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to think a priest shouldn't invite little girls into his home

(262 Posts)
TotallyAndUtterlyPaninied Thu 27-Aug-09 18:44:23

Ok this is my 3rd AIBU of the night and usually steer clear of this section because it's scary wink

But anyway, everyone's being unreasonable at the mo and I need to get it out.

So we went to our priest the other night to sort out our wedding blessing. He's a nice guy, a little odd, but nice and about 60. We went to his house next to the church and school. When he opened the door there was a little girl of about 7 playing in the car park. He shouted to her 'would you like to come in?' she said no and he said 'why? Come in.' so she did.

Then he said 'where do you want to go? Do you want to watch television or talk?' she said watch TV and clearly felt a little uncomfortable. So he said 'right that's upstairs'. We followed and sorted out the blessing. He then gave DS and the girl a teddy each from his collection. We left and the little girl stayed.

He didn't ask her parents if she could come in- they wouldn't have known where she was, and it was just her and him.

Clearly nothing untoward, but it seems a bit naive for a man to invite a young girl into his home when no one else is there. All kinds of accusations could fly around.

kormachameleon Thu 27-Aug-09 18:46:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

GirlsAreLoud Thu 27-Aug-09 18:46:59

Where were her parents?

My DD is only a baby but I don't think I'd want her playing alone in a carpark at 7.

Morloth Thu 27-Aug-09 18:47:22

I think you have no idea of the backstory.

While I think it is dangerous for him perhaps he thinks her needs outweigh his.

TotallyAndUtterlyPaninied Thu 27-Aug-09 18:49:19

Perhaps. She was on her own, too. Not with other kids. She just seemed to be playing out and there are a lot of houses around there, and obviously the school. But we went there at 5pm and left about 6pm and she was still there.

I don't know the background and I don't think there was anything in it, I just think it's a bit silly of him.

GirlsAreLoud Thu 27-Aug-09 18:50:05

As Morloth said perhaps he thought she was better off indoors than playing out all alone.

cocolepew Thu 27-Aug-09 18:50:26

Maybe he was minding her?

Morloth Thu 27-Aug-09 18:51:21

Or being sent home. Who knows, maybe playing in a carpark alone at dusk is safer than where she lives?

TotallyAndUtterlyPaninied Thu 27-Aug-09 18:53:32

Not that it means much but she was well dressed. He definately wasn't looking after her as I spoke to her briefly when he went to get the teddy. She was a happy little thing, just very shy of him.

I'm not judging him because he's a lovely man... but I do still think it's a bit of a silly thing for him to do with the way people are nowadays.

In all fairness to him, it's not the nicest of areas and she probably was safer indoors.

Morloth Thu 27-Aug-09 18:58:16

Sometimes people do silly things because they are also the right things.

MissAnnesley Thu 27-Aug-09 19:02:42

>>I do still think it's a bit of a silly thing for him to do with the way people are nowadays<<

You mean overly suspicious and judgmental? Yes, it is a difficulty, isn't it?

LaurieFairyCake Thu 27-Aug-09 19:05:48

Thank goodness someone invited her in.

If her parents don't want her going to other peoples houses maybe they could keep more of an eye on her.

TotallyAndUtterlyPaninied Thu 27-Aug-09 19:06:15

Errm yes but I wasn't being judgemental? Like I said.

pinkthechaffinch Thu 27-Aug-09 19:08:21

personally alarm bells would start ringing loudly in my ears at seeing a middle aged man giving teddies from his collection [hmmm] to children he hardly knows.

The fact the girl herself seemed uncomfortable is also very concerning. Even if all is innocent, it sounds like his pastoral skills are really lacking.

Most successful paedophiles get away with it because they seem genuinely nice. And the girl, playing unsupervised, is just the sort of vulnerable child at the most risk of abuse.

johnthepong Thu 27-Aug-09 19:08:21

It sounds like it was his grand daughter or something. I think it was very unlikely she was just a random girl.

TotallyAndUtterlyPaninied Thu 27-Aug-09 19:08:57

In fact, I was just worrying about a nice old man getting hassle off the people around here for doing something he perceived to be nice but they wouldn't. It's not the nicest of towns, it's rough for the most part.

But if I'm beginning to defend myself then I must be being unreasonable. Maybe people won't think that of him.

Nevermind, just a worry.

MissAnnesley Thu 27-Aug-09 19:09:21

It doesn't make you non-judgmental just because you preface your judgment with "I'm not judging him".

I'm not judging him but I think he shouldn't do it (thread title) and it's a silly thing for him to do.

Man (gasp), cleric (double gasp), is kind (clearly something's up).

CantThinkofFunnyName Thu 27-Aug-09 19:10:34

Sorry all but I agree with the OP, I think this would be upon very suspiciously. That being said, I actually live next door to a convicted paedophile and as such, have to be extremely vigilant and mistrusting!

TotallyAndUtterlyPaninied Thu 27-Aug-09 19:10:49

Sorry, cross posted with Pink and John, and I'm probably corss posting right now.

Pink- that's what I thought, young girl, lonely a vulnerbale invited in etc.

John- I asked her, she said she just goes to the school.

Hulababy Thu 27-Aug-09 19:11:14

Maybe she knows him and her parents know him. He may be a relative or a close family friend. We have no idea of any of the back story - if he was unknown to her or not for example.

Should a 7y really be playing out in a car park in the evening for over an hour unsupervised?

Many 7y are shy in the company of adults, even ones they see regularly.

morningpaper Thu 27-Aug-09 19:11:16

I think this VERY unlikely

I expect she was a relation, or his housekeepers daughter or something

Priests are no more allowed to spend time alone with children than teachers are tehse days - they are VERY strict about this (for the good of the reputation of the priest if nothing else)

nbee84 Thu 27-Aug-09 19:11:30

Maybe he was minding her? Maybe it was a relative? Maybe it was a neighbours child that regularly came in?

MissAnnesley Thu 27-Aug-09 19:11:42

And adding in bits like "she looked uncomfortable" and "her parents wouldn't have known where she was" is unhelpful and merely your opinion.

He was probably looking after her, she went out to play, after a bit he thought oh not that blardy horrible carpark again, "are you coming in?" in she comes.

pinkthechaffinch Thu 27-Aug-09 19:11:53

well the RC church have got a very bad track record when it comes to chiild abuse and covering it up, so I don't think it's unreasonable to assume the worst when a priest acts in a manner that could be interpreted as grooming.

TotallyAndUtterlyPaninied Thu 27-Aug-09 19:12:18

MissAnne- I think maybe you're being a little naive too. Sorry. I'm not judging him because I don't think he's done anything. BUT I think people in the area, who don't know him, let's face it not many people go to church now, will assume he is/has.

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