Related: Fr. Euteneuer scandal: the "Fiello" commentary
Reprinted on Spero News and RenewAmerica.
You duped me, O LORD, and I let myself be duped; you were too strong for me, and you triumphed. All the day I am an object of laughter; everyone mocks me. Whenever I speak, I must cry out, violence and outrage is my message; the word of the LORD has brought me derision and reproach all the day. I say to myself, I will not mention him, I will speak in his name no more. But then it becomes like fire burning in my heart, imprisoned in my bones; I grow weary holding it in, I cannot endure it. --Jeremiah 20:7-9
After the statement was written, I asked the victim's father (and later, their daughter's lawyer) a few questions about it.
"In your statement, you mentioned 'victims,' while Father--"
"I prefer 'Euteneuer' if you don't mind--our family will not refer to him as 'Father,'" he said with emphasis.
"I understand. Anyway, Euteneuer stated his 'violations of chastity' occurred with 'one person only.' Do you personally know any other victims?"
"I know of two, including our daughter, and have seen documentation about a third,” he confided.
"You made it a point in your statement to show that Euteneuer's contention that he was rarely alone with women during the prayer sessions was false. Could you give any indication about how often this happened with your daughter?"
"He prayed with her for two-and-a-half years...she said, and an eyewitness also testified, that they [Euteneuer and his daughter] ended up alone about half the time, and they met at least two or three times most weeks during those two-and-a-half years. You can do the math."
"Many of the people commenting on Father's statement said something to the effect that, since he didn't have sex with her, his 'violations of chastity' weren't that bad," I told him.
A dreadful silence occurred on the other end of the line, and, as the father of a daughter myself, I immediately knew what that silence meant, but the off-the-record statements that followed, in which he described the sexually abusive behaviors in detail, confirmed my fears. "The violations of chastity were...severe. They were..."
Indeed, the conversation was becoming too grave for me, and I turned to my only defense--humor.
"Monsignor Ignacio Barreiro-Carámbula [the interim head of HLI] recently admitted Father caused grave harm to your daughter. I didn't know exactly what 'grave' meant, but then I heard that Euteneuer sometimes took his victims to pray at the graveyard."
Not having a comeback for that comment, he instead ended our conversation with "God bless you, Tom," and bid me to talk with their daughter's lawyer.