Cardinal Pell, top advisor to Pope Francis, found guilty of ‘historical sexual offenses’

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George Pell’s ripple effect

Driven by the realisations of the Catholic Church’s mischievous use of their “crimen sollicitationis“, Australian Cardinal Pell’s guilt to multiple charges of Child Sexual Abuse is having an immense impact. Beyond solely Catholic Churches, Religions in general hid behind the veil of ‘blessed impunity’. This has now been ripped away, in both recorded phallacies of Pell’s innocence and Charges through a Court system.

Searing Testimony Heard at Vatican Sex Abuse Summit

Pope Francis has warned bishops that the Catholic faithful are demanding more than just condemnation of clergy sex abuse but concrete action to respond to the scandal.

Feb 21, 2019.

Sex abuse survivor Alessandro Battaglia, right, is hugged by survivor and founding member of the ECA (Ending Clergy Abuse), Denise Buchanan, during a twilight vigil prayer near Castle Sant’ Angelo, in Rome, Thursday, Feb. 21, 2019. Pope Francis opened a landmark sex abuse prevention summit Thursday by warning senior Catholic figures that the faithful are demanding concrete action against predator priests and not just words of condemnation. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia) THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Sex abuse survivor Alessandro Battaglia, right, is hugged by survivor and founding member of the ECA (Ending Clergy Abuse), Denise Buchanan, during a twilight vigil prayer near Castle Sant’ Angelo, in Rome, Thursday, Feb. 21, 2019. Pope Francis opened a landmark sex abuse prevention summit Thursday by warning senior Catholic figures that the faithful are demanding concrete action against predator priests and not just words of condemnation. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia) THE ASSOCIATED PRESS


BY NICOLE WINFIELD, Associated Press

VATICAN CITY (AP) — The day began with an African woman telling an extraordinary gathering of Catholic leaders that her priestly rapist forced her to have three abortions over a dozen years after he started violating her at age 15. It ended with a Colombian cardinal warning them they could all face prison if they let such crimes go unpunished.

In between, Pope Francis began charting a new course for the Catholic Church to confront the “evil” of clergy sexual abuse and cover-up, a scandal that has consumed his papacy and threatens the credibility of the Catholic hierarchy at large.

Opening a first-ever Vatican summit on preventing abuse, Francis warned 190 bishops and religious superiors on Thursday that their flocks were demanding concrete action, not just words, to punish predator priests and keep children safe. He offered them 21 proposals to consider going forward, some of them obvious and easy to adopt, others requiring new laws.

But his main point in summoning the Catholic hierarchy to the Vatican for a four-day tutorial was to impress upon them that clergy sex abuse is not confined to the United States or Ireland, but is a global scourge that requires a concerted, global response.

“Listen to the cry of the young, who want justice,” Francis told the gathering. “The holy people of God are watching and expect not just simple and obvious condemnations, but efficient and concrete measures to be established.”

More than 30 years after the scandal first erupted in Ireland and Australia, and 20 years after it hit the U.S., bishops and Catholic officials in many parts of Europe, Latin America, Africa and Asia still either deny that clergy sex abuse exists in their regions or play down the problem.

Francis, the first Latin American pope, called the summit after he himself botched a well-known sex abuse cover-up case in Chile last year and the scandal reignited in the U.S.

The tone for the high stakes summit was set at the start, with victims from five continents — Europe, Africa, Asia, South America and North America — telling the bishops of the trauma of their abuse and the additional pain the church’s indifference caused them.

“You are the physicians of the soul and yet, with rare exceptions, you have been transformed — in some cases — into murderers of the soul, into murderers of the faith,” Chilean survivor Juan Carlos Cruz told the bishops in his videotaped testimony.

Other survivors were not identified, including the woman from Africa who said she was so young and trusting when her priest started raping her that she didn’t even know she was being abused.

“He gave me everything I wanted when I accepted to have sex; otherwise he would beat me,” she told the bishops. “I got pregnant three times and he made me have an abortion three times, quite simply because he did not want to use condoms or contraceptives.”

