The former archbishop of Strasbourg recognizes “inappropriate gestures” towards a woman, criminal investigation in progress

Bishop Jean-Pierre Grallet, 81 years old and now retired, is under investigation for these facts against a “young adult woman” in 1985.

A week after the revelations, in Lourdes, of the abuse of a 14-year-old girl recognized by Cardinal Jean-Pierre Ricard when he was a priest, another French bishop admits having had “ inappropriate gestures towards a young adult woman “. This is Mgr Jean-Pierre Grallet, 81, former archbishop of Strasbourg, now retired.

The Franciscan religious attests, in a press release, to these actions that he “ deeply regret and which are linked to a complaint filed by the victim before the civil justice system. “ During the summer of 2022, writes Bishop Grallet, I learned of this woman’s testimony and I immediately wrote to her to tell her that I had failed and to ask her forgiveness. »

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His successor in Strasbourg, Mgr Luc Ravel, specifies in a press release from the diocese of Strasbourg: “ Bishop Jean-Pierre Grallet recognizes serious facts against a young adult woman at the time of these facts, which date back to the fall of 1985 when he was a priest. These facts were brought to my attention by the victim in December 2021. I made a report to the public prosecutor of Strasbourg in January 2022. The Roman authorities have also been seized. These investigations are ongoing. ” A “criminal investigation” is “In progress» pour «facts of a sexual natureon a young adult woman in the 1980s, the public prosecutor, Yolande Renzi, confirmed on Wednesday.

In 1985, Brother Jean-Pierre Grallet passed from the responsibility of the university chaplaincy of Besançon to that of Strasbourg where the facts occurred. In his note, he adds: I got lost and injured someone. The forgiveness that I asked him, I also express to all his relatives, as well as to all those who, today, will be bruised, under the shock of this revelation. For Bishop Ravel, this revelation is “ a real pain and a great sadness by our diocese of Strasbourg “. The bishop says share the shock and pain of all the priests and faithful of the diocese, in particular those who may have known Bishop Jean-Pierre Grallet or worked with him. »

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The same reaction from Bishop Eric de Moulins-Beaufort, president of the Episcopal Conference who, in the name of all the bishops of France, “ expresses its compassion to the person victim of this serious behavior on the part of a religious who later became a bishop “. He expects the investigation to reveal “ the exact nature of the facts ». « We knew that these things existed, confides for his part Jean-Joseph, one of the founders of the collective of young lay people Agir pour notre Eglise, who demonstrated for the episcopate to release its files. There is no need to be overwhelmed. We observe that the Santier affair, former bishop of Créteil, served as a trigger. The truth eventually triumphs. This is a good thing ». Mgr Grallet is the one since three cases of bishops mentioned by Mgr Eric de Moulins-Beaufort, on November 7 in Lourdes, and whose files must come out publicly. The other two are expected.

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