This would only be in line with their own hocus-pocus teachings.The catholic Church has continuously investigated sexual abuse and procedures by their own ilk, since the Council of Elvira in 309 C.E. and has nevertheless indulged in these crimes ever since, for nearly 2000 Years.If we now start to believe or trust, liars, criminals, cheats and deceivers, we have only ourselves to blame.
Thursday, 31 December 2015
The Pope has accepted Brisbane auxiliary bishop Brian Finnigan's resignation after he reached retirement age, the Vatican's press office has announced.
Bishop Finnigan, 77, submitted his resignation to Pope Francis in 2013, a requirement for bishops when they turn 75.
"In a pastoral career spanning more than 40 years, there have been disappointments and challenges," Bishop Finnigan said in a letter to fellow clergy in the Brisbane archdiocese on Thursday.
Adelaide Archbishop Philip Wilson announces return despite still facing charges of concealing child sex abuse in NSW in the 1970s
Archbishop Wilson has been on leave since March after he was charged by NSW Police with allegedly concealing sexual abuse perpetrated in the 1970s by paedophile priest James Patrick Fletcher.
Archbishop Wilson, who lived briefly with Fletcher in NSW in the early 1980s, has maintained a public silence since being charged.
Outgoing Brisbane Auxiliary Bishop and former Ballarat vicar-general and secretary to Ballarat Bishop Ronald Mulkearns, Brian Finnigan, officially resigned from his senior leadership position in the Catholic Church late Wednesday evening.
The Pope accepted Brisbane auxiliary bishop Brian Finnigan's resignation upon his reaching the retirement age of 75, the Vatican's press office has announced.
Auxiliary Brisbane Bishop Brian Finnigan quits after accusations of dishonesty before sex abuse royal commission
Auxiliary Bishop Brian Finnigan — one of the city’s three most powerful Catholic Church figures — had his resignation accepted by Pope Francis yesterday.
In a letter to fellow clergymen, he made no direct reference to his appearance before the commission earlier this month. But he wrote: “In a pastoral career spanning more than 40 years, there have been disappointments and challenges.
An Australian bishop accused of protecting himself and the Catholic church at the child abuse royal commission has resigned.
The pope has accepted Brisbane auxiliary bishop Brian Finnegan’s resignation upon his reaching the retirement age, the Vatican’s press office has announced.
Finnegan, 77, was accused of not being candid about his knowledge of paedophile priests in a bid to protect himself and the church during his December evidence to the child abuse royal commission’s inquiry into the Ballarat diocese.
Wednesday, 30 December 2015
Melinda Webster said she tied ribbons in pink, green, red and purple, with tags explaining their meaning, to the front entrance at St Mary’s Catholic Parish in Castlemaine last week, only to return two hours later and find them gone.
Ms Webster said she was “not surprised, but disappointed” by the ribbons being removed from the church so swiftly.
Tuesday, 29 December 2015
With a couple of friends on December 19, I declared I wanted to write in defence of Cardinal George Pell, only to be trumped two days later by Amanda Vanstone writing in Fairfax Media under the same heading.
I do not hold her allegiance to the Catholic Church nor do I find Pell a particularly likeable person. He represents an almost extreme version of his church's teaching, particularly with the subjugation of women, the treatment of people who have been divorced, and to homosexuals.
Thursday, 24 December 2015
Father Walshe, who now works at St Patrick's at Mentone-Parkdale, denied he abused Mr Roach, but had engaged in "consensual conduct" with another adult.
He said he told his story at a private hearing at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, and now he is telling it again as part of a public plea to raise $15,000 to start the Fellows Foundation.
Paul Levey told a child sex abuse inquiry this month, he was sent to live with convicted paedophile Gerarld Ridsdale in Mortlake in 1982 after his parents separated. In harrowing evidence given to the Royal Commission, Mr Levey broke down as he told the inquiry how he was forced to sleep in Ridsdale’s bedroom and detailed the effects the abhorrent abuse had on his life. Mr Levey now wants the Centre Against Sexual Assault Ballarat Survivors Group to be used as a blueprint for similar models across Australia. Mr Levey believed the model would save lives.
