Statement read by Francis Sullivan, CEO, Truth Justice and Healing Council on 6 February 2017
Commissioners I make this statement on behalf of the Truth Justice and Healing Council.
When the Truth Justice and Healing Council made its first major submission to this Royal Commission in 2013 it included a nine-point Commitment Statement by the Catholic Church leadership.
This in part said the leaders of the Church in Australia committed themselves to repairing the wrongs of the past, to listening to and hearing survivors, to putting their needs first and to doing everything the Church can to ensure a safer future for children.
Over the past four years, as the Church has been through what many would say has been the most intense and unforgiving examination of almost all aspects of its operations in Australia, the Council has worked hard to hold the Church leadership accountable to these words.
But more than that – to put these words into action.
And having been involved with this Commission from the word go I have seen the Church leadership rise to this challenge. Continue reading
On Friday 3 June, the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart, a Liturgy of Lament and Hope to acknowledge publicly the pain and suffering of those who have been wounded by abuse in the Catholic Church, was held in the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Rosary, Waitara.
Bishop Peter Comensoli, Bishop of Broken Bay, called upon his brother priests and the Diocesan faith community to join him for this sacred event, with more than 200 braving the wild Sydney weather to come together in prayer.
Opportunities for expressing lament such as this are important – a time at which people can give voice and shape to shared feelings of sadness, regret, and solidarity for what has occurred in our communities, and a time for the Diocese as a family to pray for those who have been wounded and turn towards the Lord with hope for healing. Continue reading
By Bishop Bill Wright
This blog was published in CathBlog on 21 November, 2012
It is a week since Prime Minister Gillard announced the Royal Commission into Child Sexual Abuse, and some people have seen it as the worst week the Catholic Church in Australia has ever had.
So much of the talk has been about the Church’s slow and inadequate response to allegations of abuse over a long period. In all honesty, though, I’ve been feeling quite positive and relieved ever since the announcement.
Here is the occasion when the nation as a whole can come to grips with one of its greatest issues. It is the beginning of a most important, purifying process. Continue reading
The Catholic Church welcomes the royal commission into child sex abuse. Picture: Bill Hearne Source: The Daily Telegraph
By + Cardinal George Pell
Archbishop of Sydney
18 November 2012
The following is the text of Cardinal George Pell’s Sunday Telegraph Column.
Last Monday the Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced a Royal Commission on the sexual abuse of children in institutions across Australia.
Naturally the victims were delighted that their struggle for justice was heard. Many have high expectations and every decent person should work to see that all possible progress is made.
Along with the Australian Catholic bishops I welcomed the Prime Minister’s announcement. The Royal Commission will provide an opportunity to clear the air.
Unfortunately the Catholic Church has been unable to reassure everyone that it is serious about dealing with sexual abuse and responding appropriately. This is despite the fact that in 1997 the NSW Wood Royal Commission found the Catholic response “a model for other Churches and religious organizations to follow”. Continue reading