1 July 2009
Maddie’s Blanket Missing from the Ocean Club
Could it have been used in a funerary ceremony at the Luz chapel? Gonçalo Amaral doesn't dismiss that as possibility.
The issue was brought to light, in an enigmatic approach, during the interview given by the McCann couple to Oprah Winfrey. What had happened to the blanket that Maddie used to be covered with – almost as if it was a protective and comforting safeguard – and that was photographed by the PJ, in the day of her disappearance from the Ocean Club apartment, on the bed of the English girl? Gerry and Kate gulped in silence and were unable to answer in a consistent manner to the mediatic TV show host.
Gonçalo Amaral, the former inspector who coordinated the investigations on the case, in declarations to the «SP» recalls to have seen the blanket in the Ocean Club apartment, on the evening of the 3rd of May, close to cuddle cat (the plush toy), that the child usually carried with her. The former inspector thought that it was odd that that blanket went missing in the immediate days that followed, when searches where made to locate the child. And he highlights, that incidentally, textile fibres (in connection with the cadaver odour scented by the British dogs) were detected in the Renault Scenic that the McCann Couple rented in the Algarve and which was used in a long and mysterious trip that they made to Spain.
As a result of the investigations that have been made by own account after he was removed from the case, Gonçalo Amaral does not dismiss the possibility that the said blanket was used as a funeral blanket in a secret funerary ceremony made in the church of Luz, sustaining that illation in depositions from sources that he believes to be credible, between them, the one of Father José Manuel Pacheco from the Luz chapel [see previous post].
Still according to the former inspector, the Catholic Church knows about that secret which might be, supposedly, known to high positioned figures inside the clergy. In fact, one poorly clarified point in this strange story is the fact that the couple had access to the church keys, which were handed to them by the Anglican priest, who has justified that fact with the necessity of praying for their daughter, away of the media spotlights.
Gonçalo Amaral sustains that the key to the discovery of Maddie’s disappearance is in the Village of Luz and that, if this new clue is duly followed by the authorities, may become decisive to unravel the mystery.
Paulo Sargento: «Public Ministry Cannot Dismiss the Blanket’s Disappearance»
Paulo Sargento, the psychologist which usually comments on the TV aspects related to the Maddie case, explained to «SP» the importance that this blanket had to the British child : “The blankets, toys, and other objects acquire a special meaning for children at early stages of their lives. Dr. Winnicot, a famous paediatrician, conceived a designation of transitional objects (most times, plush toys, small blankets, diapers, etc...) which attain some special characteristics to children. Has I have been saying, this objects that the paediatrician adjectived of transitional, are invested of a particular passion by the children, even some addiction (in the sense of affective dependency), since they possess symbolic characteristics of security, comfort, care and other qualities which emanate from the maternal figure.”
For Paulo Sargento, the thesis that Gonçalo Amaral revealed at first hand to «SP» that the blanket could have been used in a funerary ceremony at the Luz chapel “is very interesting”.
And he adds: “In reality, when the McCanns went to Oprah’s Show [video excerpt here], the blanket was mentioned. At a given moment, when Oprah tells Kate that she heard her mention a blanket several times, Kate argued that a mother who misses a child always wants to know if she is comfortable, if she is warm, and added, referring to Maddie, that sometimes she asked herself if the person who had taken her would cover her up with her little blanket (but the blanket was on the bed after Maddie, supposedly, disappeared!!!).
Well, that blanket is missing. Nobody knows where it is. But, this brief dialogue between Oprah and Kate is bizarre and looks like a slip. It seems that blanket is a word that shouldn’t have emerged under that circumstance because it didn’t find a meaning that would fit into the conversation, and the justification was very confusing”.
For Paulo Sargento, this piece of data should have been investigated without any prejudice, taking into view the possibility of someone within the Church keeping a prudent silence about the matter: “The Catholic Church follows a divine saying, that is sometimes applied to Zeno of Cyprus: “If God gave us two ears and one mouth, it was because we are meant to listen twice as much as we talk.”
The Catholic Church has had the capacity to remain silent, to keep secrets and to transform them into myths”. The psychologist has no doubts: “The disappearance of one object from the frame of a crime scene cannot be dismissed this lightly. The decisions lie in the hands of the Prosecutor and the Public Ministry”.
in Semanário Privado, 1 July 2009 - Paper Edition Only