Wednesday, 23 December 2015
Father Walshe denies he abused Mr Roach.
Mr Roach was an 18-year-old seminarian in 1982 when the incident took place.
The alleged crimes were said to have occurred between 1996 and 2001. The location is peculiarly specific – St Patrick's Cathedral in East Melbourne – the cathedral of the archdiocese of Melbourne.
The police are asking for victims, or anyone with information, to come forward.
He suffers post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and anxiety, as well as serious dental problems — the result of grinding his teeth during regular nightmares.
The Royal Commission into child sex abuse has called the directions hearing on Bishop Mulkearns to be held on February 5 at 10am immediately following a directions hearing on Cardinal Pell. The purpose is to consider Cardinal Pell and Bishop Mulkearns’ capacity to attend the third part of the public hearing into Catholic Church authorities in Ballarat on February 22.
Originally a priest in the Ballarat diocese (which covered the western half of Victoria), George Pell moved to Melbourne in 1985 to become the head of the Melbourne seminary (Corpus Christi College, then based at Melbourne's Clayton), which trained priests for Victoria and Tasmania. In 1987 he was appointed as one of Melbourne's four regional auxiliary bishops under the authority of Archbishop Frank Little (Bishop Pell's region was Melbourne's south-eastern suburbs). This is when he became acquainted with allies such as Father John Walshe.
In recent weeks, questions have been asked in public sphere debate about whether or not Cardinal Pell's inability to complete his long-promised travel to Australia for the royal commission, and to give evidence instead by video link, is an insult to victims and to an inquiry that seeks to uncover the framework and reasoning as to why sexual abuse occurred for so long in religious institutions.
Sano Taskforce detectives are investigating claims of assault at the Catholic church between 1996 and 2001.
They are appealing to anyone who was a victim or with any information relating to any alleged sexual assaults committed at the church during this period to contact them.
The Sano Taskforce detectives specialise in investigating historical sexual assault and child abuse matters.
The alleged victims were aged 14 at the time.
"Victoria Police is committed to investigating and bringing to justice those people who prey on children no matter how many years have passed," Sergeant Sharon Darcy said in a statement on Wednesday.
The allegations relate to 14-year-old boys who may have been abused at the cathedral in the late 1990s.
Detectives from the Sano Taskforce, which investigates historical sexual assault and child abuse, is urging anybody with information to contact them.
Tuesday, 22 December 2015
DEAR SANTA, all I want for Christmas is for Cardinal George Pell to come home and face his accusers.
All I want is justice for both the victims and George Pell.
For justice to be done and to be seen to be done, on Australian soil, in Ballarat, the accused and accusers all first among equals.
I am sick of George Pell's constant missing in action time wasting antics, calling in sick and whatever to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, doing everything possible to avoid a personal appearance.
I am sick of George's mate, Bishop Ronald Mulkeans calling in sick to the Royal Commission.
In 2015, we have conducted 14 public hearings, held more than 1,800 private sessions, released our final reports into redress and civil litigation and Working with Children Checks and published 13 case study reports. More than 9,300 people have called our call centre, more than 6,600 have sent emails and letters, and we have served 1,139 notices to produce.
Sunday, 20 December 2015
Hunting in a pack is very primal. Rules go out the window. We go looking, desperately, for blood. We become hunters and if you're the hunted, watch out. What's ugly about this is not just the hunt but how few people care.
Saturday, 19 December 2015
The bid to manipulate "legal privilege" to keep its records from public disclosure was one in a series of controversial measures taken to protect the reputation and assets of the church after complaints about paedophile priests began "coming out of the woodwork" in the 1980s.
