Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Kenya Shocked by Abuse Allegations Against Priest


Catholic bishops are shocked by allegations of sexual abuse supposedly committed by Rev. Renato Kizito Sesana - an Italian priest known for his work with disadvantaged children. The bishops will investigate.

The Catholic bishops of Kenya have expressed shock at allegations of child sex abuse by a prominent missionary priest and promised "to investigate the matter to its final conclusion."

The privately-owned Kenya Television Network (KTN) claimed in a Monday night report that Fr. Renato Kizito Sesana, an Italian missionary well known for his work with disadvantaged children, has been sexually molesting some of the boys in his care for the last 20 years.

KTN reported that it was in possession of leaked videos that the priest shot of himself abusing the boys. The station said it could not air the videos because they were too graphic. Fr. Kizito is also claimed to have invited some of his friends and other contacts in Europe to molest the minors.

On Tuesday, Fr. Kizito categorically denied the report in a press statement. "Let me state very clearly. I have not sodomized any child. I am ready to face anybody who can prove the opposite," he said.

In a pastoral letter signed by Kenya Episcopal conference chairman, John Cardinal Njue, the country's Catholic bishops said they were shocked by the KTN news report.

"If these allegations are true, then we condemn them in the strongest terms possible and in our pain we feel sorry for the affected children and their families. We will do everything possible to investigate the matter to its final conclusion in order to establish the truth and take all the appropriate actions as a caring church."


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