To be faithful to its commitment to the victims of J.M.M., a former French focolarino convicted of child abuse, the Focolare Movement has drawn up a psychological support procedure to be offered to victims who may wish to use it. This service (see attachment) is offered as part of the independent enquiry conducted by GCPS Consulting, which has heard the opinions of some victims.  Obviously, this support is a first step towards the commitments which the Movement wishes to undertake in the future and after the GCPS Consulting report is published.

With this in mind, the Focolare Movement has identified the Simon Network as a suitable resource for the care, listening and accompaniment of victims and those affected by this pain. The Simon Network consists of psychotherapists, psychiatrists and spiritual accompaniers who offer psychological or psychiatric support at different stages of the investigation to those who need it or request it.

The agreement between the Focolare Movement and the Simon Network aims to ensure that victims can access this service as close as possible to wherever they live. (The network covers most of France).

Those who do not wish to use the support network provided by the Focolare Movement may wish to turn to other professionals they trust. All aspects of the psychological and psychiatric accompaniment process, whether carried out by the Simon Network or by other individuals trusted by victims, will be undertaken by Dr. Alexis Vancappel, an independent professional identified by the Movement to coordinate this task.

Dr. Vancappel is a psychologist, specialised in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Neuropsychology. He works as a clinical psychologist at the University Psychiatric Clinic, CHU in Tours.

He is a member of:

  • the Centres experts dépression résistante (CEDR), Fondation Fondamentale – a National multidisciplinary network, involved in research into severe depression.
  • the Inserm Laboratory, Equipe Imagerie et Cerveau – a medical laboratory dedicated to the study of functional neuropsychiatry.
  • the Qualipsy Laboratory – a Psychology Laboratory dedicated to the study of quality of life.

Details regarding further commitment on the part of the Focolare Movement to the victims, including compensation for damages, will be agreed after GCPS Consulting publishes its report, expected by the end of the first quarter of 2022.


Stefania Tanesini

Attached: Procedure for psychological support to victims

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