By the Grace of God

Sharmill Films
Reviewed by
ABR Arts 25 November 2019

By the Grace of God

Sharmill Films
Reviewed by
ABR Arts 25 November 2019

‘By the grace of God, the statute of limitations has expired’, pronounces Cardinal Philippe Barbarin (François Marthouret), the Archbishop of Lyon, at a 2016 press conference. He is, of course, referring to the historical child abuse crimes committed by Father Bernard Preynat (Bernard Verley). The press corps is understandably shaken. A journalist rises, indignant: ‘Excuse me, do you realise how shocking that is?’ Barbarin tries backpedalling, to no avail. The words are etched in history, signifying a rare moment of truth nestled among the lies, prevarications, and confidentiality agreements that the Catholic Church has often deployed to salvage its tainted reputation. Yet these tactics have had the opposite effect, further plunging the Church into a profound legal and moral crisis.

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Comments (2)

  • A very sensitive and insightful review. Thank you.
    Posted by Kaye Morrison
    04 December 2019
  • A fine film captured nicely by this review. Maybe a bit more discussion of its narrative structure would have served it well, but nonetheless, a good review.
    Posted by Arthur York
    02 December 2019

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