Priest who was seen slapping a crying baby has tried to explain his actions
He said he's leaving the priesthood.
Father Jacques Lacroix, the priest that was seen losing his temper and slapping a crying baby, has said that he's retiring from the priesthood.
The 89-year-old said: "I am finishing my ministry now...there is an end to everything."
In an effort to explain his actions, Father Lacroix said that he was simply trying to get the boy to 'calm down' during the ceremony that took place at the Collegiate Church in Champeaux, near Melun, in the south-eastern suburbs of Paris.
The incident happened last Sunday and as you can see in the footage below, Father Jacques begins by shouting at the boy. He then proceeds to strike the child.
Clip via - L'ACTU CHOC
During an interview with a French radio station, Info radio, Father Lacroix says that we was saying to the child: "Calm down, calm down, you must calm down," before adding "be quiet."
After clasping the boy’s face in his hands, the priest proceeds to slap him on the cheek.
Father Lacroix describes this action as "somewhere between a caress and a slap, I hoped to calm him down, I didn’t know what to do. The child was screaming a lot and I had to turn his head to pour water over it. I told him to 'calm down, calm down' but he was not calming down. I tried to hold him close. I just wanted him to calm down."
He adds: "I apologised for my clumsiness to the family. I am finishing my ministry now, it was my last baptism, there is an end to everything."
The Bishop of Meaux, has also confirmed that he has "taken measures so that the priest (Father Lacroix) is suspended from all baptism and marriage celebrations".