Each time you peel back a layer, there is another underneath but slowly and steadily you move closer to the core of it. To the truth. With each layer another survivors emerges from out of the darkness with their own story to tell. Often, their stories are so gut-wrenchingly similar, it's as if each of the survivors are holding a mirror to one another. And, there are those who don't have a voice because they've died prematurely and the ones who turned to suicide because the pain of the sex crimes was too great to bear. The commission gives the ones they left behind somewhere to finally place their precious story in the hope their death will be a part of a profound change to protect children of the future.
Friday, 18 December 2015
Stephen Woods, a survivor of horrendous sexual abuse at the hands of three religious figures within the Diocese of Ballarat when he was a schoolboy, says his belief in truth and justice has “taken an utter beating” over the past fortnight.
Thursday, 17 December 2015
Very few people were actually surprised.
This community, like so many others, has grown very used to the church failing to address what occurred so many years ago.
Victim and nephew to convicted paedophile takes to the stand
Lawyers for Cardinal George Pell have suggested clergy sex abuse victim David Ridsdale misunderstood a conversation between him and the senior Vatican official in which he claims Cardinal Pell attempted to bribe him. Read more.
Fresh allegations about Pell emerge
The purpose of the directions hearing is to consider Cardinal George Pell’s capacity to attend the third part of the public hearing into Catholic Church authorities in Ballarat.
The directions hearing will be presided over by Justice Peter McClellan AM, Chair of the Royal Commission and will be live-streamed.
Venue: Hearing Room 1, Level 17, Governor Macquarie Tower, 1 Farrer Place, Sydney.
Time: 10:00AM AEDT
A report published on Tuesday by the child abuse royal commission says the Crown Solicitors Office and the Family and Community Services department breached state model litigant policy "in multiple ways" when dealing with civil claims by former residents of the Bethcar Children's Home.
Wednesday, 16 December 2015
Ms Ryan told the child abuse royal commission a local woman told her in 1989 her son had been badly sexually abused by Ridsdale.
The report of Case Study 20 follows a public hearing into The Hutchins School held last year.
The charges stem from allegations the man interfered with a boy under his authority, up to 26 years ago.
Police from Wollongong Local Area Command investigated the allegations, prompted by information obtained from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
Commissioners Justice Jennifer Coate and Andrew Murray today released their report into the response of The Hutchins School and the Anglican Diocese of Tasmania to allegations of child sexual abuse at the school dating back to the early 1960s.
The Hutchins School avoided apologising for sexual abuse to protect reputation, royal commission finds
During intense questioning counsel assisting the chair Angus Stewart accused Mentone parish priest Rev John Walshe of being untruthful in his testimony to the royal commission into child sex abuse by “fabricating” his recollection of the aftermath of phone call that occurred between Cardinal Pell and David Ridsdale when he lived in with Cardinal Pell in 1993.
A Catholic priest has denied making up key parts of his evidence to the child abuse royal commission to “save” his friend Cardinal George Pell.
Melbourne priest Father John Walshe said he spoke to Pell after Pell’s contentious 1993 telephone conversation with abuse victim David Ridsdale, who alleges he was asked by Pell what it would take to keep him quiet.
Walshe previously gave evidence to the commission that Pell appeared concerned for David Ridsdale after the phone call.
Father Lawrence O’Toole told the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse he took a confession at the hospital bedside of a man in 1988 who said Gerard Ridsdale sexually abused him.
Tuesday, 15 December 2015
BPD told then Ballarat bishop Ronald Mulkearns "I'm out", after seeing his abuser Paul David Ryan with a couple of teenage boys at the Ararat presbytery in 1993.
Ryan had his hand on one of the boys' shoulders and told him he would give him a lift home from basketball, BPD told the child abuse royal commission.
Brisbane’s auxiliary bishop, Brian Finnigan, the former adviser and secretary to former Ballarat bishop Ronald Mulkearns, insisted in the past few days he only learned of Gerald Ridsdale’s horrific crimes against children after 1993, when Ridsdale was charged.
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse announced on 11 December that Cardinal Pell would not be appearing from 16 December, as planned, and that Mr Justice Peter McClellan, the Commission Chair, had refused an application by the Cardinal's legal representative, Mr Allan Myers, QC, that Cardinal Pell give evidence by video link.
