St. Bonaventure theologian urges church leaders to listen to cries of abuse victims

Mar 31, 2019

A new book by a St. Bonaventure University priest and professor explores options for the Church as it tries to recover from the ongoing clergy abuse scandal. Fr. David Couturier is a theology professor who is also director of the Franciscan Institute. His book is titled "The Voice of the Victims, The Voice of the Crucified."

Fr. David Couturier, OFM Cap.
Credit Photo courtesy of St. Bonaventure University

Fr. Couturier takes up the difficult discussion of how the church that understands itself as “the community of the Beloved of God” became — in one generation — a “culture of cruelty and corruption” against its parishioners, especially the youngest among them.

Fr. Couturier says the path to church recovery and reconciliation with victims must be through the practice of radical attentive listening to the pain caused and the violence inflicted by abuse itself and the cold indifference of church leaders.

The Franciscan Institute will be hosting a conference on "Franciscan Reform and the Abuse Crises in the Catholic Church" April 12th and 13th at Doyle Hall on the St. Bonaventure campus. It's free and open to the public.

Fr. Couturier's book is available at