Apart from the assurances of Cardinal Stanisław Dziwisz that he will meet me, this meeting has not yet taken place – said Janusz Szymik, who as a teenager was sexually abused by a pedophile priest. – I thought it would be very good if we meet and talk face to face and exchange views on this matter – he added.
In the 1980s, Janusz Szymik was sexually abused for five years by the then parish priest in Międzybrodzie Bialskie, priest Jan Wodniak. Szymik recalled that he first went to Bishop Tadeusz Rakoczy, the then ordinary of Bielsko-Żywiec, handed over to him his written memoirs from 1984-1989 and asked for an intervention. In the absence of any action, in 2008 he handed the case over to Father Tadeusz Isakowicz-Zaleski, who – as he reported – was to go to the curia in Krakow in 2012 and hand over to Cardinal Stanisław Dziwisz the documents containing the precisely described case of Szymik and his contact details .
Cardinal Stanisław Dziwisz spoke on TVN24 in October last yearthat he had offered Szymik an interview. – There was a period of uncertainty. The possibility for this meeting has opened up now, he said. He added that it would not be a business meeting, but a conversation between the bishop and someone who needed a conversation.
Janusz Szymik, asked on Tuesday in “Fakty po Faktach” whether the announced meeting had taken place, replied that it had not happened so far. – On the other hand, twice more I was assured by his envoy whether I wanted to meet the cardinal at all. I confirmed that, and what’s more, I invited him to Międzybrodzie Bialskie so that we could meet and talk face to face, he said. – Unfortunately, apart from the cardinal’s assurances that he will meet me, this meeting has not taken place to this day – he added.
He said that “the last assurance that such attempts will be made was on December 16, 2020”.
– Today we have the end of February and somehow the Cardinal does not find the time, and perhaps the desire to meet me, said Szymik.
– I thought it would be very good if we meet and talk face to face and exchange views on this matter – he said.
Questions for Cardinal Dziwisz
When asked what he would say to the cardinal if this meeting took place, he listed a few questions that he would have asked the clergyman.
– Why, as a man of conscience, the Cardinal did not take up my case when he received it in his own hands in April 2012? Why did he not give this story any course? Why, as in the case of his friend Bishop Tadeusz Rakoczy, nothing happened, was it a sufficient premise to just take the bishop’s word for it? Why is it taking so many years? – Szymik mentioned.
– I would also like to ask him about the relationship he had with Father Jan Wodniak, when he was the secretary of Cardinal Macharski, and Cardinal Stanisław Dziwisz was the chaplain of the Holy Father John Paul II. I would like to go back to the turn of the 1970s and 1980s. I would also like to ask him about the visits of priest Jan Wodniak to him to the Vatican, about which I learned from the lips of Jan Wodniak’s late mother – he added.
Szymik, when asked if any hierarchy of the Catholic Church had contacted him, proposing a conversation, replied that “unfortunately, no such contact has existed since the hierarchy made his case public”. He added that only assurances remained that Cardinal Dziwisz would meet him.
– On the other hand, neither the chairman of the Bishops’ Conference, Archbishop Stanisław Gądecki, nor the Polish Primate, nor any other bishop has ever made any phone calls to find out how I feel, no one expressed any empathy towards me, whether I feel bad is good. There was a deafening silence, he said.
Main photo source: TVN24