Catholic missions society under fire…

Photo credit: Christianity Exchange

An organization dedicated to spreading Christianity overseas, Paris’s Foreign Missions Society is facing new accusations of a sexual abuse scandal.

France 24 reports that criminal investigations have been launched into accusations against the trio of Father Phillipe and Father Aymeric who are former missionaries in Japan as well as the bishop of La Rochelle, Georges Colomb who is the former superior general of the Foreign Missions Society (MEP). The MEP was founded in the 17th century to convert overseas populations in Asia to Catholicism.

The men of the robe are respectively accused of rape, aggravated rape and attempted rape. Since they have not yet been charged with any crimes, they are presumed innocent. While Father Phillipe and Bishop Georges Colomb deny the accusations made against them, Father Aymeric did not respond to a request for comment.

While accusations against the three have all been made by alleged victims in France, the accusations of sexual abuse against MEP members expand beyond France.

In Thailand, for more than 30 years, the village of Chong Kaep was home to a boarding school run by Father Tygreat. The school accommodated about 260 Karen children. The priest died in 2007.

Having left a complicated legacy, residents celebrate his memory for bringing knowledge and humanitarian aid. However, his sexual interest in young children seems to be well-known among locals. He is believed to have spent years promising a better future in exchange for sexual favours.

He was never investigated by the police for his alleged crimes. However, another MEP missionary, Father Camille Rio was disturbed by the stories he heard about the late priest. He then alerted his hierarchy within the MEP.

He was shocked to learn that the body already knew about the issue. His knowledge led to a deterioration of his relationship with the body. Having returned to France, he is being prevented from returning to Thailand. His future within the body is unclear.

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