Manila Cardinal Luis Tagle choked up as he responded to their testimony.

In a moving meditation that followed the video testimony, Tagle told his brother bishops that the wounds they had inflicted on the faithful through their negligence and indifference to the sufferings of their flock recalled the wounds of Christ on the cross.

He demanded bishops and superiors no longer turn a blind eye to the harm caused by clergy who rape and molest the young.

“Our lack of response to the suffering of victims, yes even to the point of rejecting them and covering up the scandal to protect perpetrators and the institution, has injured our people,” Tagle said. The result, he said, had left a “deep wound in our relationship with those we are sent to serve.”

After he offered the bishops a vision of what a bishop should be, the Vatican’s onetime sex crimes prosecutor told them what a bishop should do. Archbishop Charles Scicluna delivered a step-by-step lesson Thursday on how to conduct an abuse investigation under canon law, repeatedly citing the example of Pope Benedict XVI, who turned the Vatican around on the issue two decades ago.

Calling for a conversion from a culture of silence to a “culture of disclosure,” Scicluna told bishops they should cooperate with civil law enforcement investigations and announce decisions about predators to their communities once cases have been decided.

He said victims had the right to seek damages from the church and that bishops should consider using lay experts to help guide them during abuse investigations.

The people of God “should come to know us as friends of their safety and that of their children and youth,” he said. “We will protect them at all cost. We will lay down our lives for the flocks entrusted to us.”

Finally, Scicluna warned them that it was a “grave sin” to withhold information from the Vatican about candidates for bishops — a reference to the recent scandal of the now-defrocked former American cardinal, Theodore McCarrick. It was apparently an open secret in some church circles that McCarrick slept with young seminarians. He was defrocked last week by Francis after a Vatican trial found credible reports that he abused minors as well as adults.

Francis, for his part, offered a path of reform going forward, handing out the 21 proposals for the church to consider.

He called for specific protocols to handle accusations against bishops, in yet another reference to the McCarrick scandal. He suggested protocols to govern the transfers of seminarians or priests to prevent predators from moving freely to unsuspecting communities.

One idea called for raising the minimum age for marriage to 16 while another suggested a basic handbook showing bishops how to investigate cases.

In the final speech of the day, Colombian Cardinal Rubén Salazar Gómez warned his brother bishops that they could face not only canonical sanctions but also imprisonment for a cover-up if they failed to properly deal with allegations.

Abuse and cover-up, he said, “is the distortion of the meaning of ministry, which converts it into a means to impose force, to violate the conscience and the bodies of the weakest.

Abuse survivors have turned out in droves in Rome to demand accountability and transparency from church leaders and assert that the time of sex abuse cover-ups is over.

“The question is this: Why should the church be allowed to handle the pedophile question? The question of pedophilia is not a question of religion, it is (a question of) crime,” Francesco Zanardi, head of the main victims advocacy group in Italy Rete L’Abuso, or Abuse Network, told a news conference in the Italian parliament.

Hours before the Vatican summit opened, activists in Poland pulled down a statue of a priest accused of sexually abusing minors. They said the stunt was to protest the failure of the Polish Catholic Church in resolving the problem of clergy sex abuse.

Video showed three men attaching a rope around the statue of the late Monsignor Henryk Jankowski in the northern city of Gdansk and pulling it to the ground in the dark. They then placed children’s underwear in one of the statue’s hands and a white lace church vestment worn by altar boys on the statue’s body. Jankowski is accused of molesting boys.

The private broadcaster TVN24 reported the three men were arrested.

Jankowski, who died in 2010, rose to prominence in the 1980s through his support for the pro-democracy Solidarity movement against Poland’s communist regime. World leaders including President George H.W. Bush and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher visited his church to recognize his anti-communist activity.

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More AP coverage of clergy sex abuse at https://www.apnews.com/Sexualabusebyclergy

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Retrieved: https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2019-02-21/pope-opens-sex-abuse-summit-amid-outcry-from-survivors

Vatican Summit

Justice has been elusive, throughout our world, amongst various Religions and Institutions. Recent news pieces on ABC news covered Vatican calls of the Catholic Church, in Coping with this International matter.

