Diocese Confirms French Bishop Disciplined by Vatican for Sexual Abuse

The Diocese of Créteil in France confirmed last week that its former bishop had been credibly accused of sexual abuse and ordered to live a life of “prayer and penance” by the Vatican last year.

Bishop Michel Santier retired in January 2021 at the age of 73, two years before the age at which bishops are required to submit a letter of resignation to the pope.

Seven months prior, in June 2020, Santier had told Catholics in his diocese he would be retiring early for “health reasons,” according to a report by La Croix.

But the real reason for the early retirement — confirmed by Créteil’s new bishop, Dominque Blanchet, in a press release Oct. 14 — was that Santier was credibly accused in late 2019 of committing sexual abuse as a priest more than 20 years prior.

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