23 July 2020
Movements

Sexual abuse: mechanisms involved in the dynamics of an association

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“Abuses. Power at the origin of everything” was the theme of the report which Isabelle Cassarà, an official of our Dicastery, presented via videoconference at the training seminar which, in recent days, saw the four instances of the Emmanuel Community’s government gathered together in Paris.

The intention of this reflection, the official explained, “is to investigate, based on the experience of the Dicastery, the mechanisms at play within those ecclesial movements in which cases of sexual abuse have been confirmed, and on the associated dynamics which facilitated this.” In particular, Cassarà focused on some specific aspects: the link between sexual abuse and the abuse of conscience and power; the aspects of spiritual direction or accompaniment which require supervision, so as not to occasion abusive behavior; the distinction between the spheres of the government of associations and the consciences of their members, and related points of vigilance to be adopted.