A German priest convicted of molesting young boys has been suspended by the Vatican for breaching a ban on working with children.
Father Peter Hulllermann abused children when he served in the archdiocese of Munich and Friesing from 1980 to 1982.
He received an 18-month suspended jail sentence for his crimes in 1986 but was never dismissed.
Reports say Hullermann recently went on a camping trip with young people in his current parish in Bavaria, southern Germany.
The Vatican’s Secretary of State, Tarcisio Bertone, said the recent sex revelations were part of a plot to attack the Church.
“Believers still have faith in the Catholic Chuch, despite someone trying to undermine this confidence,” Bertone said. “But the Church can count on special help from ‘above’”.
Yet the scandal could add up to more embarrassment for Pope Benedict XVI after similar claims have been made recently.
Benedict led the archdiocese of Munich and Friesing from 1977 to 1982, when he was known as Archbishop Joseph Ratzinger.
Local religious officials in Munich admitted last week that the then-Archbishop had allowed Hullermann to stay at a vicarage in the southern Germany to receive “therapy.”
It comes amid fresh sex allegations in Ireland where the head of the Catholic Church is accused of being involved in the cover-up of abuse in the 1970’s.