French Priest Who Slapped Baby During Baptism Suspended

The French priest who slapped a crying baby on the face during his baptism has been identified and suspended.

Father Jacques Lacroix has been removed from all church activities, according to a statement released by Meaux Dioceses in France on Friday, June 22. “Since June 21, a video circulates in the press and social networks on which we can see a priest (89 years), celebrate the baptism of a child in Seine-et-Marne,” the statement reads. “This short video is an excerpt from the celebration which the baby cries a lot. The elderly priest loses his temper and slaps the child. Aware of this inappropriate gesture, the priest apologized to the family at the end of the baptism.”

The statement points out that the priest was likely tired, but this “does not excuse him.”

The statement continues: “On Friday, June 22, Bishop Nahmias, Bishop of Meaux, took provisional measures to ensure that the priest was suspended from all baptism and marriage celebrations. These measures also require him not to intervene on the Collegiate Church of Champeaux now and to celebrate masses only at the express request of the parish priest.”

The statement concludes: “Let us confide to the Lord the family of the baptized and our brother Jacques Lacroix.”

The shocking viral clip surfaced on Wednesday, June 20, in which the Catholic priest struck the baby boy across the face so hard it made a sound. Lacroix first said the infant was having a “tantrum” and then tried to tell him to “calm down, calm down” while grabbing his face.

Two other people in the video, believed to be the child’s parents, audibly gasped when the priest slapped the baby. The clergyman tried to pull the baby closer after the hit, but another man shepherded the little one away.

Twitter was understandably outraged by the video, leading to the priest’s suspension.

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