Yesterday, people from across the Diocese and local community attended two information sessions held by CEO of the Truth Justice and Healing Council – Francis Sullivan, at the diocesan offices in Newcastle West. The sessions were an opportunity to discuss issues related to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
Attendees at the sessions, which included clergy, religious, staff from diocesan agencies, teachers, parishioners, survivors of sexual abuse, members of the media and the public, listened intently as Francis outlined the prevalence of child sexual abuse within the Australian Catholic Church and the commitment of the Truth Justice and Healing Council to address the problems. Francis' blunt, honest assessment of the Church's failures left many in the audience stunned.
You can download a Commitment Statement from Leaders of the Catholic Church in Australia, which was handed to attendees of the information sessions, which outlines a number of reform proposals as well as acknowledgements by Church leaders.
* WARNING: This video features conversations about incidents of child sexual abuse. If you are distressed, please phone CatholicCare’s Counselling team on 4979 1172. For urgent assistance, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14.
In The Media
- Whilst visiting the diocese, Francis featured in a short interview with NBN Television.
- Religious leaders should "get with the program" (The Newcastle Herald)