Nazareno Fasciale was an Italian immigrant, moving to Australia when he was nine years old. He started training in the Catholic Church in the late 1940’s.
He was in the same seminary group as Frank Little (the protector of paedophiles). Fasciale used his position as a priest to sexually abuse children, forcing them to inappropriately touch his genitals.
He even admitted to touching children inappropriately.
The Church did nothing.
Two sisters complained of being inappropriately touched by the priest in 1954. Fasciale was simply moved to the next parish, where he once again inappropriately touched a ten-year old girl. The third victim came to know the sisters, and they realised they were all sexually assaulted by Fasciale.
When three victims came forward to the Vicar-General of the Melbourne archdiocese, Monsignor Gerald Cudmore, he begged them to keep quiet for the sake of the Church. With the help of organisation Broken Rites, the victims took the story to the Australian press.
Fasciale was allowed to retire “for health reasons”.
Throughout Fasciale’s career, he was moved from parish to parish. His victims included altar boys and vulnerable children. He often targeted siblings and would take the children on trips where he would then assault them.
Fasciale was charged by Newport detectives with multiple accounts of indecent assault and gross indecency in 1995. Fasciale had already been interrogated by Geelong detectives earlier in the year. The two districts asked the Director of Public Prosecutions to combine the files.
After the case came to court, Fasciale’s solicitor asked for an adjournment due to “bad health”.
Fasciale died two weeks before he was due to face court.
He was given a glowing obituary, and funeral to match his status as a priest.
Over the years, more stories have surfaced of Fasciale sexually abusing children. Many victims know each other, and are aware of other victims who haven’t come forward.
His career spanned forty years.
He sexually abused so many children.
The numbers could be in the hundreds.
And the Church knew about it all. They knew and they did nothing.
Many victims have difficulty maintaining healthy sexual relationships.
Some victims have attempted suicide.
In spite of the damage, in spite of the trauma and hurt, the Catholic Church took no responsibility.
In fact, they sent him on extended leave to Italy in 1960, while the Church dealt with the sister’s allegations of abuse.
Nazareno Fasciale was a liability to children, and to the Catholic Church, so why didn’t they remove him when they had the chance?
Reputation above all else, it would appear.
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