According to AP, and this was also clarified by the papal spokesman Fr. Lombardi, Pope Benedict XVI “defrocked” almost 400 priests for the crime of sexual abuse of children – in a little more than 2 years.
We are talking here about the formal dismissal of clerics from the clerical state, sometimes quickly, through inaccurately, called “defrocking”.
Nearly 400 from 2011-2012!
John Allen (now leaving NSR) says:
Based on information provided in the published volume “Activity of the Holy See,” according to Scicluna, there were 135 priests in 2011 who voluntarily requested dismissal from the clerical state and 125 for whom laicization was imposed as a penalty.
For 2012, the numbers were 67 voluntary dismissals and 57 cases in which laicization was imposed.
In total, that comes to 384 clergy over the two year period who were removed from the priesthood in cases related to the sexual abuse of minors.
What we will now wait to see in the MSM and in the liberal catholic press is the praise of Benedict XVI for his aggressive and exemplary work to protect children.