Abbot Spinoza Sentenced for Violence Against Children and Violates Ban, Arrested During Catechism Lessons in a Barn

Régis Spinoza was sentenced in 2021 for violence and humiliation committed against children. He was forbidden to work in contact with minors, a legal obligation that the traditionalist abbot did not respect.

He was arrested in the middle of catechism. This May 31, Father Régis Spinoza gives a lesson to a dozen children in a barn in La Guiraudière, a locality located on the territory of the municipality of Saint-Amand-sur-Sèvre (Deux-Sèvres), report our colleagues from The New Republic. It is a simple barn.

Sentenced in 2021 for violence and humiliation inflicted on students at a school outside the contract, of which he was the director, Father Spinoza had received a 3-year suspended prison sentence and a ban on exercising a professional or voluntary activity involving regular contact with minors for ten years.

Caught in the act, this May 31, 2023, the priest pleads the misunderstanding: “It was, he saida misunderstanding on his part”, tells us the parquet floor of Niort. “He claims that parents of students were systematically present during his lessons. He says he thought he was within his rights.”

Father Spinoza was summoned on June 2 before the public prosecutor for an appearance on prior admission of guilt. A one-year prison sentence is proposed to him: six months firm for the violation of his legal obligations and six months corresponding to the partial revocation of the suspended sentence, to which he had been sentenced in 2021.

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Coming from the radical fringe of French Catholicism, Abbé Spinoza made himself known from a private school outside the contract in Bordeaux (Gironde), an establishment that the investigative program Infiltrators described as a “nest of fascists”. Broadcast in 2010 on France 2, the investigation carried out with a hidden camera caused a stir. Nazi songs, tributes to Marshal Pétain… 85 children were raised there in hatred of “jews”of the “niggers” and “leftists”.

Portrayed as close to far-right groups, these traditionalists reject the progressive reforms introduced by Vatican II. Masses in Latin, liturgical rites practiced with their backs to the faithful, sermons sometimes borrowed from anti-Semitism… They present themselves as the last representatives of the original Church.

In 2017, a preliminary investigation was opened for suspicion of mistreatment within the Angélus, another non-contract private establishment run by Father Spinoza. The Bourges prosecutor then described the “climate of terror” which reigned in the establishment, evoking in particular beatings, inflicted by the director, the management or corrections administered by the older ones on the younger ones on the instruction of the management“.

Despite the violation of his ban on practicing in contact with minors, the Niort prosecutor’s office did not request the execution of the sentence imposed on Abbé Spinoza. The traditionalist priest then emerged free from court on June 2, 2023. “He is an intelligent and inserted personsays a judicial source. He may be eligible for a reduced sentence.”

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