"THE MEMORY OF JESUS IS BOTH SACRED AND SUBVERSIVE"
Tuesday, 5 April 2016
FRENCH POLICE RAID CARDINAL'S OFFICE
In a March 2016 press conference, Cardinal Barbarin stated that, "thanks to God", most of the abuses fall under the statute of limitations !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Police raided the offices of Lyon Cardinal Philippe Barbarin on March 30 to search for information related to the case of Fr Bernard Preynat, charged with “sexual aggression and rape of minors” between 1986 and 1991 at Lyon’s Saint-Luc parish, where he ran a large Catholic Scout group over two decades.
“The investigators conducted a search, and the Lyon Archdiocese was made to hand over items sought by the justice authorities,” the cardinal’s office said in a statement after the search.
“The cardinal has many times expressed his willingness to cooperate in full transparency with the judicial process and confidently remains at its disposal, hoping the authorities will calmly reveal the truth and allay the suffering of victims.”
France’s Catholic La Croix daily said Cardinal Barbarin met at his residence with family members of Fr Preynat’s victims on March 26.
“The cardinal communicates via his lawyers on judicial questions and via his advisory council in relations with journalists,” an unnamed Lyon Church official told La Croix on March 30. “But his words to victims, his requests for forgiveness, his press communiques come directly from him. There’s no ambiguity about his compassion, his support for victims and his will to do better.”
French newspapers said Fr Preynat had been moved to a new parish after his crimes were reported to then-Cardinal Albert Decourtray, but the priest was only withdrawn from parish work last August.
In January, the archdiocese said Cardinal Barbarin had launched an inquiry after first hearing a victim’s testimony in the summer of 2014. However, in a February 10 La Croix interview, the cardinal admitted he had heard about the priest’s activities at least six years earlier, but taken no action after the priest assured him he had not committed further offences.
A group of 45 abuse survivors, La Parole Liberee, is suing Cardinal Barbarin for “endangering life” and failing to report abuse, a crime that carries a three-year jail term under France’s penal code. Similar lawsuits have also been filed against three Lyon archdiocesan staffers and Cardinal Gerhard Muller, prefect of the Vatican’s Congregation for Doctrine of the Faith
TOP FRENCH CARDINAL HID PAEDOPHILE SCOUT PRIEST
One of France's most prominent cardinals knew about
a pedophile priest abusing young Catholic Scouts—and now the alleged cover-up
will be tried in secular courts.
— For all those who say that the Catholic Church is doing all it can on
clerical child sex abuse—namely the Vatican press office—there is yet another
reason to doubt those lofty words. Meet the Archbishop of Lyon, Cardinal
Philippe Barbarin, who has denied he did anything wrong by hiding the well-known fact that
Father Bernard Preynat was sexually abusing as many as 40 Catholic Scouts in
France in the late 1980s and early 1990s.
was relieved of his duties in the parish of Roanne in 2015 after admitting to
the sex abuse. He was indicted on Jan. 27 on charges of “sexual abuse and rape
of minors” and has admitted his crimes to the police.
45 Scout victims who lodged the complaint that led to Preynat’s arrest share
horrifically similar stories of abuse. “He would say ‘tell me you love me’. And
then he would say ‘you're my little boy,’ ‘it’s our secret, you mustn’t tell
anyone,’” one of Preynat’s victims said, according to criminal trial reports.
victim named Pierre-Emmanuel Germain-Thill described to Euronews how the priest
preyed on the young boys. “What shocked me the most was when he tried to put
his tongue in my mouth. He stroked my genitals, I couldn’t avoid it,”
Germain-Thill said, according to press reports.
wanted to run away, and at the same time, I didn’t know what to do, I was
afraid that if I left that room, nobody would believe me.”
victim, Bertrand Virieux, told Euronews, “I
remember the smell of sweat, I remember contact with clothes. I remember his wandering
hands under my shirt, which held me tightly against him.”
Cardinal Barbarin is facing criminal charges by a French secular court for
“failing to report a crime” and “endangering the life of others,” which could
carry a three-year prison sentence and fines up to €45,000. He maintains that
he shouldn’t be accused at all because he eventually removed Preynat from
mind that the removal came nearly 15 years after his crimes were made known.
After victims and their families came forward in 1991, Preynat was removed him
from parish duties for six months by the then-archbishop, who is now deceased.
Yet despite having confessed to the crimes, Preynat was allowed to return to
his active duties after he repented, meaning he had access to children despite
admitting to being a pedophilic sex offender.
Barbarin was appointed as archbishop, he even promoted the errant priest to an
administrative position in 2007 where he was in charge of six dioceses filled
with children, according to court documents quoted in the French
who is well liked in France despite his harsh stance against gay marriage
(which he once predicted would pave the way to legalized incest), removed
Preynat from the priesthood last August when secular authorities got
involved—25 years after his crimes had first emerged.
cardinal is now arguing that he should not be criminally charged because he was
not archbishop at the time of Preynat’s crimes, and that he did eventually
remove the priest from active duty. But it is not enough to remove an errant
priest from a parish or even defrock him, argue victims groups. David Clohessy,
head of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (SNAP), says any child
sex-abuse offender should be turned over to secular authorities immediately and
should be remanded in prison whether they wear a clerical collar or not.
of bishops have been publicly exposed as having protected predators, endangered
kids, deceiving parishioners, misleading police, destroying evidence,
intimidating victims, threatening whistleblowers, and discrediting witnesses
and suffer no consequences,” Clohessy told The Daily Beast.
Vatican has always rightly maintained that paedophiles are not restricted to the
priesthood. But the difference has always been that abusers in every other
sector, from education to medicine, almost always immediately face secular
court justice. There are no other professional institutions that systematically
hide predators from authorities to the same extent the Catholic Church does. As
the Oscar-winning film Spotlight showed, the complicity of not
only the clerics but often the entire community—under pressure from the
powerful Catholic churches that support community activities and run schools—is
why the cycle is still so hard to break, despite the Vatican’s efforts.
why when cases like Barbarin’s make it to the secular court, they underscore
just how rare that action is. And that’s why when Australia’s Royal Commission
into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse held Cardinal George Pell’s feet to
the fireseveral weeks ago—for his alleged oversight of abuse in that
country—victims were angry that it took so long to happen.
Very little to say - except that the Church and its senior officials are still covering up abuse.
Bishops who do so should go to prison - starting with Cardinal Barbarin of Lyon.