After confessing to sexually abusing a young girl, an Italian priest commits suicide by hanging himself in the vestry of his church.
According to a statement issued by the Diocese of Trieste, Father Maks Suard, 48, the vicar of Santa Croce in the port town of Trieste off the Slovenian border, took his own life on Tuesday, Oct. 28, after admitting to church authorities that he had sexually abused a 13-year-old girl.
Suard, a Roman Catholic priest from the northern Italian province of Trieste, was found to have hanged himself by the local Archbishop, Giampaolo Crepaldi.
On Oct. 25 Archbishop Crepaldi explained to Suard that he had to undergo an official church investigation. In response, Suard asked for two days during which he could prepare a resignation letter and a written statement “in order to ask forgiveness from God, the Church, and the girl for the evil committed.”Archbishop Crepaldi agreed to the request, and arranged to meet with Suard on the afternoon of October 28, but when he entered the rectory he found that Suard had taken his own life.
The Catholic News agency reports Suard was a priest of the Slovenian community of the Trieste diocese, and was parish priest of the small church of Santa Croce, in the territory of the Carso Triestino.
Suard had served as a parish priest in several parishes of the San Dorligo area since his ordination in 1995. He was also involved in the Boy Scout movement, and taught classes in religion at local schools.
According an anonymous source in the Diocese of Trieste, locals had long exchanged rumors about Suard’s alleged inappropriate conduct, but until recently no one had taken any action.