Thiruvananthapuram: Churches of different denominations in Kerala continued to face allegations of abuse, with a priest being the latest to state that the Catholic Church leadership was in the know of the abuse case involving a nun.

The nun had accused a bishop from the state, now based at Jalandhar in Punjab, of sexually abusing her as many as 13 times during his visits to the church guest house in Kuravilangad near Kottayam.

The bishop has denied the nun’s claim, alleging instead that she had a personal vendetta against him for changing her from her duties.

Giving a different twist to the controversy, a priest based in Jalandhar told a local television channel that the complaint against the bishop had been brought before the church leadership, and that the leadership had “behaved irresponsibly”. He said the church leaders, instead of providing justice to the aggrieved nun, began to threaten her.

As allegations rose that the Syro-Malabar Church head, cardinal George Alencherry had been given a written complaint against the Jalandhar bishop, the cardinal denied it saying that the matter pertained to Jalandhar and that he had told the complainants to take up the matter there.

However, the nun’s father said he himself was present when a written complaint was given to Alencherry several months back and that the church leadership took no action on the matter. He said the cardinal had told him to keep the matter private.

In another case, four priests of the Orthodox Church are facing prosecution over charges of abusing a married woman, allegedly after one of them heard her confession. The priests have been attempting to get bail in the case.