RC hearing into Catholic Church in the Maitland-Newcastle region
The Royal Commission will hold a public hearing to inquire into the response of Catholic Church authorities in the Maitland-Newcastle region to allegations of child sexual abuse by clergy and religious. The hearing will commence on 29 August 2016 in Newcastle.
The inquiry will include the response of the Diocese to allegations against Father Vincent Ryan and the response of the Marist Brothers to allegations against Francis Cable (Brother Romuald) and Thomas Butler (Brother Patrick).
This week Fr Hans Zollner sj, President of the Commission for Child Protection at the Gregorian University in Rome, visited Ballarat to hear directly from victims and survivors. The Ballarat Courier reports survivors welcomed Fr Zollner's visit and acknowledged a lot has been done by the Church and that at some point we need to stop looking back and start looking forward. One survivor said some schools that had been the least safe were now the safest. These are encouraging words, coming from some of the strongest Ballarat advocates and give me some hope that the healing process, slow though it might be, is possible and that as more concrete measures are put in place victims and survivors can feel more confident that children are safer in Australian institutions including the Catholic Church.
TJHC mets with St Vincent De Paul council in Darwin
The TJHC met with 12 members of the St Vincent de Paul Society's National Council in Darwin recently to explore the general findings of the Royal Commission and to discuss the implications for church welfare organisations.
Speaking shortly after the meeting, TJHC CEO Francis Sullivan said delegates were particularly interested possible changes to the law and administrative and compliance regimes.
Ballarat abuse survivors see church moving forward
THE first Vatican representative to meet with clergy abuse survivors on Ballarat soil. Father Hans Zollner, has vowed to do all that is humanly possible to help move the city forward from its "evil" past.
Ballarat abuse survivor Andrew Collins, who met with Fr Zollner, said the meeting had assured survivors "there was really a lot being done by the church".
"(At some point) we need to stop looking back and look forward," Mr Collins said.