Pope accepts resignation of German bishop

VATICAN CITY (AP) - Pope Benedict has formally accepted the resignation of a leading German bishop who has acknowledged slapping children. The bishop is also being investigated for sexual abuse of minors and financial misconduct.

A Vatican statement cited no reason for accepting the resignation but simply said it was in line with canon law provisions for bishops no longer fit for service. Bishop Walter Mixa offered to step down two weeks ago amid persistent allegations that he hit children while a priest decades ago and claims of financial irregularies at a children's home.

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