Judge Rules in Favor of Vatican in Sex Abuse Lawsuit

A priest abuse lawsuit that named the Vatican as a defendant has been tossed out by an Oregon judge. The question at hand in this case was whether the Vatican has a supervisory, employer/employee relationship with Catholic priests. The judge ruled that he didn’t see such a relationship in his review of the court documents.
The Vatican is a sovereign state and the Catholic Church has argued that it should be immune from such civil prosecution.
The judge’s ruling marks the last case in which the Vatican had been named as a defendant in a sexual abuse lawsuit. Previous lawsuits have been thrown out or dropped.
Obviously, the Pope does have administrative control over the church’s priests and bishops. Even recently, the Pope has removed bishops when he views them as unfit. In the last 40 years, many priests have been removed from priestly ministry by the Vatican. Such priest theologians as Leonardo Boff, Hans Kung, and Charles Curran have either been removed from their priestly duties or fired from their academic positions in Catholic universities.