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Serious questions about the decency & culpability of the Catholic Church

Posted by: Neil Mitchell | 9 November, 2012 - 9:32 AM
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There are now deeply serious allegations and questions across much of Australia about the decency, morality and culpability of the Catholic Church.

This has now reached a point where it needs to be taken up a notch.

In Victoria, we know the Police believe the Church has deliberately frustrated attempts to investigate paedophile priests.

The Victoria Police made this point: if a child is abused by a stranger in a Church, the Police are called, but if a child is abused by a priest, it is covered up and the Police aren’t told.

Now in New South Wales, a senior Police officer alleges the same thing. He says there has been evidence destroyed, priests under suspicion protected and cover ups.

He says it reaches to very high levels in the Church, and when he started to get to the heart of the investigation he was taken off the case.

His name is Detective Chief Inspector Peter Fox, so he is no junior officer. This is some of what he told ABC television about the cover ups by the Church:

”The greatest frustration is that there is so much power and organisation behind the scenes that Police don’t have the powers to go in and seize documents and have them disclose things to us.”

”I have definite information of some covering up, certainly to a number of diocese bishops. It potentially goes even higher than that.”

Victoria Police say the same thing.

Now this is what is happening. In New South Wales, they say it is a matter for Police, and in Victoria we have a piddling little inquiry run by a few backbenchers in the parliament.

That is wrong. Deeply wrong.

It continues the appearance of cover ups. The politicians must be taken out of this. It must become a federal issue. It must become Julia Gillard’s problem.

We need judges overseeing this. We need full powers for those judges, not politicians, we need forensic examination of what has happened, who is culpable, and whether the Church is trying at all to fix this.

We need a Royal Commission, a Federal Commission, and that commission needs to subpoena and put on their stand everybody from Archbishop George Pell down.

We need these people in the box, under oath, questioned by skilled barristers. Nowhere to hide or evade.

No moral authority, just simple truth is what we want. This must be done now.

It covers more than half the country, it needs to be federal. The state governments have proved they are not up for it.

We have had Royal Commissions, Federal Royal Commissions on grain storage, insurance and rental of accommodation.

This is far more important. This demands a Federal Royal Commission with full powers to establish the extent of the conspiracy to cover up.

This is now Julia Gillard’s problem and this gives her a chance to show strong leadership. She is keen to protect women and stand up for women.

Fair enough. It’s time to stand up for the kids.

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Blog comments Your Say

  • Neil Mitchell , your words "the Police arenâ??t told." about child abuse by priests says a lot, but sadly, about the bad advice the victims seem to be given by the organisations that are supposed to be fighting for them. I think that the Police and the Church should both be involved when it comes to religious paedophiles, preferably the police first. When no action seems to be taken, or done very slowly when the Church is contacted first, why, in seemingly a lot of cases, don't the victims then go down the road to the Police station to report the crime, and see the judicial side of justice move faster than the religious? The answer came a few days ago when a spokesman for Broken rites when asked about the secrecy of the confessional said that it was a non-issue. "The real issue is when victims or their families complain about abuse, the church authorities fail to arrange an interview between the victim and police." WE WANT TO REPORT A CRIME
    BUT THOSE CONNECTED WITH THE CRIMINAL WON'T COME TO THE POLICE STATION TO INTRODUCE US, SO WE CAN"T REPORT THE CRIME! Get real!! No, not you Mitchell, Broken Rites.

    John of Sydney Friday 16 November, 2012 - 8:23 PM
  • I can't believe the number of peope who are defending the catholic church and these filthy priests and the hierachy that are still covering it up.

    Willow Monday 12 November, 2012 - 11:52 AM
  • Mitchell's Usual anti-Catholic Bias, the ones who are anti-Catholic are the paedophiles within the Church hierarchy. At least, in terms of breaching the teachings of the Church's founder.

    Ajax Monday 12 November, 2012 - 10:40 AM
  • I want every single paedophile to be brought forward - the government and all its institutions they covered up, orphanages, aborigines -- open the lid on ALL of it, not just the catholic church. Disgraceful through the years, every one knew but no one said a word --- Hypocrites..

    cherry Monday 12 November, 2012 - 8:12 AM
  • I do not understand where some Police Officers get their facts from. It has been extreme media attention lately ,including a Senior detective interview : That every time members of the force moved in on these pedophiles They were told by higher authorities to surrender files and move on
    This could only come from the Government.
    ]Judges even stopped proceedings declaring it was not in the public interest Some people have long memories

    Dominic Lombardo Monday 12 November, 2012 - 6:47 AM
  • For those defending the paedophile priests and brothers you are pigs for those that actually believe in a god of any religion you are illogical fools.

    Cheryl Friday 9 November, 2012 - 9:40 PM

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