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Catholic archbishop in Brazil bans priests from being alone with children

A Brazilian Catholic archbishop has banned priests in his district from being alone with children.

Manoel Delson, archbishop of the northeastern state of Paraiba, signed the decree on Wednesday following a court order forcing the archdiocese to pay almost £2.5m in compensation over the sexual exploitation of minors.

Mr Delson’s decree prohibits priests from being in the company of children and vulnerable adults unaccompanied by their parents or guardians.

It also states they are not allowed to offer parish accommodation to minors, while “spiritual care” must be done in confessionals or locations that “ensure safety and visibility”, according to Brazilian newspaper Globo.

The decree was signed the same day Pope Francis for the first time admitted the Catholic Church has an ongoing problem with priests and even bishops who sexually abuse nuns.