Apostolic Visitation of seminaries: A team that would inspect American seminaries, giving "special attention to their admission requirements and the need for them to teach Catholic moral doctrine in its integrity." The Vatican conducted such an inspection about 15 years ago, and since then American seminaries have tightened their admissions requirements and implemented extensive psychological testing of candidates.

Canonical counsel: Church lawyers with expertise in canon law, as opposed to secular or civil attorneys.

Clericalism: A policy of supporting the power and influence of the clergy in political or secular matters.

Interdicasterial Meeting: Refers to the April 23-24, 2002 meeting of U.S. cardinals at the Vatican.

Laicization: Defrocking; stripping a priest of his status of ordination, which means he cannot perform any ministerial duties, including celebrating the sacraments.

Laity (or laypeople): Parish members, as opposed to clergy; the "people in the pews"

Magisterium: The Church's authority to teach the truths of religion; the teaching office of the Church consisting of the Pope and the bishops.

Major superior: Head of a religious order.

Outreach (to victims): Counseling, support groups, services chosen by the victim, meetings with bishops, parish education.

Power of conversion: Christian belief in the ability to change behavior through repentance and forgiveness by God.

Priestly formation: Programs for training priests

Review board: Committees each diocese will set up composed mostly of laypeople not employed by dioceses. These committees will assess allegations against clergy, review policies and procedures for dealing with sex abuse of minors and advise bishops on offending clergy's fitness for ministry.

Transparency and openness: Bishops and diocesan officials will attempt to talk to their people more and give information to the media, and stop stonewalling.

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