The report follows a public hearing held in October 2014 which examined the responses of the State to complaints made and litigation instituted by former residents of Bethcar Children’s Home, Brewarrina, New South Wales.
The Bethcar Children’s Home was founded in Brewarrina in 1969. It was funded by the State and run by a married couple, Burt and Edith Gordon between 1974 and 1984. It closed in 1989.
Child abuse royal commission: George Pell 'crestfallen' after call with abuse victim, priest John Walshe says
Reverend John Walshe told the commission on Tuesday that they had had lunch at Cardinal Pell's apartment in Rome in November, towards the end of a European holiday.
Father Walshe said that Cardinal Pell told him that he was trying his best to prepare for the upcoming hearing, where he was to give evidence of his handling of child sexual abuse allegations in Ballarat and Melbourne. The commission was "weighing on him" and he was worried about it, Father Walshe said.
Victorian priest Fr Lawrence O'Toole has told an inquiry he thought a victim of Gerald Francis Ridsdale was confessing his guilt and shame when the man told him about the childhood abuse.
That was in 1988, while Ridsdale was still serving as a priest in the Diocese of Ballarat.
Child abuse royal commission: Former bishop of Ballarat 'has trouble sleeping at night' over failure to stop paedophile priests
"He says he still struggles to sleep of a night," Father McKinnon said.
In a scathing report, the child sex abuse royal commission has condemned the academy and Swimming Queensland which reinstated Volkers as coach even though they knew it was inappropriate he work with children.
Former Ballarat Bishop Ronald Mulkearns 'profoundly sorry' for moving suspect priests to new parishes
Ronald Mulkearns, the Bishop of Ballarat between 1971 and 1997, presided over decisions to move priests, including paedophile priest Gerald Ridsdale, between parishes in the diocese, despite child sexual abuse allegations against them.
Monday, 14 December 2015
For three weeks, the County Court of Victoria has been host to countless victim survivors of Catholic clergy child-sex crimes. The severe psychological and psychiatric harm caused by these crimes was evident not only with the primary victims giving evidence, but also the many family members of loved ones who had killed themselves because the pain and damage of the sex crimes were too great to bear.
The small, as yet un-named group has collected more than 10,000 signatures on a petition calling for Pope Francis to sack Cardinal Pell over his response to child abuse within the church in Australia.
Retired priest Fr John McKinnon said the church would never have held a royal commission into itself and needs people from the outside looking in to change its culture.
"I just think that we need help, but it will have to be help that we don't want, in a sense. Help that's hard for us to face," Fr McKinnon told the child abuse royal commission.
Brisbane's auxiliary bishop Brian Finnigan, formerly a secretary and adviser to former Bishop of Ballarat Ronald Mulkearns, has been grilled for almost two days about his knowledge of allegations against serial child sex offenders, including disgraced priest Gerald Ridsdale.
The offences allegedly occurred while the man was teaching a Catholic school in Wollongong between 1989 and 1991.
Brisbane Bishop Brian Finnigan has been accused of trying to protect himself and the Catholic Church in his evidence to the child abuse royal commission.
Counsel assisting the commission Angus Stewart SC suggested Bishop Finnigan's evidence has lacked compassion and has not been candid, particularly about Diocese of Ballarat pedophile priest Gerald Francis Ridsdale.
Bishop Finnigan, a former Ballarat vicar-general and bishop's secretary, said he did not agree with Mr Stewart's suggestions.
CLERGY sexual abuse survivor Paul Levey says he has spent his whole life trying to escape his past.
Mr Levey said he been a “broken man” since he was forced to live with notorious paedophile Gerard Ridsdale after his parents separated in 1982.
After being subjected to daily sexual abuse at the hands of Ridsdale, Mr Levey spent years in a haze of drugs and alcohol, trying to numb the pain.
The report follows a public hearing held in Sydney in 2014 which examined the responses of several institutions to allegations of child sexual abuse against swimming coaches Scott Volkers, Terrence Buck and Stephen Roser.
