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Abuse and cover-up have marred the Catholic Church, and traditional communities aren't exempt. In tonight's In-Depth Report, senior producer Christine Niles exposes "trad" abuse on the Dark Continent.
Bishop Bernard Fellay has never owned up to facilitating sex abuse.
Longtime former head of the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) — a breakaway traditional priestly group — Fellay routinely transferred predator priests to new assignments, where they often went on to abuse again.
Case in point: Fr. Damian Carlile, an Australian priest who got his early start in the 1990s at the SSPX mission in Gabon, Africa.
Jacques: "I know at least six other victims, but they don't want to talk. I know that many of us have been abused."
One of his alleged victims, given the alias "Jacques," revealed Carlile's modus operandi.
Jacques: "It was Damian who started the sexual touching on me, around 1992 or 1993. … It started when we went to the beach. First, very discreetly, giving me my towel and helping me to wipe myself, he took the opportunity to touch my private parts."
Carlile worked in tandem with Fr. Patrick Groche, superior of the Gabonese mission and longtime collaborator with SSPX founder Abp. Marcel Lefebvre.
François: "I was sexually abused by Fr. Patrick Groche, a close collaborator of Abp. Lefebvre and founder of the St. Pius X mission in Gabon. The events occurred in Gabon in Libreville, but also in France, in his family home in Besançon, and also in a Society school."
Bishop Fellay knew about abuse allegations against both priests as far back as the 2000s and did what he always does — hiding them away for a time before restoring them to priestly ministry.
He has a track record of doing this.
He did it with Fr. Philippe Peignot, found guilty by an SSPX canonical court of abusing multiple boys in France.
He did it with Fr. Christophe Roisnel, found guilty of torturing and raping multiple teachers at a French SSPX academy.
He did it with Swiss priest Frédéric Abbet, a known pedophile Fellay placed under the same roof as boys (whom he abused).
And he did it with Fr. Damian Carlile, transferring him from Gabon to New Zealand, where the priest abused again.
All of this abuse can be placed directly at the feet of Bp. Fellay, yet he has never publicly acknowledged his role in destroying innocent lives and souls, continuing his pious façade in comfortable retirement at the $40 million SSPX seminary in Virginia.
Meanwhile, the victims whose lives he helped destroy are left to pick up the pieces.
Church Militant contacted Bp. Fellay for comment on this report. As usual, we were met with silence.