Abuse scandal: new case burdens the Catholic Church



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Status: 12.01.2022 10:15 a.m.

According to BR and Corrective there is another abuse case in the Catholic Church. It’s about a priest who, despite previous crimes, was able to work with children undisturbed. The church also hushed up evidence of new attacks.

In the coming week, a law firm commissioned by the Archdiocese of Munich-Freising wants to present a comprehensive report on abuse in the Archdiocese. The case of the priest Peter H., who, despite a final conviction for multiple child abuse, continued to work in pastoral care, will play a central role.

One Search for BR and corrective shows a previously unknown case of abuse. Accordingly, despite knowledge of his previous crimes, the Church not only allowed H. to work unmolested with children, but also hushed up references to new attacks. A victim reports for the first time how he was abused as a child by Peter H. in the Bavarian parish of Garching an der Alz for several years in the early 1990s, although the priest had previously been convicted of child abuse by a court in Bavaria.

Staggered several times

The H. case is one of the most serious scandals within the Catholic Church: allegations of sexual violence against children against the clergy from Gelsenkirchen have been on record since the late 1970s. The Catholic Church repeatedly transferred the pastor to new parishes. In 1980, the then archbishop and later Pope Joseph Ratzinger approved his admission to the Archdiocese of Munich-Freising. Upon request from BR and Corrective, however, he denies having knowledge of the allegations made against H.

The victim’s statements are particularly explosive, as the abuse took place when H. was under the supervision of a retired auxiliary bishop. The bishop, together with H., looked after the communities of Garching an der Alz and Engelsberg for seven years, was informed about the dangerousness of priest H., but apparently did not protect the children, but the perpetrator. In conversation with BR and Correctively said the person concerned: “Everyone was aware of this, including in the church. To send this condemned and untreatable man back to a church and to have so many children and young people work with so many children and adolescents, that just makes you stunned and a bit stunned far aggressive. ”

Actions played down

In a church judgment on H. BR and corrective is available, the deeds of this priest are openly addressed, but largely trivialized. It is true that the superiors’ knowledge of the dangers of the priest is documented there. However, the ecclesiastical judgment plays down references to acts committed in the 1990s and there is no reference to the role of the deceased auxiliary bishop under whose supervision the perpetrator was.

According to his own statements, the victim also spoke to the Munich law firm, which prepared the report on behalf of the Archdiocese of Munich and Freising. The victim’s lawyer has announced that he will prosecute the bishops.


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