Late Dutch Catholic Bishop Jan Ter Schure "Abused Boy"

BBC News
November 26, 2010

Jan ter Schure was bishop of Den Bosch

A Dutch Roman Catholic bishop who died in 2003 abused a boy while serving as a priest at a monastery after the war, Dutch media report.

Jan ter Schure, who served as bishop of Den Bosch until 1998, is said to have been one of seven priests involved in abusing the boarding school pupil.

Church documents show the victim was paid compensation for "emotional damages" after ter Schure's death.

The religious order involved paid him 16,000 euros (?13,500, $21,000).

The abuse occurred at the Don Rua monastery in Ugchelen between 1948 and 1953. The monastery later relocated to the town of 's-Heerenberg.

Revelations this year of widespread sexual abuse at Don Rua prompted a wave of publicity about sexual abuse in the Roman Catholic Church in the Netherlands, Radio Netherlands reports.

The Church complaints body, Hulp en Recht (Help and Justice), has received more than 1,100 claims of abuse.

Victim 'ignored'

The unnamed victim asked the Bishop of Rotterdam, Adrianus Van Luyn, to publicly denounce abuses by the Salesian order two years ago, according to documents seen by Radio Netherlands Worldwide and Rotterdam newspaper NRC Handelsblad.

However, the bishop did not respond directly to his repeated requests and he turned instead to Hulp en Recht.

Asked about the bishop's actions, the Diocese of Rotterdam said the bishop had referred the victim to the Salesians.

It stressed that Bishop Van Luyn, who headed the Dutch Salesian order between 1975 and 1981, no longer had administrative authority over the order by the time of the victim's requests.

"As a diocesan bishop, Monsignor Van Luyn can unfortunately play no part in matters that concern orders or congregations," it added.

Herman Spronck, Father Superior of the Salesians in the Netherlands, declined to comment, Radio Netherlands adds.


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