Group of Swiss priests fears supporting coming-out in new code of conduct


Central Europe


The Swiss diocese of Chur has no unanimity around the code of conduct against abuse. Photo AFP, Fabrice Coffrini

In the Roman Catholic diocese of Chur in Switzerland, around 40 priests refuse to sign the bishop's new code of conduct against sexual and spiritual abuse.

The resistance has to do with the commitment in the code to supporting a coming-out for homosexuals. The bishop says that a coming-out is a good thing. He says the homosexual character should be respected, but the "living-out is a different thing." He supports the traditional marriage of man and woman as the place for sexuality.

Bishop Joseph Bonnemain talks about this in an interview with the Neue Zürcher Zeitung. The group of 40 is just a small group compared to all the clergy in the diocese, the bishop says.

The 40 priests do not hesitate in the fight against abuse. But they criticise the points that contradict the Catholic teaching on homosexuality and marriage, Katholisch.de summarises.

Binding for employees

The diocese of Chur had declared the signing of the text entitled "Code of conduct for dealing with power – prevention of spiritual abuse and sexual exploitation" as binding for all church employees. The bishop of Chur, the three general vicars and the top representatives of the seven cantonal churches in the diocese signed it on April 5th. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Chur is located in eastern Switzerland. It has over 2 million residents, with around 679 thousand people identifying as Roman Catholic. In total, there are 309 parishes in Chur.



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