A group of devout Catholics has turned to social media to expose what they call “corruption” within the Diocese of Lafayette, an effort they say is in response to the diocese’s handling of sexual abuse cases.
KATC has spoken with members of the “Society of St. Peter Damian,” who have chosen to remain anonymous at this time. Among them are parishioners of the Diocese of Lafayette, who tell us they formed the group because of what they felt was a weak response to the latest church scandals locally and worldwide.
Church ‘reticent to engage in full transparency,’ group says
On the group’s website, members say their mission “is not an attempt to tear down the Catholic Church, as we are all devout and grateful members of that Church.”
“On the contrary, it is precisely our devotion that urges us to follow St. Paul’s command to the Corinthians: Auferte malum ex vobis ipsis. We strive to put away the evil one from among ourselves, and to cut out the cancer feasting upon the body of our Holy Mother Church, especially those closest to her heart, namely, her priests.”
The group also has posted an audio recording of Tuesday night’s forum on the church sex abuse crisis featuring Bishop J. Douglas Deshotel.
Of the event, the society wrote that “the hierarchy of our local church, despite lip service to the contrary, is still reticent to engage in full transparency.” They question the diocese’s motives in prohibiting cameras at Tuesday’s forum.
“…the panel forbade any and all public questions for the evening before the event even began. As you can hear in the recording, the participants had to forcefully make their questions known; furthermore, the bishop refused to be interviewed by KATC afterward.”
The group also claims the church is deleting questions they posed on the Diocese of Lafayette Facebook page.
Why is @DioLafayetteLA deleting our honest questions? "For there is not any thing secret that shall not be made manifest, nor hidden, that shall not be known and brought to light." #Luke8@DeshotelBishop @JulieDarce pic.twitter.com/tBk5X9ihzA
— Society of St. Peter Damian (Lafayette, LA) (@SSPDLafayette) September 18, 2018
We reached out to the Diocese of Lafayette for comment, but we haven’t heard back.