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[–] Vindicator 0 points 1 points (+1|-0) ago 

Child abuse by Church clergy doesn't go up the ladder because according to the Church, clergy are not employees of the Vatican but of the local parish (who cover up the crimes).

There's more to it than this. People think of the Church like a giant multinational corporation, with the pope as the CEO who can fire people. But that isn't really how it works. There is a thing called "Episcopal Collegiality" which has been the tradition of Catholic church governance since the days of the Apostles themselves that gives almost all the power to the local bishops. The Bishop of Rome (the pope) has always been seen as the lead bishop, but only in the past couple hundred years has he had any administrative power.


[–] HennyPenny 0 points 0 points (+0|-0) ago  (edited ago)

He's a little more than lead bishop:

Pope (eccles. Lat., papa from Gr. papas, a variant of pappas, father; in classical Latin pappas—Juvenal, "Satires", vi, 633), the. The title pope, once used with far greater latitude (see below, section V), is at present employed solely to denote the Bishop of Rome, who, in virtue of his position as successor of St. Peter, is the chief pastor of the whole Church, the Vicar of Christ upon earth. Besides the bishopric of the Roman Diocese, certain other dignities are held by the pope as well as the supreme and universal pastorate: he is Archbishop of the Roman Province; Primate of Italy and the adjacent islands, and sole Patriarch of the Western Church. The Church's doctrine as to the pope was authoritatively declared in the Vatican Council in the Constitution "Pastor Aeternus" (1870)The four chapters of that Constitution deal respectively with the office of Supreme Head conferred on St. Peter, the perpetuity of this office in the person of the Roman pontiff, the pope's jurisdiction over the faithful, and his supreme authority to define in all questions of faith and morals .

The Bishop of Rome's jurisdiction extends over all Christendom. He is first in both authority and honor --The Pope has supreme and complete power and jurisdiction to decide questions of faith and morals and to arrange the discipline of the universal Church.

The power of the Pope extends over every single church, every single bishop and pastor, every one of the faithful. He may appoint and depose bishops, call councils, make and unmake laws, send missionaries, confer distinctions, privileges, and dispensations, and reserve sins to his own tribunal. The Pope is the supreme judge; to him belongs the last appeal in all cases. The Pope is the "teacher of all Christians", the "chief shepherd of the shepherds and their flocks". "Peter, standing up with the Eleven, lifted up his voice and spoke out to them ..." (Acts 2:14). The word "Pope" is derived from the Latin term papa, which means "Father".

The Pope is independent of every temporal sovereign and of every spiritual power. He is responsible only to God.

In the 1400-1600s Catholic Popes wielded immense power, issuing papal bulls that divided the world trade into spheres of influence; Pope Innocent III, born Lotario dei Conti di Segni reigned from 8 January 1198 to his death in 1216. Pope Innocent was one of the most powerful and influential of the medieval popes. He exerted a wide influence over the Christian states of Europe, claiming supremacy over all of Europe's kings. He was central in supporting the Catholic Church's reforms of ecclesiastical affairs through his decretals and the Fourth Lateran Council. https://en.wik