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Senior Vatican priest resigns over advances to nun

A senior Vatican priest accused of making advances towards a nun during confession has resigned, the Vatican said on Tuesday.

Senior Vatican priest resigns over advances to nun
A file picture of the Vatican. Photo: DPA

Austrian Father Hermann Geissler resigned as one of three top officials at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which ensures Roman Catholic moral doctrine. 

“Geissler decided to take this step to limit the damage already done to the congregation and to his community,” a Vatican statement said, adding that he “reserves the right for possible civil legal action”.

A Canonical disciplinary procedure in 2014 let Geissler off with a warning after German former nun Doris Wagner accused him of inappropriate behaviour during confession.

“He kept me for hours, kneeling before him, he told me that he loved me and that he knew that I loved him and that even if we couldn't marry, there were other ways,” Wagner said.

“He tried to take me in his arms and kiss me. I panicked and ran,” Wagner said in testimony she put on social media.

Wagner also accused another priest of raping her in 2008.

He was removed from the Vatican but remains a priest in a community where “many young nuns live”, according to Wagner.

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PRIEST

Fake priest ‘tries to get to Schumacher’ in hospital

A person dressed as a priest, reportedly a journalist, tried to approach Michael Schumacher, who is in a coma and critical after a ski accident in France, his manager said on Tuesday.

Fake priest 'tries to get to Schumacher' in hospital
Journalists pack the press conference at the hospital where Michael Schumacher is being treated. Photo: Philippe Desmazes/AFP

"There have been several interesting incidents here at the hospital," Sabine Kehm told reporters in the Alpine city of Grenoble, where the Formula One legend is being treated following his off-piste accident on Sunday.

"There apparently was a person dressed-up as a priest, who tried to get near Michael. I am asking everyone to let the doctors work and leave the family spend peaceful time with Michael."

Responding to a question as to whether the priest was a journalist, she said: "It's what I was told… We have clearly noted that people are trying to get beyond the press room here in the clinic. It's revolting, in my opinion."

Schumacher has been a coma since Sunday, when he was helicoptered to hospital after slamming his head on a rock while skiing off-piste in the upmarket resort of Meribel with his son.

Doctors said Tuesday that after a second operation to remove bleeding from his brain, he showed slight improvement but remained in a critical and fragile state.

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