Lima, Peru, Dec 1, 2015 / 00:08 am
The superior general of the Sodalitium Christianae Vitae has announced the creation of an Ethics Commission for Justice and Reconciliation to assist and offer proposals amid investigations following accusations against its founder.
"In the last few weeks, we have seen with pain and shame the disclosure of credible accusations about the grave misconduct and abuse committed by Luis Fernando Figari and other members of the Sodalitium of Christian Life. These accusations need to be clarified," said Alessandro Moroni Llabrés, superior general of the group, in a Nov. 25 statement.
"To ensure the highest level of rigor and impartiality in this task we have called together a group of professionals, recognized for their quality and independence, to be part of an Ethics Commission for Justice and Reconciliation. Its aim will be to review what has happened, offer the highest level of assistance possible for victims and to propose the necessary (actions)."
The new commission includes Manuel Sánchez-Palacios Paiva, former president of the National Jury of Elections and spokesman for the Peruvian Supreme Court; Rosario Fernández Figueroa, a lawyer and former president of the Peruvian Justice Council; Bishop Carlos Enrique García Camader of Lurin; Maíta García Trovato, a surgeon with a specialization in psychiatry, former general director of the Peruvian National Institute of Mental Health; and Miguel Humberto Aguirre, a journalist and director of content for the RPP Group.
The Sodalitium Christianae Vitae is a society of apostolic life which was founded in 1971 in Peru, and granted pontifical recognition in 1997. Alejandro Bermúdez, executive director of CNA, is a member of the community.
An apostolic visitor from the Vatican is currently investigating allegations of sexual abuse, mistreatment and abuse of power against Luis Fernando Figari, founder of the community.
Figari stepped down as superior general of the Sodalitium Christianae Vitae in 2010.
In addition to Peru, the community operates in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Chile, Ecuador, the United States, and Italy.
Moroni said in the statement that "Luis Fernando Figari should remain in Rome until new instructions from Church authorities in order to not interfere with the investigations they are conducting. In regards to proceedings of Peruvian justice, we assure our utmost collaboration."
He explained that the new ethics commission will last for 150 days and is part of a period of review, reconciliation, and renewal for the community.
"This implies a profound examination and questioning of practices and processes of our organization so that we can face and resolve problems caused by the reprehensible behavior of some. Every aspect inconsistent with the Christian values we should serve needs to be clearly reconsidered."
"We would like to renew our solidarity with anyone who has suffered as a result of these actions, which we condemn," Moroni said.
He reiterated a commitment to "act with the highest level of transparency and firmness to repair the damage done and to encourage Reconciliation following Pope Francis' call to convoke a year dedicated to Mercy."