Royal Oak Tribune

Pope tightens oversight of new religious orders


ROME » Pope Francis on Wednesday tightened oversight on creating new religious orders to exert more Vatican control over the process and prevent charlatans from duping the faithful.

The new law was approved as the Vatican in recent years has cracked down on the founders of some religious orders and lay institutes after they were found to have been religious frauds who sexually or spirituall­y abused their members.

Usually, religious orders begin as small “institutes of consecrate­d life” that are approved by a local bishop to operate in his diocese. Over time, if they attract more members, they can apply to the Vatican to get pontifical recognitio­n, like the Jesuits or Missionari­es of Charity.

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