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse’s public hearing into Catholic Church authorities in Ballarat commenced at the Melbourne County Court last week.
As more truth emerges of Ballarat’s dark history of abuse, torture and rape survivors Andrew Collins and Peter Blenkiron say the emotional toll of being away from their loved ones intensifies.
Bishop Finnigan is back on the stand.
Fr McDermott is being grilled about disgraced priest Paul David Ryan’s appointment to Penshurst Parish and subsequent leave to go to the United States.
In a document tendered to the commission Ryan voices his desire to escape from “temptation” and travel to America.
Fr McDermott is back on the stand.
Retired Diocese of Ballarat priest Fr John McKinnon says then Ballarat Bishop Ronald Mulkearns may have given the impression he didn't want to be queried about priest Paul David Ryan's resignation from a parish, during a College of Consultors meeting in 1991.
Sunday, 13 December 2015
Several parents complained to Brisbane auxiliary bishop Brian Finnigan about Ridsdale’s “disturbing” behaviour in Mortlake in 1981, the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse was told.
An internal Church assessment concluded the priest had sexually assaulted the woman and he has been stood aside from from his role.
However the priest has taken the Church to the NSW Supreme Court, arguing for the matter to be dealt with via canon law processes that were superseded by the Towards Healing regime in the mid-1990s.
Saturday, 12 December 2015
Daruk Training School in Windsor was home to hundreds of state wards and juvenile offenders from 1960-1991.
Friday, 11 December 2015
Cardinal Pell was to appear before the child abuse royal commission in Melbourne next week but will now front a Ballarat sitting in February.
Stephen Woods was among victims of pedophile priests outraged by Cardinal Pell's attempt to give his evidence via videolink from Rome next week, due to a worsened heart condition.
'Being held in February, that's fine, but of course the victims are still waiting,' Mr Woods told reporters.
Cardinal Pell unable to fly to Australia for sex abuse inquiry because of pre-existing heart condition
“It was extremely traumatic, that was my experience,” Mr Ridsdale said. “It was just as traumatic in some ways and the trauma continues for me.”
Catholic Church Authorities attempted to pressure Mr Ridsdale’s parents to drop the charges against notorious paedophile Gerald Ridsdale, the child sex abuse inquiry heard.
He called for Cardinal Pell to “come and face the music” like the survivors have been forced to do for years.
Cardinal Pell is unable to make his anticipated appearance at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse next week due to ill health, his lawyer has said.
Cardinal Pell had requested to give evidence via videolink from Rome, with his lawyers arguing it was unsafe for him to travel to Australia due to health issues.
He was due to arrive in Melbourne on Sunday, and appear before the inquiry from Wednesday to give evidence about clergy abuse in the Melbourne archdiocese and the Ballarat diocese.
The cardinal was to appear in person at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in Melbourne next week to give evidence on how he responded to child abuse allegations as a priest in Ballarat and as the Archbishop of Melbourne.
The chair of a royal commission has rigorously challenged claims by the auxiliary bishop of Brisbane, Brian Finnegan, that he was not aware that a now notorious paedophile priest he had oversight of was suspected of abusing children.
Finnegan was secretary to the bishop of the Ballarat diocese, Ronald Mulkearns, between 1979 and 1985, a period during which Gerald Ridsdale was abusing children in his role as a priest at parishes within the diocese.
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse delivered its formal findings on the cases of Brother John Chute, also known as Brother Kostka, and another Marist brother, Gregory Sutton, on Friday.
Although never charged over allegations of abuse at Lismore, a complainant was paid $130,000 in compensation.
In 2008 he was charged and convicted of 19 sexual offences involving six children he later taught at the Marist College in Canberra.
A report was released today about the public hearing held in Canberra last year examining the response of the Marist Brothers to allegations of child sexual abuse in schools in the ACT, NSW and Queensland.
Cardinal Pell applied to give evidence by video link to Rome at next week’s hearing, but that request was rejected by the Commission.
