Disturbing photos of pupils licking cream off priest's knees. 'Just a game' says school
Disturbing photos of children licking whipped cream from the knees of a priest have emerged – but have been defended by the school as merely part of initiation 'games' for new pupils.
The photos show 13-year-old pupils, both male and female, licking whipped cream off a priest's bare knees as well crawling up a flight of stairs.
Boys and girls, apparently pretending to be cats, approach the priest, seated in a battered armchair, on all fours.
But once the pictures were picked up by the media, police and the local prosecutor's office began a formal investigation.
The emergence of the pictures has provoked outrage in Poland.
"This is very disturbing," said Marek Michalak, the Polish government's spokesman on child affairs.
"Surely the boundaries of decency and acceptable forms of bodily contact have been exceeded. I've ordered an enquiry and demanded an explanation from all relevant authorities."
But the priest involved, Father Marcin Kozyra, defended the 'ceremony'.
"There has never been a complaint from either parents or students about any impropriety involved in these games," he said.
Similar pictures were posted on the school website last year and nobody batted an eyelid.
The priest has also won the support of his immediate superior.
"It appears to be a storm in a teacup," commented Father Alfred Leja, a school inspector from the local church authority.
"It appears to me that people are trying to distort this situation and make it look like some form of sexual abuse."
How would you feel if you saw a photo like this with your child on a school website?