Br Mario’s parents died when he was young, and he was raised by the Rosminians at Upton. He took his perpetual vows three years later. In the mid-1950s, he was transferred to Upton and appointed to an administrative role. In the early 1960s, he was sent to Ferryhouse where he was appointed as an assistant to the Rector.
He was discovered by Br Alfonso to have been sexually abusing boys during his posting in Ferryhouse, where he had been transferred following his term in Upton. A letter from the Provincial to the Superior General in the mid-1960s reported the discovery, and stated that the Brother had been transferred to Kilmurry for the time being. The letter said: that there were two members of his community who had been rather indiscreet with the boys and owing to some talk there and admiratio45 he wished to have the two changed sine mora.46 One was Br Mario47 ... and went to Clonmel [Ferryhouse] at the request of Fr Alanzo ... He admitted his faults and went to Kilmurry on 19th pro tem and about the middle of January Fr Pietro48 will find suitable work for him in the office there – at Drumcondra and so will accept him with the debite cautele49 ... You will fully appreciate in such circumstances how instant action is often necessary and the changes made are a cover up in some respects.
Br Mario was transferred to a Rosminian School for the Blind, where he remained until his death over 10 years later.
A complainant, who was in Upton from the late 1950s to the early 1960s, made a complaint about Br Mario. He alleged that Br Mario pinned him up against a table in the kitchen, and the complainant said he was conscious of Br Mario’s arousal. This happened on a number of occasions and only ceased when the complainant threatened to tell Fr Eduardo, the Resident Manager: That man annoyed me week in week out for four or five weeks, commencing when I was working in the kitchen. Now, he knew I wanted to go on holidays, that man used to have me in tears. He would come up behind my back when I would be scrubbing pots, and I mean scrubbing pots now, and he would put his arms around me and he would be saying to me “I don’t know will I let you go on holidays or not”. He used to force me up against the sink. Believe me he used to have an erection on him. This was going on for weeks ... He used to annoy me every day of the week for weeks until I threatened to tell Fr Eduardo on him. I told him to do what he wanted. I got the holidays anyway. When I threatened him with Fr Eduardo he didn’t come near me any more.
Br Alfonso said that, when he was Prefect, he was responsible for identifying to his Superiors seven sexual abusers operating in Upton. He confirmed they were as follows: Br Fausto; Br Constantin; A named night watchman; An unnamed lay teacher; Br Mateo; Br Mario, Br Gilberto.
In reply to an internal Rosminian survey, other members of the Order who were not in the School at the time recalled how they heard about the Br Lazarro episode. One priest, who was appointed teacher in Glencomeragh in the mid-1960s, stated in his questionnaire that he heard that Br Lazarro had been involved in improper behaviour and that the Rector, Fr Rafaele, was suspicious. Similarly, another priest described a conversation that he had with members of the Institute in the early 1960s, when he was a student in Glencomeragh, in which it was mentioned that Br Lazarro and Br Mario ‘were somehow implicated with some boys at Ferryhouse’.
Br Mario was transferred to Upton in the mid-1950s. In the early 1960s, he was sent to Ferryhouse, where he was appointed to an administrative role. He was discovered to have been sexually abusing boys during his posting in Ferryhouse in the early 1960s, to where he had been transferred following his term in Upton. Once again, Br Alfonso, himself then serving in Ferryhouse, was the discoverer. The full details of this case are given above, in the Rome files section.