Cardinal Pell’s solicitor said he was suffering high blood pressure and could not take long flights.
Cardinal Pell was meant to arrive on Sunday ahead of his planned appearance at the Commission next Wednesday.
The cardinal was to appear in person at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in Melbourne next week to give evidence on his time as a priest in Ballarat and as the Archbishop of Melbourne.
Child sex abuse inquiry: Cardinal George Pell unable to give evidence at royal commission due to illness
Cardinal George Pell's appearance at the child abuse royal commission has been deferred, but he's been told he must still come to Australia to give evidence in person.
The commission has rejected a bid by Cardinal Pell to give his evidence via videolink from Rome after his lawyers argued it would be unsafe for him to travel to Australia due to serious health issues.
Cardinal Pell was to appear before the inquiry in Melbourne from Wednesday to give evidence about clergy abuse in the Melbourne archdiocese and the Ballarat diocese.
The chair of the royal commission into institutional responses to child sex abuse has refused to allow Cardinal George Pell to appear by video link, instead deferring the hearing until February to ensure Pell can appear in person.
A lawyer representing Pell, Allan Myers, made an application for Pell to give evidence next week via video link from Rome rather than appear in person, citing health reasons.
The child abuse royal commission has heard Bishop Brian Finnigan, then Ballarat diocese vicar-general, told convicted pedophile Gerald Francis Ridsdale in 1994: "Some of these fellows now see the opportunity to obtain some easy cash."
Bishop Finningan, now a Brisbane auxiliary bishop, said it was a rash statement and not his view of child sex abuse victims who sought damages from the church.
"It's a rash statement not given much thought to at the time when it was written," Bishop Finnigan told the commission.
Child Abuse Royal Commission: Current Bishop of Brisbane Brian Finnigan 'ignored' complaints about paedophile priest Gerald Ridsdale
In 1981, he took a phone call from concerned parents in Mortlake about Gerald Ridsdale.
Counsel Assisting Angus Steward read a statement from the parents.
"We said that the enquiry was related to the safety of our son," he read.
The royal commission on Friday released a report into Brothers John (Kostca) Chute and Gregory Sutton.
Chute pleaded guilty and was convicted in 2008 of 19 child sex offences against six of his former students between 1985 and 1989.
Bishop Brian Finnigan, Brisbane auxiliary bishop and former Ballarat vicar-general and bishop's secretary, told the parents in early 1981 he was not aware there was need for concern about priest Gerald Francis Ridsdale.
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse delivered its findings on the cases of Brother Chute, also known as Brother Kostka, and another Marist brother, Gregory Sutton, on Friday.
In 1981 a mother told Bishop Finnigan, who was then secretary to Ballarat Bishop Ronald Mulkearns, she was concerned about the safety of her son.
Bishop Finnigan told the woman there had been no other concerns raised about Ridsdale and did not organise for the woman to see Bishop Mulkearns, claiming it was up to her to take the matter further.
The report follows a public hearing held in Canberra last year which examined the response of the Marist Brothers to allegations of child sexual abuse in schools in the ACT, NSW and Queensland.
Thursday, 10 December 2015
Former Diocese of Ballarat priest Gerald Francis Ridsdale has been jailed for abusing 53 children, including victim BWA who he abused for two years.
Dr Kristine Hanscombe QC told the child abuse royal commission BWA initiated proceedings to get compensation shortly after Ridsdale was first convicted in 1993.
Australian army chaplain Monsignor Murphy dealt with sexual abuse allegations from 1993 to 1997 as the special issues committee convenor. He told the inquiry he “implicitly” trusted Bishop Ronald Mulkearns to pass complaints onto police.
“Did I have faith and trust that the Bishop would follow through with information I gave him, yes I did,” he said. "There was no indication to me that he was not passing on any material that he should pass on."
Fr Eric Bryant has told an inquiry he heard through the grapevine about possible child abuse issues involving Gerald Francis Ridsdale.
'I began to hear and suspect that he had interfered with young people,' he told the child abuse royal commission.
