/* */ Rosa Rubicondior: Catholic Child Abuse News - Enquiry Confirms - 3000 Paedophiles in the French Catholic Priesthood and 10,000 Victims!

Monday, 4 October 2021

Catholic Child Abuse News - Enquiry Confirms - 3000 Paedophiles in the French Catholic Priesthood and 10,000 Victims!

Jean-Marc Sauvé, head of the independent commission
Photograph: Quentin TOP/SIPA/Rex/Shutterstockx
'3000 paedophiles' held positions in French Catholic Church since 1950s — leaked report | Euronews

Another major scandal is about to rock the Catholic Church with the report due out tomorrow into child sexual abuse within the Catholic Church in France.

The report, leaked ahead of publication, will confirm that about 3000 priests and other Catholic clerics, sexually abused some 10,000 children between 1950 and 2018 when the independent commission of enquiry was established. The report runs to about 2,500 pages.

It is said that some members of the commission needed psychiatric counselling after hearing some of the details of the abuses. The commission is made up of 22 legal professionals, doctors, historians, sociologists and theologians. A hotline set up in 2019 for victims and witnesses to contact the commission received 6,500 calls in its first 17 months of operation.

Olivier Savignac, spokesperson for the victims' association, Parler et Revivre (Speak and Relive), predicted that the report will have the effect of a bomb. It is not yet clear what action will be taken by the church against abusers still living but prosecutions under French law are unlikely for the vast majority of cases because of the statute of limitations. In 2019, Cardinal Philippe Barbarin, the archbishop of Lyon, was given a 6-month suspended prison sentence for not reporting the abuse of boy scouts by the parish priest, Bernard Preynat, between 1971 and 1991. The boys were all aged between 7 and 14.

After allegations were made against him, Preynat was prohibited from leading boy scouts but was later allowed to work with children and continue as a parish priest until 2015 when the scandal resurfaced and he was defrocked. Preynat, aged 75, received a 5-year jail sentence. Cardinal Barbarin's conviction was overturned by a court of appeal which ruled that, although he should have informed the authorities, he was not criminally liable for his inaction. Pope Francis subsequently accepted his resignation.

Bishop Éric de Moulins-Beaufort, president of the French conference of bishops, said he feared the report would reveal “significant and frightening figures”.

The Catholic Church in France, as elsewhere, has suffered a massive decline in attendance in recent years. This is expected to continue.

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