Rome, Italy, Nov 17, 2011 / 14:08 pm America/Denver (CNA).
The French charismatic movement, the Community of the Beatitudes, has admitted that its founder Gerard Croissant – also known by his religious name, Brother Ephraim - was a sexual abuser.
“The Community is deeply ashamed of Ephraim’s behavior and expresses its sympathy with all the people who have been abused by him,” read a statement on the movement’s website Nov. 16.
It explained how Croissant had committed “crimes against the morality of the Church” involving a number of “sisters” that lived in the community. The statement added that “his prestige as a charismatic founder, combined with the seduction of his words, led most of his victims to let themselves be abused.”
The document is signed by the man sent in by the Vatican in 2010 to head up the reform of the community, Father Henry Donneaud O.P., as well as by the community’s board.
It explains that the community “has been committed for years, and at the request of the Catholic authorities, in a process that is not just a process of explanation and purification but also a process of deep restructuring and rebirth.”