Nick Benson

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Medieval pope’s seal discovered in Shropshire

A pope's seal dating back 700 years has been discovered in Shropshire. The medieval find represents the 1.5 millionth archaeological object to have been officially unearthed by the public in Britain. Pope Innocent IV, whose papacy began in 1243, used the lead...

Caritas worker warns of disaster in Burkina Faso

A Catholic aid worker has warned of a humanitarian catastrophe in Burkina Faso, with over 2 million facing starvation in the face of Islamist attacks and poor harvests. "People have been unable to cultivate their lands, so there've been no harvests, and this has all...

Lockdown has increased risk of grooming and abuse of minors, says expert

The increased screen time and isolation due to quarantine measures or restrictions during the Covid-19 pandemic have put vulnerable minors at greater risk of grooming and abuse online, a Jesuit safeguarding expert said.

Almost every nation that has had lockdowns or other restrictions has had similar consequences in which young people are spending a lot more time at home, “alone, online with no supervision or being checked on,” said Jesuit Fr Hans Zollner, a member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors.

With increased screen time and so many options available for interacting online with others, “pornographic material also becomes more accessible” to predators and to children who have no limits on what they can access and no guidance on what they should do to protect themselves from people contacting them online, he told Vatican News.

“We have to educate about protecting the dignity and respect of vulnerable people, especially young people,” he said.


Picture: Jesuit Fr Hans Zollner, a member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, is pictured in a 2019 file photo. The increased screen time and isolation because of quarantine measures or restrictions during the Covid-19 pandemic have put vulnerable minors at greater risk of grooming and abuse online, Fr Zollner said. (CNS photo/Paul Haring).

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OTHER NEWS

Medieval pope’s seal discovered in Shropshire

A pope's seal dating back 700 years has been discovered in Shropshire. The medieval find represents the 1.5 millionth archaeological object to have been officially unearthed by the public in Britain. Pope Innocent IV, whose papacy began in 1243, used the lead...

Caritas worker warns of disaster in Burkina Faso

A Catholic aid worker has warned of a humanitarian catastrophe in Burkina Faso, with over 2 million facing starvation in the face of Islamist attacks and poor harvests. "People have been unable to cultivate their lands, so there've been no harvests, and this has all...