He said around the same time a parent told him they were great friends with Ridsdale, who is now in jail for abusing 53 children.
'I remember taking him aside and warning him to keep the children away from Ridsdale,' Fr Bryant said.
Abuse survivor Gordon Hill calls for Catholic Church to properly compensate victims, not offer apologies
Monsignor Glynn Murphy helped establish the church's Special Issues Committee in the 1990s, initially to help survivors of convicted paedophile priest Gerald Ridsdale. The committee also advised Ballarat Bishop Ronald Mulkearns on child sexual abuse and other issues. The committee members included police officer Paul Murnane, a retired magistrate and another priest who was a clinical psychologist.
A Catholic priest escaped immediate censure for trying to take a bath with a young boy because church leaders in Victoria did not want to arouse suspicion about him, the child abuse inquiry has been told.
In 1991 the archdiocese of Ballarat heard from a mother who complained that Paul David Ryan tried to have a bath with her youngest son when he was 12 or 13.
"I know Gerry Ridsdale's still got friends amongst the clergy who don't see the severity of what he has done," Fr Bryant told the child abuse royal commission.
Wednesday, 9 December 2015
A survivor, known as BWE, told a royal commission on Monday that he overheard then-Father Pell speaking to parish priest Father Frank Madden in the sacristy at St Patrick's Cathedral in Ballarat while he prepared to serve as an altar boy for a funeral mass in 1983. BWE said Father Madden had asked Father Pell 'How's everything your way?' and that he responded by saying, 'Ha ha I think Gerry's been rooting boys again'."
Two of former Ballarat bishop Ronald Mulkearns' consultors have accepted at least some responsibility for Gerald Francis Ridsdale and others being allowed to devastate so many lives.
The church, like a lot of male institutions, gave pedophiles a place to hide, Fr Eric Bryant told the child abuse royal commission on Wednesday.
Father Frank Madden was a member of a group of senior priests called the College of Consultors, which advised Ballarat Bishop Ronald Mulkearns on various appointments of priests within the diocese between 1979 and 1982.
“I remember him saying we have a problem with homosexuality and he referred to Ridsdale and what he’d done, but there was no discussion whatsoever,” he told the inquiry.
He told the hearing how he attempted to seek help from the Catholic Church after his younger brother BWG was brutally bashed and molested by disgraced brother Edward Dowlan in 1973.
His evidence sparked more allegations about Cardinal George Pell’s intricate knowledge of abuse at the school.
Former Ballarat diocese vicar-general and consultor Fr Frank Madden has told the child abuse royal commission he accepts some responsibility for Gerald Francis Ridsdale being moved between parishes and allowed to continue offending.
Tuesday, 8 December 2015
Mr O'Callaghan told then bishop Denis Hart, who later replaced Cardinal Pell as Melbourne archbishop, in May 1998 that Baker was likely to be charged with child sex offences, documents tendered to the child abuse royal commission show.
Graffiti scrawled in black paint across the windows and pillars of the Catholic Archdiocese building in East Melbourne said:"child molester Pell" and "put Pell in jail for cover up".
They were written on the Victorian County Court and a building belonging to the Melbourne Archdiocese.
Child abuse royal commission: Victoria Police admits 'Catholic mafia' covered up allegations of abuse
The former officer Denis Ryan told the royal commission into child sex abuse today that his colleagues conspired to cover up the priest's crimes in Mildura in the 1970s.
The commission was told a "Catholic mafia" operated in Victoria Police at the time and that the conspiracy went right to the top.
Miller said he was horrified by what he read in a book written by Ryan, which documented serial sex offences against children, and misconduct by police. "It was corruption at its highest, an absolute conspiracy...when you look at the abuse of justice". Hazel again said to us: 'He allows us to drive the auto.
The police and church protected pedophile Monsignor John Day, thwarting a 1971-1972 investigation by former Mildura policeman Denis Ryan, the child abuse royal commission has heard.
