December 18th, 2022
“Rupnik case: Jesuits invite anyone who has suffered abuse to contact them”
“Structure to handle complaints” says Delegate of Fr. Sosa.
Statement from Fr. Johan Verschueren SJ, Delegate of Fr. General Sosa SJ
and Major Superior for the International Houses
The last week has seen a focus on two investigations carried on concerning the ministry of Fr Marko Rupnik. One concerned a matter relating to the sacrament of reconciliation; another related to abuse against several women of the Loyola Community by Fr Rupnik. The information shared has provoked many questions and I share below a timeline of the events in the hope of providing some clarity.
My main concern in all of this is for those who have suffered and I invite anyone who wishes to make a new complaint or who wants to discuss complaints already made to contact us. I assure you that you will be listened to with understanding and with empathy. Already a few months ago, we established a team of people, women and men, from various disciplines and with a variety of expertise in dealing with these situations. They are available, and indeed have been, to listen, support and to help. The e mail of this service is: [email protected]
and people can write in English, Slovenian, French, Italian, Spanish, Dutch and German (see below explanations on how our Survivor Response system works).
I re-iterate what Fr General said last Wednesday December 14th:
“The case of Fr. Marko Rupnik, which became public last week, is a good example of how much we still have to learn, especially about people's suffering. This case, like others, causes us shock and sorrow; it forces us to understand and empathize with the suffering of all those involved in one form or another. It confronts us with the challenge of respecting this pain at the same time as we scrupulously initiate the procedures demanded by civil or canonical laws. We seek to communicate this in a way that does not conceal the facts, while we also, enlightened by the Gospel and other human experiences, try to open paths toward healing the wounds produced.”
I conclude by assuring you that the Society of Jesus, as asked by General Congregation 36, wants to create a culture of safeguarding and that we are committed to the highest standards in our ministry. We try to exclude that anybody runs the risk of being harmed in any of our ministries.
Johan Verschueren SJ
Delegate of the Superior General for the International Houses in Rome
Original Language: English