QUEBEC CITY (CANADA)
Catholic News Service
February 28, 2019
By Philippe Vaillancourt
The apostolic nunciature in Ottawa, Ontario, confirmed Feb. 26 that it received a first complaint of sexual misconduct concerning Archbishop Luigi Ventura, the Vatican’s ambassador to Canada from 2001 to 2009.
Ventura, now 74, is under investigation for similar allegations in France, where he has served as nuncio since 2009.
The alleged incident took place July 26, 2008, at the shrine of Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupre. Ventura was there for the feast of Ste. Anne, as the shrine was celebrating its 350th anniversary.
Christian Vachon, then 32, was part of the youth pastoral team. He told Presence info that, on that day, he was asked to help by providing service at the tables during a banquet. He alleged that Ventura touched his buttocks at least twice while he was serving him. He said he thought it was done inadvertently the first time, but that that there was no doubt after the second time.
He said the nuncio tried to engage in conversation with him, but he did not want to speak.
“During the meal, I was on edge. I was shocked. I was shocked by what he did. This is the complete opposite of the dignity that comes with its function. I was scandalized,” he told Presence info, a French-language Canadian news service.
Vachon said he felt “depressed” during the afternoon.
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