Apuron Accused of Abuse: Former Seminarian Lodges Complaint with Vatican
By Gaynor Dumat-ol Daleno
Pacific Daily News
November 24, 2014
A former Guam seminarian has forwarded a written allegation he's made against Archbishop Anthony Apuron to Vatican officials.
John C. Toves, a Guamanian who lives in California, sent a letter to the Archdiocese of Agana on Nov. 21. It notes that a courtesy copy of the letter also was sent to the Vatican.
In it, Toves alleged that a former co-seminarian and relative, who went to school with him at a minor seminary in Guam between 1980 to 1983, was sexually molested by Apuron.
Apuron couldn't be reached for comment yesterday, through messages left with Archdiocese of Agana officials.
Meeting with pope
Apuron had a meeting with Pope Francis at the Vatican on Nov. 21, but the reason for the meeting was unclear.
Apuron's meeting with the pope was reported by News.va, the Vatican's official news center.
An Apuron critic and a blogger on Catholic issues, Tim Rohr, yesterday said the meeting with the pope didn't appear to be a routine papal meeting that archbishops like Apuron get with the pope once every five years. Rohr said it wasn't clear why Apuron met with Pope Francis.
Apuron was still a priest at the time of the alleged abuse, Toves said.
Toves stated he forwarded his letter to Archbishop Martin Krebs, the Vatican's delegate in the Pacific islands; Cardinal Marc Ouellet, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops; and Cardinal Fernando Filoni, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples and a former personal envoy of Pope Francis.
"I come forward now as I realized that no one else has, and I believe the Archbishop must be held accountable for his actions," Toves wrote.
Toves sent a similar letter to the Archdiocese of Agana about two weeks ago, reporting alleged sexual misconduct by Apuron.
The archdiocese also didn't return a phone call for comment on the earlier letter.