Cardinal Pell at the Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry
From Catholic Communications, Sydney Archdiocese
Monday 27 May: Speaking to the six members of the Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry, a packed meeting room and overflow room for victims of abuse, support groups and media, Cardinal Pell said he was "fully apologetic and absolutely sorry" for victims of child sex abuse committed by priests or Church works.
"That is the basis for everything which I'll now say," Cardinal Pell said to the committee.
The Archbishop of Sydney was invited to appear before the Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into the handling of sex abuse allegations during the time he was Archbishop of Melbourne (1996-2001).
Originally scheduled from 1.30-3.30pm, the Cardinal's appearance, which was streamed live, ran to 6pm with a short recess called by the Chair of the Committee, Ms G Crozier.
Cardinal Pell said victims of abuse are and must be the Church's first priority. On a number of occasions he renewed his apology to victims and their families saying the terrible crimes carried out by convicted priest-paedophiles were appalling and reprehensible.
He said within 100 days of becoming Archbishop of Melbourne he established the Melbourne Response and the role of the Independent Commissioner to investigate complaints and make findings.
Cardinal Pell agreed past cases of sexual child abuse by priests had been very badly handled, there had been serious errors of judgement and added; "I don't think many of any persons in the leadership of the Catholic Church knew what an horrendous widespread mess we were sitting on."
Read full report at the Sydney Archdiocesan site
Cardinal Pell’s submission to the Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into the Handling of Child Abuse by Religious and Other Organisations has just been posted on the official website:
The specific links to the submission and appendix are:
Pell, Cardinal George, Archbishop, Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney (178.89 Kb)
Pell, Cardinal George_Appendix 1 (1.87 Mb)
Pell, Cardinal George_Appendix 2 (1.29 Mb)
Pell, Cardinal George_Appendix 3 (210.82 Kb)
Pell, Cardinal George_Appendix 4 (40.70 Kb)
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