Archdiocese of Montreal publishes second Ombudsman’s Report
The Archdiocese of Montreal today released the second quarterly report compiled by Ombudsman Me. Marie Christine Kirouack, Ad. E. The Report is cumulative, presenting data from May 5 to November 30, 2021.
The Report provides an analysis of 75 formal complaints, of which 46 relate to abuse. Of these, 30 complaints concern instances of sexual abuse occurring between 1950 and the present. The remaining 16 abuse complaints are related to other forms of abuse: psychological, financial, physical or spiritual.
Ten of the abuse complaints (sexual or other) have been referred to external investigators, and nine complaints have been forwarded to the religious communities concerned.
‘’Listening to the suffering [of victims] is an important part of the Ombudsman’s job," says Me. Marie Christine Kirouack, Ad.E. “These people need to be comforted and comforted in their feelings,” she underlines. “I hope this report will encourage more victims to file complaints.”
There were also 20 complaints, mainly concerning problems between a member of the clergy and churchwardens or an employee, that are being addressed by the Office for Pastoral Personnel. Nine other complaints of various kinds are being addressed by the Vicar General. These do not involve clergy, but rather issues regarding cemetery upkeep, genealogical research or labour relations.
The Report also records 30 complaints regarding issues not within the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction, including complaints regarding health measures related to COVID-19 (8) and “the atrocities suffered by Indigenous peoples” (13).
“It is with an open mind that I receive this second report from the Ombudsman,” Archbishop Christian Lépine says. "On one hand, we are constantly striving to improve our internal procedures. On the other hand, there are people who have remained silent for a very long time about events that turned their lives upside-down. It is my sincere hope that by attentively listening to victims today, people will feel the freedom to speak.”
“I want to reiterate my deepest regret for the suffering that victims have endured, and I want to underline that the Ombudsman is there to hear complaints related to all forms of abuse."
Archbishop Lépine established the position of Ombudsman in May 2021 to assure victims of abuse that their voice will not only be heard but also acted upon; it was one of the major recommendations of the Capriolo Report.
The entire Report is public and can be found on the Catholic Church of Montreal’s website.
To request an interview, please contact the Ombudsman.
Telephone:(514) PLAINTE - (514) 752-4683
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