Should Priests be obligated to tell police if something is said in confession that could lead to an arrest?
In May, the California state senate passed a bill to require the seal of confession to be broken if a priests learns of sexual abuse while hearing the confession of a fellow priest or church worker. Australia has passed a similar law.
In an official statement, the Vatican says:
“(The Church) does not receive its legitimacy from individual States, but from God; it (breaking the seal) would also constitute a violation of religious freedom, legally fundamental to all other freedoms, including the freedom of conscience of individual citizens, both penitents and confessors.”