Mick Miller, chief commissioner from 1977 to 1987, says he did not know of the existence of a 'Catholic mafia', as described by Mr Ryan, comprising Catholic police officers who protected priests.
Abuse victim David Ridsdale claims Cardinal George Pell urged him to keep quiet in phone conversation
In 1983, the then rising priest in the Catholic Church was allegedly overheard making the comment to Father Frank Madden at St Patrick’s Cathedral in Ballarat a decade before Ridsdale was first charged.
A witness, identified only as BWE, yesterday told the commission he was an altar boy, aged about 12, when he overheard Fr Madden ask the visiting Fr Pell, “how’s everything down your way?”.
Australia: Australian Royal Commission Recommends Abolishing Limitation Periods Retrospectively - Reinsurers
Witness BWF said he went to see Cardinal Pell at a Ballarat presbytery in 1973 after learning Brother Edward Dowlan was beating and molesting his brother at St Patrick's College in Ballarat.
BWF said he went to see Cardinal Pell out of desperation after the school refused to take action to protect his brother.
Cardinal George Pell became angry at a boy who told him his brother had been beaten and sexually abused by a Christian Brother, an inquiry has heard.
Witness BWF went to see Pell, then a Ballarat priest, after finding out his brother BWG had been molested by Brother Edward Dowlan at Ballarat’s St Patrick’s College in 1973, the child abuse royal commission heard.
Mick Miller, the 1977-1987 chief commissioner, says he did not know of the existence of a Catholic mafia in Victoria Police which protected priests.
Witness BWF went to see Cardinal Pell, then a Ballarat priest, after finding out his brother BWG had been molested by Brother Edward Dowlan at Ballarat's St Patrick's College in 1973, the child abuse royal commission heard.
'I just blurted out to Pell that Dowlan had beaten and molested BWG and demanded to know what Pell was going to do about it. Pell became angry and yelled at me 'young man, how dare you knock on this door and make demands',' BWF told the commission.
Monday, 7 December 2015
Witness BWF will testify on Tuesday at the child abuse royal commission's inquiry into widespread abuse in Victoria's Ballarat diocese.
Mr BWF is expected to give evidence about a conversation he had with Cardinal Pell in the 1970s while he was a student at St Patrick's College in Ballarat, senior counsel assisting the commission Gail Furness SC said.
Pell is expected in Australia this month to face the child sexual abuse royal commission.
His presence here is a start, but it isn’t enough. Nothing less than the defrocking of Australia’s most senior church member will indicate the church is a fully reformed beast.
No one action can fully compensate victims, but the downfall of Pell — the third-most powerful Catholic in the Vatican — would bring a certain quiet satisfaction to many.
One of the big problems is that Pell continues to keep his head in the sand.
Hopes the government would, in line with the final recommendation of the child abuse royal commission, announce by year's end its backing of a $4.3 billion scheme are fading, principally because some states are reluctant to come on board.
The other is yet to indicate whether it will follow suit.
The Anglican Diocese of Brisbane is responsible for St Paul's School, which employed a paedophile music teacher for four years in the 1980s and a sexually abusive student counsellor a few years later.
Last month the diocese adopted a policy to refund the tuition and boarding fees of what's believed to be dozens of students from the Bald Hills school and any other confirmed cases of abuse under the diocese's control.
A victim's parents met with then Ballarat bishop Ronald Mulkearns in 1982, saying: "We've got big problems in Mortlake."
Cardinal Pell – who will appear at the child abuse royal commission in Melbourne next week – was widely criticised for supporting Ridsdale at his first court appearance for child sex offences in 1993. Cardinal Pell was also present at at least one meeting of senior priests which decided Ridsdale should be moved to another parish, but maintains he never knew children were being abused while he was in Ballarat.
In her opening address on Tuesday, counsel assisting the royal commission Gail Furness said Bishop Ronald Mulkearns remains subject to a summons to appear before the commission, but is receiving palliative care and is unfit to give evidence.
Child abuse royal commission: Cardinal George Pell told priest that Gerald Ridsdale was 'rooting boys again', inquiry told