Vatican City, Jan 14, 2020 / 19:01 pm
This week Fernando Martínez Suárez, a priest of the Legionaries of Christ, was dismissed from the clerical state. He had been found guilty of the sexual abuse of minors by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
Martinez, 79, will remain a member of the Legion of Christ. He had been ordained a priest in 1964.
The Legion of Christ stated Jan. 13 that Martinez, "who was found guilty of delicts of sexual abuse of minors, as a result of the process before the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, has lost the clerical state and can no longer exercise the priestly ministry."
Fr. Andreas Schöggl, secretary general of the Legion, wrote in a Jan. 13 letter to Martinez' victims that "the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith submitted the request to the Holy Father after an attentive study of the case.”
Martinez abused at least six girls, ages 6 to 11, between 1991 and 1993 when he directed the Cumbres Institute in Cancún.
He was also accused of other acts of abuse, including that of a boy between the ages of 4 and 6 at the Cumbres Lomas Institute in Mexico City in 1969.
Martinez had himself been abused by Fr. Marcial Maciel, founder of the Legion of Christ, in Ontaneda and Rome in 1954, when Martinez was 15.
An internal commission of the Legion published a report last month saying that since its founding in 1941, 33 priests of the Legionaries of Christ committed sexual abuse of minors, victimizing 175 children.