Ramon De Plata says the victim passed away before he could share his own story of sexual abuse.
Guam – The sex abuse scandal continues in the catholic church, this time a former altar server has come forward with explosive details involving Archbishop Anthony Apuron, another priest and a young altar boy allegedly engaged in a threesome.
Ramon De Plata is the latest to come forward with allegations of sexual abuse at the hands of Church members. Although De Plata says he was never physically abused, he did witness something that he wishes he had never seen. De Plata says he was 10 years old and an altar server at the Our Lady of Peace church in Chalan Pago back in March 1964.
He and a number of other altar boys were invited to sleep over at the rectory by Pale Antonio Cruz and by Archbishop Anthony Apuron who was at the time just a seminarian. While getting ready for bed, De Plata says Pale Cruz told the boys that he would leave his bedroom door open in case any of the boys needed to use the restroom in the middle of the night.
“So later in the evening I needed the restroom. So I got up and went there and when I walked in the door and everything, I noticed to my right that the priest was naked, the altar boy was naked and the altar boy was [expletive] the priest’s penis and he was turned halfway where Apuron was kneeling on the floor and he was [expletive] the altar boy,” explained De Plata.
De Plata says he headed straight for the restroom when Apuron followed him. Behind Apuron was De Plata’s brother who asked De Plata if everything was alright. De Plata says he left the rectory and went straight home as his brother followed him.
His brother confirmed that he had also witnessed the same thing but both agreed to get some rest and talk about the shocking experience the next morning.
But De Plata says he and his brother never spoke about what they witnessed the next day.
We asked De Plata if he had ever spoken to the young altar boy about what he saw, but he says he wasn’t sure if the altar boy knew that De Plata had ever walked in on them. He also says the altar boy is no longer alive to share his own story.
Pale Cruz and Apuron never brought up the incident to De Plata either, he recalls. De Plata says he never reported it to any other figure of authority because, much like other survivors who have come forward years after the fact, fear was instilled in their young minds.
But that wasn’t the only incident De Plata says he experienced. Months later, he says he witnessed Pale Cruz masturbating in front of him. This happened twice. In the second incident, De Plata says, Pale Cruz even attempted to lure him with “limosna,” or church offerings in the form of cash.
After that incident, De Plata says he never returned again.
PNC: “Do you consider yourself a victim at all?”
“Yes because I as a 10-year-old back then, I didn’t need to see these. What if my brother wasn’t there? What would have happened to me? I don’t know what would have happened,” he said.
De Plata says he held on to this secret for over 50 years but finally let it go because he wants other victims to come forward.
“I want the Chalan Pago altar boys to please have the courage and come out and say this is what happened and let’s heal, take this burden out of our souls,” said De Plata.