Groups speculate on outcome of Apuron church trial

Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio, Sept. 17, 2017

Concerned Catholics of Guam is hopeful Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron will not only be removed as archbishop but also be stripped of his priestly faculties after his Vatican canonical trial.

But the world’s largest network of priest abuse survivors is doubtful Apuron will be laicized, or removed from the priesthood, even if the church concludes he sexually abused minors.

Apuron in June 2016 was temporarily stripped of his authority to run the Catholic Church on Guam after being publicly accused of sexually abusing former Agat altar boys when he was parish priest in the late 1970s. Three former altar boys and the family of a deceased former altar boy accused Apuron and later sued him and the church. The Vatican started a secretive canonical trial for Apuron as a result. No findings or conclusions have been announced.

‘Damaged goods’

Concerned Catholics and the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, agree the Vatican is unlikely to send Apuron back to Guam.

“He’s damaged goods, so to speak, and to reassign him would just cause bad publicity,” said Joelle Casteix, volunteer western regional director for the St. Louis-based SNAP.

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