On one hand, it is relieving that the reality is becoming known, yet on the other the same bodies at the basis of these ordeals continue to be largely hidden away.

Timeless realisation

In something that’s been drummed home home: from both my own personal histories being restated, support gained from researching similar ordeals & simply speaking to a growing number of other CSA Survivours/Family members. None of us are alone!

As unique as what each of us may feel, in one part we are completely correct, while in another we’ve gained entry into one of the world’s most secret societies that money can’t buy. We’re individual AND part of something bigger than those not in, will ever realise. For something that seems oxymoronic to explain, once you’ve entered into you may feel like inviting in others who you’ve always had a suspicion of, but weren’t brave enough to take that leap.

To anyone who’s read this far, we thank you & welcome you if you wish to read some more. Authors & Writers of other posts, appearing throughout these pages, related Tweets & other Online responses have been of great boosts in enthusiasm. Thanks!

Pieces coming together

As devastating as dealing with any of these hard truths may be, together we’re taking ideas further than what had been publicly considered by the Royal Commission. In piecing the overlapping empty bits together, some common patterns or habits are becoming known. “Denial of Responsibility” seems alike another level of Authority distancing themselves from their involvement in the CSA happenings under their watch. None of which would’ve happened, had these positions been operating as they’ve now been notified. Interesting, how legal Damages may proceed?

Child Sexual Abuse and CALD Communities Education Program

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (2013–2017) identified Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) communities as a sub-group of Australia’s population that we know very little about. To help heed the call on building knowledge and capacity in the services sector, a cultural competency education program has been developed by Dr Pooja Sawrikar at Griffith University (p.sawrikar@griffith.edu.au). 

She will deliver the program in four cities:
• Brisbane: Monday 25 March 2019, 8.30-1pm,The Ship Inn at Southbank
• Sydney: Wednesday 27 March 2019, 8.30-1pm, Waldorf Parramatta Apartment Hotel
• Adelaide: Friday 29 March 2019, 8.30-1pm, Sage Hotel
• Melbourne: Wednesday 3 April 2019, 8.30-1pm, Melbourne Metropole Central

Please register by the date of presentation in each city. The cost is $65 p.p. and coffee/tea on arrival, morning tea, and lunch will be provided. The program is primarily designed for service providers in sexual assault and domestic violence organisations (such as counselors, social workers, and psychologists), however GPs, psychiatrists, and relevant program trainers, researchers, and policy-makers are also invited to attend as the content is relevant to their work.

CALD victims/survivors of child sexual abuse may not necessarily want a service provider who is of the same cultural background as themselves. Thus, all service providers need to be ready with knowledge about how best to understand and meet their needs, if and when they present at a service organisation. We look forward to meeting you as you take up this professional development opportunity.

Note: This program has been CPD endorsed by Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW), and will be listed on the Events websites of AASW, Australian Psychological Society (APS), and Australian Medical Association (AMA). As it is newly developed, attendees will be invited to complete a short voluntary survey that aims to evaluate it (GU HREC approval no. 2018/953). Funding support has been provided by the School of Human Services and Social Work. Please distribute this invitation widely through your networks.

Privacy Statement – Griffith University collects, stores, and uses personal information only for the purposes of administering university events and communication. The information collected will be handled in accordance with Griffith University’s Privacy Plan.


  • WHEN

  • Monday, March 25, 2019 – Wednesday, April 3, 2019
    8:30 AM – 1:00 PM
    AUS Eastern Time

  • WHERE

  • Brisbane (25 Mar), Sydney (27 Mar), Adelaide (29 Mar), Melbourne (3 Apr)
    Cnr Stanley & Sidon Sts Southbank (Bris)
    110-114 James Ruse Drive Rosehill (Syd)
    208 South Terrace (Adel)

REGISTER

Retrieved from http://events.griffith.edu.au/events/child-sexual-abuse-and-cald-communities-education-program/event-summary-760ffdd21dca4bef82f5248b09e43cc4.aspx