‘Time Church should reform’: Kerala nun narrates sexual abuse in her book
The bare-all autobiography of a nun in Kerala, who was expelled from the congregation three months ago for indiscipline, is set to ruffle many feathers in the Catholic church.
The Franciscan Clarist Congregation (FCC) had expelled Sister Lucy Kalapura in August citing “serious indiscipline” but the nun said she was victimised for supporting the agitation for the arrest of the deposed bishop of Jalandhar, Franco Mullakkal, who is facing rape charges.
In the book ‘Karthavinte Namathil’ (In the Name of Christ), 52-year-old Sister Lucy has described alleged abuses and assaults in convents and seminaries under the church.
“It is all about my life in the convent. It is a collection of my memoirs. It is not fiction but hard truth. I wish church authorities accept some of these realities to stem the rot. Most of the time they are in denial mode and try to brush it aside,” the nun said.
Sister Lucy also said she will remain a nun till her last breath and will be happy if her book helps bring the much-needed reform in the church.
She was later forced to vacate the convent but insisted she will remain at the convent. She had also sought a personal appointment with the Pope in October but is yet to hear from the Vatican.
The nun says in the book that there were attempts of sexual assault on her at least four times during her convent life and many nuns easily succumb to such intimidations. She claimed that some young nuns were subjected to cruel sexual perversions at the official residence of a priest.
She also alleged that Father Robin Vadakumcherry, who is serving a double-life term for impregnating a minor girl in Kottiyoor of Kannur, had illicit relation with many nuns.
Besides priests, she alleged that some elderly nuns subject younger ones to satiate their pent up sexual desires. She also cited another example that a nun gave birth to a baby and both were shifted to an orphanage discreetly. She claimed that accused priest was protected by authorities in the church.
She said she was a silent witness to many such incidents and what she has written about was “only the tip of the iceberg”.
“I have narrated my 35 years of experience as a nun. I don’t want to paint all in a bad light. On several occasions, victims turn villain. Results are there to see—young nuns’ numbers are dwindling. This is high time the church should reform,” she said.
The 230-odd page book written in Malayalam was officially released on Saturday and publisher DC Books said all the 3000 copies were sold out on the same day and they are into the second edition.
“We are getting enough inquiries. In the second edition we are planning more copies to meet the demand,” DC Books’ spokesperson AV Sreekumar said.
It will be translated into Hindi and English soon, he said.
Another defrocked nun Sister Jesme had written a book ‘Amen’ which had also created a storm in church circles.