Former nuns reveal sexual abuse by Catholic priest close to Vatican

On Wednesday (21st February), two former nuns revealed how a Slovenbia-based Catholic priest named Marko Rupnik sexually abused them three decades ago in the garb of ‘spiritual growth.’

The victims, identified as Gloria Branciani and Mirjam Kovac, were members of the Ignatius of Loyola community. The duo held a press conference in Rome on Wednesday and informed the media that Rupnik forced them to watch pornography and have a threesome in the early 1990s.

“He took me to pornographic theatres to help me ‘grow spiritually’…He said that I would not grow spiritually if I did not meet his sexual needs. We had another nun have sex with us because he said it was like the Trinity”, narrated Gloria Branciani.

“(Rupnik) was always protected by everyone, and everything that you could accuse him of was either minimized or denied…” she added.

“We hope that our testimony – and for this reason we’re exposing ourselves like this, because we feel protected and supported – will stimulate a greater transparency and a consciousness by everyone, and also maybe the pope who wasn’t really aware of the facts that occurred,” Gloria Branciani further emphasised.

It must be mentioned that the victim left the Slovene community in 1993 and had even informed senior Vatican officials at that time. She said that no action was taken against Rupnik and that her accusations were dismissed.

During the press conference, former nun Mirjam Kovac said, “We were all young girls, full of ideals. But these very ideals, together with our training in obedience, were exploited for abuses of various kinds: of conscience, of power, spiritual, psychic, physical and often sexual.”

Who is Marko Rupnik

Marko Rupnik is a famous mosaic artist and a priest at a religious community in Slovenia. He has been accused of sexually abusing at least 20 women in the past 30 years.

He was temporarily excommunicated by the Church after he absolved a woman of having a sexual relationship with him. Rupnik was reinstated two weeks later after he ‘repented’ for his actions. It was only in June 2023 that he was expelled from the Jesuit order, the same one as that of Pope Francis.

Anne Barrett Doyle of ‘Bishop Accountability’, who documents church crimes, described Marko Rupnik as a “powerful cleric who was protected at the highest levels of the Church and the Vatican.” She added, “The Rupnik case shows that little has changed.”

Rupnik, however, continues to serve as a ‘priest’ in a diocese in Koper city of Slovenia. His mosaic art can be found in the Catholic shrine in Lourdes (France), the cathedral in Aparecida (Brazil), and the Redemptoris Mater chapel of the Apostolic Palace (Vatican).

Source: OpIndia

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