Russell Shorto

Cross to Bear

As Benedict becomes the first pope in six centuries to resign, it may be of interest to read the formal petition to the International Criminal Court, by the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, that he, along with other Vatican officials, be tried “for rape and other forms of sexual violence as crimes against humanity.” I don’t think many seriously expect the petition to succeed, but the Center for Constitutional Rights, its co-filer, says Ratzinger’s status as a layman “may make international prosecution easier.” The petition can be found here.

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About the Author

  I was born in Johnstown, Pennsylvania. I have three children (Anna, Eva and Anthony) and three step-children (Reinier, Hector and Benjamin).  I write books of narrative history; I believe history is most meaningful to us when it manifests itself through individuals in conflict. My books have been published in fourteen languages and have won numerous awards.  I am senior scholar at the New Netherland Institute and a contributing writer at the New York Times Magazine. My interests include the past, the present and the future, not necessarily in that order.  

photo by Keke Keukelaar