Church Officials Knew

By Neil Pang
Guam Daily Post
November 11, 2016

At least one of the civil lawsuits filed in the Superior Court of Guam last week on Nov. 1 by abuse victims Roland Sondia, Roy Quintanilla, Walter Denton and Leo Tudela included written testimony from an abuser and former priest of Guam that states that archdiocesan officials knew about child sex abuse being committed by priests and did little to address it.

Of the four complainants, Sondia, Quintanilla and Denton have accused Archbishop Anthony Apuron of sexually abusing them as children when they served as altar boys at the Agat parish that Apuron ministered in the 1970s.

Tudela, 73, came forward in August of this year to give oral testimony in favor of Bill 323-33, which would remove the statute of limitations for civil litigation for cases involving child sex abuse, and disclosed details of abuse that he endured as a child while attending Catholic school on Guam in the 1950s. He named two individuals, Fr. Louis Brouillard and a "Brother Mariano" as church officials who ministered at parishes of the Archdiocese of Agana, as his abusers.

Bill 363-33 was signed into Public Law 33-187 on Sept. 24 by Gov. Eddie Calvo, opening the door for civil litigation against individuals, organizations and aiders and abettors who permitted the sexual abuse of children. Last week's filing marks the first such suits to make use of the provisions of the new law.

The complaint filed by Tudela was aimed at Brouillard, who is now a resident of Minnesota and who has, since Tudela came forward, publicly admitted to abusing boys during his ministry on Guam. Brouillard has said that he did not remember details from each instance.

The suit includes two documents submitted as Exhibits 1 and 2. Exhibit 1 is a written copy of the oral testimony that Tudela gave to the legislature during a public hearing held on Aug. 1, 2016. Exhibit 2 is a written statement from Brouillard admitting that he sexually abused boys and that Bishop Apollinaris Baumgartner, the bishop of Guam at the time, and others in the church knew about the abuse.

"While in Guam (in the 1950s), my actions were discussed and confessed to are priests as well Bishop Apollinaris Baumgartner who had approached me to talk about the situation," Brouillard wrote in the letter dates Oct. 3. "I was told to try to do better and say prayers as a penance."

Possibly more than 20 victims

In the letter, Brouillard, now 95, admits to committing sexual abuse, and said that the number of victims could number 20 or more.

"Because of the many years that have passed, I do not remember the exact dates and times or the names of the boys involved," he said. "There may have been twenty or more boys involved. Other locations where the sexual contact may have (happened) would be at San Vicente and Father Duenas Memorial School."

Brouillard explained in the letter that he believed that his victims enjoyed the sexual contact and stated that he now realizes that he crossed the line with his actions.

Brouillard apologized in name to Tudela and further apologized to all of the boys he abused.

"I apologize to you Leo and the rest of the boys that I may have harmed," he wrote. "I regret with all my heart any wrong I did to them. I pray for all the boys I may have harmed and ask for their forgiveness and for forgiveness from God."








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