almost at once received widespread condemnation, with many people slamming the language used around sexual abuse as tone-deaf.
Document - Name - Santiago - Archbishop - Ricardo
They argue that the document, published in the name of Santiago Archbishop Ricardo Ezzati, treats abuse as though it is a minor indiscretion - one which clumsy priests simply need to be told to avoid.
According to the document, local priests must not 'give hugs that are too tight, slap the buttocks, touch the area of the genitals or the breast, or recline or sleep with children or adolescents.'
Pictures - Children - Adolescents - People - Shower
They must also refrain from 'taking pictures while children, adolescents or vulnerable people are naked, getting dressed or in the shower'.
Anne Barrett Doyle of the online abuse database BishopAccountability.org said: 'This is a bizarre and frightening document.
'It - Mindset - Chilean - Bishops
'It reveals the dangerous mindset of the Chilean bishops.'
'Even in this era of supposed penitence and reform, they remain weirdly removed from healthy social norms of child protection,' she added.
Recommendations - Window - Rationalizations - Cardinal - Ezzati
'The recommendations give us a window into the rationalizations of Cardinal Ezzati in particular.
They show his apparent inability to be horrified at behavior that constitutes child molestation.'
Document - Clergy - Games - Way
The document goes on to say that the clergy should not 'fight or play games that involve touching yourself in an inappropriate way.'
Nor should they 'give massages,...
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