Second French priest takes his life after abuse claims

The Tablet

October 30, 2018

By Jonathan Luxmoore

The French Church has been plunged into soul-searching after a second young priest in a month committed suicide after being accused of sexually improper conduct.

Fr Pierre-Yves Fumery, 38, took his life on 20 October after being sent away for psychological treatment because of his close relations with a teenage girl. That was a month after Fr Jean-Baptiste Sebé, also 38, committed suicide after authorities examined accusations he had assaulted a young woman.

“This is a terrible shock, even if we knew he was going through a difficult time,” Bishop Jacques Blaquart told journalists after Fumery’s suicide.

His Orleans diocese now ranks among the best in France in dealing with the sexual abuse crisis; its previous bishop went on trial this week for not denouncing an abusive priest.

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