Wed. Mar 3rd, 2021

By ARITZ PARRA and NICOLE WINFIELD, Associated Press

Madrid (AP) – The first comprehensive internal investigation on allegations of sexual abuse by a religious order in Spain identified 81 children and 37 adult victims of 96 Jesuits since the late 1920s, a case known to the public so far Much more than. .

Victims associations are welcoming the disclosure, but they are not disclosing it to the perpetrators or to the abusers. They also want the Jesuits’ investigation to lead to appropriate criminal cases against some of the abusers who are still alive and a detailed plan to compensate their victims.

Miguel Hurtado, a spokesman for the Stole Childhood Association, told The Associated Press on Friday, “It’s a sneaky measure that goes in the right direction, but it falls just short.”

How the Jesuits, members of the Society of Jesus, a Roman Catholic religious order formed in 1540 by Ignatius Loyola, is commonly known. According to its website, the order runs some 75,000 students in Spain as well as 68 schools in half a dozen universities and higher education centers.

The Society of Jesus in Spain, in its report published on Thursday, said internal investigations confirmed that 96 members had been accused of sexual misconduct since 1927, the year of the first recorded case. For 65 of the Jesuits, the charges involved the victims involved. The report also states that the accused Jesuits constitute only 1% of the 8,782 members admitted to the order during the last 93 years.

The revelation by the Spanish Jesuits comes as Pope Francis, the first Jesuit pope of the church, has tried to sensitize the church worldwide about the problem of pastoral abuse and to hold it accountable to the hierarchy to cover it Have passed laws for

Along with other religious groups specializing in education, the report suggests that Jesuit-run schools had become the basis for cooked hunts for hunter priests, in which they provided a constant supply of victims. Spanish Jesuits said that most of the abuse was found or related to schools.

Only 17 of the offenders who involve minors are alive and 13 of them who are associated with the Jesuits have either been punished or are awaiting the results of a criminal or internal investigation, and keep all of them away from children. Has been transferred to, the order stated the report good.

The case stemmed from allegations, witness accounts, and media reports, and said incidents ranged from inappropriate verbal remarks to sexual abuse and rape.

Spain’s El País newspaper said that in its investigation of pastoral sexual abuse cases since 1986, only eight of the 123 alleged criminals were Jesuits until the Order’s revelations this week. This revelation, the paper said, is “a shock to some of the figures known about the mistreatment of minors by the Catholic Church in Spain.”

The report also says that there are 19 cases of “rumors” where no evidence has been found to justify the allegations and 15 Jesuits, who were accused, were left out.

The entry of Spanish Jesuits is significant, noting that under the radar of mass criminal investigations, national inquiries and voluntary revelations of clergy sexual exploitation around the world have been stripped of large and religious orders, focusing on Diocrates and his priests Have grown to do.

Some religious orders in the US have been forced to disclose information on predators as part of civil litigation or bankruptcy proceedings, while others have done so under pressure since the latest scandal in the US in 2018. However, many orders have kept such information under wraps, and even outside the US, such disclosures by an order are highly rare.

Many religious orders operate outside the diocesan structure of the Catholic hierarchy, reporting their own superiors who report directly to the Vatican. As a result, they are generally not adept at the guidelines or recommendations made by their national bishops’ conferences, which in recent years have tried to get a handle on the problem. However, some outside the US advocate publishing the names of the accused priests.

For Hurtado, abusing himself as a member of a Catholic youth group in northeastern Spain, the identification of the victims is particularly needed, as church officials have for decades accused the plaintiffs of various parganas or nuisances. They hid in, even they were sent abroad as missionaries. .

“Once again, the report gives the impression that the misconduct arose incidentally, unfortunately, not as a result of a policy of institutional cover-up enforced for decades,” the activist said.

The Jesuits presented the findings after a two-year internal investigation, stating that the results were “incomplete” and that the order’s response over the years was insufficient, which has contributed to causing more pain. “

“Our goal is to create a safe environment in our work and an important part of what we do is to be accountable,” Spain’s Rev. Antonio Espana said in a statement.

As part of a new plan to make its churches and schools “a safer environment for minors and vulnerable people”, the order states that it has trained its clerics and staff to prevent sexual abuse, but will not let anyone coming Also to provide safe place for potential victims. Up ahead with the charges.

The Jesuits said the effort was part of a “profound change of culture”.

In the report, the order makes a rare admission of providing financial assistance or in some cases being paid for therapy, although it states that those are not considered to be legal indemnities.

The Society of Jesus stated that it is working on a protocol of reevaluation in accordance with Spanish laws.

“In any case we do not understand that compensation eliminates suffering, but we want to respond wherever possible”.

His Northwest US Chapter, at the time of the largest settlement for pastoral misconduct in 2011, paid $ 166 million to 500 victims – many of them Native Americans who were raped and molested – in their record of abusing Jesuits in the US. In remote Jesuit schools and parishes in Alaska.

Nicole Winfield reported from Rome.

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