Showing posts with label Father Marie-Dominique Philippe OP. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Father Marie-Dominique Philippe OP. Show all posts

Monday, March 11, 2019

Statement by Prior of Johannes Brothers About Sex Abuse

We understand that victims are still angry at our community - the Johannes Community has published a recent statement on the allegations of abuse against the founder of the community, Fr Marie-Dominique Philippe

Vienna-Paris ( documents the statement:

Following a shocking testimony of an abuse victim of Fr. Marie-Dominique Philippe over the last few days, the Brothers of St. John set great store by asking forgiveness from all the victims.

The Brothers of St. John denounce any incident of sexual abuse and abuse of power and reaffirm their commitment to communing with Pope Francis in the fight against abuse. They are aware that their approximately 45-year religious history is painfully shaped by their founder's sexual abuse cases - which was unveiled on the Prior General’s own 2013 initiative - and by confreres, as well as by mistakes made in dealing with sexual abuse cases, in particular by a lack of awareness of the victims' suffering and lack of training and inadequate procedures in dealing with such cases.

Mistakes that have happened in the past would not be possible today and have been for several years. Each reported incident will be handled according to state and ecclesiastical jurisdiction.

We understand that the victims of our community can still be angry. In a letter to all the brothers on the 20th of February [1] this year, Father General Thomas Joachim, General Prior, wrote about the painful issue of abuse: "I want to take this opportunity to ask forgiveness from those victims who have not been sufficiently heard and / or accompanied (...). I would like to apologize to the victims of our founder and some of our confreres.”

The governing body of the Brothers of St. John has for years, with courage and determination, taken important steps to prevent the errors and mistakes of the past from being repeated. In a letter from the Vatican dated 18 February 2019 to the General Prior of the Brothers, "[the Dicastery] recognizes the measures taken and encourages all the brothers and sisters of St. John to continue on this path in humility and with courage, trust and determination.”

The General Prior stated in his letter of 20 February 2019 to the brothers: "In order to fight against the manifold abuse and the internal climate that made this possible, we had to implement measures in at least four areas. They concern: 1) the education of the brothers 2) a facility for immediate hearing of victims 3) a facility to handle reported incidents seriously and promptly 4) measures to assist victims of abuse and provide real assistance.” In fact, numerous measure have been implemented for several years; At the same time, these included: the distinction of vocation, the basic and secondary education of the brothers in affective and sexual matters, the prevention of pedophilia, spiritual guidance, procedures for dealing with allegations or testimonies against a brother, and in particular the establishment of an Abuse Commission in 2015, which also includes two lay people - including a psychologist - which includes full cooperation with Rome and the state authorities. For all this, we call on the support of external experts.

We would like to remind you that any (affected) person can contact the Abuse Commission directly by sending an e-mail to or by contacting the complaints office of the French Episcopal Conference at:

Our commitment to correcting mistakes is also motivated by the desire that we will not overlook all the good that is done in the 50 or so priests of the brothers of St. John on all 5 continents, and that the life of the great majority of the brothers, dedicated to the service of God and man, continues to be a sign of hope in this world.

In the following words, the General Prior concluded the letter of February 20 to his brothers: "Thanks to the power of the Johannine charism we have received, thanks to our brotherhood, which amazed me most recently during our last Vicariate meeting, in the face of all the trials we have I am convinced that, in his letter of June 2016, Cardinal Braz de Aviz [Prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life] rightly said to us, "That young people in your family of St. John can be called to spiritual life, is a good for them and the Church. "The joint work begun will certainly bear fruit for our community in the medium term, even if we have to sow in tears.

Trans: Tancred

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Pope Throws Spotlight on Traditional Female Contemplative Order

Edit: CNN just posted an article wherein it quotes Francis taking responsibility for priests and bishops who've allegedly raped nuns.  We all know what he thinks of contemplative orders, particularly the females. It's not an exaggeration to say they are in the cross-hairs.

For the purposes of this exercise, he's singled out a traditional contemplative female order was suppressed by Benedict XVI.  He excused his predecessor, as if to say, surely he did nothing wrong.  He was a strong leader.   

We'd already covered this, here, here,  and the superior's comment here

One of the commenters said they went on to form a new Society, Sisters of the Morning Star, which was founded in 2014 and has 250 members worldwide.

Photo from article by Marian T. Horvath....


Saturday, February 9, 2013

Father Luc of Brothers of St. John: Reproach Doesn't Correspond to Reality

Edit: I'm guessing we're still not any closer to knowing why these steps were taken.

The crisis of the Sisters of St. John -- The Prior of Marchegg takes issue with's statement and makes some reproaches against the sisters.

Vienna (  The article about the tragic developments with the Sisters of St. John has led to some reactions.  Father Luc, the Prior of the Johannine Brothers, would like a word, as he has written some reproaches of the sisters, which would refute statements  mentioned in the article.  Fr. Luc clearly states that he calls upon the same founder, Fr. Marie-Dominque Philippe OP.   Not withstanding the two branches work as two "autonomous congregations with their own superiors, their own constitutions and statutes."  The brothers then also don't want to reveal the internal difficulties of the sisters.  The Prior explains to that the Cloister of the Sisters in Marchegg, Austria, is empty at present.  "We take care of it it however and use it in any case as a prayer and guest place, in the expectation that our sisters will return."

As to the reproach the sisters make that the General Prior of the Brothers want to have the highest authority over all three branches of the Johannine family, Fr. Luc imparted clarifying to  "Each of the three congregations in the family of St. John, that means the brothers, the contemplative sisters and also the apostolic sisters, have their  own leadership structure.  Our founder desired this from the beginning. Some years before a "council of the Johannine family" was founded with the three general priors ("Conseil de Famille"),  in order to strengthen cooperation between the three congregations.  It was never the case of a 'highest authority': as attempt to reduce this complex crisis to a power struggle is really very theatrical, but it doesn't correspond to reality.  God knows, how much all of the brothers pray for and support their sisters and to carry this consequences of this crisis with patience.  We have the secure hope that better times must come, and each will recognize the clear will of God."

Link to

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